spring translations: safe stripes


so, i was going to write about another spring trend that’s annoying me this week, perhaps neon, or boyfriend blazers, or…you see where i’m headed.  but i decided instead to be a bit more positive.  to find the silver lining on this sad spring fashion cloud, if you will.  and i’ve done it!  

stripes!  they’re absolutely everywhere right now, and while i’ve run screaming from them in the past, they’re a trend i’m totally willing to reconsider.  i was terrified at first – the whole concept of the stripe adding width, etc.  but, there are ways around this!  diagonal stripes, mixed-width stripes, thin stripes…basically anything other than the thick stripes we all remember from those gap rugby shirts we were all wearing in the ’90s, or anything with stripes only around your midsection.  yeah, those ones will add a little heft to your hips, it’s true.

but if you’re smart about them, stripes are such a fun way to add pattern to your life, particularly for those of you who are anti-floral.  the big rule of thumb is to break up the stripe somehow, so that you’re never left with a clean horizontal line.  so, with a striped tee, add a jacket – this cardigan/vest combo is another great, easy way to try stripes.  with a striped jacket or cardi, leave it unbuttoned to reveal a solid or other pattern beneath.  i also love taking a long-sleeved striped tee and layering a solid tee over it.

one of my favorite buys this spring was a striped jersey scarf from michael stars, a relative steal at $38.  i’m annoyed that i can’t find my color combo online (heather grey and purple), but the one above is awfully close.  you can also check out michael stars’ site and banana moon for other color options, or call one of my favorite local boutiques to see if they still have one to spare.  this is a great way to add a little stripe without fear, and even try mixing patterns a bit.  if you’re living in fear of stripes, this is a great first step.

while i was at the same lovely local boutique (yes, i get into some trouble there), i also picked up that sweet lamade striped cardigan above.  my general cardigan addiction notwithstanding, i love that the stripes on this one are subtle and neutral – i can pair them with literally everything, and mix patterns to my heart’s content.  the fabric is lightweight and supersoft for spring, and, unless i make the critical error of wearing this one buttoned up, it’s risk-free in the bulk department.  grab it at revolve, or add it to your order when you’re calling covet about the scarf.  i’m definitely in favor of keeping my fave indy stores in business.

one last rule of thumb:  keep your striped pieces trim, but not skin-tight.  too tight is just never flattering.  too loose, and well…this is what happens.  it’s not every day that even a shopbop model looks fat.

what do you think?  will you be adding stripes to your closet this spring?

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5 comments on “spring translations: safe stripes

  1. alyssa

    I’m rockin’ it right now! I’m wearing a navy blue and white striped tank with a dark gray hip length slim cardigan over it, with jeans. I’ve always been a fan of stripes but agree there is a right and wrong way to wear them.

  2. Sal

    I’m totally neutral on stripes. Never been drawn to them, but never shied away. Totally depends on the garment. Now polka dots are another matter! I’m mad for ’em.

  3. shoppingsmycardio Post author

    alyssa, glad we timed this so well – your look sounds darling! i never think of striped tanks…good call!

    sal, go ahead – embrace the stripe! heck, mix them with some polka dots and go completely crazy 😉

  4. Jennie

    I already started this winter with a few striped sweaters from Theory and a turtleneck from McQ by Alexander McQueen (NOT Target). I acquired some beautiful Missoniesque striped scarves in Cambodia in December as well. So I guess you could say I am a huge fan!

  5. Anne @ The City Sage

    I LOVE stripes but somehow have managed to purge them all from my closet–not sure how that happened! I think they were all remnants from high school and so looked quite shabby 10 years later…

    But I think it’s time to add some more back into the wardrobe!

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