Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Pattern Mixing for the Squeamish

This outfit elicited a dramatic response from one of my coworkers today. 
A sharp intake of breath, followed by, "I could NEVER do that." She looked like she was going to hurl or something, ha!

  • Top - Old Navy, swap from Patti; first worn here in July with cerulean
  • Skirt - Savvie; last seen here in May with tomato red
  • Shoes - Half Truth Veda, Fluevog; last worn here a couple of weeks ago with Etro

She meant the pattern mixing. Some of the pattern mixing I see on the interwebz is too much for me - I need to have some colours in common. I need a little matchy!

The trick (I told her) is take a busy pattern, like this top, and then put it with a non-busy, two-colour larger pattern, like this skirt.
Make sure you have at least one colour in common, preferably a neutral. In this case, it's white in both the skirt and the top. The green in the skirt doesn't quite match the green in the top's pattern, but it's close enough. It doesn't match, but it goes.

The stuff:
I tied the black of the shirt with the black shoes - I like a top-to-bottom coherent look. Bookended, if you will.

Round bling:
Then I pulled out a few of the colours in the top as accessories. You can see that I also did a red camisole under the top (it has open split sides).

  • Earrings - Plum
  • Lapis lazuli ring - Wendy Brandes

And voila! I pointed out to my coworker how she could have swapped out her plain skirt for a patterned one that would go with her floral top and she totally got it. That was cool.


  1. Yeah, I love to see those Aha! moments. Great lesson, Sheila. I'm glad she didn't hurl though. If she had, it would have been a hurl of happiness.

  2. That's a lovely clash of patterns & colors, Sheila(great story too)!

  3. oh I love this. I would not have created this outfit on my own but now I want to wear it head to toe. You are a fashion goddess. xox

  4. It's impressive that you took a comment that some might be offended at as an invitation to teach your coworker about the theory behind your pattern mixing! I'm impressed with your demeanor :)

  5. I think it looks great! I love that you're challenging your coworkers at the same time. Fashion isn't fun unless you challenge perceptions once in awhile.

  6. I love to read about when you get comments from your co workers, as I get none.
    Pattern mixing is something I still struggle with, but I keep on trying.


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