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How To: Mix Prints

Jennie O'Dell

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One of the scariest concepts in fashion is mixing patterns or prints. And I’m not talking like a graphic tee with a pair of plaid pants or anything like that. I’m talking about taking that GIANT step in the fashion styling world and getting OUT THERE by mixing stripes and animal prints or florals and polka dots! However, I know it can be extremely discouraging when you look at the prints on a sales floor or in your closet and can’t help but internally scream and wonder how on earth people ever make it look good! It’s an easy concept to give up on, but we are here today to show you how EASY it truly is to mix those prints!

Let’s start with the basics! Ladies, I kid you not when I say the easiest way to start mixing your prints is simply by substituting your solid neutral item (black, grey, ivory, beige, taupe even navy) with a monochromatic pattern. So those black pants you have, grab a black dot print pair instead or that navy top in your hand, grab a navy striped top as a replacement! Then, if you’re planning on stepping out for the day in a floral top, leopard bodysuit, etc., you can throw on those dot print pants or that striped top and you are DOING IT! You’re in the beginning stages of becoming a pro-pattern mixer! I am telling you, this is happening! Look at the three looks I styled below to help get you started!

Outfit Details: Full Bloom Floral Top $53.00, On The Dot Shorts $41.00 (above) Natalie Floral Top $52.00, On The Spot Denim Skirt $42.50, Selfie Ankle T-Strap Platform $39.50 and the Veronica Printed Mini Dress $41.00, All Night Cheetah Cardigan $51.00, and Cashmere Black Suede Heel $39.50 (below)

Alright, now that you’ve mastered substituting your solid neutral print for a monochromatic pattern, lets step it up by mixing two different prints, but with the same unifying color. To demonstrate, we really simplified this step by using a white grid print blazer and white polka dot top! However, if you really want to step outside the box with that same unifying color, you can try more bold types of colors! Such as using a leopard print that has some pink in it, for example! You can then add any other print that has pink in it and you’re golden!

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Outfit Details: Layla Polka Dot Top $44.50, Out Of Line Grid Print Blazer in ivory $41.50, Not Your Average Mom Jean $70.00, Wulff Cut Out Mule Sandal $35.00 (above) Out Of Line Grid Print Blazer in mustard $41.50, Wild One Cropped Leopard Top $38.00, Costal Destroyed Jean $68.50, and the Austin Floral Mini Dress $48.50 (below)

Now, on to that pro-level mix-matching business! When you can successfully master coordinating two patterns of the same color and swapping your solids for a monochromatic print, you are ready to try adding a completely different pattern! Believe it or not, leopard print is a neutral pattern! I’ll say it again; LEOPARD PRINT IS A NUETRAL! So, if you have a leopard top on and a mustard grid print blazer, like we have here, instead of jeans you could add another neutral or monochromatic pattern! You could easily substitute in a plaid skirt or pant and be head-to-toe patterns! Honestly, it looks fantastic and I would wear this combo every day if it was socially acceptable! See, so easy right!?

Take a look at these other options for adding more prints to your look!

(pictures taken from Pinterest)

I will be the first to admit, mixing patterns is hard and does take some practice, but don’t take it too seriously! It’s supposed to be a FUN concept that helps your outfits be more UNIQUE! The most important advice I can give you when it comes to mixing patterns is to HAVE CONFIDENCE! If you think something looks good there is a great chance it does in fact look good, so let the world be your cat walk and rock it! Plus, even if it doesn’t look the best, people don’t know that and will just think you’re ahead of the trends! Score for you! So, the next time you really aren’t feeling your outfit or really want to step outside your comfort zone (which is a GOOD thing) try something fresh, new, and exciting and MIX THOSE PRINTS!

Key Reminders:

1. HAVE CONFIDENCE

2. Swap out solid neutrals for classic patterned neutrals (black and white stripes/dot print, neutral plaid)

3. LEOPARD IS A NEUTRAL

4. Find patterns that share the same base or accent color

5. Mix pattern sizes (large floral print with smaller dot print)

And as always, be yourself and take a step outside of your comfort zone!

xx

Jeryn