Saturday, February 11, 2012

Black & brown

Photo credit: Pinterest 

I found this picture floating around pinterest, and I wish I could find the original source. Please leave me a comment if you know. Thank you! This outfit is gorgeous, totally wearable, simple, and you probably already have the components in your closet. It also proves the point that you can definitely wear brown and black together - it's all in how you put them together. The same concepts apply to blue & navy, which have been verboten for seemingly ever.

Why is she so cute?
  • Intention - This looks put together because it looks like she thought about it and planned it out. Brown and black get a bad rap because it can look like you got dressed in the dark if your entire outfit is black except your shoes, which are brown. However, if you repeat the same brown in the form of a belt, necklace, blazer, cardigan, or even a handbag, it shows that you did it on purpose, and it ties it together. And I love the color combination, especially with tortoiseshell or multi-shaded brown wood jewelry - without the heavy glasses, you could totally rock some big earrings or a big necklace.
  • Tone - There are a lot of different shades of brown, and this outfit would not work as well if you didn't match the tone. For example, if the boots were a warm nutty brown like here, but the belt was a cool dark umber. In this same outfit, you might be able to get away with two different shades of blue shoes and belt, for example. But I don't think that would work as well with brown. 
  • Color balance - The black of the dress is repeated in her glasses, and in the dark color of her hair. Her legs are bare, which balances the tone of her face and neck. And the warm brown accent color is repeated both above and below the waist. This balances things out.
  • Fit - The dress is cut somewhat loosely, and the belt creates a waistline and a blousing effect. She is very slender, but any body type could wear this. Just try to keep it a little loose and blousy to get the same look. You could even wear a black top and black skirt instead of a dress.
  • Horizontal lines - The hem of her dress is a little short for me, but with knee boots the hem of your skirt should land above the knee or you risk looking like a flashback to the 70s.  If you were wearing brown pumps or flats with this outfit, your hem could land right below the knee. But unless you have stick straight legs, don't let the hem cut you off directly at the knee, or at the wide part of your calf. Frump-a-dump.

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