Color

Colorblock Sweaters to Look More Creative

A good way to take your wardrobe in more of a creative direction is through color blocking. That’s when you take multiple solid colors and piece them together into an outfit for a modern pop-art look.

If that sounds like more than you want to tackle at the moment, then an easy place to start is with a colorblock sweater. Here are a few I found that look cute and are super easy to style.

Pastel Slice

Most women think of colorblocked clothes as very bright and bold, but you can colorblock quieter hues too. This pretty pastel pink sweater with it’s soft slices of white and gray looks arsty in a more relaxed way.

The asymmetrical hem with the chic side slit is the selling point for me because it makes you look twice.

Push up the sleeves for a more youthful look, and add dark gray jeans and booties to show off the top. A gorgeous camel coat and bag makes this whole look uber elegant.

Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend

Oh, yeah! This sweater is for all my bold ladies who love color and a good classic print. I would wear this in a heartbeat. I love the modern mix of bright pink and orange (I own another colorblock sweater in the same color mix), and that diamond pattern is always a stunner.

With a top like this, you want to keep everything else toned down or risk looking like a clown. I’ve paired this sweater with jeans with a bit of an edge to offset the classic diamonds ( they’re cropped and frayed). Then I’ve added some neutral flats, a bag, scarf and gold earrings.

The nice thing is, if you really don’t like these colors, this sweater comes in 4 other fabulous color combos, so take a look.

Arsty Alpine

Here’s a sweater with an alpine vibe that makes me think I should be out skiing. The shape of it, and the classic mock turtleneck say chalet chic to me, except for one thing.

The icy blue and white color blocking is a far cry from a nordic knit pattern and gives this fabulous sweater an artsy, arctic twist. I love this sweater, and it comes in hot pink too!

Here are a few more colorblock sweaters in stores now.

Casual

Cute Galentine’s Day Outfit!

Today I’m partnering with three fabulous blogger friends:  Jo-Lynne,  Jennifer, Tania, to show you some cute Galentine’s Day looks.  If you don’t know what Galentine’s Day is (and I didn’t until last year), let me fill you in.

Galentine's Day outfit Pink colorblock sweater, jeans, pink bag Deborah Boland

While Valentine’s Day is all about loving and honoring your sweetheart, Galentine’s Day is about celebrating female friendships. It takes place the day before Valentine’s Day, on February 13th.  I’m not sure how this extra holiday got started, but it has grown into a thing, and now lots of women are starting to plan some pretty fun and fabulous outings with their girlfriends!

Galentine's Day Outfit Pink Sweater, jeans, pink bag Deborah Boland

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I  was recently out and about shooting some outfits in my neighborhood when I happened upon the cutest place called Lola Choco Bar and Sweet House.  I love going out for tea with my girlfriends, but it’s hard to find somewhere cozy to go, so when I discovered this darling cafe, I was thrilled.

What a perfect place for a Galentine’s Day gathering, or tea with a friend, anytime.  To be able to sit, chat, and laugh in such welcoming, homey surroundings with a hot drink and a tasty treat – well, that’s what friendship is all about!

Galentine's Day - pink, red, purple colorblock sweater Deborah Boland

What does one wear to a Galentine’s Day gathering? It’s so new that there are no guidelines, but my vote would be something casual, pretty, and feminine, like this lovely colorblock sweater.   (*Canadians use this BR sweater link)

Galentine's day outfit Pink striped sweater, jeans, pink bag Deborah Boland

You know I’m a fan of bright colors and modern color combinations, so when I spotted this colorblock sweater at Banana Republic, I thought it said Valentine’s/Galentine’s Day to me! A fitted sweater like this always looks chic with bootcut jeans.

flare jeans, black suede booties with gold heel

My favorite Michael Kors black suede booties with the gorgeous gold heels really turn up the glam for Galentine’s Day!

Galentine's sweater pink colorblock

Pink, purple and red! It’s a bold, beautiful mix!

