A pinch of ethnicity #3
For the final entry of the series I’ll focus on the vintage handcrafted patchwork “berbere” belt. The first thing that caught my eye was the variety of colors and detailing: if you thought the tunic was a bold piece, this one definitely takes the crown. The thing is, being an accessory, it has a much smaller impact on the overall ensemble, making it easier to pull off. As belts are usually perceived as a finishing touch or embellishment, they pose the perfect opportunity to add a splash of color and boldness to an outfit; even if you’re wearing a suit, don’t be afraid to tone it down a bit.
Due to its length and marked creases at distinct parts, it’s likely that the original owner wore it tied up at the front or side, letting the long ends drape over the leg. Although this is a great look, here I went for a more usual approach, doubling it through the belt loops and incorporating it into a casual, weekend appropriate look: trim navy bomber jacket, crisp white shirt, slim dark blue jeans, boat shoes and messenger bag. As the belt is a such a bold statement piece by itself, the best way to make it work is to balance the rest of the look, avoiding strong shades or patterns, so as not to go overboard.
Slim navy bomber jacket by Lacoste, white dress shirt by ACNE, dark blue jeans by Levi’s (511 slim - tailored), vintage patchwork moroccan belt, light brown crepe sole boat shoes by Buttero and brown canvas messenger by Zara.
LINKS À LA MODE: WEEKLY ROUNDUP 04/28
Great news! My post about the Moroccan tunic was selected for this week’s Links à La Mode! Thank you all for following!
Edited by Fajr Muhammad at Stylish Thought
When you visit a fashion blog you often see a stylish blogger posing in a perfectly, put together outfit with gorgeous scenery. What you don’t see is the work that goes into curating and maintaining a fashion blog. This week the theme across IFB was outfit posts: what deems an outfit worthy, what goes into creating a stunning visual post and ultimately the comments (some not so nice) that we receive as style bloggers. Ultimately, blogging is a way to express our love for fashion and personal style but as this week’s links can attest to, there is much more to fashion blogging than meets the eye.
Links à la Mode: April 28th
- Best Of Bklyn: Wardrobe Emergency Kit
- Beyond Fabric: A Pinch of Ethnicity
- Consider Me Lovely: Blush + Gold
- Dress with Courage: Dealing with Negative Comments
- Elle Enchanted: On Fashion Blogging
- Fashioned By Love: This Strange World of Fashion
- Fashion in Films: Safe vs. Sexy
- Fashion Limbo: The Rant- Skinny No More
- Forever Amber: Adventures in the Magic Garden Centre
- Grechen Blogs: Why I Stopped Reading Fashion Blogs
- Grit & Glamour: On the Unexpected Beauty of Social Media
- Independent Fashion Bloggers: Blogging Against Adversity
- Lady in Lycra: Address Your Style
- Over 50 Feeling 40: Pondering Much More than an OOTD
- Sample Twenty Nine: Comment Courtesy
- Stay in the Lines: Breezy Blocking
- Stylish Thought: What I Wore- Fallen Robots
- The Fashion Grove: There are Ghosts Towns in the Ocean
- The House in the Clouds: Tattoos. Expression or Accessory
- The Quirky Martini: The Buzz about Fashion Bloggers
- Un-Stitched: Creating Amazing Outfit Posts
A pinch of ethnicity #2
On this entry I’ll leave you with a few pics of the embroidered tunic I mentioned earlier. When I asked my brother to keep an eye out for them, I must say I had envisioned something different: a basic tunic in solid colors whose hemline would sit at the thighs, allowing for interesting plays with length. The thing about creating expectations and visual images in our minds, is that the element of surprise may backfire when the time comes.
Thankfully this wasn’t the case: besides knowing me well, my brother also has great taste. He got me an olive green cotton tunic with orange embroidered detailing on the front: definitely a bold piece. However, it poses the perfect opportunity to add visual interest to a look, by mixing vibrant colors and unusual design.
The minute I laid my eyes on it, I immediately pictured it paired with a shirt, blazer or even a tie. What I love about these pieces is that they’re usually a great way to make you think outside the box, challenging you to develop your creative side and come up with ways to make them work. Here, I used it as an overshirt, trying to oppose its relaxed nature with a more put together look: it’s amazing how a classic combo of khaki pants, white shirt and loafers is given a whole new life.
Olive green Moroccan tunic, white slim fit dress shirt by Paul Smith (S), khaki cotton trousers by Osklen (tailored - 40), brown distressed penny loafers by Lottusse (8.5), vintage braided belt, watch by Gucci.
A pinch of ethnicity #1
I’m a strong supporter of investing in timeless, classic pieces, which will last you a lifetime and are easily paired to form outstanding outfits. However, sometimes, adding a fresh twist to your look feels invigorating and just…right. An interesting, out of the ordinary way to raise the bar for a look, is by throwing ethnical items into the mix.
The thing about them is that they immediately catch your eye: I love gazing into these additions as they definitely set an outfit apart, breaking down that “off the rack” impression. How can I put it… they add background to your attire, it’s almost as if they have a story behind them, one that people will want to know; for me, they relate to vintage pieces in this way. I’m a sucker for the concept of collecting said items during my travels and wearing them proudly, reminiscing past journeys, places and people.
The trick when incorporating ethnic pieces is balance. If you go overboard it might look awkward and like you’re trying too much…on the other hand, the right piece might bring that special something into the picture. Perhaps the best way to get familiar with the concept is by starting with accessories: take a look at Joshua Kissi’s and Travis Gumb’s incredible collection of wrist jewelry, comprised of colorful beaded bracelets and engraved rings. Due to their scale, these pieces are hard to mess up, and even if you do, they won’t scream it to everybody else. Get it right though, and they can make a huge difference.
When you come to terms with smaller items, you might want to try something bolder, the likes of knitwear, tunics or jackets. I recently got two Moroccan pieces my brother brought back from a week long trip to the country: an ancient “berbere” belt and an embroidered tunic. Although I love them both, the belt blew me away; as for the tunic, it’s a welcome challenge to incorporate it on my daily ensemble. More on that on future posts.