Without Looking Juvenile!
Happy day, reader dear!
I pray your day is bright and breezy. Ours here have been grey, hot and sticky. But I’m hoping for some sunshine this week. If nothing else, I’ve got sunshine in my closet!
They say writers write the book they need to read. I certainly don’t think of myself as a writer (in the literary sense), but sometimes I blog what I need to read… Hence today’s post!
The other evening I stood in front of my open closet (Overtired = Not a good time to make decisions!) trying to hang up my ensemble (I am running with that word!) for the next day. Yes, I’m that nerd. I check my calendar and the weather–and hang up an outfit for the next day. I can always change my mind in the morning, but usually inertia wins and I wear what’s there. It’s easy and I don’t have to think about it! So what was my problem that evening? (Besides overtired?) Well, it was my capsule. I have a LOT of pink and blue in my closet, and everything was feeling too cute for an adult female. Or too old… You know, like in the ads for polyester pants, the pastel ones? Not my vibe!
You might call that a capsule fail, but it was a brain fail. The next morning, my (refreshed) brain was coming up with all sorts of outfits that worked. It was time to connect the dots and ask myself why these would work but the others felt too cute. Well, it came down to Value Contrast (and accessories). Because both dramatically change the feeling of an outfit!
What did I find? To keep the look from saccharine:
Look for Crisp Lines
Mid to light pink and light blue are often thought of as children’s colors, with the exception of men’s dress shirts. So what’s a woman to do when those colors rock her world and she still wants to look like an adult BUT not old-lady? Let’s take a lesson from the boys… Crisp lines and tailoring are our friends! (One of these days I will find my pink power suit.) In the meantime, these tailored trousers with the crisp crease down the front kept my combination from feeling to soft and sweet. That and…
Add(ing) Edgy Accessories
Or you can go dark…
White and black aren’t your only options! Dove grey and ivory work for light. Navy, charcoal, or even deep eggplant could be your dark! Both these outfits have a top and bottom of similar value, which is the reason I chose to add light and dark accessories to finish them off. That addition of light or dark helps…
Up the Value Contrast
Wearing light pink and light blue together are a sure recipe for a juvenile look. Especially if, like me, you are 5’3″ first thing in the morning when your spine is stretched loooooong after a good night’s sleep. AKA: Altitudinally Challenged. One way to lose the baby vibe is by upping the Value Contrast. Raise the contrast by wearing light with dark OR light with bright. (Or dark with bright!)
No, the pink shorts aren’t bright on their own, but that’s the thing about contrast… Contrast is relative. The pink looks brighter next to the soft blue blouse. The same effect occurs with the pleated skirt. It’s not nearly as dark as it appears here! It’s more blueberry than navy, but the contrast with the pale blush top makes the skirt look darker than it is.
Caveat: Because my coloring is 2N+1C, I do not normally wear multiple colors in an outfit. I usually pair one color with neutrals or wear color monochromatically. (Shades of one color: e.g. pink and red.) In the case of these two tops, they are so light in color that their blue or pink-ness is lost to the other color and they almost read neutral. Paired with another pale or matched with their own hue, their color would be more obvious.
How About You?
Are there color combinations you avoid because they make you feel juvenile? Or super-aged? Do you find yourself taking out pieces and putting them back because they don’t play well with others? It might be the impression those colors give you when paired… Have a poke about in your closet and let me know! I love to hear from you…