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Pin Money How-To: Mixing Patterns

Mixing patterns in one outfit can be intimidating and tricky. Often enough, without knowing how to pair different patterns together, the wrong combinations end up being worn.  There are a few tricks to the trade, but once you learn how to mix patterns and textures it becomes fun and allows for endless outfits to be created- full of personality, and individuality. Here are some key points to follow:

Steer away from mixing large patterns with large patterns or small patterns with small patterns. Large patterns with large patterns will not only look overwhelming, but will ultimately give you a wider look. On the flip side, mixing small patterns with small patterns creates a busy appearance and again, is overwhelming on the eye. Instead, combining a small pattern with a large, or two opposite patterns like floral and stripes, creates balance and an unexpected cute look.

Make sure that your patterns share the same color scheme. This is very important when mixing patterns, otherwise you will look like you did back in Kindergarten trying to dress yourself for the first time! An example of mixing patterns that share the same color scheme would be mixing a navy paisley top with a navy, red, and white striped skirt. Even though the patterns are different, at least one of the colors is shared which creates balance.

Make sure that when mixing patterns, that the patterns are not too matchy-matchy. Think of plaid, stripes, or polka dots head to toe. This is not a good look and the result will not be pretty. Instead, add structure to your outfit by combining loose prints with refined, structure prints. Try flowers with stripes or try gingham print with polka dots. The prints compliment one another, instead of competing with one another.

To add balance and to tone down the overall look of the outfit go back to the basics. Add a solid colored belt like black, silver, or navy. Make sure to then match your shoes to your belt to add balance to the outfit. This will help pull the look together in a very classic way, while still keep it hip and modern. You can also add balance with the actual clothing items. For example, try pairing a solid black skirt with a polka dot blouse and a striped cardigan. Solids, whether a skirt, top, or belt help to create balance in the overall outfit.

Take at look at these outfit examples below:

Polka dot skirt Dorothyperkins.com $28.00, Blazer johnlewis.com $93.00 , Target t-shirt $5.00, Targets sandals $29.99, Forever 21 earrings $4.80, Forever 21 bracelet $5.80, Aldoshoes clutch $40.00 

Delias.com skirt  $25.00, Zara.com tank $26.00, Target cropped jacket $29.99 , Riverisland.com jacket $77.00, Forever 21 wedges $29.80, Forever 21 bow  earrings $3.80, Forever 21 envelop bag $19.80 

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