Although most the big fashion magazines have been an explosion of color, florals and prints the past few seasons, behind the scenes is a different (color) story. Were you were to suddenly find yourself at a typical fashion-industry event with editors & insiders in attendance, you'd be forgiven for thinking you had stumbled into a (very chic) funeral.
Black is always back because it's easy to wear and risk-free. But who wants to live their whole life in black, black & more black?
Prints are fresh and fun & can be totally do'able if you make this your new mantra: "I vow to pay for good quality! I vow to pay for good quality!" - like this striking satin-jersey print tunic from Balmain (available at NET-A-PORTER) which oozes Parisian chic from every pore (seam?) - and follow some simple rules:
(1) Be ready to spend money. Items like black pants, skinny jeans, neon jewelry - these are all good places to save your pennies and buy the cheap-o version from Zara, Mango or H&M where they focus on the look of the piece rather than ensuring it's really well made. Which is perfect because just about the time you start to get really bored with it, it's falling apart, which means you have a great excuse to go hunting for the newest must-have. However, when it comes to a key piece that features prominently on your person, like a top or tunic in a bold print, do not cheap out. Why? Because prints are relatively expensive to manufacture and when they're being sold at too low a price point, something's gotta give in the manufacturing - meaning crappy fabric and garish colors. Cheap prints look cheap. Only when they've got some leeway with the price can brands use nicer quality materials and prettier colors. So when you decide to step away from the safety of all-black and enter the devil-may-care world of florals or prints, be prepared to spend some cash on your item.
(2) Be creative about how you wear it. Fashion should be fun, and if your closet is filled with really cool pieces you love, you'll enjoy the challenge of coming up with new ways to wear your latest find. If you invest a lot in a piece, the last thing it should be doing is hanging basically-unworn. Instead, make sure to get your money's worth! Here we paired the tunic with some leather-look skinnies (these are by Karl Lagerfeld - also available at NET-A-PORTER), a cozy charcoal duster/coat and neon-yellow accessories.
TIP: black and/or navy & white prints look fabu with loud colors, especially neon-brights!
Stay tuned for 4 more ways to rock this rockin' Balmain tunic.
- Lesley Scott
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