Does the seasonal shift to shorter days and the clocks going back affect your mood?
I have to say that it definitely affects mine. I always find this time of year to be fairly tricky to navigate. As nature retreats to its bed to start its annual, winter hibernation, the world seems a little less bright and colourful.
I suffer from Seasonal Affected Disorder and I can really struggle with the reduced daylight hours and often diffused light. Over the years I’ve found a number of solutions to help my Seasonal Affected Disorder. One particular solution I’ve really adopted is to purposely wear bright colours and fun patterns. I harness the joy that wearing colours and prints bring me, to help lift my mood, especially on days when all I want to wear is a duvet, whilst horizontal.
It’s not a cure all but it helps to make me feel more positive at this time of year. There’s no doubt that colour can influence our lives in more ways that we perhaps imagine. I’ve always been naturally drawn to bright colours or rich, luscious ones such as the jewel tones and in the winter months I make an effort to gravitate to them even more.
For many people, blue is their favourite colour and it certainly is mine. I LOVE blue – every single shade of it from the palest, most delicate baby blue to the dark, inviting depths of midnight navy. Some people find blue a cold colour but I find it an energizing colour to wear, especially cobalt blue.
For me, cobalt blue is an immediate, pick-me-up colour for any outfit!
I can never resist an unapologetic print and the shirt I’m wearing is certainly not shy in proclaiming itself. I am normally ambivalent about wearing clothes with hearts on them for fear of straying into the territory of ‘twee’, to be swallowed up by a mist of saccharine. And if you’re a petite, you want to avoid at all costs, looking or feeling ‘twee’!
But these hearts could never be described as twee! They are big, bold, life-affirming, smile-inducing hearts and I love them! I’m not just wearing my heart on my sleeve but all over my torso!
Best foot forward and all, we’ve places to go. You see, Tall Brown Fox and I were having a Date Day when I wore this outfit recently.
Yup, Date Day, as opposed to Date Night. I often work 4 nights a week so come the weekend I often want to stay home in the evenings, hence Date Day at the weekend. We hadn’t been to the cinema in months, so we treated ourselves to brunch and a movie.
Now some people might say that I look fairly dressed up for just brunch and a movie! My job involves wearing casual clothes all week and certainly never skirts. At the weekends, it’s often a welcomed break to up the sartorial ante. I also find that if I make a little more effort in how I dress, the mental and emotional boost it gives me, helps my S.A.D.
And a skirt is all the better for showing off my blue, utterly fabulous-in-every-way velvet-y boots, don’t you think?
I really wanted to see Murder on The Orient Express. Absolutely nothing to do with being able to longingly gaze at Johnny Depp, up there on the silver screen. All to do with …
… gazing longingly at all those divine 1930’s costumes! The bejewelled dresses, the beautiful tailoring, the sharp 3 piece suits. Somehow, dressing with a little more attention to detail seemed fitting with the choice of film!
And we’re off… on the underground.
My bag was smugly pleased to be able to have a seat all to itself, as we zoomed towards our destination.
And once we’d disembarked, we found these pretty posters on the platform.
Can I be a ‘Poster Girl’?
‘Yes’, said small voice of reason, ‘once you’ve seen the exhibition at the Transport Museum of London.’
Note to self – add Poster Girls to my list of exhibitions to see.
I love the patterned umbrellas, mixed in with the bright, mono-coloured ones. I’m feeling very at home!
What patterns work best with each other?
If you’re starting out exploring the delights of pattern mixing, it can feel more like mayhem than mixing. Choose the easiest pattern to mix – Stripes.
Well, the simpler the pattern, the easier it is to mix. Stripes simply go with everything, even plaid! I consider stripes to be practically a neutral, just as these days leopard print is considered a neutral. A striped skirt will go a long way in your wardrobe, being equally at home with plain or printed tops and is a good base for pattern mixing. Mine is a classic A-line, with pockets that go on for days, a nipped in waist and flattering box pleats that skim the hips. It’s from one of my favourite brands – Boden BUT I bought it second hand for a song!
Next, choose a pattern for your top half. Florals are a match made in heaven with stripes or you could go for a geometric pattern such as I did here with my Polka dot Jumper and Striped Skirt outfit. Stepping it up a notch, you can do Florals and Checks.
The simpler the pattern, the easier it is to mix!
With the evenly repeated stripes, my skirt can take a slightly larger than life pattern. In fact, the skirt almost cries out for a more show stopping partner. My navy hearts shirt is an unusual and striking design; the ideal companion.
