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Style Q&A

By Lindsay Feeney

Q. What is “baroque”? I keep hearing that word, but I don’t know what it means, let alone how to wear it.

A. Fashion history buffs everywhere rejoiced when baroque styles debuted on the runways for Fall/Winter 2012. Baroque is an aesthetic that was most prevalent in Europe during the seventeenth century. It can come in any artistic form, such as architecture, paintings, literature, and, in this case, fashion. This style is notable for its fine detail and visually redundant patterns, two things that set this look apart from others.
Though high-end designers such as Emilio Pucci and Stella McCartney had baroque looks sashay down the Fall 2012 runway, more affordable ready-to-wear designers adopted and brought the ornamented look onto their sales floor, making it available to the general public.

Depending on your personal style, one way to incorporate a look such as baroque into an ensemble is to wear one statement piece that speaks for itself. A simple outfit of black jeans, wedged booties, and a black blazer with a gold baroque design or embroidery would make Marie Antoinette swoon, especially if your wrists and fingers were sprinkled with simple gold accessories. A more understated baroque look could be created with a printed shift or mini dress, over opaque tights that would accommodate the cold winter months. Last, you can’t talk baroque without talking jewelry. Though the jewelry doesn’t have to be as pricey as a gift from Louis XVI, adding statement baubles such as a ring or a necklace that incorporates a pendant, gold and/or silver hues, or pearls and rhinestones can update any fall look for this season’s demands.

Q. This fall/winter, can I still wear my colored jeans I bought last season?

A. Colored jeans have exploded in popularity over the past few months. Every color of the spectrum from mint, to fuchsia, to kelly green has not only been showing up in stores but even flying off the shelves. However, not all of these colors are seasonally appropriate for the colder months. As with every rule, however, there are exceptions. If you invested in burgundy, wine, or emerald jeans, you’re in luck- not only are those colors versatile for mixing and matching, but the depth of their hue allows you to extend their use through 2013.
If you’re more interested in packing your colored jeans away for the season, or if you are simply searching for something new, there are new trends in jeans for the fashion semester. Waxed finishes may be the most original installment in the world of denim, offering a leathery look for a fraction of the price without compromising comfort. Similarly, metallic-threaded jeans, either bronze, gold, or silver, give any holiday top or cozy sweater that little something extra to catch the eye of others.
If you want to try a new trend in jeans but are looking for something more subtle, try a monochromatic pattern. This could be a charcoal grey/black combination, for example, in the form of a reptile skin, a cheetah print, or a geometric pattern. Either of the three will give your outfit more of an edge, while maintaining a conservative personal style.

Q. Is it okay to wear white during the winter or is that something to wear only in the summer?

A. There are those who live and breathe by the Memorial Day to Labor Day rule when it comes to wearing white, but I disagree. For this season, Philip Lim and Alexander Wang both had whiteouts at their runway shows: their models were head to toe in the color. As long as the piece is seasonally appropriate for a New England winter, you won’t turn any negative heads. Something to keep in mind when wearing white is that complexions change in the winter, and you want to make sure that the color of the garment – even if it’s your favorite piece – won’t wash you out.
Ways to incorporate the clean color into your winter wear could include white jeans with a chunky-knit sweater, or even a crisp white jacket atop your day’s outfit. Though sporting the absolute-white look is a bit more extreme and difficult to pull off, you can’t go wrong having a few white staple garments to carry you through the snowy months ahead.

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