Monday, 1 April 2013

Mixing Patterns for Spring 2013

Unconventional Choices

Closet Content Analysis: Mixing Prints & Patterns

NO THANKS?         NEED?          

One of the trends for Spring 2013 calls for floral prints. For the most part, florals have been a NO THANKS in my closet. At this moment, short of a few scarves, some of which were gifts, I do not have a single floral print item. And so, in order to complete this post, I appealed to friends and family who responded with similar laments, "I have no prints or florals in my closet!" Scarves tend to be the exception. Perhaps 2013 will see a change. 

The fact is that florals and prints in general do date a wardrobe. Solid is safe. 

Adding floral prints to my closet will be difficult. As I write this, I hear my brain saying, "It's not going to happen". Yet here I am, about to encourage you to do what I have no intention of doing.

If I don't even have floral prints in my closet, it's no surprise that I would have difficulty writing about mixing patterns, such as floral prints with stripes, stripes with geometric lines, or geometric lines with floral prints. However, perhaps this a NEED.

NEED?: Prints in my closet.

NEED?: To mix those prints in my closet.

In my email appeal for prints, artist Jan Corcoran sent me a photo of her favourite scarf. She bought it in the Minneapolis airport on her way to Saskatoon, Saskatchewan from the Miami Art Faire, December, 2012. She claims to "find some of my best buys, scarves, hats and gloves in airport kosks". The one you see here is  12"X72" long and is composed of 50% silk and 50% viscose weave. Similar to my closet choices, she chooses to wear it with t-shirts and jeans but claims it goes with everything. 

For spring 2013, what about floral jeans? 


Photo source for Alice & Olivia floral skinny jeans:

When I emailed Jan to tell her what I was going to write, she responded with, "Coloured jeans, yes; floral, no. I love the florals and if I had my daughter's figure, absolutely!" There, it has been written . . . those floral pants require a more youthful slim figure. Even though I am a size 6, I am more "hour glass" and so I do wear skinny pants, but would never consider a floral print . . . maybe a geometric print? Hmmm . . . maybe not.

But, back to my original intent for this post, that of mixing patterns. Here are some guidelines to apply to your closet contents.

If you have never mixed patterns before, choose two pieces with matching colour combinations. For example: Look back at the skinny pants and Jan's scarf - one piece in a yellow, blue, green and red combination on a white background and a second piece with predominantly the same colours. 

A third piece should be a base solid colour that is dominant in both pieces. Therefore, using Jan's scarf and the floral skinny pants, I immediately see blue as the colour for the top. For some of us who are a bit more self-conscious, make that a top that covers the butt.

Experiment by changing the base colour as your third piece or for your accessories. Essentially what you are doing is combining pattern mixing and colour blocking. I personally wouldn't have a blue top, red shoes and a yellow purse . . . that begins looking clown-like in my estimation. Without ever having done this, I propose that my purse and shoes would be neutral in beige tones, browns or black.

This is definitely a post that needs your input!

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