Winter grays run rampant on the backs of men and women alike for three months of the year but a little bit of color can add a much needed light to the crowds of shaded fashion out of a scene from Oliver Twist. This season, let’s think outside of the box and go a bit further than the grays’ and black that inspire us from the cold dark mornings on the way to work and the equally cold and dark mornings of the night ride home.
A pop of color can go a long way and I used this bold color cardigan to build a look that is still winter friendly but without the standard tiers of dark neutrals typical of winter style.
As I am reminded each of the rare times I actually post one of my looks, I’m really bad with colors but who can blame me? One shade darker or lighter and burgundy can turn to merlot, purple or whatever so I’ll do my best to cover all grounds of description to tell the tale of the . So for all its purpose, let’s call this cardigan gold.
I found this shawl collared cardigan last year at Tommy Hilfiger on sale and I had to have it. It immediately reminded me of an article a read some years ago in GQ where a cardigan just like it was featured and that’s what inspired me to create this look.
The color of the knitwear is bold and holds a strong force in its own and so I didn’t want to add anything that would compete with the strong hue but rather compliment and one of the best colors to pair along with this shade of yellow is a the time-honored and elegant navy blue.
This look is intended to give an example of how to use bright colors in your winter wardrobe without creating a look that it out of touch with the season and one of the simplest ways of doing so it to pair a bright color with one that is reserved like navy blue.
Where is your Coat Young Man
Before we began I just want to clear the air. If you haven’t noticed, I’m talking about winter fashion and yet I’m not wearing the one piece synonymous with winter wear, a coat. The reason for my lack of outerwear is due in full to some freaky weather the United States experienced towards the end of last week into the weekend.
According to weather reports, the climate was due to a weather phenomenon called El Niño where unusually warm water currents are present in the east-central Equatorial Pacific (approximately between the International Date Line and 120 degrees West for you technical people). In the case of the New York Metropolitan area where I live, the results were high air pressure producing warm winds and a spring like temperature that made last minute Christmas shopping much more relaxed and inspired me to pierce together the idea of this look that I have been contemplating since the ACTUAL spring. So in summary, no coat was required for this post and it was f**king sweet!!!
Now to get back to the style talk, the first piece I pulled to be paired with my glowing cardigan were these windowpane pants that are also from Tommy Hilfiger as the cardigan. At this rate, I really hope I can get an endorsement from Tommy Hilfiger like some other well known bloggers because this product placement is becoming consistent but I do favor heritage brands so you will see and hear more of Tommy and similar brands from me in the future.
The trousers have just enough blue to hold its own style credentials in this sunny ensemble but dark enough to keep me from looking as if I just got off a plane from Palm Springs and forgot to change clothes on the plane.
The pattern of these pants are formed by dark grey squares to create the geometric shapes that resemble the panes in a window, hence the name of this arrangement. The use of a dark grey makes it so that the pattern doesn’t pop off the pant but rather takes a step forward to add a simple visual interest that is sure to catch the eye.
Speaking of catching the eye, one thing I wish I would have done before taking this leg selfie was roll the lint off of these catchers of all things airborne. Wool has a of both giving off a lot of lint as well a capturing it but this little fluke just proves that there is no photoshopping happening on this blog, not just in the spirit of keeping it real but also to avoid taking the time to harness this new skill, ain’t nobody got time for that!
Ethnic Pattern Shirt
The shirt I choose was actually a random bargain from an Old Navy store that I happened upon when I decided to check out the store on a whim one day. My friend Lucious once joked that Old Navy was the store that you would shop in but never admit to but I have a different opinion on the matter.
In building up a wardrobe, I believe it’s a smart move fiscally to compile your looks with a mixture of “highs and lows” as they are often referred to in fashion. To be more specific, a great mix in your wardrobe would be a collection of pieces that you have found for a steal which will allow room for pieces that are a bit more of a splurge especially if it’s one of those items that you’d rather give up your first born than to leave it behind. As a side not, if that reference offends you, you may want to get the hell off the site because there’s more where that came from I can promise (insert wink).
Just as in the pants, you will notice that this shirt has a pattern as well but with a bit more drama than the simplicity of the trousers. This is an example of how to wear more than one pattern in an outfit and not look like The Fresh Prince of Bel Air.
The trick here was to pair two pattern that vary in boldness and shape. The pants are more understated with a larger pattern while the shirt has a more miniscule ethic pattern. Typically, when you are mixing patterns, you should try to stay in a general theme such as strip on strip but there is always a grey area.
If you’re going to mix two different patterns, an easy route would be to try and stay in the same color pallet so that your pairing does not look messy which was my method of choice in this ensemble.
One of the best feelings in the world is the one you get when you accomplish a goal and one of my most recent goals was to welcome a pair of Chelsea boots into my footwear collection. Sure, the goal wasn’t to save up for a tour of Italy or join The Peace Corp but these are my priorities at work and my properties are an area of focus to achieve and these boots are a product.
Chelsea boots are a hot item this season and I got this pair after viewing them in a Macy’s catalog in the summer. Your footwear plays a huge role as the base of your outfit so special attention should be paid to what you’re stepping around in. Shirt, pants, sweaters are all important in a wardrobe but your shoes are the few items in your closet that actually take a bit of a beating. You may not be going hiking in your brogues or running in your oxfords but your shoes should be durable enough to withstand your day to day travel without unraveling to pieces so I always recommend you strive for high quality.
These boots from Macy’s Alfani brand particularly stood out to me because of the buckle detailing on the side and I needed more dark brown footwear so two birds, one stone. To make ensure their longevity, I had my local cobbler tact shoe heel protectors on to the bottom of the heel to avoid the wearing of the heal. And yes, cobblers still do exist although they may be as rare as finding a blacksmith.
I think these boots act as a perfect ground for this casual look but also dresses it up with the help of the buttery slickness of the leather. The hue pairs well with both the navy blue and the gold in this look and it matches the accessories as well as the shirt buttons.
Razzle that Dazzle
Accessories are tools that enhances the look of an outfit and adds an extra dose of visual interest taking your look to a higher level of awesomeness. Here, I choose simple pieces to enhance and compliment my look in shades of brown.
The watch was a Christmas present from dear old grandma and has been a huge asset in my wardrobe. This timepiece from Kenneth Cole is one of my favorite because of its shape and size. It’s the perfect size for my unfortunately small wrist and has a sleek and modern design that adversely makes a watch look more dazzling as many elegant things are simple in their design like an Audi.
The bracelets are a mixture of two different bracelet sets from H&M and Aldo. The tan numbers are made of wood while the beaded gems are made of glass colored to resemble marbles.
The multiple shades of brown in the glass beads offer a whimsical air while the stainless steal tag makes you turn your head sideways to behold the random wonder. Pieces together with the honey roasted wood tones makes for a cool layer of depth thanks to the contrasts in colors and texture which are all ingredients for a look that delivers attention to detail.
So there you have it, a look that offers a break from the muted hues you see draping bodies of big city dwellers, try a look like this and you’ll be playing the most well clad game of Where’s Waldo.