A Classic vs Modern Style Using your Shoes with a Dress
Quote of the day: “To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” Anonymous
What is your style? That’s a question that many articles will refer to, yet sometimes it’s the hardest question to answer! The idea for a post incorporating classic vs modern style came to me when I was looking through the Talbot’s catalog! They had paired the same skirt with 2 different shirts on different pages, and it really got me thinking about how one outfit was very classic while the other outfit seemed more modern.
On top of that I had a reader make a suggestion of how I would change up an outfit that my mom already put together to produce a different look !
Thus the idea for a couple of posts started forming. I thought I’d experiment with taking a dress from a classic look to a more modern look just by changing out the shoes & accessories. I am in no way saying that one style is better than the other! In fact, I think they are all great for different occasions and events. But then again, maybe you lean towards one style over another? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!
Jodie’s (50+) Outfit: For my classic vs modern style, I updated the shoes from black & white pumps to my silver sneakers!
Classic Style for Jodie
Since we were going out to dinner to Fleming’s for one of their prime rib specials, I thought the classic look would work perfectly for this occasion!
I will admit that I don’t think of a denim dress as very classic; however, I thought it transformed nicely. We all seem to love our denim jeans, so the thought about a denim dress could be quite versatile. Take this dress for instance! It’s not much different than the one I am wearing, and could easily work in many situations! If you like the idea but lean more towards a cleaner look, then this dress is lovely.
It’s not only the shoes that I updated for the look, but the accessories too! I grabbed my black & white purse, and picked out some gold & silver jewelry!
I realize that we were taught not to mix our metals in an outfit, but if the jewelry is already made that way, then it makes it easier to accept!! Heck, you could even find a necklace like this one that has three different metals in it!!
I always think of a pump heel as a classic shoe. And I was vacillating between my black pumps and these! But since it is summer, I opted for the lighter pair! If you like this idea, but need a smaller heel, then I found this pair or this pair!
Dress: Amelia (similar here)~~Cardigan: Ann Taylor (similar here)~~Shoes: Ann Taylor (similar here)~~Necklace: (similar here)~~Earrings: (similar here)~~Bracelet: (similar here)~~Purse: Mix No. 6 (similar here)
Modern Style for Jodie
This outfit was worn for a casual day down on Larimer Square in Denver, watching the sidewalk chalk artists create their masterpieces! It was a walking day like the 3 of us had styled outfits for recently on the blog.
I prefer to wear dresses and skirts when it’s hot outside, and the fact that this dress wouldn’t blow up in the wind, was perfect! I think the straighter dresses or even the hi-lo dresses can be better for the windy days!!
Since we were outside all day, I threw on a hat, and sunglasses!!
The big floppy hats are really such a fun addition to a casual outfit. My friend even commented that she was glad I was wearing it because I was easy to find in the crowds! The nice thing is there are certainly ones that aren’t expensive such as this one and this one!
I wanted to add a youthful vibe to this dress & cardigan, so I layered my necklaces and even included a choker. My mom laughed at this choker because it reminded her of a dog collar!
When the chokers first started coming back last year, many women commented that it wasn’t their favorite! For some reason I like the chokers, and if you do too, then check out the fabulous ones under $10 here, here & here!
Nancy’s (60+) Outfit: The idea behind Nancy’s classic vs modern outfit is the thought of wearing shoes of a different color than the dress.
Classic Style for Nancy
I thought a black & white dress would be perfect for this experiment. I think the normal response is to wear black shoes with a dress like this! Therefore, I’d consider this outfit a classic look.
I’m sure all of you have black shoes in your closet! But do you have black sandals? I was saying a couple of weeks ago that I hardly wear my black sandals! So, of course, I wanted to search for some that would make me want to wear them. I found this pair and this pair that really caught my fancy! No, I haven’t ordered them yet, but….
We wanted to keep the jewelry subdued to keep with the classic vibe, so we grabbed her silver jewelry!
I’m curious to know, if you tend to pair gold or silver jewelry with your black & white pieces?
I also want to point out that this dress has been altered! When Nancy first bought it, the dress had another ruffle piece at the hem line. It seemed too long and voluminous, so I removed the bottom piece of material.
She also just wore one bracelet!! You’ll see below how we layered Nancy’s bracelets, but classically, I believe that one is preferred.
Modern Style for Nancy
Then we changed out the black sandals for a bright colored sandal. Nancy actually had a couple of options that would have looked great, like orange or yellow. However, we went with her red sandals.
This addition of a totally different color for your shoes may be hard to wrap your head around if you’ve never done it. I know many article say you should match your shoes to the bottom half of your outfit. But, I think, that information is coming from the old rules, and breaking those rules adds in a modern flair!
We carried the red up into Nancy’s necklace, yet kept the earrings and bracelets white and silver.
This outfit really isn’t very different from the post where we wore red sandals to add a pop of color to an outfit 2 years ago!
It’s not always easy to see the bracelets from far away, but Nancy is wearing 3 different ones! Stacking your bracelets like this is a fun way to add in different colors or make them show up better!
Charlotte’s (70+) Outfit: For my mom’s classic vs modern dress, I thought it’d be interesting for her to wear solid colored shoes and then switch to a pair of print shoes.
Classic Style for Charlotte
I think this is the usual way to style a print dress for most of us! The solid colored shoes match the background color to look cohesive.
The dress and shoes may look black, but they are actually navy! I think that navy is going to make a comeback pretty soon. So if you don’t already have some navy shoes, then check out these and these.
I had mom grab a patent leather purse that is older than I am, and some gold jewelry.
Now the purse is black, but you realize that it’s okay to mix navy and black now, right? Besides I always say that if you have a hard time telling the difference between the two shades, then everyone else will too! So don’t worry about a black purse with a navy outfit. Most of us already have some kind of black handbag, so that makes it easier! But if you need a new one, how about a reversible one?
You can see how the dress is solid on the back portion.
I think there are some fabulous color block dresses available. This one almost looks like two pieces! Or this kind is my favorite at having that slimming effect! If you like that last one, then here it is in the opposite colorway!
Modern Style for Charlotte
To add in a vibe of modern, I wanted my mom to mix her prints, by wearing print shoes! I had originally requested that she wear her pink, floral pair that she wore recently, but she chose these color blocked heels instead.
I do think print shoes can add so much interest to an outfit, especially if you tend to dress in solid colors. But recently, we showed how they can even work with other prints! Like this pair of shoes would really go with any other colors!!
Since mom was on a color block kick, she even grabbed her purse that has two different colors on it!
Personally, I didn’t used to care much about my purse and how it looked with my outfit, but I’ve found that it can add a whole different element to the look! Print purses have become my favorite lately. If you are a butterfly lover then you’ll be excited for this one! Of course, if you just like fun stripes then this one is all that!!
For my mom’s accessories, we decided to go with some fun colors instead of silver or gold!
Another way to make your accessories modern is to incorporate the trends! For now, that would mean fringe! You can find this detail on everything from necklaces to earrings to bracelets along with purses, and hats!
This exercise of styling classic vs modern looks with a dress by changing up the shoes, would be perfect for traveling! Then you basically have a couple of different outfits taking up very little space! I’d love to know your first instinct when you pick out the shoes and accessories to wear with a dress. Are you more of the classic or modern style?
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