I LOVED making this fun video! When I saw this maroon leopard patterned midi skirt at Ann Taylor Loft outlet, I knew I had to have it, even thought it is a little bit more wintery.
One of my questions I ask myself when shopping, especially for statement pieces like this, is can I make at least 3 outfits from stuff I already have in my closet? If the answer is “no,” and I still really love it, is there something that could be added that I would be willing to purchase to complete the outfit?
My first thought with this skirt was “I don’t know have anywhere or anything to wear that with.” And I almost put it back. Thankfully, I recognized that thought quickly and decided to change my thought about it, and I’m so glad I did! I began to think creatively and became excited about all the ways I could style this statement leopard patterned midi skirt. It’s amazing how our thoughts always create our results – even whether we love an outfit or not!
You don’t have to have a skirt exactly like this one to get some ideas. My hope is that you will take away some tips for creatively mixing outfits, and feel inspired and bold to try some of your own outfit creations!
Look 1: Casual Office
I paired the skirt with a chenille black sweater, some white earrings, and maroon heels. The mix of textures was important to me. I also pulled from the color palette of the skirt. The slightly oversized sweater is easily tucked into the skirt, to create a fitted waist. If your sweater is extra bulky, you can try the bra tuck trick – tuck the bottom of the sweater under into the bottom of your bra. That way, the sweater is secured, still showing off your waist and creating that hourglass look, without adding bulkiness between a slim skirt. This can also be done with skinny jeans!
Key Style Tips
- Mix textures. The skirt is silky/shiny, the sweater is chunky and soft. Suede heels, and a little sparkle from the earrings tie it together.
- Pull from the color palette of the pattern. For this skirt which has three colors, maroon, black, and white, I chose one piece from each color to coordinate. If you have more than 3 colors in your pattern, choose one or two to accessorize with.
- Create shape by tucking in bulky items. You can maximize the use of sweaters, styling them with more than just jeans or leggings, by tucking them in to emphasize the waist.
Look 2: Casual
For this casual look, I wanted to create something that I’d wear out to a park, the farmers market, shopping for groceries, etc. Basically a cute everyday/weekend look. Styling a patterned midi skirt with a plain white T-shirt, is an easy way to use something you probably already have in your closet to make a cute outfit! Pair with any coordinating sandals, and a fun pair of earrings or bracelets, and you’re ready to go! Sometimes simple just really works!
Key Style Tips:
- Plain white t-shirt, or coordinating color plain t-shirt. This is an easy way to make use of plain t-shirts and give it a little more interest with a patterned midi skirt.
- Add casual accessories. Dress the skirt down with sandals, some natural/easy earrings, possibly a watch, or belt! Get creative and use what you have.
- Don’t overthink – simple works. Your outfit doesn’t have to be complicated or fancy to look put together. Keeping it simple lets the statement piece like the patterned skirt take the spotlight.
Look 3: Casual/Creative
I wanted to do a fun/creative look to show how a graphic t-shirt could be paired with a pattern. This is another great casual look for when you are feeling a little feisty. The key with this look is deciding to be bold! Although I paired it with some black slip on sneakers with a zipper detail, I think a graphic t-shirt paired with a patterned skirt would also look great with some white fashion sneakers!
Key Style Tips:
- Show creativity through unexpected pairings. A graphic tee paired with a pattern can be really fun. Sneaker style shoes can add a casual feel to a traditionally dressier item!
- Coordinate colors. Remember not to choose items that will overpower each other. Notice how the graphic is still simple colors, and coordinates with the black and white in the skirt.
- Use your confidence and boldness. Stepping out of the box with style requires you to prepare your mind ahead of time to feel confident with your choices. If you decide to feel great in it, you will, and it will show to others!
Look 4: Corporate Office
Shifting gears, this is a perfect outfit for a corporate office. Pairing a solid silk cami and a blazer will instantly read professional and put together. This is a slightly cropped blazer, which accentuates the waist, but a traditional style blazer would work well too. I paired it with nude heels, but of course this outfit could easily be paired with another color or style. Adding a necklace and some earrings add an extra something!
Key Style Tips:
- Add a blazer. This is one of the easiest ways to make a look appropriate for a corporate office. The shape works well with the silky midi skirt. Alternately, take the blazer off to make it perfect for date night!
- Solid blouse. Keep the under layer fairly simple. A simple silky cami works well, or something with some interest, like a tie front or button down blouse would also look great.
- Accessorize with coordinating jewelry. For a corporate environment, keep it classy, but dress it up with a slightly trendy piece, like the tassle fan earrings I paired it with.
Look 5: Date Night
For the date night look, I paired a fitted long sleeve black shirt. I wanted it to feel sleek, but still a little sexy. Bonus points, my husband told me this was his favorite look! 🙂 My black heels have a slight platform, to elongate the legs. I loved how the pearls on the necklace mimicked the round leopard pattern of the midi skirt.
Key Style Tips:
- Fitted is sexy for date night! Even though this is pretty modest and covered up, wearing a fitted shirt, or body suit adds a subtle sexy feel.
- Heels help elongate the legs, I love a slightly pointed toe, and a very small platform. If you don’t enjoy wearing heels, you can still get the look with a pointed toe flats or a kitten heel.
- Look for shapes in the pattern. Noticing the shapes you have in your pattern can help you coordinate jewelry or accessories. I used the round shape of the leopard print to coordinate with the roundness of the pearls. You can look for shapes, colors, patterns, textures to coordinate with.
BONUS Look 6: Monochromatic
This look didn’t make it into the video, because to be honest my sweater shape just didn’t work. It has some ridge details at the bottom of the sweater and wasn’t quite draping right when I moved. I wanted to show it anyway, for another creative way to use patterned midi skirts. I love doing a monochromatic look, and since maroon is one of my favorite colors I have a lot of it in my closet. This is another very bulky sweater, so I had to use the bra tuck trick on this one. If you have a lot of one color in your closet, sometimes they will be just close enough that you can pull together a really cool look! I’ve seen this done with whites, beiges, grays, blacks, navy. Even pink or turquoise could be fun!
Key Style Tips:
- Look for color themes in your closet. If you find you buy a lot of one color, this may be a bold way to try to coordinate a new outfit.
- Match to the predominant color in your pattern. For this skirt, the main color is maroon. To do a monochromatic look with a pattern, choose a pattern that has mostly one color and match to that color.
- Mix textures. When working with a monochromatic look, the variation comes not in the colors, but in the textures. Here I have a rough textured sweater, a soft silky skirt, and suede shoes. This keeps the eye interested.
Which was your favorite look?! I’d love to know how this has inspired you to create your own looks. If you have a patterned midi skirt, or even some patterned pants or other style skirt, you can use these same tips as inspiration!
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