Mixing and Matching Contradictory Fashion Styles

When you look at photos of yourself, do you feel like you’re always wearing the same stuff in the exact same combinations? If so, that’s a sign that you’re in a style rut. There are two ways to break out of it. One is to get new items you’ve never owned before. The other is to take out all your current belongings and see if you can make new combinations.

What makes mixing and matching so exciting is that everything doesn’t have to look harmonious. Sometimes you need a little wow factor, a twist, or conflicting elements to stand out. Here’s my attempt at orchestrating 3 pairs of seemingly contradictory styles:

Formal vs. Casual

Suit Jacket x Shorts x Sneakers

Power suits are still cool, but instead of dressing up in a full suit, how about switching your trousers with structured shorts and lavish sneakers? Do it like a dude by tucking a shirt or fitted tee into your shorts and finishing with a slender belt.

T-Shirt x Pencil Skirt x Loafers

Tees will take you far this summer. Rather than the usual shorts and denims, hang one loose over a knee-length pencil skirt and round it off with loafers. You’ll be surprised at how these items blend so well for casual Fridays.

Crop Top x Tulle Skirt x Mules

To channel your inner goddess, wear a crop top with an airy tulle skirt that ends mid-calf. Heels would be the usual choice, but take a chance on mules for a change!

Feminine vs. Masculine

Flannel Shirt x Babydoll Dress x Combat Boots

Let this one be your baby step to an androgynous look. Simply match the more boyish flannel shirt and combat boots with a breezy babydoll dress. Tie the shirt around your waist to pull off a retro grunge style. You can even try mixed prints with your dress and shirt!

Denim Jacket x Boyfriend Jeans x Sandals

This denim-on-denim outfit can be made more feminine by adding strappy heeled sandals.

Anorak x Tennis Skirt x Slip-Ons

With anoraks going strong this season, it’s time to think about how to wear them. One way is to sweeten them with a tee and a pleated mini skirt, which is so popular in Korea these days. Balance the sporty composition with versatile slip-ons.

Cute vs. Sexy

Tube Top x Overalls x Heels

You can look sexy in seemingly childish overalls! As a garment that actually bares a lot of skin around the shoulders, the sexiest way to flaunt overalls is with a tube top. Show off even more skin with heeled pumps, ankle-tie sandals or slingbacks.

Playsuit x Crossbody Bag x Espadrilles

For a stroll on the beach, nothing beats a chiffon playsuit. Glam it up with a boxy bejeweled crossbody bag and embroidered espadrilles.

Spaghetti Strap Dress x Tote x Brogues

Spaghetti straps are never too feminine if you know how to tone them down. Totes and brogues are no-brainer additions to the mix if you want to look sexy and preppy. A denim jacket, too, if you want to show less skin.