A good friend, a real friend, a really good friend will always be brutally honest if you ask… or sometimes without your solicitation. Listen carefully to your friend if he or she responds poorly to your outfit or accessory mash-up. Odds are they are not “just jealous” or “judging” – they are trying to save you from embarrassing yourself and them. If they say something like, “That’s a crazy outfit, but I like it!” or, “What are you wearing? That’s kind of cute,” you are in the clear, but if they look in horror, start to blush, or say anything along the lines of, “Are you going out like that?” heed the advice and take a second look. I have outlined some potential pitfalls below.
Too much white/too much black: Too much of any color can be intense. Head to toe white can be very pretty for the right occasion, or it can make you look a little lumpy, bumpy, washed out, or like you belong in a hospital. You can totally do the all-white ensemble, but get a trusted second opinion and go with fabrics that don’t cling. All black can be professional and work appropriate, but if you consistently wear all black all day every day, that can begin to define you. Brighten up you doom and gloom with at least one pop of color.
Too many accessories: I know the feeling of wanting to wear all of your favorites, but less is more. Pick a focus accessory, like a necklace, and then add supportive pieces, pieces that are more delicate than your statement piece. Try not to do a chunky necklace with a stack of bracelets, chandelier earrings, and a floral headscarf. Then the only accessory you are missing is a crystal ball. And if you had a crystal ball, it would have told you to take off some of that jewelry.
Patterns: Patterns are great, but be mindful of how your makeup works with the clothing. If you are wearing bright makeup, make sure it doesn’t battle with your outfit. Also check your skin tone against the pattern in natural light. I once wore a black and white striped blazer in the dead of winter, and when pictures were posted of the event, I was so pale that I resembled Beetlejuice. That was not what I was going for.
Trends: The most popular but shortest lived trend will haunt you for years. That is my own advice to you. Feel free to quote it.
We’ve all tried to recreate Carrie Bradshaw’s style (all of us that are 30+), but it doesn’t always work – especially when you don’t have a beautiful pair of Manolos to ground you. Always ask a friend. They will tell you if you are a fashion genius or if you just look like a hot mess. You can also protect yourself by taking Coco Chanel’s advice and remove one accessory before leaving the house.
Do you have a fashion faux pas story you would like to share? Or a slice of advice? I would love to hear it! Tweet me @erinrovin.