Especially over the course of the last year, sweatsuits have offered a specific kind of comfort. Instead of tossing on an arbitrary selection of cotton-blend pieces, choosing a set — à la Entireworld, Pangaia, Champion, and countless other brands — offered an easy monochromatic outfit and intentional styling, even when that wasn’t on your priority list. In a head-to-toe sweatsuit, an outfit is established and complete, yet packaged in fabrics and loose-fit silhouettes that feel soothing even on days you’d rather just wear your pajamas from morning to night to morning again. Still, even the most comfortable fall-back items can lose their appeal. Consider the below an easy transition to your next stage of color-coordinated dressing, inspired by the humble sweatsuit.
The secret (if you could really call it that) is sticking with the monochromatic palette. As seen on some of the most creative dressers today, establishing a full-body hue is the shortcut to a thoughtful-looking ensemble. This can include lightweight dresses, oversized sweaters, or a classic trench coat. You can stick to your most relaxed silhouettes or opt for something a bit more dressed-up, regardless of the occasion. And best of all, this approach to easy dressing doesn’t ask for perfection either; as long as you can find pieces in similar-enough tones, the final result is still impressive. Ahead, a few favorite examples that are easy to emulate.
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Monochrome Outfits: Toss Together Textures
If you’re feeling like an outfit is quite literally falling flat, the answer is to add texture. A nubbly knit, slick, shiny leather (faux or real), gauzy tulle, liquid-looking satin ... you get the picture. For this tonal look, blend together two or more different textures in the same color, such as this blend of a puffy jacket, extra chunky sweater, and sleek, leather pants.
Monochrome Outfits: Think Minimally
As previously stated, monochrome dressing should be easy in execution. So for this outfit, keep things as minimal as possible. Pair a light white dress with voluminous sleeves with coordinating knee-high boots in the same tone. The result is elegant and seamless, top to bottom.
Monochrome Outfits: Stick to Classics
Trench coats or tan, high-waist trousers are the foundations of a great wardrobe. But instead of wearing them individually with statement-making items, compile them together in coordinating hues — no need to perfectly match, just aim for the same color family. The result is chic, timeless, and bold, without actually using bright colors.
Monochrome Outfits: Incorporate Prints
Monochrome outfits don’t exclusively require a mixture of similar, solid colors. Get creative and select one print to showcase in this ensemble. Even if the print is multicolored itself, choose just one of the hues to highlight in the remainder of our outfit's pieces.
Monochrome Outfits: Stick to Suits
Inherently, suits make for easy monochromatic dressing as, assumedly, the bottom and top will already coordinate. To make the look slightly more creative — not to mention, more casual — choose a boxier, oversize silhouette and dress down with sneakers. They don’t have to be the exact color of the suit, just include a hint of the suit’s shade to tie the look together. Finish off with a contrasting handbag to avoid results that are too matchy-matchy.
Monochrome Outfits: Mix Proportions
The whole point of these monochromatic outfits is to ditch sweatpants while keeping styling simple. But no one said anything about other cozy garments. In this look, pair together knit pants and a sweater in nearly matching colors — a rich neutral is highly suggested — for full-body comfort that’s slightly more sophisticated than sweats.