Fashion rules for mixing and matching bright pieces

Work this season's hot trend of mixing bright colours


Diane von Furstenberg Fall 2011/


Diane von Furstenberg Fall 2011/

Fergie_Simms_Michael Buckner

Michael Buckner/

Q: Should you mix bright pieces?

A: Yes! Because it’s a fresh and modern-looking way to dress. Not only were bold, bright shades absolutely everywhere this season, but also colour-blocking (pairing two or more bright hues) was another major trend on the spring/summer 2011 runways.

And, no, just because designers are showing it doesn’t mean you should be wearing it. In this case, stepping out in living colour is a do because it looks fab and is easy to recreate in real life. With a few guidelines, pairing colours is basically goof-proof.

You virtually can’t go wrong wearing two brightly coloured accessories.Whether it’s shoes and a bag or a belt and a pretty necklace, small pops will liven the look.

Clothing has more rules. The colour of a garment may seem to be the deciding factor in its wearability, but shape is actually the most important thing to consider when wearing two brights at once. With the shades making such a loud statement, you need to gravitate towards clean lines and streamlined shapes. Think cropped blazers, fitted tops, slim trousers and pencil or A-line skirts. Small embellishments by way of petite pleats, ruffles or tiers are acceptable, as long as they don’t distract from an overall tailored silhouette. Steer clear of anything too drapey, loose or unstructured. Strong shapes emphasize the chic factor.

As for which colours can, or should, be worn together all depends on your sense of adventure. For guaranteed shade success stick to hues that are neighbours on the colour wheel. Blue and green, yellow and orange, and pink and purple will always get along nicely. If you’ve mastered those combos, or want to try something more daring, try unexpected, yet still striking, duos. Pink and red, green and purple or blue and red can look amazing together when given the chance. And don’t forget to utilize your neutrals! Black and white are obvious go-tos, but khaki, grey, chocolate brown and navy can also be mixed with brights to eye-popping results.

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