Galentine's Day pink colorblock top, pink bag Deborah Boland

How do you like my purse? It’s from Kate Spade – no surprise there. They have the best bags! I was hypnotized by this delicate pink color and had to have this bag!  It’s such a fresh, pretty color, and it’s the perfect size for me.

Galentine's Day pink, red sweater, pink bag Deborah BolandIt’s a gorgeous spring bag, but heck, I’m using it now. It’s a great pick-me-up to get me through dreary February!

Galentine's Day Colorblock sweater, jeans, pink bag Deborah Boland

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So what do you think? Will you be doing Tea or brunch, dinner, or drinks with your girlfriends on Galentine’s Day? At least you will have some ideas on what to wear!

 

Galentines day outfits. inspo

Be sure to visit Jennifer, Tania, and Jo-Lynne to see what they suggest too!

You’ll find my outfit linked above. Happy Galentine’s day, girlfriend!

Color

Here’s the Latest in Colorblock Sweaters

I’m a big fan of adding color to perk up my wardrobe during the long, dreary winter, which is why I love color-block sweaters. Over the holidays, you usually see colorblock sweaters in a mix of deep, rich, traditional colors like burgundy, black, white, camel, red and green. This year, it’s all about the brightest of brights!

Colorblock sweater | Deborah Boland | Fabulous After 40
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My  bold, new colorblock sweater in hot pink and orange is an exciting change from the classic winter shades!

Continue reading “Here’s the Latest in Colorblock Sweaters”
Color

Pointers On Wearing Purple this Fall

Purple adds drama to even the most average outfit, creating excitement and immediate impact. Would you wear purple?  Could you wear purple? What message does it send?

Pointers on wearing purple this Fall |ultra violet purple paint chips beside woman wearing a purple hat | Fabulous After 40

What Purple Symbolizes

Purple has long been known as the color of royalty and is associated with wealth and leadership. It’s also a color associated with spirituality and magic. The positive psychological power of purple is that it is intuitive, sensitive, and imaginative. Continue reading “Pointers On Wearing Purple this Fall”

Dresses

How Colorblock Dresses Slim & Shape Your Body

Colorblock dresses are a bold and fun way to express your style and can be super slimming too. Strategically placed blocks of color whittle your waist, shave inches off your thighs and create optical illusions that make you look slim and trim.  How does it work?

Color blocking

Dark Colors Recede

Black absorbs light, so if you wear black or a dark color on a certain area of your body, it will make that area appear smaller. This why so many women love wearing black pants and skirts. Dark colors, like black, camouflage and visually shrink a heavy belly, thick hips, and thighs.

Light Colors Pop

The opposite is true about light and bright colors. Light/Bright Colors reflect light.  Wherever you place a light or bright color on your body, that area will be highlighted. You’ll draw attention to it,  and it will appear larger.  This is why so many bottom-heavy women don’t feel comfortable wearing white pants or skirts or brightly colored red jeans.

colorblock dresses

What Does Combing Light and Dark Colors Do?

When you combine chunks of dark  + light/bright in a stand-alone dress, you get some interesting special effects. Our eyes naturally want to follow lines, and we’re attracted to blocks of color. Colorblock dresses can trick the eye and help whittle your waist, trim wide hips, lengthen your legs, make you look taller, and shrinking or enlarging your bust.  Here are some of the latest colorblock dresses and what they can do for you.

 

1. Elongate Your Body with a Colorblock Dress

Vertical lines naturally elongate the body, making you look taller and slimmer. Colorblocked vertical lines can intensify that lengthening effect depending on the arrangement of dark and light/bright colors. The less contrast between color blocks the more elongating the look.

 

2.  Minimize Your Botton Half with a Colorblock Dress

When you look at something, your eye automatically goes to the lighter area, which is the white bodice of this dress. Black on the bottom minimizes this area. This elegant dress would be great for someone who wants to make their bust look larger and/or their bottom half appear smaller.

