Saturday, July 14, 2012

Matching Your Clothes

Matchy matchie, either way my computer's Spellcheck doesn't like it.  It's a word that has been coined in the fashion industry by stylists.  Decades ago a woman tried very hard to coordinate her outfits by matching items to each other much like a game of "Go Fish." The challenge was something to look forward to and we would become excited when an outfit came together.  I don't know when things changed, maybe it was the show "What Not To Wear" that gave women the idea that it was no longer "cool" to match their clothes in an outfit.  To me it is not an outfit if the elements don't match.  In interior design we do it all of the time.  Repeating a color or element in a room gives it a look and feel of balance.  The same holds true for an outfit.  By repeating colors and patterns you create a sense of balance and harmony.  Anyone can throw on a few articles of clothing and walk out of the door.  To me that is not true "style." While there will always be times and places where it's appropriate to wear something thrown together there will be times when a woman will need or want to coordinate her outfit and make it something attractive and cohesive.  I don't think we would be so enamoured by shows like "Mad Men" if the wardrobe creator did not work very hard to match the female characters' wardrobes in an attractive and appealing way.  I don't think Christian Dior would have become so famous if he had not created his "ensembles" of a matching dress and coat.  He had a shoemaker create the perfect matching shoes for his ensembles as well as coordinating handbags and hats.  The costume jewelry market of the 1950's took their cues from the Paris designers and created works of art to be worn with the designer creations.  All of this is art to me.  When I'm styling an outfit I look at all of the elements, colors, fabrics, patterns and silhouettes. When it comes together it looks cohesive and attractive.  When a woman wears such an outfit it makes her feel more confident and special as well as pretty.  I hope that before long "matchy matchy" will no longer be dirty words.

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