Styling together an outfit is all about mixing together complimentary patterns, textures, fits and colors. I don’t always mix more than one pattern in one getup unless they are similar enough without being overwhelming (maybe one is muted down a bit). However, when the same is all considered in the production of one garment, things can get even more interesting! Patchwork is one of those fun mixed-media ideas in terms of designing a piece, and perhaps brings a bit of nostalgia, either from grandma’s quilts or recycling fabrics to make a perfect pair of bell bottoms in the 1970s. It’s a cool category in the denim industry that is always around, but seems to poke its head out from time to time every few years as a new trend. It can be used to portray just about anything from a bold, rebellious street style to a laid-back, friendly aesthetic. It’s been awesome to see how brands get creative with all the ways to create a unique pair of jeans in such a saturated market, and patchwork is always a bright go-to when stuck in a style rut or when you’re just feeling stylishly playful.
I’m not usually big on patterns—I like block colors and solids for the most part, with the occasional logos. I know leopard print has been huge for a long time, but it took me awhile for it to rub off on me. I thought it made it look too much like I was fresh off a safari or jungle cruise! I wasn’t fond of the wild side feel, although I know I liked edgy styles. I think I can credit those all-too-cool Current Elliott leopard jeans that were popular years ago for tipping me over the edge. Again though, I wasn’t partial to them at first, but the subtle print with a colored background caught my eye. I had to have them! Animal prints come and go, but they seem to be turning into all the rage for the Fall. I am not one to follow trends either, but I can dig some of the unique looks that are making animal print look fun to style. Leopard, zebra, snakeprint—I’ve definitely got my eyes on a few animal print pieces for Fall and am already thinking of styling ideas!
So for those who followed me through my last post, you know why I’ve been MIA for three weeks: I was at that little party in the desert. You know, that one that’s actually a temporary city built by 70,000 people, and also known as Burning Man! What an experience! Since my blog doesn’t focus on such things, I won’t get into details, but I’ll just say it was the most transformative experience of my life. It tested my mental strength several times, and gave me some clarity to some of the things I wanted to improve in my “default” daily life. This event also encourages everyone to be participants rather than spectators, so the collaboration we had giving back to our camp (building, bartending, helping with workshops, etc) was also extremely fulfilling considering that teamwork is not always so easy in the real world! Yeah, there was plenty of partying, but it went way deeper than that—there’s something so liberating and inspiring seeing so many people letting loose with their creativity, and doing good for others without expecting anything in return.
When I’m choosing an interesting new pair or line of jeans to either shop or write about, I’m always looking up the obvious brands: AG Jeans, 7 For All Mankind, Joe’s…you get the idea. I don’t write much about the bigger designer or couture brands, both because of their lack of focus on denim and because their price ranges are a bit far out of my reader’s hands. However, every now and then something new or cool comes out from one of these companies that I just have to share, at least because it’s interesting to see what’s out there! I like all kinds of creativity.
One of the reasons I love denim so much is because I am a creative…I am basically an artist of sorts by craft. There are so many cool pieces of denim out there beyond the traditional blue jeans, and the possibilities somehow always seem endless. I always gravitate to the most unique, colorful, creative, unusual, weird and different pieces in the denim industry, and I try to get my hands on as many as possible to make dressing up in the mornings even more fun! When it comes to a night out, I know most ladies prefer to opt for the foolproof sleek, dark-washed, leg-lengthening skinny jeans to go with their favorite pair of killer heels, but why not opt for something to set you apart from the pack, to let our your playful side? Shopbop has put together a fun collection of party-worthy denim, with patchwork, fringe, distressing, embellishments, and other fun and daring details to shake up your nightlife routine a bit.
I’m definitely digging the alice + olivia Joana Splatter Paint Skinny Jeans (paint and denim always somehow seem to go hand in hand) and the Citizens of Humanity Agnes Crop Jeans in Euclid Bleach. The BLANKNYC Two Tone Raw Hem Jeans in Sliding Doors also catches my attention as I love colorblocked styles! The Siwy Mary-Jane Jeans in Crazy Train offer a fun festival-style vibe in my eyes and I’d wear them out dancing any time as well. Also, I’m sure you all remember the beautifully distressed BLANKNYC Skinny Classique in Good Vibes which has been a very popular blogger and stylist staple all this last year, longer than any denim piece I’ve ever seen out of the brand! Here are my favorite pieces from Shopbop’s Party Denim collection!
Shop the entire Party Denim collection from Shopbop here!
’70s Vibes with alice + olivia at Shopbop
Well, I’m back! Sorry for the hiatus, but my hubby and I took a well needed break traveling around the midwest. We visited family and various hotspots such as the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland! Cleveland in itself is such a beautiful and fun city from what I could tell by the short amount of time we were there before we continued on with our road trip, but the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame was easily a place you could spend several days at. I always say if I could ever get my hands on a time machine, I’d go back to experience the earlier days of rock, especially that famous National Anthem solo by Hendrix at Woodstock (and yes, that guitar was on display there!!). I’m always fascinated by ’60s and ’70s vibes, and visiting the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame brought me right there. Maybe I existed in a past life during that era? Who knows. I can only dream. But when it comes to fashion, I’m always drawn to pieces that are inspired by this carefree and yet politically active era. As soon as I got back and sifted through my backup of emails that accumulated while I was gone, I found one from Shopbop featuring a collection of cool ’70s inspired pieces from fashion powerhouse brand alice + olivia.
Patched and Embroidered Denim for Fall
The artistry within the denim community is one aspect that keeps me hooked. When ripped jeans first got popular over ten years ago, I started by buying my own pair and ripping them myself, then added rhinestones and patches all over them, based on a pair I had seen at either Abercrombie or Hollister (same thing basically…but can’t remember specifically). Way before that, in high school, I enjoyed putting embroidered patches all over my backpack, but hadn’t ever considered putting them on clothing. Jeans with cute embroidery have been floating around the market more than before now, and it’s so fun seeing all of the different designs available! It further pushes the notion that denim is like a canvas, ready for a designer (or designer at heart) to have at it and express their creativity, just like with painted jeans. A lot of them bring out a cool flower child-ish ’70s vibe which obviously fits me pretty well if you’ve been reading my blog long enough!
Fall is almost here already, and I think patched and embroidered jeans would be perfect to match the falling leaves and changing colors of the season. Springtime is also another season that I feel these embroidered jeans fit well within, but that’s a subject for a much later post! Here are some of the best I could find out on the market right now, starting with two beautiful styles that are part of Level 99’s Fall/Winter 2016 lookbook: the Allie Mid Rise in High Street (above) and Level 99 Amber Slouchy in Point Dume (below). Which is your favorite?