Black and white always makes for a very smart dressing combination.
Let me introduce you to how to make black and white an even smarter look.
Whether you wear a lot of black or have one or a few black outfits in your wardrobe, combining black or white with black and white is a simple way to look extra smart and stylish. You also become memorable as you stand out from those around you who stick to black only.
I am not talking about simply adding black and white accessories to your black outfit. I am suggesting that you look for black and white patterned items with added black or white features on them.
You can build a whole wardrobe around black and white patterns combined with black or white basics.
Let me show you how you can look an even more stylish baby boomer woman by applying some of the following tips.
Smart Black and White Patterns – Basic Tips
- More black than white in the pattern generally creates a duller and darker look
- Equal black and white in the pattern suits all women and is a smart, stylish, neutral look
- More white than black in the pattern creates a brighter and lighter look
- Matt fabrics tone down the colour contrast while fabrics with a bit of lustre lighten and brighten the contrast
- Searching an online websites for ‘black & white’ is not easy. I only found 4 sites that include this combination under their advance search options. They are – David Jones, Myer, Jacqui E and Chicos.
- Black and white with either black or white creates a medium contrast which is flattering to all women.
Smart Black and White Patterns with Black (a common combination)
This is the simplest and easiest combination to find.
The Jacqui E black and white layered top has a sheer zebra pattern over a black knit base. The top opens and swirls. It is hard to show the black knit base as it blends into the colour of the pants. The Chic top on the right has a zebra-patterned yoke and sleeves. This look creates a long, lean body line and draws attention to your face. The Jacqui E skirt in the middle has a black and white pattern highlighted with white diagonal lines. You could wear a black or white tip over it.
Smart Black and White Patterns with Black –V2 – (another common combination)
All these styles above contain equal black and white in the pattern. Yet each creates a different look.
The Diana Ferrari A-line dress on the left is equal black and white stripes with black sleeves and a black patent belt. It is a modern look with its feminine, uneven hanky hem. The second dress is a Jacqui E lace with black diagonal inserts front and back. It has a peplum at the waist.
The third tunic along from Taking Shape is a sheer top with a rolled black neckline. It is worn here with a white tank under. That create the impression that there is more white than black in the pattern and thus, a lighter, brighter look. The tribal shadow dress on the right from Taking Shape comes with a detachable black sheer mesh overlay. It demonstrates that you can use a shorter overlay to create a ‘very smart black and white pattern with black’ look.
Smart Black and White Patterns with White (a rarer look)
If you are a lover of white pants and jeans or simply, the colour white, you can create use smart black and white look that is lighter
The Butterick pattern on the left has a black and white pattern only on the front of the top. Notice the white neckline edging. The Birdsnest outfit in the middle has a black and white check dress with reverse white and black check edging. Instead of a black jacket, they suggest wearing it with a white jacket which creates a much lighter look. The Taking Shape outfit on the right uses a white tunic and jacket in different lengths worn over black and white patterned pants. Notice that the necklace has more black than white.
Smart Black and White Patterns with Black and White (a skill you can learn)
The Chicos outfit on the left has that little extra touch that elevates it above the mundane. The travel pants are a black and white abstract pattern. Over it is a layered side-zip black & white top. It is the white layer at the bottom that create the point of difference. Notice the white necklace that stands out on the black top. The Butterick pattern keeps it simple, elegant and very smart. Underneath is a simple, neutral, equal black and white stripe top. The jacket is a simple design that has two white panels on the front. The back is all-black.
The middle outfit by Review from Myer combines two black and white patterns. One of the keys to carrying this off is that the equal black and white stripe cardigan is contrasted with a skirt that has more black than white in the pattern. The second key is that the floral pattern is large while the stripes are close together. My secret insider image consultant tip is that stripes always go well with florals. The black edging at the neckline and centre front of the cardigan tie the patterns together. As an added touch the cardigan is embossed dot details below the black edging around the neck and down to centre bust.
Smart Black and White with Black Accessories
Dip your toes in the water of black and white with black by incorporating them with smart accessories.
The Birdsnest outfit in the centre is a simple way to do this with a black skirt, a white top and a mostly black pendant. What lifts is to very smart are the black and white metallic ballet flats (ok with a bit of brown) that have a contrasting solid black heel.
On the left are shoes that combine black with black and white. The snakeskin flats at the top are from Diana Ferrari (also comes in a heel style. The abstract by Django & Juliette wedges on the bottom are from Styletread. The Marikai handbag with its abstract pattern is from Strandbags.
As you have discovered black and white has endless possibilities from the simple to the very smart. When next you go shopping, keep your eyes open for clothing and accessories that combine black and white with black or white. You’ll feel great, look smart and receive lots of compliments.
Increase your dressing knowledge with this FREE download. This Really Simple Image Tip works well with black and white.