3 Easy but Elegant Outfit Ideas

10 Minutes

Today, I'm sharing easy styling tips to use proportions to change your outfit and change your style without shopping.

These fashion styling tips are easy and simple and I hope they help create new elegant outfit ideas using what you already own!

Whenever your outfit feels a little bit off, I always recommend changing and tweaking the proportions.

So let’s check out some 60 second styling hacks to perfect your outfits.

White shirt and black pants look

1. White shirt and black pants look

As is, there’s nothing wrong with the proportions of this look. I’m going to break down why it works and then make some swaps.

I recommend checking the proportions at the waistline. So, whether you’re tucking a top or leaving it untucked, for example.

Notice how my footwear is super sharp, very minimal, pointed slingbacks. This works with the outfit because it provides tension with the proportions.

The blouse and trousers add a lot of body to the look while the half tuck provides a bit of definition.

The sharp footwear offers the perfect balance to the loose-fitting clothing. 

White shirt and black pants look

When I say tension, I mean playing with the juxtaposition of big and small proportions.

Balance means matching the visual heft of one item with another.

Here, I’ve added a heftier shoe to balance the heftier clothing choices.

White shirt and black pants look

The look still works without the tension of a pointier shoe since the shoes carry the visual weight of the pants.

The half tuck and rolled sleeves also provide balance. You can also see some skin at the collar.

White shirt and black pants look

You can choose between balance versus tension. What you don’t want is something in between, which will look uninspired.

For example, these Oxford shoes don’t carry as much visual weight to match the top and they aren’t providing any tension.

White shirt and black pants look

Without any tension or balance on the bottom half, I will swap out my blouse for this fitted top.

The shoes fade into the background with the interest in terms of proportion at the top.

Color blocking look

2. Color blocking looks 

There’s nothing inherently wrong with this look, but let’s try changing up the proportions with color.

As is, the color blocking of tan, cream and baby blue is cutting my body in a lot of places. 

Color blocking look

To balance the color and give an elongating effect to the bottom half of the body, I’ve swapped in these penny loafers.

Pairing this chunky shoe with the midi length skirt works because the tones, including my skin tone, are all in the same family.

The look feels old world Italian chic!

Color blocking look

When I change out the top for this half-tucked black sweater, the look feels sloppy.

This is because the top and skirt give similar, loose silhouettes

Color blocking look

To add tension, change up the footwear to something more sharp and pointed.

Color blocking look

I would not add a purse that mimics the tension of the shoes with a similar sleekness and structure.

Now it’s competing with the shoes. The eyes don’t know where to look.

Color blocking look

This purse is softer in structure, so it doesn’t compete with the shoes.

Color blocking look

3. Jeans and blazer combo

The final outfit works around a classic formula: Jeans, a t-shirt and a blazer.

For my long torso, the high waisted jeans are the most flattering.

Because the blazer is long, the higher waistline offers that positive tension that the look needs. 

Jeans and blazer combo

See what a difference it makes when I untuck the shirt. Now my legs look really short because the white of the t-shirt is closer to the white sneakers.

Jeans and blazer combo

The front panels of the blazer are signaling the eye to think the waistline is smaller.

If I change the color on a similarly proportioned blazer, I personally feel like there is too much contrast. 

Jeans and blazer combo

Bring back the harmony to the outfit by choosing a shoe that’s similar in style and color to the blazer.

Jeans and blazer combo

If we change into a shorter, boxier jacket but keep the white sneakers, the attention is focused at the waist and we still have that balance with the shoes.

There’s more focus on the bottom ⅔ of the body and then the ⅓ on top.

Jeans and blazer combo

Elegant outfit ideas

I hope this tutorial was useful and taught you something new about how to look polished with these elegant outfit ideas.

Which outfit was your favorite? Comment down below.

It's now your turn to shop your closet, keeping in mind the elements of proportion and tension to create classy and cute outfits that work for you.

Check out my 5 Easy Style Hacks That Transform Your Outfit in 60 Seconds.

The author may collect a small share of sales from the links on this page.

Join the conversation