Thursday, August 30, 2012

Fashion Rules Demystified

I know today is usually #ThrowbackThursday but I'm going to change the game up a little bit. I was asked to cover what Fashion Rules hold true and which have been thrown by the wayside. So before we delve into which rules still stand and which do not, I want you to take a quick True/False Test to test your Fashion IQ when it comes to the Rules of Fashion. So put on your thinking caps :)

Each question has either a True or False response. So answer to the best of your abilities (no pressure though).

Q1. Wearing white is acceptable "after" Labor Day (T/F)
Q2. Wearing white to a wedding "as a guest" is ok (T/F)
Q3. You should "always" wear a bra (T/F)
Q4. You're bag should "always" match your shoes and/or belt (T/F)
Q5. You "cannot" wear black with blue (T/F)
Q6. Silver and gold "cannot" be worn together (T/F)
Q7. Horizontal stripes "thin" you out (T/F)
Q8. If you're a tall glass of water, you "shouldn't" wear high heels (T/F)
Q9. Mixing and matching prints is "never" allowed (T/F)
Q10. You can wear sequin/sparkle during the day (T/F)
Q11. Short women should "not" wear long dresses (T/F)

The answers are higlighted in red and are discussed in detail below.

A1. Wearing white is acceptable "after" Labor Day (T/F)

White can be worn 365 days of the year no matter what region of the country you reside (just ask Lisa Ray). The only rule that holds true about wearing white is being sure you have the appropriate fabric for the season. Ex: I wouldn't suggest wearing white linen pants during the harsh winter or a wool white sweater in the middle of June. Oh, and another rule: try to keep it clean lol!

A2. Wearing white to a wedding "as a guest" is ok (T/F)
Typically a wedding is one day in a girls life when she (along with her prince charming) get to be the center of attention. Therefore, I still would not suggest you, as a guest wear white to a wedding (white is still reserved for the bride). But you can slip into your Little Black Dress (which used to be taboo as some thought it mimicked funeral attire).

A3. You should "always" wear a bra (T/F)
As a stickler for undergarments, I would say no matter what size your bra may be..I would personally suggest that you always wear a bra to make sure you look your absolute best. However, I will suggest that you make sure not only do you wear a bra, but also that you wear the "correct" bra. So if you have on a strapless dress, you should wear a strapless bra. There is nothing worse than seeing bra straps when you shouldn't.

A4. You're bag should "always" match your shoes and/or belt (T/F)

Your shoes and handbag or belt for that matter do not always have to match. The rules of fashion have been demolished and now you can change the game. I'm not saying that they can't match but it's ok if they do not. If you don't know where to start, try pairing your shoes and bag in the same color hue family. Check out the chart below to help you! If you are daring you can mix and match like Solange did with her hot pink bag and purple and orange ankle strapped heels (notice the purple and pink still are kind of around the same color family hue).

A5. You "cannot" wear black with blue (T/F)

I won't lie, I used to think black and blue was a no-no in the world of fashion, but I discovered that it is possible to use two colors (which have similar hues) and make them work. Ways to allow these to colors in the same space is to accessorize, contrast, or brighten. I will give you an example of each. If you wear dark denim jeans (almost navy colored) and you want to wear a black sweater you can accessorize with a red clutch and red heels. Say you're nervous about wearing blue and black directly together you can add a bit of a contrast by throwing a white t shirt under your navy cardigan and your black pencil skirt. Or you can opt of ditching the navy blue and going for a brighter version of blue like cobalt, sky blue, or even robin's egg blue!

A6. Silver and gold "cannot" be worn together (T/F)

Of course you can wear gold and silver together. You just have to make it intentional. Be sure to layer more than one piece each so it doesn't look like you accidently grabbed the wrong color necklace or bangle. Also, make sure that the pieces you layer are proportional  in scale and theme.

A7. Horizontal stripes "thin" you out (T/F)

I know some of you have heard that horizontal stripes will draw peoples eyes across the frame of your body causing you to appear heavier. But actually this myth is a total bust. A study was actually conducted by an expert at the University of New York showing that people who see others in stripes don't actually perceive the person in stripes as heavier, but they actually perceive you as thinner. However, be mindful that stripes will draw attention to the area(s) in which they are worn. So if you have a "problem - area" that you don't want to draw major attention, then I would suggest breaking up those stripes with a blazer or cardigan etc.

A8. If you're a tall glass of water, you "shouldn't" wear high heels (T/F)

Some women who are height challenged swear by heels to appear taller. But if you were blessed with a killer pair of legs should you punish yourself of the luxury of wearing high heels because of your birth -right height advantage?  OF COURSE NOT! Heels only will elongate your gorgeous legs and allow you to strut your stuff a little higher up! Just be sure to remember to stand up straight. You don't want to hurt your back from trying to minimize your tall stature. Just take a page out of Jennifer Williams (from Basketball Wives) or NeNe Leakes (from Atlanta Housewives) fashion handbooks. Both ladies are always out and about proudly wearing their high stilettos and I'm not even mad at em'!

A9. Mixing and matching prints is "never" allowed (T/F)

Fashion has definitely graduated from the days when everything from your shirt, to skirt, to purse, to nails etc. had to be so "matchy-matchy!" Now we are in the land of the free where you can mix prints and patterns. Check out how Solange and Rihanna effortlessly mix these random prints while still looking chic!!! Just be sure to wear your mix match masterpiece with full confidence. Make it look intentional and NOT like it was a mistake!

A10. You can wear sequin/sparkle during the day (T/F)

It is perfectly fine to wear sequin during the day without looking like the office disco ball or a bright light on a casual day out. I wouldn't recommend wearing a full sequined dress to the office (even throwing on a blazer cannot tone it down). But you can incorporate sparkly tops and add a neutral cardigan to give you the shine you want without blinding those that look your way. Be sure to remember if you do decide to wear sparkles during the day to keep it more reserved. The evening allows much more leeway when it comes to rocking sequin embellished garments. Check out the ladies above, Rasheeda's top is really busy with all the colorful sequin however she managed to dress it down with her denim shorts. Heidi Klum's look is more sleek, but she managed to edge up her sequined top with a white blazer and leather pants.

A11. Short women should "not" wear long dresses (T/F)

Short women are always told to wear items of clothing that elongate instead of those that shorten their compact stature. However, don't believe the critics when they tell you that you can't wear a long maxi dress or skirt past your knees as it will cut your body in half. You don't have to leave that cute maxi dress on the rack because you're not a certain height. You can definitely get away with wearing long dresses. I would recommend wearing some type of heel to give you a little or a lot of height (depending on the shoe). Pull your hair up to elongate your neck (which can also make you look a little taller). And solid or small prints can assist you with your height!

I hope this post has helped to demystify some of the crazy rules set up by fashion pioneers that you've always wanted to know the answers too.


  1. Great post! The silver and gold is something I would always avoid but I love the ideas. I am Jealous NeNe and Jennifer have each other. I always wanted a really tall friend.

    1. Well there are not that many girls that are as tall as you. You're uniquely made!