How to make It Work


The more you know the rules, the more you can break them.

This is one of my beliefs when it comes to fashion. The more you pay attention to fabric, fit, proportion — the more chic your details, silhouette, accessories — the more you can go wild with colors, patterns, or most any trend your little heart desires.

Consider the colors in this outfit and if each piece were a cheap fabric, ill-fitting, somehow felt dated. Maybe my skirt was too tight and you could see the lines of my underwear, the fabric thin and unlined. The cut of the jacket seemed awkward, too big or too small. The top was a stiff button-down or bore the logo from a 5K run.

Suddenly this color combo could look tragically early 90’s. I might look like one of those slightly-misguided confident people like Mindy Kahling’s character in The Office, Ugly Betty herself or Zooey on New Girl… that slightly socially awkward girl dressing a bit too close to Rainbow Bright or a kindergartner to be taking seriously in the working world.


Meanwhile here (at least in my humble opinion) blush, plum and emerald work together quite beautifully. Each in a soft luxurious fabric, fitted or flowing, feeling easy amidst the effortful color, without flashy accessories to push it over the top.

If you look at this thinking you could never pull it off, I’d argue you simply need to learn the rules to know how to break them. You can start here by watching this free video in my 3 Steps to Simplified Style series when it’s released next.

[ tank: american vintage // skirt: thrifted, paris // coat: american vintage // sandals: dsw // hat: street vendor, italy // photography: xenia udalova // location: amsterdam, netherlands ]

The principle, is that nice fit and fabric are the base upon which you can play with things like color and pattern with more mature success. In other words, the better you dress, the more you can get away with. (wink)

The goal, is dressing joyfully.

And I find the less you worry about the rules, the more empowered you are with the principles at your fingertips, the more fun it is to play with your style and rediscover the joy that comes from feeling beautiful …

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