 

3. Define Your Waist with a Colorblock Dress

This dress is blue on blue, but the darker blue color blocks at the waist create curves and the illusion of a smaller, more shapely waist. If you have a rectangular-shaped body with a thick middle, this dress will work wonders to give you a more hourglass shape.

 

4. Broaden Your Shoulders with a Colorblock Dress

A bright block of color across the top of this dress highlights and widens your shoulders making your hips look smaller.  Colorblocked chevron stripes that angle in and optically narrow the body. If you are a pear shape with wide hips and narrow shoulders, this dress will broaden your upper half and downplay your bottom half, making you look more balanced.

 

5. Shave Inches off Your Hips with a Colorblock Dress

Dark side panels recede into the background and almost disappear while brighter colors pop out and to the front. The result? Dark side panels will shave a couple of inches off your body and make your hips look slimmer.

 

6. Create Curves with a Colorblock Dress

A colorblock dress doesn’t have to be high-contrast colors to shape and slim. Even this low contrast version in red on red with its soft rounded lines can help give your body some beautiful curves.

 

7.  Look Lean in a Colorblock Dress

Diagonal lines on a colorblock dress create a slimming effect. The more vertical the diagonal line, the taller and leaner you will look.

 

DEBORAH'S STYLE

Colorblock Sweater Has Athleisure Vibe

Athleisure hasn’t been high on my list of new looks to try. But recently I found a classy way to get the Athleisure vibe without having to sacrifice my style.

I’ve never warmed up to the idea of clothing designed for workouts and fitness, such as yoga pants, sweats, and track suits being worn leisurely to work, restaurants and in other such settings. It just feels a little sloppy to me.  However, I do like the thought of a relaxed, sporty look for my on the go lifestyle.

That’s the reason I was attracted to this cute new outfit I just picked up from Michael Kors.

This cute colorblock top with the racing stripe border is right on trend. It has an athletic, modern look, but it’s dressier than true Athleisure clothing.

My soft pullover feels great on because it’s nice and lightweight for this transitional time of year.  I love the body-hugging fit, which is streamlined but not tight. Vivid orange stripes at the bottom, cuffs and up along the sides create bold contrast against the navy and give my sweater a fabulous shot of energy.

Even when I’m sporty, I like a touch of femininity, which is why I added this darling  MK oval crossbody bag with gold chain. The gentle nude/blush color soften things up just a touch.

I’m ready for action! It’s a great look for when I’m on the go. This outfit makes me feel healthy, happy and fit!

The cropped cargo pants have the cutest gold zippers at the pockets and ankles. They are the perfect length to show off my fab sneakers.

I’m a huge fan of statement sneakers.  They are comfy, practical and fun. These are super cool with the white python print and silver trim. I wear them traveling and had three people stop me at the airport to ask where I got them!

The great thing about a sporty look? It’s youthful without making you look like you are trying too hard. Sporty is energetic, and energetic is youthful!

I look pulled together, but relaxed, visiting the gift shop at our local art gallery gift shop in Burlington, Ontario.

Sporty, a little bit tailored and minimalist. My version of the Athleisure trend, with a classy, fresh spin.

DEBORAH'S STYLE

How to Wear a Fall Poncho

Lately, I’ve been talking about accessories, like jewelry and gloves, and how they can help you Tweak your Chic.

Colorblock ponchos for women 

Today I’m partnering with Nordstrom to bring you one more accessory that I think should be in every woman’s wardrobe – a fabulous fall poncho.

Rust women's poncho 

I’ve always had a thing about wraps, ponchos, capes, you name it, because of how glamorous they make me feel. Nordstrom has a fantastic selection of ponchos for women at the moment.  A poncho-like is the ultimate accessory because you slip it on over a simple outfit, and you look like a million bucks! Continue reading “How to Wear a Fall Poncho”

FALL & WINTER

Fabric Blocking – Tips to Try Fall’s Newest Trend

First there was color blocking and now there’s fabric blocking? What is it and how do you wear it?

donna karan fabric blocked dress

 

“Fabric blocking” is fashion-ese for having multiple fabrics in one outfit or even one item of clothing, often sectioned off by hard lines. Popularized this fall/winter 2013, most notably by Fendi, the look is modern and striking. You could almost call it color-blocking 2.0, as it often (but not always) uses different colors for each fabric.

