Summer fashion doesn’t require too much preparation, you can get away with pretty basic outfits because the weather is nice. But now that the cold weather is setting in, you need to start dressing for warmth as well as style. That means layering up your clothes, which is a lot harder than people realize. You can throw a load of layers on and keep warm fairly easily, but making sure that they all work well together and you still look good is a lot harder. If you’re struggling to put together some good outfits for the cold weather, here are some basic tips on layering your clothes properly.
Choose The Right Inner Layers
The easiest part of layering an outfit is choosing the inner layers. That’s because, most of the time, nobody will be able to see them. Things like tank tops or undershirts are all great inner layers. You don’t need to worry about style too much here, go for comfort instead. When you start choosing the outer layers you can think more about style. However, if you’re creating an outfit where the inner layers are going to be on show at some point, you need to think about matching them to the rest of the outfit.
Use Seasonal Colors
Layering is all about warmth, so you’re going to be putting together these outfits in the autumn and the winter. So, you need to make sure that you’re using the right seasonal colors. Check out these 38 cute fall outfits for some great ideas on how to use fall colors in your outfit. The best autumn colors are warm oranges and reds or deep browns. In the winter, you should be looking at blues and purples for your outfits.
When you’re matching colors, you need to make sure that you’re getting the balance right. You’re using a lot of different layers so if they’re all one color, it’s not going to look good. When it comes to neutral colors, you need to avoid using too many similar shades. For example, you can combine black with a light gray, but if you combine blacks with lots of dark navy, it’ll be a bit much. When you’re matching colors, try to stick to around 3 for the entire outfit. Any more and it’ll start to get crowded. It’s always best to pick a few different shades of the same color so they work well together.
Easy To Remove Outer Layers
Your outer layers should be there for warmth when you’re outside but you’re going to take them off when you’re inside. That’s why you need to pick outer layers that are easy to take on and off. This is where you’ll make good use of wardrobe staples like a good coat or jacket or a sweater. Don’t forget about accessories like hats, scarves and gloves as well. Always make sure that your outer layers sit over the top of the outfit and they’re easy to remove because these are the layers that you’re going to be removing most often.
Outfits That Work In Different Combinations
You’re going to be switching up the layers depending on the temperature and you need to plan for that when you’re putting together the outfit. That means the outfit needs to work as a whole, but it also needs to work just as well if you remove a couple of the layers as well. If your coat clashes with the rest of the outfit or you’re wearing a coat that works but the sweater underneath doesn’t match, the outfit won’t look good once you start changing the layers. Think about this when you’re pairing up items.
Be Careful With Patterns
Building an outfit with patterns is always risky. It’s not so difficult in the summer when you’ve only got one or two pieces in your outfit. But when you’re building up a layered outfit with a lot of different pieces, you can easily go wrong. If you want to play it safe, only use one patterned item per outfit. If you do want to use multiple patterned pieces, you need to make sure that you’re spreading them out properly. For example, if you’re wearing a patterned coat, the sweater that you’re wearing directly underneath needs to be a plain, block color. Otherwise, the outfit will look crowded and messy. If you’re using very subtle patterns, you don’t need to worry too much about this, just follow the basic rules of color matching in a layered outfit.
Choose Items Of Varying Lengths
When you’re wearing a lot of different layers, you’re in danger of the outfit looking puffy. The best way to avoid this is to vary the length of the items. If they’re all the same length, they’ll build up on top of one another. You don’t need to worry about this too much with the thinner layers on the inside but when it comes to coats and sweaters, you need to be more careful. Pick a sweater, jacket and shirt that are all different lengths to create a slimmer looking outfit. Traditional fashion rules dictate that you use the shortest hem on the inside and work outwards. So you’d have a short shirt with a mid length sweater and then a longer coat over the top. You don’t need to stick to those rules religiously as long as you make sure that you’re varying the length of different items when you’re layering up an outfit.
Loose And Baggy Cuts
Another big mistake that could make your outfit look baggy is using too many baggy cuts. You need to get the balance right and use loose items sparingly. For example, if you’re wearing a flowing skirt with a baggy blouse, the outfit won’t look right. But if you match that same skirt with a tighter top, it’ll accent it a lot better. When you’re choosing a coat, you need to think about what’s underneath. A long flowing dress is best paired with a smaller jacket. If you’re going to wear a bulky coat, you need to match it with a slimline dress.
Choose The Right Fabrics
Choosing the right fabrics is very important when you’re layering up and people often get it wrong. Just because it’s warm, that doesn’t mean you should just load up on thick fabrics throughout. The aim is to create an outfit that keeps you comfortable when you’re outside as well as when you go inside in the warm. If you’re wearing thick fabrics on every layer, you’re going to be boiling hot when you get inside. But equally, you need enough thick layers to keep you warm when you’re outside. Balance is key here; your inner layers should usually be fairly light, thin fabrics. Then you can use a thick sweater and coat to keep warm outside. It’s also a good idea to take an alternative to your thick coat, like a cardigan or light jacket so you’ve got a good middle ground.
Match One Piece At A Time
With all of those rules about matching colors and patterns and making sure that outfits work in different combinations, it can get a little confusing. That’s why it’s best to match your outfit one item at a time, starting from the inside and working out. Take the inner layer and pick out the next piece and make sure that they match. Then pick out the next item and make sure that it works with the other 2 and so on. If you put together your outfits this way, you can be sure that every piece works together regardless of which items you take off.
Layering up an outfit is a lot harder than people think but if you follow these rules, you can get it right.