My updated style moniker is “cactus in bloom”, with adjectives colorful, glamorous, thriving, competent and a little bit dangerous. But what makes an outfit “say” dangerous?

Actually, “dangerous” is one of the softer adjectives that resonate with me right now. I’ve looked up words like intimidating, fierce, tough- and then tried to convince myself that the definitions are stronger than I really mean. But if I’m honest, I DO want to project a hint of that kind of power. An iron fist in a velvet glove- with a quiet emphasis on the iron. Sharp spines not quite overshadowed by the flower.

The colorful, competent adjectives are easy for me to express. The dangerous part is not. (I cringed when I told new coworkers that I used to teach in public schools and they assumed I was a kindergarten teacher. Kindergarten teachers are brilliantly talented heroes! But I taught 9th and 10th grade in very difficult schools, and that requires a different kind of toughness. I loved it and was great at it.)

Any suggestions for ramping up the fierce in my style?