*featured image by @blaireadiebee
Tonal dressing is one of those things that you either do right, or just don’t do it at all. Get it wrong, and you’ll look just about as monotonous and 1-dimensional as my rum and coke by the end of the night. But get it right, and you can end up looking contemporary, fashion forward and effortlessly innovative. Try to keep in mind that monochromatic styling doesn’t automatically equate to dressing in 1-of-the-shades-of-the-rainbow; wearing an all black or white outfit follows the same principles.
1. Focus On Textures
Fabrics are the foundation of fashion; clothes wouldn’t be clothes without them. Reinvent tonal dressing by experimenting with different fabrics and materials. The clash of textures will help pull the look together, whilst distinguishing a balance needed for the outfit to work. Consider pairing classic staples such as cotton, wool, cashmere and tweed with romantically luxurious alternatives like silk, velvet and lace.
2. Pick n Mix Shades
Don’t always opt for the boldest shades of each colour. It doesn’t always work and isn’t appropriate for every occasion. An ocean blue or moss green is just as appealing as a citrus yellow or pillarbox red. As said earlier, wearing 1 colour all in the same shade will just make your outfit look flat, and it’s certified you won’t achieve that oomph you’re after. Consider varying the concentrations and undertones. Additionally, the colour story doesn’t necessarily have to be conventional either. You can play around with metallics, and still have your monochrome moment.
3. Complement Your Skin Tone
The golden rule for everything whether it be hair, beauty or fashion is match match matchy MATCH your skin tone! And this includes your undertones as well. Choose a colour that highlights the beauty of your natural skin colour. Pale and dark skin shades can really pull off richer deeper hues like emeralds, rubies and violets. Whereas browns, dark and neutral colours can really bring out the warmth in medium and olive skin shades. But also try to think about undertones. Neutral undertones can pretty much pull off anything. Self-explanatory, warm undertones look amazing in – you guessed it– the warm shades of the colour wheel (red, oranges, pinks and yellows). And cool undertones look stunning in the cool side of the colour wheel (blues, greens, purples, darker pinks). Either way, learn your colour theory and analysis!
4. Experiment With Length and Silhouette
I’ll be the 1st to admit, you couldn’t pay me all the money in the world to get me out of mini skirts. Anything remotely past mid-thigh was like asking me to convert to monasticism. Then I realised that I just had to discover the right length and shape to complement my 5’3 frame, without compromising on sensuality and femininity. The trick is to work with your body. Fashion is to here to love, not loathe! No matter your size, height or body type, once you find the lengths and silhouettes that flatter your proportions, you’ll look fire – I promise. Why not wear a clothing silhouette you’ve never tried before? Hey, don’t knock it ’til you rock it.
5. Match Block Colour With Print
Monochromatic dressing is just as much about colour as it’s about patterns. Colour will only get you so far – prints will always elevate your look, and add a playful chicness to your outfit. Who said pattern has to be boring? The variety is endless, with options ranging from animal print, to floral and botanical, to geometric. No matter whether you want to be loud or subtle, there’s always a print out there for everyone. And the same goes for designs with graphics and slogans. Trendy yet nonchalantly powerful.
6. Break Up The Look With Accessories
Rethink tonal dressing by implementing neutral accessories through jewellery, footwear and bags. Whites, blacks and beiges are always a safe bet for styling an all-1-colour outfit. It also helps draw attention to the main outfit, for an overall standout appearance.
If you follow these rules, you’ll look absolutely phenomenal; you’re gonna look really really good.
Words By Charis Crawford CORRI – fashion director & acting beauty editor at ragged cult
*Disclaimer – Ragged Culture Publishing Ltd. does not own copyright of images featured in this article. All rights reserved*