Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Wear It Twice: Mixing Prints

Since the dawn of fashion, there have been rules. For every decade, and every season, there is a set of do’s and don’ts, and some are more strict than others. Although ‘individuality’ has been a trend for some years, never before have there been so few rules to follow when getting dressed.

One of the oldest fashion decrees is never to mix patterns and prints. Polka dots and stripes don’t go together, and neither do leopard and floral. Or so we once thought. Mixing up prints is not only doable, but trendy. And since dressing to the beat of your own drummer is also in, it’s a great way to create an outfit that no one else can match.

How to Mix Prints with Style by

There are, of course, a few rules to follow. These are actually more like tricks, since mixing prints is as much a science as an art. The idea is to flatter your shape and create a look that is easy on the eyes. Today I did a little window shopping to try out some of these fun and eclectic approaches.

I started with a beautiful multistrand necklace with a striped pattern in neutrals. The simple design has a great tribal or boho quality, but can also be played down, or even worked into a western theme. It has a lot of possibilities, so it’s perfect for this experiment.

One of the easiest tricks to print mixing is to pair small with big. Which goes on the top or bottom will depend on your shape, and which areas you want to draw the most attention to, or away from. Here I chose a patchwork A-line skirt, in white and navy stripes. It’s quite busy, so I topped it with a fitted blouse with big, bright flowers.

There’s already a lot going on in this outfit, so I played it safe with simple red slippers, rose stud earrings, and a brown bag with just a hint of subtle florals.

For the second outfit, I started with a gorgeous jacquard print dress in orangey-red and white. A simple nude shawl takes it from Sunday barbeque to drinks-on-the-patio. To balance the patterns, I used some fabulous Betsey Johnson wedges with black and gold stripes.

I chose simple earrings again, though much bigger. The red hoops pair up nicely with the dress print. A dark and subtle navy blue clutch ads an extra hint of color.

For a little more fun, I’ve decided to include an extra accessory to the mix. A wooden bead memory wire bracelet would look right at home with either outfit, or anywhere that the necklace could go.

For a handmade and vintage alternative, I found these similar looks on ArtFire:

Mixing Prints Collection

And here are my favorite Polyvore collages using some of my picks:

What kind of print or pattern would your wear with today’s necklace?

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1 comment:

  1. Jeans with anything is more me but I have to say I love what you put together.


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