28 July 2010 – Opposite Day

July 28th, 2010 § 21 comments

28 July 2010 – Opposite Day, originally uploaded by academichic.


  • Top: August Silk via Filene’s Basement
  • Skirt: Banana Republic
  • Belt: Banana Republic Outlet
  • Shoes: Giuseppe Zanotti Design via Filene’s Basement
  • Bag: vintage (below)


I have to admit that when I first was told about the color wheel challenge I thought smugly to myself “this will be easy because I already wear lots of bright clothes in fun combinations.” However, the more I looked at my closet and pondered contrasting colors and triads the more I realized that while when it comes to blues, purples, pinks and greens I have options, my wardrobe was severely lacking in reds, oranges, and yellows. I had recently purchased this red belt to add a pop to an outfit, but the orange shirt was completely out of my comfort zone. I decided that any purchase that was an experiment would be capped at $10, and fortunately this shirt was on sale for $9. As a natural redhead, I had grown up avoiding orange and red because of my hair, but recently I have discovered that by staying in the cooler tints of these colors (more towards a sienna or rusty umber rather than “safety orange” and deeper, blue or plum shades of red) I am able to incorporate these without looking like a pumpkin.

28 July 2010 – Opposite Day, originally uploaded by academichic.

I have been looking for fun red shoes for a while, but have yet to find the perfect pair of red flats. My philosophy is – when in doubt, wear metallic shoes because they go with everything. You can probably tell from the scuff marks on these that I wear them often. A tip for wearing flats in the summer, which some of you might already know, is before putting them on put a little baby powder in each shoe and knock it all around the inside. This absorbs some of the summer sweat so your foot doesn’t stick (and your shoes don’t smell). As for my other accessories, this bag was something I found in the attic at home, which is a treasure trove of vintage clothes, shoes, and accessories from my mother and grandmother. All-in-all I feel terrific about this outfit, and I am very excited that orange has made a summer debut in my wardrobe and complements not only my jean pencil skirt, but also my red hair! Do you have any colors that you were always told to avoid? How have you worked them into your outfits? What other out of your comfort zone or experimental pieces have you added to your wardrobe?

28 July 2010 – shoes and bag, originally uploaded by academichic.

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§ 21 Responses to 28 July 2010 – Opposite Day"

  1. Starling says:

    This is a great outfit. That bag makes it pop! Also, how did I not know the baby powder trick? Thanks for sharing – I can get back to wearing my favorite flats now :)

  2. MONKEYFACE says:

    I didn’t know the baby powder trick either, and I’ve recently started using it on my hair in between shampoos (dear baby powder, time to rebrand as magic dust). I thought your metallic shoes highlighted your watch, which is a simple and lovely accessory, too!

  3. EmilyKennedy says:

    This orange does a great job complementing your hair and skin tone. Also, I totally rock that baby powder trick, but rather than putting the powder directly in my shoe, I pat it onto my foot before I put my shoes on. Works wonders.

  4. Kelsey says:

    I still think I can’t wear yellow (I too am a redhead!). I’m far too pale and pink-tinged, and have yet to find a shade that I think flatters me. However, I’ve never shied from reds. I like the orange you chose; you truly don’t look pumpkin-ey. Good work embracing a color we’re not “supposed” to wear.

  5. Sara says:

    I totally didn’t even know about the baby powder thing, so thanks!! :D

  6. Lauren says:

    I didn’t know about the baby powder in the shoe trick either! Great tip! And I love how the bag pulls the whole outfit together!

  7. Sara says:

    natural redhead, here! I agree- I was always told to avoid orange, red and pink yet I have found that if I opt for deeper shades of these colors I can rock it. I often get the most compliments when I wear burgundy or burnt orange. As for the other redhead who commented that she can’t wear yellow, I have found that in the winter mustard is a lovely choice and in the summer (when I have a little more freckled color) I can pull off a pale icy yellow.

  8. Beth Ellen says:

    another natural redhead here! well, more auburn, but definitely the redder side. my whole life my mom has said i can never wear oranges, yellows, fuschias, and maroons. it wasn’t until college that i even owned a pink shirt. these days i’m trying to embrace the warm colors, but it’s hard to know what looks good. (i always here my mom’s voice in my head). any more examples you can show i’d love! i need all the help i can get…

  9. Vanessa says:

    The baby powder trick is essential for comfortably wearing shoes without socks, but I’ve always been surprised that a lot of people don’t know it. I love your outfit! The colors are lovely on you!

  10. angie says:

    I’m going to try the baby powder trick this summer! I’m one of those people who didn’t know about it! Thanks for sharing that with us!

  11. Jacinta says:

    I have avoided yellow. And orange.
    I found a nice top from the thrift store last week with yellow patches (with grey and navy) which wasn’t overbearing so I’ve given it a go.
    The key is probably to just find the right shade of the colour that suits.

  12. philosophotarian says:

    Corn starch also works well for those sensitive to talc or who hate the smell of baby powder. FYI.

    Great post, btw: colors and combination are a win.

  13. Robin says:

    Thanks so much for mentioning the baby powder trick! I love wearing flats but always feel gross by the end of the day. I have stuck dryer sheets in my shoes when I’m not wearing them to help with the smell.

    I think you found a great shirt, I love when redheads pull off shades of red/orange. It’s like tossing old rules out the window, which is always fun :)

  14. Nicole (the other one) says:

    Wowsa…you have great legs! Cute outfit too :-)

  15. maureen says:

    Cute look. I have auburn hair, and blue eyes, and wear shades of orange. Never red though.
    Interesting tip about metallic shoes, I never thought of them as a neutral. I will give it a try!

  16. Clare says:

    I love the “cooling off” of that fiery orange!

  17. Dottie says:

    The color wheel stuff is the hardest for me to grasp. I tend to wear whatever matches in the easy, traditional sense.

    I have never tried the baby powder trick, but I need to. My feet feel so awful at work all day in heels.

  18. G says:

    Love that bag!! The whole look is really fun and I have to try baby powder now!!

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