Forget about what your mother told you because times have changed and fashion dos and don'ts aren't nearly as clean cut as they once were. After all, isn't fashion at its most interesting when people get creative and break the rules? Here are 10 fashion rules worth breaking.
Double denim from Derek Lam, S/S 2011; Mixing bright colors at Krizia, S/S 2011; Winter white from Francesco Scognamiglio, F/W 2011-2012. Images: IMAXtree
1. No white after Labor Day
If the 2011 Fall/Winter shows showed us anything, it's that white — even head-to-toe white — is completely acceptable after September.
2. If you’re tall, avoid heels
For most women, wearing heels isn’t first and foremost about being taller, it’s about making their legs look better. Don’t sacrifice the look of longer, leaner legs just because you’re tall; embrace your height and never slouch!
3. No belts or empire waists if you're pregnant
Not every woman wants to show off her baby bump, but for those that do, there's nothing more beautiful than showing off the female figure at its best with a belt or empire waist.
4. No mixing of black and blue
The reason these two shades often get a bad rap when worn together is because they’re so close in hue that one might wonder whether the pairing was accidental or intentional. Play up the slight contrast with a third contrasting color (think white), and this won’t be an issue.
5. No suede in the summer
As long as it's limited to a single piece, preferably in a bright color, or an accessory, suede can look perfectly appropriate in warm weather.
6. No mixing of gold and silver
A steadfast rule for years, this one has finally loosened up. An easy way to combine the two metals is by wearing stacked, slender bangles or by layering necklaces as a base. Once your jewelry is in place, it will look more natural if you, for example, pair a gold clutch with silver pumps.
7. Horizontal stripes and large prints will make you look larger
Eyes will naturally be drawn to the area where you are wearing large prints or horizontal stripes, so don’t wear them in places where you're trying to minimize attention. An easy way to do this is to cover the printed/striped top with a blazer, or opt for accessories with large prints/stripes.
8. Never mix bright colors
Wearing lots of brights can easily go sour, but not if you keep the look simple by opting for a bright, color-blocked outfit.
9. Sparkle is only for after-dark looks
Don’t deny yourself the pleasure of a little sparkle by day. An easy way to work some glam into your day-to-day office look is by pairing a glimmering top with a simple blazer and tailored trousers or a sequin-accented pencil skirt with a plain top. The key is for everything other than the sparkle piece to be a basic.
10. Never opt for denim-on-denim
Head-to-toe denim looks were a major spring/summer 2011 trend and one thing learned from Derek Lam’s collection in particular is that the look can be incredibly sophisticated as long as you have contrasting fits (i.e. loose trousers with a fitted top). Another viable route is opting for white or black jeans paired with a top made out of denim with an interesting wash.