The fashion world is full of variety, from dark, edgy pieces with sharp tailoring to light, feminine silhouettes in lace and florals. Although these looks seem to be on opposite ends of the style spectrum, they’re actually not mutually exclusive. Mixing hard and edgy designs with soft and girly patterns is a creative way to put together an attention-grabbing outfit. Whether it’s your clothing, makeup, accessories, or all of the above, there are many ways to rock the contrast between hard and soft looks.
The striking combination of this morbid symbol and a pretty floral print creates a nice balance between girly and edgy. Money permitting, you can indulge in this trend with a scarf or tee by Alexander McQueen. Brandy Melville, a cult favorite Italian brand, also has a few graphic tops that are trendy and affordable.
A staple of every woman’s wardrobe, jewelry is a great way to add some edge to a more feminine look. These bullet earrings from Nasty Gal are simultaneously sophisticated and badass.
Leather with Floral
To attain a nice juxtaposition of hard and soft styles, wear your favorite sleek leather jacket over a dress with a pretty flower pattern. And, as many celebrities have demonstrated, the recent floral skinny jean trend provides another way to mingle these contrasting looks.
Menswear-inspired pieces can add a sense of androgyny to any outfit, but you don’t have to go full-on Annie Hall. Subtlety is key, so stick with individual accessories like large-dial watches or loafers. Or better yet, dare to be unconventional and wear a men’s tie as a belt.
Ruffles with Dark Accents
Ruffles and tutus. It doesn’t get much girlier than that. Counter the feminine frills with sleek accents like a leather jacket or dark accessories à la Leslie Mann at the Met Gala.
Black Swan-Inspired Makeup
Speaking of tutus, you can also mix hard and soft styles by taking a cue from Natalie Portman’s character in Black Swan (which, as a dark drama about a beautiful ballerina, seems to also juxtapose edgy and girly themes). Pair dark, dramatic eye-makeup and pale foundation with a white or very light colored ensemble.
If you happen to find yourself at the San Lorenzo market in Florence, go to one of the many vendor stalls and pick out a leather flower accessory. Combining the feminine motif with the sharp angled leather cuts, these flowers come in various colors and forms, including barrette, brooch, and belt. For the less well travelled, fear not; you can find similar leather flower goods on Etsy.
As noted in the Black Swan example, the hard-soft contrast can apply to more than just fashion. Execute the concept in your dorm room with both edgy decor and feminine touches, or bring it to your iTunes through the growing genre of beautiful female vocalists covering harsh R&B songs.
Featured Image From: brandymelvilleusa.com