Coloured Jeans – Dead, Dying or Must Have

I have resisted writing about coloured jeans because I believed they were a Fad that would disappear after one year.

I was wrong!

They have stayed around for three years. I have done some recent research on them. The cheaper catalogues – Big W, Kmart & Target – only picture earthy and bright red jeans. Mid-price websites – Suzanne Grae & Diana Ferrari – are promoting earthy reds to purple jeans and leggings. Ezibuy has all colours. US website, Chicos, is featuring reds, purples, oranges and greens as it is Spring in the northern hemisphere.

Coloured jeans are on the websites but I rarely see women wearing them. This applies to the young as well. I can count on one hand the number of women I saw in the USA on our recent holiday who were wearing them. There are lots of favourable buyer reviews on the Ezibuy website: so I can’t say that retailers are pushing a dead product.

If you want to consider wearing coloured jeans, here is my guide to help you wear them in stylish flattering ways.

The Provisos

The first three challenges of coloured jeans are your personality, your shape and your colour knowledge.

Diana Ferrari - garnet jean leggingsExtrovert personalities are happy in bright, look-at-me colours like fuchsia, bright purple and green. Introvert personalities run a mile from the bright colours but may consider the dark earth red and deep grape jeans like these Diana Ferrari garnet jeans.

The second challenge is how you feel about your body shape. Coloured jeans, jeggings and today’s leggings tend to be slim-shaped. The last thing most women want is to highlight their lower body shape in bright-coloured jeans.

I believe that the biggest challenge is the universal question – ‘What will I wear with it?’ As girls and women we are not taught how to mix and co-ordinate colours. Websites like Suzanne Grae, Diana Ferrrari & Chicos show you at the most, only one top with their coloured jeans. One choice is not enough to help you feel confident wearing them.

Colour Combinations that Work

Suzanne Grae -Royal Blue Jeans & Black Flecked TopSuzanne Grae -Purple Jeans, Black Top & ScarfSolid black, white or grey tops seem to be the default options. When you wear light and dark colours together, you are using the Power of Contrast as mentioned in the last Ezine. It is always the lightest or brightest colour that draws and keeps our attention. A black top over bright blue jeans like this Suzanne Grae example on the left, draws your eyes to the jeans. If you want to wear a black top, add a scarf or large necklace that includes a brighter or lighter shade of the jeans colour. The attention now comes to your upper not lower body as seen in the Suzanne Grae example on the right.

Another way to keep the attention on the upper body is to wear a white top with cool-coloured jeans like clear red, green and royal blue or a cream or beige top over warm-coloured jeans like earth red, garnet and red-purple. Upper body attention is guaranteed when you add a co-ordinating scarf or large necklace.

Accessories tone down the severity of a black top and lift the classic look of a white or cream top.

Oprah magazine 2011 - Slim Ankle Pants, Striped Top & Checked ScarfSuzanne Grae - Garnet Leggings & Striped JumperStripes and spots work exceptionally well with coloured jeans. Use the following style tip to look great – choose irregular-width stripes as in this example on the rightfrom a 2011 Oprah magazine where the white stripes are larger than the black ones. Add a scarf in the same colours in a check pattern to reinforce the other person’s focus on your upper body.

Tops, blouses or t-shirts that include the jeans colour in the pattern or as a decoration on a plain background are another way to wear coloured jeans with style. On the right from Suzanne Grae is an example of  a tonal coloured-striped jumper over fuchsia leggings.

Chicos - Patterned TopSuzanne Grae - Salmon Cordswith striped JumperOn the left is an example from Chicos website in 2011 of a patterned top that would co-ordinate with green jeans.

On the right from Suzanne Grae is a softer combination for Introverts and gentle women – of pale salmon cord jeans and irregular width stripes in cream, beige, pale green and salmon.

The Future of Coloured Jeans

I am really surprised that coloured jeans are still around. In my view they will never become a must-have item because there are too many emotional and practical hurdles for women to overcome. Advances in slimming clothing technology still can’t persuade you if your body self-esteem is an issue. The darker colours may stay around another year as they are easier to mix with your existing clothes.

Last Words

If you want to wear coloured jeans, learn from me or by studying examples of how to take the emphasis to the top half of your body. Then stand tall and wear them often over the next year. Otherwise, forget them and move on with a smile.

I’ll write the final eulogy for coloured jeans next year.

(Don’t miss out on upcoming articles for Baby Boomer Entrepreneurial Women. Click here to sign up for The Fashion Translator eZine and get your weekly info every Thursday.)

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