How to Combine Neutrals Without Being Bland and Dull
Neutrals are necessary for any wardrobe. They can work as accent pieces when you wear something bold and daring, and can tone down your wardrobe when you want a professional or subdued look. Neutrals are also good when you want your hair or makeup to stand out, as they won’t overpower your look. However, one drawback to neutrals is that they can be somewhat dull themselves, if you don’t mix and match them properly. Trying to combine neutral colors can result in an outfit that looks washed out and wearisome, whereas the right combination can be the perfect choice for any ensemble.
First consider the neutral colors that work well together, such as black with white or grey, or brown with shades of taupe or muted yellow. To combine neutrals properly you want to stay within the same shade or color family, rather than combining black with brown or tan. If you stick with a certain color family your colors will complement more readily.
The next consideration when you combine neutrals is that you want to choose a dominant color along with one that is more subdued. For example, you might wear dark brown professional trousers along with a taupe blouse. You might also choose a black pantsuit with a soft grey or white silk blouse.
Breaking up the neutrals with patterns is also a good idea in order to keep them from being bland and dull. That black pantsuit may look better with pinstripes or you might choose a color block white and grey blouse for underneath. Your dark brown professional trousers will not look so muddy if you choose a taupe sweater with a flower pattern. Solids on top of solids are somewhat dull but with some pattern they can be very eye-catching.
It’s also good to break up your neutrals with some pops of color. When you choose that patterned sweater to wear with your neutral business trousers, look for bits of red or bright blue or sunny yellow against a neutral backdrop. If you don’t have pieces that have color in them, add color with accessories. Choose wooden or plastic costume jewelry in fun colors that complement your neutrals, or wear a nice scarf around your neck in a bold print.
You can also break up neutrals with metallic elements such as a wide, oversized belt or long chains, or bangle bracelets that go up one arm. Even oversized earrings can give your outfit some focus and appeal when you blend neutrals. Keep these tips in mind and be sure you look at your outfits with a critical eye to ensure they don’t become dull and drab when you choose neutral colors.