Subliminal Style
Effortless. Authentic. Professional.

Catching Rae

Vanilla Drama

Occasion: Client services
Dress Code: Casual
Outdoor Temps: 87°F
Activity Level: Moderate
Wearing: Abercrombie draped trench, Madewell tank, vintage necklace, Banana Republic jeans, Tsubo sandals

My dad uses vanilla as a euphemism for totally boring, so I'm envisioning today's post title as an oxymoron and pondering the mysteries of visual interest in the absence of color play.

Although color is a powerful tool for outfit creation which evokes all kinds of emotions and assumed personality traits, color does not have to make and break every outfit. Other attributes that provide visual interest and information include:

  • cut
  • drape
  • proportion
  • texture
  • tones/highlights

For example, the lightweight drape and nubby textures of the rayon and linen in this outfit make me think of relaxed and carefree summers. The dramatic cut and swish of the trench suggest some kind of swashbuckling adventure. And the varied tones within the same boring ol' beige family help add a little depth, luxury, and creativity. 

Even if you are wearing head-to-toe color, it helps to take these other factors into account whenever you need to pack a lot of information into a single, short meeting - like a date, interview, or audition. Controlling these elements helps control your overall impression - and yes, can prevent you from coming off as too "vanilla."