The art of layering
The Weekly’s resident stylist Sabrina Salehuddin dishes out helpful advice to deal with your style woes
Spend some time in front of the mirror experimenting to find the colour combos that work best for you
Q I’ve worn “safe” colours like black and grey all my work life, but I’m getting bored of these colours. How can I go about mixing in brighter colours and prints? Soo Lin, 40 A
Firstly, give yourself a pat on the back for deciding to take on brighter colours for your workwear! If you’re feeling shaky at first, try working colour in small doses. Start with a bright red bag or a pair of fuchsia heels. Once you get confident with these little pops of bright hues, you can gradually work in more colourful pieces. Secondly, while black and grey may err on the safe side, in this situation, they can be your best friends. Whether it’s a black blazer or a grey skirt, use these neutral tones to anchor your look and balance out the vibrancy of your coloured pieces. I’d recommend spending some time in front of the mirror experimenting to find the colour combos that work best for you. Prints are also great styling tools, because they colours in balance. Begin with something simple, like white stripes or a muted check pattern.
Find a design that features both silver and gold – that’s half the battle won Before you buy, ask yourself: “Is this bag representative of me?”
Q I own a lot of jewellery pieces that are either gold or silver. Is there a way that can I mix them together? – Mabel, 33 A
The easiest way to mix your metals is to start with an anchor piece. Find a design that features both silver and gold – that’s half the battle won – then, build your layers around that piece. Deciding on the look you’re going for will help narrow down your options. It’s an easy temptation to pile on as much as you can in the hope of finding a combo that works, but, unfortunately, that rarely succeeds. What you’ll end up with is a mess of colours with little order. Identify the mood you are aiming for – whether it’s bohemian, high glamour, or casual and fun – and pick out the pieces that embody that mood and start experimenting.
When all else fails, try injecting only one jewellery piece of a different colour. For example, let’s say you’re used to wearing four gold bracelets to the office. In this case, I’d take one of them out, and add a silver one instead. There’s no real equation here, it’s all about trying and seeing what works best for you.
Q I work in finance, and I’d like to invest in a good bag for daily use. How do I choose which bag is best for me? – Catherine, 28 A
You’re in luck, Catherine, because classic designer bags are experiencing something of a renaissance right now. Before rushing out to buy a new bag, first figure out what you want out of your bag. If you’re going to be shelling out a decent sum of money on a classic, you want it to still look stylish and hold up years from now. Whatever you choose to invest in, ask yourself two questions: “Is this bag representative of me? Am I going to get my money’s worth out of carrying it?” If either answer is no, put that bag back on the shelf.
Personally, I’m a fan of medium-sized bags – yes, you have to be selective about what you’re bringing with you, but it’s also less weight you’re lugging around – and if you don’t mind a handheld bag, Simon Miller is doing great bucket bags that have a surprising amount of space. (Plus, his bags are getting plenty of love from the fashion industry, so that’ll up your street cred!)
Lastly, don’t get distracted by the prestige of a brand, because even expensive bags can fall apart. Always inspect the workmanship of the piece. An easy way to determine a bag’s real value is to check the workmanship of the inner lining. If anything looks shoddy, it’s probably a sign that you shouldn’t invest in it.
Marion Caunter in Fendi.
Tiffany Paper Flowers necklace in platinum with diamonds, from Tiffany & Co. Bracelet,RM904, from PANDORA. Celine Swarovski.
Alyson Nano bag, RM1,380, from Materialipstick.
V Sabrina endorses The Alyson Nano is classic in style and the iconic ketupat knot adds character! You can carry it to work and on the weekends.
Spade Kate New York.