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Monday, August 29, 2011

How Do I Wear This? - Too much black in my wardrobe

Dear Pulling It Together,
I've noticed that my wardrobe has a lot of black. I do love color, but for some reason I just migrate to the black section when out shopping for clothes. I hear it's slimming! Could you give me some ideas on how to add colors to an outfit where I'm wearing a black top & black slacks?
Great question!  I think I can try to assist you with that dilema that we ALL have faced at one point or another.  I have Pulled Together 7 outfit ideas that will get you out of your blah black mode everyday of the week.  Hopefully there are enough tips here that can help you start mixing up your black wardrobe, take it from Blah to Beautiful and Pull It Together!   
The black base outfit on the left needs life! The pieces to the right are mix and match pieces that can easily and affordably liven up an entire outfit with some or all of the pieces. The key in this set is to repeat the reflective metallic accessories and do one solid bright pop of color in a single larger piece.
In this set I have paired a fantastic black and graphite pearl accented ensemble with the soft pastel of the Orchid Hush cardigan.  Take the pearlescent side of black to transition your solid black outfit into some black with shine and depth.  I love the idea of mixing the black outfit with the upcoming fall color of Orchid Hush with black and black pearls. 
This black base outfit is trousers and the open front cardigan. The ruffled gray blouse lightens up the black and then the white stilettos with black flower carved heels brings the whole look together. I have inserted a pop of color with the deep coral briefcase and belt to tie the look together and bring in a but of color.  This fantastic colored belt is fun and affordable at H&M stores near you.  I have one myself and love it!!!
Dressing up this black scoop neck top and the black slacks with a fantastically colorful patterned purse. This purse inspired the whole look of color bursts in solid colored pieces allowing the print to come from the bag. Adding texture to the look is easy when you have carved and uber beaded jewelry. The key is to pick a patterened accessory and then layer on the rest of your accessories in solid colors. If you can find jewelry that is ombre colored then it adds more dimension and visual interest to the solid color pieces.
Using a black top and slacks as the base or starting point, I added color inspired by these super cute plaid shoes in some fantastic summer colors. I added a solid colored open front cardigan to allow the ruffle details of the black blouse to cascaed through the colorful look. The orange handbag pulls out the citrus color from the plaid shoes and continues in touches through out the jewelry.  If you have black in your wardrobe already then go for the embellished pieces, anything that will broing texture to your look will be perfect with solid colored accent pieces like this cardigan and doesn't compete with the patterned accents like the shoes.
How do you pep up a black outfit? Wear a bright colored cami under a low cut or sheer blouse (allowing a hint of color to pop out) and repeat the color in accessories without going overboard. Then warm up the black with some golden brown and black shoe in an animal print. This brings in the warm golden tans so that you can repeat that color in a handbag and in your jewelry. Black is often thought to be slimming, and it is, but it's not about the lack of color, its the solid color and the way it's worn. Repeating a bright color in the key places moves the eye around and is just as (or more) slimming than the solid blah black from head to toe.
Wearing black is anything but boring when you engulf yourself in sparkles and rockstar glam accessories and accents.  I have added in a great purple leather jacket for layered warmth when needed and to bring out the edgy side in this look. I kept the classic black cropped trousers and accessorized with a fantastic teal leather bagthat is perfect for the office or your off time! The blouse is still black but far from blah being sheer with metallic pinstripes.  I kept the blouse layered over a simple black cami to stay cool but still provide coverage.  I chose to pair this look with a wedge for easy running to and from meetings and maybe even lunches.  I can't stay away from sparkling stones encrusting the fabulous Louboutin shoes.

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