Want your look to pop this summer? Follow this list of summer style do's and don'ts for a breezy, sun-sational look.
Mix prints. From luscious fruits and pretty florals to fierce animal prints, this season's racks are alive with prominent patterns. Rather than play it safe, pack twice the punch by doubling up with a bold skirt and blouse! The key to looking coordinated versus clashing is to pick patterns that feature the same color combos.
Embrace stripes. Traditional nautical stripes have not only gone supersized, but also been given an injection of cheeky color (think orange and navy). And they're everywhere: From blazers to bags, shirts to shoes, you can choose between a little and a lot.
Look white-hot. Say "Hasta luego" to the little black dress and "Hola" to the bright white number. The most sophisticated cocktail look this season is monochromatic, head-to-toe white. To avoid looking like a washout, apply eye-catching emerald eyeliner, a lollipop-pink lipstick and a dusting of bronzing powder.
Flash some skin. We haven't done this much navel-gazing since the 1990s. Crop-tops have made a triumphant return perched atop elegantly feminine high-waist pants and skirts. For a work-appropriate spin, try a dress with a very subtle cutout detail on the bodice.
Lace up. For 2011, lace gets an antique spin by way of fabrics that have a handcrafted look. However, don't get too carried away with the romantic vibe of this 18th century favorite. Toughen up a girly lace dress with a jean jacket, and add a distressed leather cross-body bag and biker boots.
Try flared jeans again. Summer's hottest denim trend will see you burning up the dance floor, Studio 54 style, in the era's inspired bell-bottoms. The versatile wide-leg style also looks chic at the office when topped with a silk blouse and elegant heels.
Express sheer joy. Designers fell in love with sheer fabrics this season, as evidenced by an array of revealing skirts, dresses and shirts. The most accessible way to try the trend is with a sheer blouse, which gives tailored shorts instant desk-side polish. Just remember to layer a bandeau top or silk cami underneath.
Mini-mize. While we're all for showing some leg, the coolest look this season is keeping your gams under wraps. Ankle-grazing maxi skirts not only make everyone look taller, but also easily transition from the boardwalk (paired with a tank top and flats) to the office (with a belted blazer and wedge heels).
Blend in with the furniture. The original car czar Henry Ford may have insisted on "any color, as long as it's black," but today's tastemakers are stepping out in a dazzling array of rainbow hues like fuchsia, cobalt, tangerine and amethyst. For extra credit, mix two to create a daring color-block look.
Go to great lengths. Channel your inner Audrey Hepburn with calf-baring capri pants paired with ballet flats and a fitted tee. At night, get rock-chic glam by swapping in a biker jacket and sexy stiletto heels. Another fun twist on the trend: low-slung boyfriend styles that look effortlessly cool paired with platform heels and a slouchy tee.
Claire Coghlan is an New York City-based writer and editor who has covered fashion and style for magazines such as InStyle, People, Life & Style Weekly, TheKnot.com, DailyFrontRow.com and EverydayHealth.com.
Thursday, August 28 2014 9:33 AM EDT2014-08-28 13:33:06 GMT
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