Caught Red Handed: Making a Monochromatic Statement

Caught Red Handed: Making a Monochromatic Statement
1For Love & Lemons
2Rebecca Minkoff

Every rule has its exceptions, and the world of styling is stuffed with them. Overflowing, really—wearing white after labor, moms who can (and do) rock skinny jeans, turtlenecks in the summer. And on that note, I tend to bend a few sartorial rules when assembling outfits. My greatest fear isn’t looking outrageous; it’s looking forgettable.

The thought of an all-red ensemble might intimidate a few of you. Heck, it intimidated me. But with the right pieces on hand, there’s no reason a monochromatic look has to be vanilla or safe… or even worse, “matchy-matchy.”

Photos by Kyle DeWitt.

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When I’m putting together an outfit, there is no magic checklist of fashionable criteria that formulate the perfect look. Not to contradict myself, but there are a few golden rules one tries not to break, namely dressing with your body frame in mind. But mostly, a lot of looks are the result of trial and error. (This top and this skirt together on the mannequin? Great! On me? Yuck!) There’s quite a bit of trying on and experimenting. The only way to really know what clothing looks good on you (and more importantly, makes you feel good!) is to throw caution to the wind and try everything.

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The process for creating this look isn’t at all dissimilar from the scenario I describe above. I found this For Love & Lemons dress at a sample sale last fall—it was quite a feat, but more on that later—and I’m always looking for occasions to whip it out. I may have red(dish) hair, but I’m not about to give up a lifetime of wearing red for fear of clashing. My philosophy is that anything worn with confidence is sexy, and that includes this candy apple red dress on this auburn haired girl.

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When it came to picking the shoes, I was all over the place—black strappy heels? Too strappy. Cork wedges? Bleh. Nude shoes? Not with that fiery, off-the-shoulder lace frock. And then, I had a “duh” moment. The laser-cut latticed BCBGeneration red pointed toe heels you see here are some of my very favorites, and pairing them with the dress was a rich combination. Which then lead me to immediately pick up my Rebecca Minkoff tote bag, a steal from Nordstrom Rack, to complete the red look trifecta. The Brandy Melville choker is something I’ve worn before as well, and added an edgy feel to this very femme look.

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And on the note of re-wearing items—I’m absolutely guilty of it, as we all are, including most famously the great Kate Middleton (queen of outfit repeats). But hey, this blog is real girl showing off how to wear real clothing from a real wardrobe, and that means there’s going to be instances of (stylishly) re-wearing items.

As for this all-red ensemble, I’ll admit it’s a more daring look for me. And for that, I love it. But if you still have your hesitations about creating monochromatic ensembles, just know this: They may not all work, but when they do, they’re truly show stopping (and rule-breaking) looks.

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Outfit Details
Dress: For Love & Lemons Garden Rose Red Off-the-Shoulder Dress
Bag: Rebecca Minkoff Mab Medium Tote Bag
Necklace: Brandy Melville Choker
Bracelet: Kendra Scott Erica Bracelet in Pyrite
Heels: BCBGeneration
Sunglasses: Dolce & Gabbana

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