Mothers everywhere have steered their budding fashionistas away from many a faux-pas (bedazzling everything we owned), and for this we are eternally grateful. But sometimes mother doesn’t always know best, and we’ve compiled the archaic style rules that are much more fun to break.
The 14 Style Rules You Should Break
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Who doesn’t love a challenge? Here are 14 chic, approachable outfits to inspire you.
- 2 of 15PHOTO: Camille Over The Rainbow
Sneakers Should Never Leave The Gym
Giving your feet a break doesn’t mean you have to look sloppy. Sneakers look great outside the gym, just ditch the socks and wear with a crisp button-down, cropped pants and a tailored coat for a pulled together weekend look.
- 3 of 15PHOTO: Vanessa Jackman
Sequins Are Only For The Evening
If you weren’t convinced by our most recent Trend Trial, take a cue from Erin Wasson and mix a sequin piece with simple separates, like a white tee and jeans. Sequins also pair brilliantly with army green, so try layering a chunky sweater and army jacket over your holiday dress to give it a new lease on life.
- 4 of 15PHOTO: Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images
Navy And Black Clash
The trick here is to make sure that it looks intentional. Do this by choosing a rich blue navy that is clearly distinguishable from the black, and the result is actually a very flattering, and slimming, combination.
- 5 of 15PHOTO: Tommaso Boddi/WireImage
Shorter Girls Can’t Wear Midi Skirts
Select a style that highlights the waist and hits just below the knee, choose eye-catching heels and a more fitted silhouette—leave the super poofs for your tall friends.
- 6 of 15PHOTO: We Wore What
Head-to-toe Denim Is A No-No
A denim shirt tucked into fitted, cropped jeans provides a great canvas for a bold statement coat. Trepidatious beginners should try mixing different shades of denim.
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No White After Labor Day
Winter white is universally flattering and a breath of fresh air in a crowd of black cocktail dresses. Flaunt your adventurous nature by pairing it with white accessories.
- 8 of 15PHOTO: Natalie Off Duty
Socks With Sandals Are For 80’s Tourists
You can wear your open-toed sandals in the winter—what more do we need to say? After all, are tights really that different from pants and socks in the same color? Nope!
- 9 of 15PHOTO: Vanessa Jackman
Faux Fur Looks Cheap
Not anymore, thanks to all of the fabulous new and very realistic versions that are on offer. Opt for a scarf or collar in a natural color (read: no orange) and it will add something special to an all-black winter outfit.
- 10 of 15PHOTO: Neil P. Mockford/FilmMagic for J. Crew
Your Bra Should Never Show
Not that we suggest strutting around in a fishnet top, but sometimes a suggestion of lingerie under a slightly sheer blouse is an alluring alternative to exposed skin. Keep everything else ladylike and choose a high-necked blouse, or let a delicate bra peek out from a silk button-down.
- 11 of 15PHOTO: Stockholm Street Style
Horizontal Stripes Add 10 Pounds
Lies! If you feel unsure, keep the stripes on the skinny side and slip on a blazer, denim jacket or coat so that the striped expanse is limited.
- 12 of 15PHOTO: David M. Benett/Getty Images
Mixing Prints Looks Messy
Only if they are both competing for first place. Make sure one print is more sedate than the other, ideally by choosing a smaller pattern or a more muted color palette. Beginner tip: pick prints in the same color family.
- 13 of 15PHOTO: Man Repeller
Gold and Silver Jewelry Don’t Go Together
The contrast looks fresh. Throw in a strand of pearls for even more interest.
- 14 of 15PHOTO: Collage Vintage
Your Belt And Shoes Must Match
Perhaps this rule was conceived when shoes were only made in black or brown? In today’s world of printed and embellished accessories, it seems completely ridiculous. If this feels unnatural, start with different colors of the same fabrics—you wouldn’t pair a grosgrain belt with patent pumps—and contrasts like tan and black or plum and navy.
- 15 of 15PHOTO: Larry Busacca/AMA2013/Getty Images for DCP
Always Remove One Accessory Before Leaving The House
Sometimes more is more, particularly if you are receiving an award. A covered-up cold weather outfit provides a perfect chance to pile on the dazzlers, just abide by one overarching aesthetic.