As much as I love color, there are times when I just want something calm and classic. Since neutral fashion is always in style and is easy to put together, it’s the perfect choice for those times. And it’s the color palette chosen by French women most often.
French Neutral Style
I was reading an article recently on how French women dress. And how they view holiday looks often worn by American women. The consensus seemed to be that many of us style a bit over the top. Hmm. At first, I was offended, but after some thought, I realized that might just be true.
Even seen a holiday outfit with holiday color–green and red–holiday jewelry–likewise–holiday tights–same–and maybe a jacket or bag of the same colors? Ever been guilty of that yourself? I have.
I have a photo of me when I was an elementary school principal. Over-the-top doesn’t begin to describe my look! Lol! I had a green swing dress with buttons up the back. Cute, right? But then I added Christmas bulb earrings (yes, really) and white tights with green holly and red bows up the back. Oh, and the shoes? Sensible red flats! Now, granted, we did tend to dress for the holiday spirit working with all those adorable elementary kids. But, honestly! Oh, and I was pregnant with my son at the time!! Can you picture it? Haha! Too much of a good thing, to be sure.
I did throw those earrings away as soon as I saw the photo. Yikes.
In any case, the moral of the story is that you don’t have to wear the traditional holiday colors to be festive and look elegant. Regardless of the holiday. And you don’t need to over-accessorize. If you are a fan of neutral fashion, there are lots of ways to look holiday festive without breaking out the green and red.
Back to the French style. The classic French style is typically subtle neutral shades with quality shoes and bags and classy jewelry. Now, we can all do that, right?
The Neutral Fashion Outfit
There are lots of ways to put pieces together to form a “neutral” outfit. It doesn’t always have to be monochromatic or dull. We often think of neutral as beige or tan or black. But there is a range of tones that is still considered neutral that can be added to create some interest. As in this neutral winter outfit.
Take this sweater coat or coatagin, as it is sometimes called. (I first shared it last year in the post Fall Cozy in a Chunky Sweater Coat Outfit over a year ago!) What is a coatagin, you ask? Basically it’s a super warm sweater, typically in a longer length that can serve as a coat.
The shade of the coat I’m styling is called “tan sugar.” Huh? It’s kind of a cross between camel and mustard. I would designate it a neutral. Don’t think all neutrals have to be subtle. Here’s a tip for adding a pop of color to your neutral outfit.
Contrast outfits involve putting together complementary colors. This type of dressing results in outfits that have a pop factor as the colors are clearly defined within the outfit.
So there you go! You can either wear contrasting neutrals or tonal neutrals–those that are close to one another on the color wheel. Both ways work!
Here are some beautiful sweater coat options to keep you warm this winter:
I’ve mentioned lately how I am liking the pull-on pants style. They are generally made of a knit or stretch material, so they fit nicely. There are lots of versions of knit plaid pants which make them versatile to wear from fall to spring. Of course, plaid is a very popular pattern, especially in the winter. Here is a similar pair of pants in a black windowpane pattern.
Black Top and Booties
You’ve seen these booties many times! They are my Vionic Wedge booties and a winter favorite.
By adding a contrasting neutral to a basic tonal neutral outfit, you can make use of all the neutral pieces in your closet! And you can wear a neutral outfit for any occasion–casual or dressy.