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Mixing It Up!

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In the fashion world, mixing prints and patterns is not a new concept. In fact, many style icons adopted the trend years ago and made sure it has remained a classic style. It is a fairly eclectic way to dress, but if done correctly it can exude sophistication with a hint of whimsy. Think of style icons such as Olivia Palermo, the great Sarah Jessica Parker or interior designer turned fashion icon Iris Apfel. All of these women are pattern mix masters!

My personal style is truly more modern and minimal but lately I have wanted to add that dash of whimsy. So I decided to dip my toes in the water of print mixing! Wanting to remain true to my signature style, I did so in a way to make it more “me.” With the use of my men’s styling education and my love for monochromatic dressing, I found a way to make print mixing my style! And here’s how.

1. Identify which prints you really love to wear! This is important, because for example, I love the look of gingham, but not on me. However, I do love polka dots and stripes, which are always in style. And I love to wear both prints.

2. But mixing polka dots and stripes? Old news. So instead, take one of the prints you love and find two pieces of clothing with a variation of the same print. We are not going for matchy-matchy. It’s the mismatch that we are going for. By keeping the print similar we maintain continuity.

3. Finally, and this part can be tricky, find two similar prints in the same color way. Then double check that the silhouettes of the two pieces complement each other. And ta-da! You have achieved monochromatic print mixing and your look becomes iconic. 

Summertime is the perfect season to experiment with new styles. Step out of your box and try to mix it up!

Abby Wood is a wardrobe stylist and style blogger in Kansas City, and her education in design plus retail experience make her an expert in fit, fabric, style and trends. Her professional experience in fashion began with an apprenticeship with a bridal designer, shifted to creating and showing her  own line, moving up to management and training at a retail level and now professional styling as an independent consultant. Abby loves to help individuals develop and evolve their own sense of style. /  @abbywoodwear  /