There are certain standards by which fashion is judged, but I’ve always thought fashion is best served when marching to your own beat.  I once had someone stop me on the street to tell me that my clothes were having an “abhorrent stripe fight.”  OK! Truth: I was wearing vertical and horizontal stripes, but contrary to referenced stranger’s opinion, it looked awesome.

The other good news: your closet is most likely brimming with prints, some you’ve probably never considered wearing in unison.  But with a fresh eye and a little throw caution to the wind spirit, you can create outfits that give your closet an unexpected makeover.  Everyone’s favorite Man Repeller is great at mixing and not matching.  Check out her blog and the below for some inspiration.

Mixing stripes:  It’s hard to carry a ballsy look if you are the least bit tepid, but thick and thin is a good place to start.  You also need to consider balance—i.e. show some skin.  Shorts with vertical stripes mixed with a tank with horizontal stripes is a good place to start.  You show enough leg that the neutrality of your skin balances the wanton disregard for convention.

Big florals and small florals and similarly colored florals.  This is also a fairly safe place to start for the uninitiated. Try this Floral Twill Pant (bonus under fifty bucks!) with a floral top.

Put it together: stripes and florals.  The ribbon stipe boat neck tee with a simple floral skirt.

Go a little nuts, but keep it simple with like minded colors. Raja tribal patterned jean with a color-block striped top. Or a knit floral top with some geo-patterned skinnies.

As crazy as you go, perhaps the best and most important element of all, is carrying it with a smile.

-Arianna Schioldager

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