Tuesday, March 15, 2011

How to Embrace the Color Blocking Trend

1. Jill Sander Spring 2011 RTW, 2. Louis Vuitton Spring 2011 RTW, 3. Gucci Spring 2011 RTW
Photos from www.style.com
Color blocking is a big trend for spring and summer as seen all over the Spring 2011 Ready to Wear runways! I suspect it will carry on right through the fall and winter months too! I'm not at all surprised, since many of us have been doing very basic color blocking ever since tights replaced panty hose as the main staple of winter fashion! Every time you throw on a blue shift with black tights, you're color blocking on a minor scale and you may have never known it!
Classic old school color blocking is coming back and it's bigger and brighter than ever! This trend is so simple, when aware of a few simple rules and it can be embraced on any budget, no matter how small! If you regularly have solid color separates in your wardrobe, it may not be necessary for you to spend any money at all to rock this trend!
Here are a few small rules to help make this trend oh so easy:
1. Keep textures to a minimum when color blocking. Too many colors alongside big ruffles, sequins or other textures might be just too much going on. If you must wear something textural, wear it on top.
2. For my taste, gold jewelry and accents are key to this trend. Color blocking just looks better with gold than it does with silver, though fashion is all about taking risks so it's your choice.

3. If you're not adventurous, or swear you look bad in color, try doing this trend with black & white, black & camel or camel & white.
4. If you're worried about a color flushing you out, wear that color on the bottom with shoes or pants and choose a more flattering color, black or white for the top.
5. Unless the combo is fairly simple (i.e. only 2 colors) keep jewelry and accessories simple. However, with the right look, this is a good chance to wear the funky jewelry you've been splurging on all year! Big turquoise jewelry or any other bold color will look especially fabulous with black & white or white & camel combos.
6. When wearing colored shoes as part of the ensemble, find shoes that are as rich in color as possible. This often has to do with the material they are made of. I find that suede and patent leather tend to be more vibrant than other materials and work best for this trend.
Let's start with the basics, shall we? If you're unsure of this trend, go simple. Invest in one of the many pieces available in stores right now that are already color blocked and pair with basics and simple jewelry. You don't have to be outlandish to wear this trend. The look below pairs a color blocked red & black top with all black and gold basics and a pair of red sunnies. Simple, right?

If you're a little more adventurous, but still unsure go for a 3 color look using black, white and a bright color. Still not too bold or difficult, but a little more fun! I think this is super chic and always appropriate! The ensemble below pairs classic black, white and yellow! Mix it up even further by wearing bright shoes and carrying a white clutch.

For those who feel even more adventurous, the next look is super easy to put together. I have paired 3 colors using a bright turquoise pair of shorts with a white top and accessorizing with all yellow.

Nude shoes are HUGE for spring and summer and they work so well with a lot of color blocking looks! This next look is super easy as well. Go for 2 colors, using one bold color like red and one lighter color like a pale yellow. Accessorize with nude shoes and gold jewelry, but don't be afraid of bright colored shades or a fun bag!

Bold on bold is not for the faint of heart! I think it can be difficult to pull off without looking like you're wearing a costume from Punky Brewster or Breakin II: Electric Boogaloo. However, this look can be super cute and fun for spring or summer. Pick 2 bold colors that compliment each other or are in the same family and mix it up. I would suggest green/orange, blue/red, yellow/blue or tuquoise/orange. The following works well too, using fuschia and purple and it's toned down a little by using different shades of the 2 colors. Notice the pants and scarf are a little lighter than the earrings or the shoes. Another way to break up the brightness would be to take a cue from Gucci Spring 2011 RTW and use gold as a separator with shoes, wide belts and jewelry.

For the extreme fashion forward, go all out! I recommend sticking to colors that are either true jewel tones or pastels, but not mixing the two when using this many shades. It's important that all the colors look like they came from the same section of the crayon box. When going this drastic with color blocking, it is definitely wise to keep your jewelry very small and basic. It's also important that the pieces you use are basic separates! The colors have enough going on, so having ruffles, embroidery or too much detailing of any kind would be extremely distracting and over the top.

I am super obsessed with this look! I've already invested in a bright orange bag and a pair of coral ballet flats for the spring! I'm on the look out for some bright trousers, shorts and skirts as well and I'm dying for heels in bright blue and some bright yellow espadrilles!

What do you think? Will you be color blocking this spring?

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  1. Nice article. The pictures were inspring.

  2. LOVE!
    I can say no more!

    Mrs. Kindergarten

  3. Love it! Now where's the best place to shop for "color-blocking-clothes" in London!?

  4. Such a fun post. I will definitely be color blocking. In fact, I would call myself a color block and tackle. :)

  5. great post! come visit mine :) and become a follower :)


  6. I have never tried color blocking before. I was more of a black-white girl, but after reading your tips I'm definitely upgrading my closet. Will try first the same color pastel look.


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