Continue reading “Fabric Blocking – Tips to Try Fall’s Newest Trend”

How To Stretch Your Wardrobe with Stripes

stripesIt can be expensive to have a really nice wardrobe, so it’s important to know how to get the most fashion mileage out of your clothes. If you want to look chic on the cheap a great way to do this is to invest in some good quality basics and then style them together in different ways.

One of my readers Annette Hoeldrich, 50, from Munich Germany has mastered this. Annette sent me some photos of 3 different ways she wears a black and white striped dress she recently purchased.

If you’ve been following Fabulous After 40, you know that strong stripes are very popular. In fact, I’ve written a few posts explaining how to wear bold stripes after 40.

What everyone seems to love about them is that they are fresh, and modern and they act as a neutral base that can be dressed up or down, taking you from a fun, casual look to a more dressy, dramatic look.

By mixing things up Annette has created three distinct outfits each with a different mood: Elegant, colorful and casual. I asked Anne to tell us a little about each pairing. Continue reading “How To Stretch Your Wardrobe with Stripes”

FALL & WINTER

6 Simple Ways To Color Block and Look Classy

Color Blocking is still going strong, but many of you are shying away from it for fear you will do it wrong and look foolish. So here’s a simple way to get in on the color blocking trend in a classy and elegant way:

helen mirren color block
Helen Mirren is bold and beautiful in her color-blocked outfit.

1.  Stick to Two Colors

Too many colors and it’s true, you can look like you like a mixed up mess. To keep things current but chic stick to 2-3 bright hues and keep everything else such as your shoes, jewelry, and bag neutral.

dvf color block
Diane Von Furstenberg wears the perfect colors to suit her skin and hair ( photo: shutterstock)

2.  Choose Colors That Blend with Your Skin, Hair, and Eyes 

When you choose shades that naturally blend with your skin tone, hair, and eyes, you will look stunning. Choose colors that are opposite to your natural coloring, and everyone will see the colors walking in the door and never even notice you. Continue reading “6 Simple Ways To Color Block and Look Classy”

Body-Type

Monochromatic Dressing Tips To Magically Slim

Want a quick and easy way to instantly look taller, thinner and trimmer?

Check out my video on  color tricks to look slim and discover how monochromatic dressing can help you look 10 lbs. lighter.

Oxblood outfit
Any color worn head to toe is slimming.

If you are not familiar with monochromatic dressing, it is  simply wearing one color from head to toe to create a long lean silhouette.

If that way of dressing sounds too matchy-matchy and boring, it’s really not. There are many ways to work a single color to make it look interesting and modern. To get the monochromatic look right simply:

 

Blue outfit
Textures and subtle pattern break up the monotony of all one color.

 

1. Vary Your Shades

Instead of trying to match reds in an all red outfit, vary the shades slightly to add depth and interest. For example try a jacket, dress and boots in slightly varying shades of brown or a bright red dress with oxblood shoes. If you are wearing blue jeans, you could  mix them with a  blue top and blue jacket.

2. Mix Textures

Combing different textures like leather, silk, suede, chiffon, tweed, boucle adds dimension and makes monochromatic dressing so much more cool.

3.  Include Subtle Patterns

Very subtle patterns in the same color family can also give the monochromatic mix more personality.

4.  Combine Matte and Shiny Materials

Try a shiny metallic sweater with a matte dress pant,  or  a matte dress with a glossy belt or shiny shoe. Polar Opposites make monochromatic come alive.

For more great tips on monochromatic dressing and how to use color to look Age-Amazing™ over 40,  pick up a copy of my popular eBook Color Me Fabulous at www.fabulousafter40.com.