And even thought the hearts are topsy turvy, angled in all directions, a little disorderly, because they are an evenly, repeated pattern they still work in harmony with the regular, more orderly stripes below.
It might be Autumn but I can just about get away with a 3 quarter length sleeved cardigan – all the better for a flash or perhaps flush of hearts.
Pattern Mixing Tips
I’ve read lots of so called ‘rules of pattern mixing’ and boy, are some of them overly complicated. I end up being more confused than when I started! Just keep it simple and don’t over think it.
– Link colours and tones rather than patterns.
– Think about the scale of your patterns. If you want one pattern to be more the focus, with the other being an accent, just pair a bigger one with a smaller one. If you’re top heavy, better to keep the bigger pattern in the lower half.
– Equally, patterns the same size can work together. Done well, they actually balance each other.
– Another neat trick to pull a pattern mixing outfit together is to have one bold or solid colour, in a couple of places to add visual contrast and depth. The cobalt blue of the cardigan, bag and belt does the job beautifully here, against the darker colours of the navy and red.
– Take accent colours through to your accessories. By now it would have been a total anti-climax to opt for a neutral or basic colour shoe or boot. Black would have been dull, dull, dull. I was on a colour roll! Besides my crushed velvet boots wanted to join the fun.
Can petites wear bold patterns?
Of course! If they suit your style personality, as it does mine. I never understand when I read that petites shouldn’t wear bold or big patterns. If the cut and fit is good, then you won’t be swallowed up by the patterns.
Skirt – Boden, Maggie Ottoman Skirt (second hand) Similar cut Boden Lola Spot Skirt
Shirt – Boden Petite (old)
Boots – Marks & Spencer AW16
Cardigan Dorothy Perkins Petite (old)
Bag – TKMAxx
Patterning Mixing Footnote
My philosophy is, if you’re going to pattern mix, then don’t be half arsed about it. You can choose to mix a small print with a big one, or as I’ve done, two evenly sized prints, doesn’t matter. As along as you start with a common colour, you really can’t go far wrong. And if you love colour, throw in one that’s a real tonic for the eyes and soul!
Be fearless and unapologetic.
Grab yer patterns with both hands and run with them. Figuratively and literally!
As I’m doing below.
I have no idea what the heck I’m running from … or even to … but I do look like I’ve got to be somewhere.
With my big, unapologetic hearts.
To the cinema, no doubt.
I need to buy my pix ‘n’ mix.
And the film? Brilliant. Go see. The period detail is faultless, incredible and visually stunning.
And the sight of the moustache that Kenneth Branagh sports as Poirot is worth the ticket price alone!
What prints and colours do you like to mix? Are there certain colours that never fail to make you smile?
Links à la Mode, November 23rd, 2017
- Aesthetic Distance: I Dumped Out The Contents Of My Makeup Bag Again For You
- April Was Here: Mommy and Me: Plaid Shirt and Parka Jacket
- Be You, Very Well: Fall/winter outfit – Knitted dress, camel aviator jacket and the over the knee boots
- Britt and Whit: Gift Guide 2017: The Best Hostess Gifts
- Deyn’s World: Makeup for Men: How to Make it Work for You
- Have Clothes, Will Travel: ModCloth’s Stylish Surprise Sale Event Explained + My Surprises Over The Years
- I’m a Norbyah: Summer Days Have Come and Gone
- Kintan Fashion: Sunny Fall: With Camel Coat & Floral Embroidered Skinny Jeans
- Luna Vida: Weekend Wear | Coffee Crewneck + Ripped Jeans + Sneakers
- Petite Silver Vixen: Pattern Mixing a Midi Skirt | Wearing Colour to Lift Your Mood
- Sifa’s Corner: 5 Essential Products for a Relaxing Shower
- Style Splash: Check Jacket, Lace Skirt and Shiny Boots + Link Up
- The Real JLowPersonal Branding | A How Not to & How Fashion and Life Collide
- Meghan’s Mirror: Meghan Markle’s 10 Fashion Rules
- Wine & Couture: Thanksgiving Day Outfit *Collab*
NotDressedAsLamb / Visible Monday / Glass of Glam / ClaireJustine / FakeFabulous / Confident Twosday / Turning Head’s Tuesday / Lady in Violet / Shelbee On The Edge / Style Splash / Style Me Wednesday / ColorandGrace / JerseyGirlTexanHeart / Living In Colour / High Latitude Style / Eleganceandmommyhood / A Labour of Life / Curly Crafty Mom / Vanity&Me / Fashion Should Be Fun / A Pocketful Of Polkadots / Jeans And A Teacup / Nancy’s Fashion Style / Fine Whatever /