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7 Ingenious Tips for Choosing the Right Stripe In Your Outfit

Wearing stripes is an easy and stylish way to incorporate patterns into your wardrobe.

These simple, straight lines are classic and timeless: from Breton nautical stripes stemming back to Napoleon to pinstripes that featured on the suits of bankers in the early 19th century.

French sailors wear Breton stripe tops as part of their uniform in the late 1800s

The Breton stripe top was first introduced in 1858 as a uniform item for French naval personnel.

Today, there is a stripe for everyone and every occasion.

So that you feel confident and look your very best, here are a few style guidelines to keep in mind when wearing stripes. These are general guidelines because, as you know, there are always exceptions to ‘the rules’.

7 Ways To Know The Stripe Is Right For You

1. Creating Curves With Stripes

Big, bold stripes broaden and give the illusion of more curves and shape.

Three women wear wide striped garments which creates the illusion of a body with more shape and curves.

Create shape and the illusion of curves with large stripes. Shop this board.

2. Elongate with a Narrow Stripe

Small stripes that are closer together lengthen and slim your body.

3. Communicate with the Colour of  Your Stripes

When you wear neutral colour combinations such as navy and white, your outfit appears classic and chic. A more colourful combination comes across as fun and playful.

If you want to appear more professional and business-like, choose traditional colour combinations in medium to dark shades such as charcoal and white.

4. Use Stripes to Balance Your Body Shape

Stripes are perfect for creating optical illusions too.

For example, if you have an ‘A’ or pear shape body type, you can widen your top half with light, bright horizontal stripes.

If you have a V shape body (broad shoulders, no hips), add horizontal stripes to your lower half to balance your shoulders.

Vertical stripes, if narrow and close together, will elongate.

If you have a short upper or lower body, place vertical stripes in that area to create the illusion of length.

5. Mix and Match Patterns with Stripes

Of all the patterns, stripes are the easiest to mix and match. Play with different widths and different directions if you’re feeling courageous.

Speaking of being courageous, why not mix your stripes with prints like florals and geometrics? An easy way to combine them is to have a unifying colour in both patterns.

6. Use Stripes to Create Illusions

Diagonal stripes create movement. They can draw the eye up, down, in, or out. For example, a diagonal line that starts down on your right side and ends up on your left will draw others’ eyes up to your face.

Bold light and dark stripes such as black and white will appear larger and stronger. Whereas combinations where the colours are more similar in value, like light grey and white, seem more subtle and less obvious.

7. Choosing the Right Stripes for You

Unsure if stripes are for you? A smaller item like a piece of jewellery, a small handbag or some fun shoes might be a way to test the waters. Or, how about a stripe down the outer seam of your pants?

When you’re trying on a striped garment, look in the mirror and do the blink test. Close your eyes, count to five and reopen your eyes again. Use this technique to see where your eye is drawn and if the stripe placement is right for you.

Are you wondering which stripes are right for your style and body shape? During a Personal Style session, we uncover the prints and stripes that are most flattering for you. It’s three hours of fun and style information specific for you – you’ll never have to Google another thing about your style again 🙂

Aug 26, 2022

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