Layers & Patterns

Creativity involves breaking out of established patterns in order to look at things in a different way
- Edward de Bono





Layering goes hand in hand with the freezing weather conditions and unexpected rain showers of autumn and winter, but how does one layer successfully and what do you do when multiple patterns are involved? These are just a couple of the questions that I get asked quite regularly so I thought I'd devote this post to the fine art of winter layering.

In essence there are four main points to layering that can be used in all elements of your life (not just your wardrobe):

1) Scale
2) Colour
3) Shape 
4)Texture

My first rule of thumb involves patterns of opposing size and scale. If a pattern is going to sit on top of another pattern then you should always try to mix large and small shapes, making it easier for people to focus on you and your outfit. 









You can get some really effective layering happening by working with a single colour palette. For example, if you create a whole outfit around a particular shade of blue, you can break up the monotony by using different patterns to give your look character and depth. 

Let's say that you've decided to wear a navy suit as your foundation colour - You could try pairing it back with a contrasting striped shirt (perhaps in brown) and a navy tie. Or you could step the contrast up again by using a green tie with a large motif pattern which would compliment the navy and brown. 

Another option may be a grey vest or cardigan, which would pop against the navy suit. Use the white from your shirt as your neutral tone and incorporate that shade into a pocket square. It's tricky and a lot to remember but this can be done with as little as only two colours (in this case navy and brown) and one neutral (white). 

For an experiment or a little homework, try laying your clothes out on the bed and use these methods to visualise a final outfit before wearing. You can even photograph it and email me for my opinion, I'm always happy to help. 








Shirt by Eredi Libero
Tie by Biagio Santo
Cardigan by Hermen Menswear
Gilet by River Island
Jeans by Denham
Watch by Nixon
Sunglasses by Bailey Nelson
Boots by Jeffrey West