Sunday, December 27, 2009

French Nautical Stripes -- How To Wear Them

Horizontal striped tops are everywhere. They have been featured in Marie Claire magazine, the Air France in flight magazine, and on many runways. I sat in church this evening and saw at least five young women wearing blue and white stripes. They varied in style, width of the stripe, and cut of the top. Each person added her own identity even while they embarrassed this trend. The most impressive was the woman who wore a horizontal striped tank top under a thin, chartreuse colored wrap. The color reminded me of Absinthe and nights in French port. Très chic!

Many of us are hesitant about wearing horizontal stripes. When I shop in the big girl sections of stores I question why so many designers think I want horizontal stripes around my tummy and hips. No, I don't think so. If you have large chest horizontal stripes can create a unique psychedelic effect.

Here are some tips for captaining this look:

  1. Keep it simple. Pair your striped top with simple pants or skirt. Don't be tempted to slip into sailor pants. Navy or black is the best choice to keep your look for being over done.

  2. Go wide or skinny. This is the amazing thing about this type of top. A pair of simple (see above) wide leg jeans or skinny jeans balances the look.

  3. Play with the stripes that work best on you. The stripes can vary from narrow to wide. You may love the wide stripes, but look better in the narrow stripes. If you are still unsure of wearing too many stripes just go for stripes on the sleeves.

  4. Layer the look. Wear a striped tank under a solid color cardigan. You can also wear the tank under a blazer.

I found a great striped cardigan from C.J. Banks. The stop part has strips while the bottom is solid blue. This moves the eye up from the hips and tummy area. It's marvelous for those of us who are looking for a way to wear this look.

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