There is “being stylish” and there is “being over-done." Don’t be confused, it is a very fine line, and crossing it will easily put you on the worst dressed list all over town. Commoners and celebrities alike have pushed the boundaries of mixing bold patterns over and over again, but few have gotten it right. How do you create a foolproof ensemble while trying to capture runway style? Here are a few tips for making that crazy look work.
Let’s dive right in with a big "don’t." Too many things, too little time. Oh, Anne Hathaway, you are truly a fashion icon of late, but this outfit has taken you to a cha-cha land full of stripes and polka dots! I see what you were trying to do. You are in Rio and you want to dress “native," but this look just isn’t working on you. Not only are there a bunch of patterns going on here (totally fine), it is the overload of different silhouettes that has pushed it just too far. There are ruffles on the pants, a belly shirt, a bold necklace…I could go on and on and on (just as her outfit does).
Bob Charlotte / PR Photos
And then the “do.” Whitney Port is not only a stylish young lady, but also a designer. This outfit may be quite bold (look at those stripes), but she manages to make it feminine and fun. There are only two major pieces going on here: stripes on top, florals on the bottom. Simple and sweet. Keeping it to only two competing factors allows the look to flow only the way a runway look can. Mixing bold patterns is certainly not for the faint of heart. You really have to own the concept, and know that you are pushing the envelope no matter how you do it. Whitney’s look works because one print is very bold, while the other is soft and almost working as a backdrop. You obviously notice the blazer first.
Janet Mayer / PR Photos
If you are not ready for the full plunge, try one piece that creates a mixed combo for you. This Sonia Rykiel dress is the perfect option for first timers. It has everything in one. Lots of pattern, lots of fun. By breaking up the two patterns with a black bow, Rykiel has created a less complicated choice. Bold, but not over the top.
Sonia By Sonia Rykiel Knitted Top With Spots, $152.41
So don't be afraid of pushing your own fashion envelope! Remember, you are the captain of your own style ship, and therefore in charge of how far out to sea you go. Have faith in yourself and mix those bold patterns!