There are so many basic fashion rules most of us grew up hearing and have accepted as style truths over the years. We want to challenge those rules. Some of them limit what you can do with your wardrobe, while others promote buying more clothing or accessories in order to create outfits that abide by the “rules”. As a sustainable fashion brand, we want to help you do more with less clothing, so keep reading to find out the outdated fashion rules you to break from now on!
1) Navy blue and black don’t look good together
Navy and Black are two neutrals that look surprisingly great together. Our style tip is to choose a navy that isn’t too dark. It’s best to have a slight contrast between the blue and black so the look is more intentional. For example, our navy blue Unblazer pairs seamlessly with black Dressy Leggings and loafers.Similarly, most of us have asked ourselves, “does brown and black go together?”. Our answer is yes! Wearing black with brown can be a great neutral outfit. Similar to black and navy blue, we recommend going with a shade of brown not too close to black, so something on the lighter side like a taupe.
2) Sweatsuits shouldn’t be worn outside the house
As 2020 has become the year of the sweatsuit, we’re hoping this outdated fashion rule can finally be retired. Comfortable, stylish, and versatile, what’s not to love. One of the easiest ways to look stylish in sweats is by wearing a well-made, matching set. This makes the outfit look much more elevated and put-together. Another option is pairing joggers with a blazer and loafers for a comfortable, effortlessly cool look.
3) You shouldn’t mix metalsWe’ve probably all heard that you shouldn’t mix metals, but luckily this basic fashion rule seems to be on it’s way out. Brands even make jewelry that combines gold and silver into one piece, and if that’s not proof that mixing metals can look great, we don’t know what is. There’s no need to limit yourself to one style of jewelry, or to purchase pieces in two metals so you can always pair them. If you’re unsure about this one, try one of those pieces we mentioned that’s made of two metals. This will act as a bridge that ties the rest of your gold and silver jewelry together.
4) You shouldn't wear white after Labour Day
This is one of the most well-known and outdated fashion rules, so have you ever wondered where it came from? According to a Time article, one explanation is that in the early 20th century, Labour Day marked the end of summer and vacationing, “You’re back in the city, back at school, back doing whatever you’re doing in the fall — and so you have a new wardrobe.” Do we really need to have a fully separate wardrobe for different seasons? We think not. Checkout our blog posts, “How to Layer Your Winter Clothes in the Spring'' and “How to Layer your Summer Clothes in Winter” for tips on getting more wear out of your wardrobe. However, another explanation is that the rule was created to serve “old-money élites with a bulwark against the upwardly mobile.” According to Valerie Steele, director of the Museum at the Fashion Institute of Technology, “It [was] insiders trying to keep other people out,”.
Regardless of the origin of the “no white after Labour Day” rule, there is no need to follow it anymore.
5) Buy More expensive Clothing if You Want Better Quality
Unfortunately it’s not that simple when it comes to clothing (or most other products). A higher cost doesn’t mean a brand used better fabrics, or invested more in their workers to create a better garment. It may just mean that the brand will profit more while selling cheaply made, poor quality clothing. Instead of judging the value of a garment from the price tag, we encourage you to look at the fabric they use, where the piece was made, and research the company to see what they value.
Remember, you vote with your dollars so vote for brands working to make the fashion industry more sustainable, ethical, and setting a higher standard for quality.
6) Leggings are "athleisure" and can’t be dressed up
Considering we created a design called the “Dressy Legging” it’s pretty clear where we stand on this one. A fabric with more spandex in it will look more like workout wear, so if you’re looking for an everyday pair of leggings, we suggest something a little softer like the Bamboo we use for our leggings. From there, leggings make a great basic pant that can be dressed up with a blazer and heels, or dressed down with some sneakers, a t-shirt, and a denim jacket.
7) Horizontal stripes are unflattering
The belief that the horizontal striped fabric will make you look wider is nothing more than a style myth. Need proof? See the below photo of our striped Everyday T-shirt Dress for how flattering horizontal stripes can be.
One of the best things about fashion is that it’s a fun way to express ourselves, and not only do fashion rules hinder that expression, but they also limit what we can do with our wardrobe. If there’s an outfit you feel amazing in that breaks a basic fashion rule, we say wear it! We hope this list of fashion rules to break will inspire you to create some new looks with your wardrobe that you didn’t think would work according to outdated fashion rules.
Do you have any fashion rules to break that you think should be added to this list? Let us know in the comments!
For more Encircled style tips, check out these posts: