How To Mix Prints Without Clashing, Like Anna Wintour

by Danielle Naer
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The many names and faces of the fashion pack each have their claim to fame. If Gigi Hadid mastered skinny jeans and boots and Kaia Gerber perfected styling the tiny purse, then it's safe to say that Anna Wintour wrote the rulebook on how to mix prints without clashing. The well-heeled Editor-In-Chief has spent more than 30 years at the helm of American Vogue, putting together looks and informing countless designer collections along the way.

After Givenchy's Spring 2020 Couture show on Jan. 21, Wintour stepped out onto the streets of Paris in an electric royal blue look, providing the world with the perfect case study in pattern layering. Though Wintour loves seeing developments in style icons of today, her own way of dressing has remained pleasantly consistent for most of her career — and yet, her powers of print-mixing still remain elusive. With a closet of snakeskin Prada coats and tweed Chanel skirts for days, Wintour has endless textiles at her fingertips for mixing and matching.

For those struggling with what to do with that chic pattern you've been trying to work into your own rotation, be sure to take style notes on Wintour's icy evening street look. She layered a cool snakeskin ankle-length coat over an equally-long floral lapis dress, providing the ultimate eye-catching moment for stepping out in. She completes the look with a pair of grape-hued reptilian boots.

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With so much going on, it's hard to imagine that everything works so well together. The jacket, while boisterous, is less pigmented than the other vibrant colors featured in the look. However, its cool temperature allows it to pair nicely with the cerulean and cobalt petals on the gown. When it comes to prints-on-prints, the rule is to keep color notes in sync to ensure a high-impact look. If you're looking to pair a warm-toned, printless dress with outerwear, it may be possible to dazzle with something on the opposite side of the color spectrum. Once bouncy patterns come into play, keep hues consistent to achieve a fully AWOK'd (Anna Wintour OK'd) look.

The wear-everywhere chunky necklace that never leaves her person (and retails for around $20,000) is no exception, popping against the dress with glinting shades of aquamarine. Her prune-colored pointed-toe boots offer a splash without failing the outfit-wide temperature check.

Shop our rounded-out, multi-print look below, and be sure to keep watching Wintour for future pattern inspiration.