How To Wear Color In Spring 2014
After Fashion Week last fall, the Internet buzzed about what will be hot for Spring ’14. If you are like me, in September, you are still focusing on what will keep you hot (warm) as the leaves fall. But alas! It is January and today is 50 degrees and I’m starting to think about Spring 2014! Keeping up with trends each year can be tough (especially here in the Midwest) so I wanted to dive into what you should and actually could wear this spring.
Each spring, the trends vary some, but the style stays the same. Yep, colors will get more attention. Yep, there will be florals. Yep, there will be shorter hemlines. This spring, the fabrics are getting more attention. We saw a lot of artistic expression on the runway last fall – even Aquilano Rimondi printing Gauguin onto skirts. I loved the geometric shapes by Caroline Herrera & Chanel, but it makes me ask, “Will I really wear that?”
The answer is no.
What will you actually wear? An artistically inspired t-shirt.
Instead of a chiffon dress with 3D flowers on it, wear a simple flower crown.
Certainly be more outgoing in your wardrobe this spring. However, retro striped tube socks with a dress? I don’t think so. Mix a cute pair of tennis shoes into your ensemble, or a cute ball cap.
So, what can you actually wear this spring? COLOR! Tons of it. Wear it all over. Just go for it! Pantone named their color of the year Radiant Orchid, with others following up such as Cayenne, Celosia Orange, Freesia, Placid Blue and Hemlock. But what do those words mean??
Well basically, the color of the year is purple and there are also some accent colors like orange, pink, yellow, green and neutrals. See? Doesn’t sound that bad now, huh?
Let’s start with the color of the year: Radiant Orchid and its sister Violet Tulip. Sounds sweet enough.
Here in this wonderful graphic I made via polyvore you can see lots of THE purple. There is some Orchid and there is some Tulip. How can you tell them apart? Sometimes you can’t. I paired this Orla Kiely Wool Twill Jacket (3/4 sleeve- perfect for spring) with a pair of dark denim and Nike trainers. See! You can mix that new “sporty” trend into your wardrobe. By adding a light purple bracelet/earrings by Kate Spade, and this navy bargain bag you complete the look. Now, without looking like the purple people eater, you can spend your whole Saturday running errands looking chic as ever.
Note: Purple is one of those colors that works on about anyone. Play up the purple ‘fit with nude lips, and dark eyes.
Next, Celosia Orange & Cayenne.
When I first heard these colors I thought, “Hmm, I think I have a tea with that name,” which led me to this English tea party ensemble. (My brain is very obvious sometimes)
One of my absolute favorite design houses, Burberry, came out with this adorable print ”English Tiled Lace”. I didn’t think one item was enough, so I happily tucked the shirt into the pencil skirt just like Cara D wore it down the runway. Still a little confused about the color “Cayenne” and trying to oppress my feelings for how terrible I look in orange, I wanted to subtly bring the orange into the look with accessories such as this watch by Michael Kors, and with this bag by Posh Spice. Something about just using a clutch is so ladylike I can barely handle it. Keeping on the whole lady drinking tea vibe, I brought in a neutral shoe (sand) according to Pantone and Vince. Topped off with a flower crown which is available in just about every boutique across town.
Note: the model has tan skin and warm hues in her hair. If you are pink & pale skinned like me, stay away from orange by your face.
Okay, let’s see here. Let’s move onto Freesia & Hemlock!
Started off with a yellow midi skirt by Antonio Marras. This longer-length skirt was very popular on the runway last fall and I felt to keep things young, we should wear a cropped neoprene something or other. This crop in particular by Alexander Wang is reminiscent of Pantone’s Paloma, so it felt appropriate. I brought it the Hemlock (mint green color) with shoes by Steve Madden, optics by Wildfox, and the ever sought after Birkin bag. I know, not realistic, but it serves as inspiration when you find the similar one at Aldo in the mall. Wear this look out to lunch with friends, brunch, or basically anywhere they serve mimosas.
Note: This bold yellow is hard to wear, especially for a blonde woman with a blonde face. By using a cool neutral like gray to act as a middle man between the yellow and your face you prevent something I call “convenient store bathroom face”. If you aren’t feeling so daring a pastel yellow will be a lot easier to wear day to day.
Now to my favorite color pallette: Placid Blue & Dazzling Blue
As a stylist, I am a firm believer in figuring out your colors and sticking to them. I am real big into the blues & greens so I felt very inspired by these two Pantone choices. I knew I couldn’t do a post about Spring fashion without including the wide leg pant. Pictured is a pair of blue wide leg pants made out of vintage cotton by Balmain. (Just typing that made me smile..) I love the ice blue & big bow in this top from Prabal Gurung elegantly sitting on top of these pants hiding any mistakes from the low rise fit. Throwing in some of the Dazzle with pointy toe shoes (Modcloth), and YSL bag add bookends to this look. Finishing off with a sand colored bracelet and timepiece as to not take away from all the glory that is an all blue ensemble. Wear this to work if you are a creative type, a teacher, or if you sell real estate.
Note: Blue looks amazing on everyone. Wear it all the time. It’s also calming, and makes others feel peaceful around you.
Last but not least, the final outfit inspiration! What if you want to mix some of the colors of 2014, the trends of 2014, but you don’t want to look like you even thought about it? I have your solution.
Yeah, all your friends will be jealous. And isn’t that the point of this anyway? Starting off with this artistically designed violet floral tee shirt knocks out three spring trend birds with one stone if you know what I mean. (Tee by Dorothy Perkins). Tuck it into a pair of Cayenne inspired slacks by Marni, strap on that matching violet watch you got for a steal from Zappos.com, slip on a pair of Sand ankle booties (remember from last year?), grab that Alexander Wang minty cross body bag, and head out the door! Wait, check your hair first when was the last time you washed it? No fear! Pull on this cuuuute cap from J.Crew, and throw on your tortoise shades! Phew, that was a close one.
Note: Wearing ball caps with sports logos are the best way, and the worst way in some cases, to get unsolicited talk from the guy behind you at Starbucks. Be prepared especially if the team you are sporting won a game/tourney/match/world series in the past three years.