Chapter 8: A Pairing of Prints

Chapter 8: A Pairing of Prints

A fashion editor watches someone walk into a café...

...and order a $6 multi-word coffee (don't worry this isn't the beginning of a joke – I can't deliver one to save my life). Within a few seconds, an impression is made and a narrative is built on an assessment of clothes, shoes, hair and how said person carries themselves. Research shows that being perceived as trustworthy is much more important to a good first impression than the confidence displayed in a firm handshake or sustained eye contact. I don’t know about you, but I am much more inclined to trust someone who is expressing their authentic self and fashion is a wonderful way to do just that.


Dries Van Noten

As a former fashion editor, I was professionally trained to be superficial (among other things, of course). I admit, I do consider the degree of style. Do the clothes wear the person or does the person wear the clothes? There are lots of ways to evaluate an outfit – things like silhouette, proportions, and fabric are important pieces of the puzzle, but I want to focus on the role of a print (or two! Or three!)!

In pursuit of a chic wardrobe, some of us stick to solids and neutrals. For decades, I dressed head to toe in "black and white only" as many editors do or at least did. However, designers like Dries Van Noten have helped me round a corner and find happiness in prints and color. I love the creativity and charm involved in wearing prints and specifically a combination -- complementary or even clashing. Adding just one or two bold pieces to a tightly curated core wardrobe can create so many expressive new combinations. If you have commitment issues (I hear ya), thrift shopping and clothes swapping can be an inexpensive way to ease into it.

                    Shirt 054                                            PJ 004                                       Party Pant 001

In sourcing my line of upcycled mens' shirts, it is satisfying to find a classic white or blue stripe, but nothing beats the feeling of finding beautiful patterns and prints. Whether subtle or bold, I love to know that, in the next chapter of their stories, those shirts will play a part in someone expressing their authentic self.

As no one in particular said, "Don't postpone joy!”


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