Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Where to begin: building an outfit

A new day!  Full of a renewed energy, I hop out of bed and creep down the hall to my wardrobe.  Opening the doors I peer into the sea of colors and fabrics, searching for a stronghold:  Anything catch your eye Linds?  What's inspiring today?  What on earth can I wear???

Building an outfit can be a daunting task.   I work in clothing retail so I constantly find myself struggling over what to put together at 5 in the morning that will reflect some semblance of apparent knowledge of the industry I work in.  When I think ahead I pull things together the night or days before, but its not always that organized of a production.  I could speak at lengths about organizing your closet for easy decision making, but that will be a subject for a later post.

From what I've found, on days that I really want to have a put together outfit (not the days that I throw
on leggings and oversized cat shirts and eat pop tarts in bed), I find myself gravitating toward a singular piece.  It might be an interesting pattern, a particular fabric, or something more necessity based, i.e. its freezing outside so lets go for pants please, anything involving pants!!!

This is usually the best way to begin.  Start with that must have piece that you want to wear that day.  Let's say that I started with this skirt from last week's Ootd.

Now that it's been decided, I'll start looking for what else will go with the skirt.  Going off of the colors in the floral print, I could go with something white/cream, something pink, green, possibly even goldenrod (maybe), or pretty much any neutral.   Here are some options I came up with for tops:

Simple, singular graphics like the bunny or cat above will work, as well as textured/printed monochromatic pieces like the white crochet.  But with such a strong base patterned skirt, I would stay away from most patterns like these that may cause just too much chaos:

Okay!  now I've got my top + bottom.  The next step is pulling the look together with shoes and other accessories.  Because I've chosen a top that also has a significant amount of detail, I don't want to go too over the top with the rest of my accessory choices.  I might pick this longer, simple necklace for the negative space around the collar, and finish it off with solid black leggings and black lace-up combat boots.

If you were to go the route with the grey tee, you could certainly choose some creative accessories, like this sun hat and bird necklace, or a more ornate necklace and a shawl.

There's not really a particular limit to how many accessories to wear (that I know of), but I usually try not to over do it or mix too many different styles together ( i.e. crochet shirt + floral skirt + polka dot tights + cat hat + deer necklace = sensory overload!!!).  Perhaps I will devote an entire post to the finer points of accessorizing, but for now this is a basic method to creating a pulled together look.
So there you have it.  A simple walk-through of putting together an outfit.  Obviously every styling adventure has its challenges, but hopefully this can serve as some sort of inspiration!  Whenever I get stressed out trying to get dressed I try to adhere to this idea of starting with a single piece and walking through it slowly.

- The Lovely Red Fox

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