Fashion: Bold and bright does it

By Susan Edmunds

With all the floral prints and girly flounces that are popping up this summer, colour blocking is a refreshing change.

It's bold, glamorous and often flattering - whether you're looking for something to wear to work or to a summer party.

In essence, colour blocking requires blocks of bold hues to be worn together - but which ones is a matter for debate. Some experts advise that colours should contrast but complement each other, while others seem to revel in creating a wildly clashing ensemble.

The safest way to approach it is to start with a neutral colour and build around that.

The most flattering colour blocking tends to use no more than three different colours, and generally only one primary colour. Yellow and violet are a good combination, as are orange and blue, purple and orange and blue and violet.

Lots of shops seem to be full of neons. These should be used as an accent to finish off the outfit and never more than one type of neon at once. Balance colours with other shades that are equally vibrant, such as jewel colours like emerald with deep blues.

Stick to structured items such as blazers, well-cut cardigans, pencil skirts and shirts. Colour blocking can easily move from trendy to chaotic if colours start popping up on frills or maxi dresses. Stay well clear of any patterns.

If you're pear shaped, leave the darker colours for your bottom half as they will have a minimising effect.

This isn't a look for anyone who likes to blend into the background and can be unflattering if you are on the short side.

There are some ways to get in on the act without jumping in: Get a taste of the trend with a bright handbag or a couple of bangles. Alternatively, opt for colour "toning" - a softer version of colour blocking, using shades within the same family.

If you're colour blocking in your outfit, keep your makeup very neutral.

- Hamilton News

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