Avoiding January Fashion Blahs

Let’s be serious: snow, grey skies and windchill are not the makings of vibrancy or the inspiration for anything other than sweaters and socks. But just because we’re in the midst of winter’s wrath doesn’t mean you’ve got to abandon your zest for fashion and adopt a monochromatic aesthetic. So here’s our guide to avoiding the January blahs and keeping your look interesting “ big socks and all.

Surprise! Colour exists past December 31st, but instead of recycling the holiday sparkles and festive red, look towards spring inspiration “ especially when it comes to the likes of neon and safari print as showcased by designer Jil Sander and chains like H&M. No, you don’t have to don head-to-toe vibrancy or patterns that rival the worst of the 70s, but a headband, tank or even a blouse (if you’re daring), will take you out of the monochromatic and into the sun-drenched aesthetic of spring and summer 2011.

Not reserved solely for vintage sweaters or work-friendly button ups, the closer spring gets, the more multi-dimensional fashion becomes. Whether it’s floral print, a retro design or classic polka dots, patterns are no longer reserved solely for understatements or hair accessories. This time around, they’re inundating skirts, dresses and even pants. And while you may be hesitant to begin wearing sundresses during a snowstorm or a floral mini during cold weather warnings, stores like Urban Outfitters have capitalized on the print-infused movement with trousers and button-ups, perfect for jacket pairings and winter-appropriate boots.


No stranger to the 2010 fashion dynamic, texture returns in spring 2011, and nothing will keep January interesting like the intrigue created by sheer, layers or old-fashioned sheen. Those holiday skirts can be carried over to late winter by pairing them with a blouse rich in detail (like ruffles or plaiting), while black cigarette pants can work with a chiffon top paired with a classic cardigan. Of course, for nights out, texture also reigns supreme, with the likes of oversize sheer button-ups worn over bright tanks creating the perfect look for drinks out with friends or an old-fashioned date night.

Contrary to popular belief, denim is far from blah or ordinary “ especially when paired with spring 2011’s trends or the grunge-friendly look fall and winter re-introduced us to. For a look a less feminine and more punk rock (because if windchill doesn’t give you an edge, nothing else will), pair a denim vest with a solid long-sleeve tank and an eternity scarf, or take to your favourite thrift shop for a denim mini dress that works perfectly with thick patterned tights and a patterned pea coat. And of course, don’t forget to combine trends: patterned denim will be back with a vengeance come the warmer months, but it’s never too soon to add interest to your wardrobe with floral cigarette jeans or the kitschy acid wash.

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Tags: denim, H&M, jeggings, keeping january interesting, mixing patterns, neon, patterns, safari, winter fashion

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