14 July 2012

The Muse: White Done Right

I know that white/winter white is basically boring and lacks flare but I sooo love it. Do you have any designs that you bring alive that begin with the most- basic-white! There is such a chic classy look to white that I love:)

I received the above email from reader Michelle, and had a whole slew of posts planned with specific photos, however Blogger is rebelling and not letting me upload any photos at the moment so I'll outline some of my thoughts on white and follow up with at least three separate posts to illustrate the concepts from my own closet. I confess, as much as I love white, it is seldom the first color I reach for in my closet, for a couple of reasons. Primarily, I am really, really pale. I tend to turn up the saturation on my photos and take them in warm afternoon light so you can't always tell, however I'm practically Casper the friendly ghost. Because of this most really pale colors, whether its white of cream or ecru really wash me out, so without extensive restyling they can often be quite unflattering. I either look like a polar bear lost in a snow storm, white clothes on white skin, or it turns me a funny shade of yellow usually associated with liver disease. Neither, at least I have found, is a desirable color to be. Secondly white is hard to care for and required both special attention and an annoying amount of forethought into undergarments less one wants to look like they're available by the hour. While I am not adverse to the bleach bottle I also don't want to be a slave to it, and since eating, drinking, and deep breathing are all inadvisable while wearing most white garments it can quickly become a deterrent. In terms of the underwear situation it certainly depends on the garment, its construction, and the material. white shirts, regardless of their material or weight need a white bra. White trousers also have a nasty tendency to show things they rather wouldn't, the white garment, most of the time is not an easy throw-it-on-and-go type of proposition. Thirdly, and this may be a personal issue, I have a hard time finding quality white clothes for a number of reasons, and this is nothing new. I have a number of white shirts, none of which I really love, whether its shape or fabric, there is always something lacking. When you don't really love the piece of clothing you're a lot less likely to wear it.

 Over the last three months I haven't worn a whole lot of white only here and here  both as bottoms to anchor much busier, colorful, patterned blouses. This is the first (and probably the most common way for me and just about everyone) that I recommend wearing white.

1.) As an anchor for bright colors and busy patterns
2.) Wear white and black, its much more unexpected than black and white
3.) If you are wary of a lot of patterns or the intensity of them, chose patterns that use white as a base, it can make it easier to transition because you feel like you're still wearing a neutral
4.) Chose whites with interesting textures, tone-on-tone patterns, sheen, or shape to keep them from being too basic

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