How to rock clashing prints at any age
Our guide to mix ‘n’ matching bold patterned pieces like a pro, whether you’re 25 or 55…

Natasha Saroca

Mar 09, 2014 01:39
by Natasha Saroca

Clashing prints: It’s a trend that you’ve probably noticed on and off the runway over the last few seasons, but have you tried it at home? No? Well, we don’t blame you – after all, it’s not for the fashion faint-hearted and can be a bit tricky to pull off!

If you’re avoiding double-pattern looks because your style mantra is ‘less is more’ or you’re worried you can’t pull clashing combos off at your age, we have just one word to say to you: Don’t. Why?


a) this popular trend is not going anywhere in a hurry;

b) we like to think of ourselves as your fashion fairy godmother, so it’s our job to encourage you to spread your sartorial wings every now and then; and

c) we’re about to school you in ‘Clashing Prints 101’, and once we’re done, you’ll be a certified mix master and matching unexpected pattern combos like a pro!

There are a few simple things you should keep in mind when pulling together print-on-print outfits.

1. Pick patterned pieces that have one or more common colours. This will tie the ensemble together tonally so the combo looks oh-so-hot, rather than like a hot mess.

2. Or try wearing the same print, but in different colourways or scales.

3. Too shy to wear electric tones from top to toe? Pair a bright print with another pattern in neutral shades, like classic black and white, grey, cream or beige. Gold and silver will also help balance out high-impact colour.

4. Wearing patterned accessories or kicks is another way to easily incorporate clashing prints into your outfit.

5. Stripes and leopard print go with everything – they’re basically a neutral.

6. Play with textures, too. This will add another element of contrast and chic appeal to your ensemble.

So, there you have it: our guide to wearing clashing prints. We’ve also put these into practice to prove how easy it is to pull together a killer mixed print outfit, regardless of your age. While we’ve styled an ensemble for every age group, we’re pretty confident you could wear every single look – most, anyway (and maybe with a few simple tweaks, if needed!) – whether you’re in your early 20s or late 50s. We’re game if you are!

So, what do you think? Are you a clashing prints convert?

Shop the looks


French Connection Leopard Sleeve Bomber Jacket, $129.95; Bardot Paris Cats Tank, $35; We Are Handsome The Bahamas Leggings, $219; Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Hi Leather Metallic Sneakers in Rich Gold/White from Authentics, $120; Stussy Five Iron Backpack from Glue Store, $59.99; Samantha Wills Ruby Tuesday Necklace in Gold, $130.


Jaded London Gold Chain Sweat from Topshop, £48; Manning Cartell Triangularity Flip Skirt, $349; Siren Shoes Kami Heels, $189.95; Rachael Ruddick Oversized Octavia Clutch, $420; Lovisa Emerald Green Teardrop Stone Collar Necklace, $24.99; Amber Sceats Orion Ring, $95.


COOP by Trelise Cooper Melton Johns Dont Pink Twice Jacket, $479; Topshop Check Tee in Pale Blue, £32; by johnny. Wall Art Pencil Skirt from Piper Lane, $230; Tony Bianco Leola Heels in Limone Kid Suede, $159.95; Rachael Ruddick East West Shopper in White Croco/Calfskin from David Jones, $439; Kate Spade New York Gramercy Grand Watch in Silver from Piperlime, $230.80.


Charlie Brown Luck Coated Gold Knit Cardigan, $249; Willow Racer Back Tee, $145; Zimmermann Tamer Floral Wide Leg Pant, $650; Mimco Trophy Block Heel Pump in Spearmint, $199; Marc by Marc Jacobs Classic Q Colorblock Hillier Hobo, USD$428; Witchery Button Studs in Gold, $14.95.


Tokito Collection Tassle Trim Jacket from Myer, $90; Charlie Brown Angel’s Eye Faustine Print Dress,$349; rmk Nightrider Tan Leather Heels, $139.95; Nine West 9 On the Go Tote, $79.95; Peter Lang Madeline Multi Rose Gold Chain Necklace, $75.

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