Now, before I start, let me say that I am no fashion maven. Heck, I am likely even a fashion flunkie.
First tip (and this is one I actually *do* use) and can say it is quite nice. You need to find a neutral color that works for you. Black, dark navy, brown, cream, grey, the like. Find one that you think compliments you well, and declare that to be YOUR neutral color.
Okay, hang on — I lied. I don’t use this very well, as I have chosen both black and brown. So sue me. Black and brown are pretty much my staples for my wardrobe. Okay, so we’ve established that I’m a cheater. So be it.
Anyway, here are some great pieces to have in your wardrobe in YOUR neurtral (I actually do have several of these in both of my neutrals, and know that this is an area to keep working on):
And, then this was an idea that I heard elsewhere and embraced (kind of, anyway) — then try to find two colors that compliment you well, and that compliment each other when worn together. Make these your colors, and it will simplify your shopping.
For instance, I know when I go shopping, I can completely not even look at things that aren’t in the colors that I buy. I don’t even have to browse through anything red, yellow, or orange. Not even for a second. (Well — except I think I will buy red Crocs eventually, but that doesn’t really count.)
I know that when I am shopping, I’m basically looking for earthy colors. I am keeping my eye out basically only for black, brown, purple (on the deeper side of the color — sometimes almost jewel colored), and then green (usually more along the lines of an earthy green/olive green).
I do have to admit, I don’t wear purple and green together, so it doesn’t fit the rule. But, I get to cheat again because of having a couple of neutral colors, right? (Plus, I do cheat in that, as long as the tones are right, I wear black and brown clothes together — like a cute second hand brown jacket that looks good with a black shirt underneath, and then the black jacket I got for Christmas that looks good with a particular brown shirt I have.)
From your coordinating colors, I am told that it is good to have:
It’s also good to have a white shirt, or in my case, a couple, since I am very hard on shirts. (I swear it’s not a meal if I haven’t dropped food on myself.)
When you shop like this and have a wardrobe like this, then you don’t need too many pieces to have a large amount of outfit choices to choose from.
Oh…and if your shoe collection is like mine that consists mainly of tennis shoes and Crocs, make sure you pick up at least a few pairs of shoes that range from dressy to dress casual. Even some shoes that make jeans look better than just throwing on some tennis shoes.
And honestly, though I mostly wear my Crocs, I *do* actually have probably about 10 pairs of shoes, including a few different types of sandals, some Mary Jane type of shoes, some chunky dress shoes, flats, etc. Many of them I rarely wear, but they are all ones that I grab from time to time.
It may not be a surprise to share that I believe apart from Crocs and tennis shoes, ever pair of shoes I own are either brown or black.
I suppose I have put the cart before the horse here. I think I should have talked about clearing out your closet first, in order to take stock of what is right for you, and what needs to go.
This was originally posted on February 19, 2008.
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