So many of us are afraid to wear what we think, and quite possibly know, will look good because of some fashion rule that was once spoken to you at some point in your life. I remember it was New Year’s Eve, and one of my friends looked and noticed I was wearing black pants with brown shoes. He said to me, “Hey Mr. Fashionista, you can’t do that.” “Do what?” I asked. “You can’t wear black with brown.” I looked at him baffled; surprised to hear this from him of all people, as well as the fact that I couldn’t believe I had never heard that rule in my life. For the next 5 plus years I was terrified to wear any brown with any black in any wardrobe.
Close to a year ago now, I attended a wedding and wore a charcoal-colored suit. I realized that the suit would look very sartorial if it were paired with a black tie. However, recently coming back from London, I purchased a new pair of light brow, pointed tip, dress shoes that I more or less needed to wear. There’s the debacle: Brown and black. What do I do with this predicament? My mind was made up and I was quite upset. I got dressed, wore a white button-down underneath, threw my jacket on, threw my brown shoes on and went from tie to tie in my closet. It sucked. Nothing looked as good as the black tie, even with the brown shoes, and I didn’t know what to do. It is like that scene in Entourage where Johnny goes to see a house he believes is $1,200 a month rent, only to discover it was on the market for purchase at $1.4 million. After realizing the price was too steep, he then went to visit different housing locations, only to realize because of the luxurious one he had seen and wanted, that nothing else was going to do the trick. Under different circumstances, that is how I felt. “Fuck it,” I said. I decided to rock the brown with the black.
A bit insecure at first, because of a nonsense rule that had been cemented into my head, I walked into the wedding a little gingerly. My girlfriend told me to relax, and I must admit was my pushing point to wear the “Oh-so-dreaded” black and brown. Not a snicker, not a sigh, the outfit was a hit! People appreciated the look and I’m sure most were completely unaware of the “Rule breaking maneuver” I had pulled.
My point behind this story is that rules, in the fashion game, are meant to be broken! That is how trends are set and started. Wear black with brown, try the blue with black (maybe), and sport the non-complementary patterns with one another. Be daring and be risky. I’m not telling you to go to your next wedding dressed like Lady Gaga or Nicky Minaj, rather I am saying to be experimental. Make use of the items in your closet that have not seen the light of day. Bring out your old gear and bring it back into style. Trust your first instinct: If it looks good, wear it. If it looks bad, try something else. Don’t dress to simply please the crowd. Dress to please yourself so that you will feel confident and dignified whether walking into the Oscar’s or to a dinner party. Just go with it!