Fashion Forward or Fashion Faux Pas?
By Rosie Crompton
Double Denim is a trend that sparks many a fashion debate: love it or hate it? Fashion forward or fashion faux pas? Denim delight or denim disaster? The majority fall into the latter opinion, usually due to the painful memories of a time when B*Witched sported identical Canadian Tuxedo’s in their ‘C’est La Vie’ video, and Britney and Justin wore those matching denim ensembles at the 2001 American Music Awards (if you have managed to successfully repress this horrifying image from your mind, let me remind you: they wore stonewashed denim, bedazzled with rhinestones denim, patchwork and distressed denim… and there was even a denim cowboy hat.) But they say that time is the greatest healer, and twelve years later, the fashion world have forgiven, forgotten, and are ready to rock double denim once again. A wave of denim on denim ensembles were sent down the runways at Mui Mui and Philip Lim, countless celebs (including Rihanna and Alexa Chung to name a few) have been papped wearing it, and any respectable fashion blogger is blogging it.
So what’s their secret to looking less Texan trailer trash and more double denim diva? A bit of careful consideration towards the pieces you pick, and double denim needn’t be daunting.
Step One: Immediately step away from any two items in the same shade of denim- this is almost impossible to pull off, and will more often than not resemble a pair of overalls and result in someone in your office getting you confused with the janitor. The number one rule of wearing double denim is to always mix and match shades. Generally, darker shades of indigo look best on the bottom and light washed denim on top. The use of pattern is an excellent way to break up an all-denim ensemble, and inject some playfulness and personality to your outfit. Try floral printed jeans with a classic denim jacket, or a polka dot denim shirt with your every day jeans. And, if you’re still feeling nervous about dabbling in denim on denim, beginners could be advised to try coloured options; a white denim jacket, brightly coloured jeans, or a pastel chambray shirt.
Step Two: Keep your silhouette clean and structured. Stay away from ill-fitting jeans, oversized jackets and (unless you’re uber cool) flares, which are likely to make you look like you’ve stepped straight out of a camp 1970’s western. Figure hugging skinnies work best, otherwise keep it ultra feminine by tucking a chambray shirt into a denim skirt or throwing a cropped jacket over a denim dress.
Step Three: accessorize with caution. Simplicity is key- you’re already making enough of a statement by giving the sartorial middle finger to the double denim haters… no need to overdo it. Avoid anything that could look Country ‘n’ Western like the plague: no large belt buckles, no cowboy boots, and certainly no cowboy hats (should you own one, in which case, I worry for you.) Instead, opt for a pair of feminine heels or ballet pumps, and simple silver jewellery. Choose accessories in a contrasting colour- step away from the blue and use pinks, oranges and creams to break up the denim.
Do you dare to don the double denim? How will you wear yours?
About the author: Rosie Crompton is a journalist for UK fashion search engine, Style In View, and a beauty blogger for everythingsrosieblog.com.