Johnny Was Blog
Print Shop: How to Pair and Wear PatternsSeptember 14, 2018
When it comes to patterns and embellishments, we are like the classic Carly Simon song–nobody does it better. Every collection is seasoned with the freshest prints in bold hues, with inspiration taken from travels, classic artworks, timeless design, and Mother Nature. “We always look to different cultures for inspiration,” says Head Designer Amy McNeil, who is one of the pattern masters at Johnny Was and can spend weeks tweaking a single design until it’s perfect. “I think it’s really what sets us apart and why we’re considered such a trendsetter with prints and color.”
For fall we’ve really felt the call of the wild. “All of our collections create this beautiful mashup of color and design, our prints are a form of art,” says SVP of Design, Theresa McAllen. “It’s a great way to give a one-of-a-kind appeal to your look because everyone wears them differently.” Below, both women give us their top tips on how to wear prints to show off your personal style.
Layer on different fabrics: The beauty of fall is layering. Pair a luxurious silk or rayon top underneath a velvet bomber or embroidered coat. Even if they both feature a contrasting print or design, they will look pulled together. The general rule when layering prints is scale, pick a small one and a larger one. Always chic.
Try a little tone on tone: Not sure if two prints work together? An easy tip is to keep them in the same color family. “For example, you can have wildly different patterns but if they are both in tones of blue, they’ll work,” suggests Theresa.
Pick one solid piece: Another simple way is to always wear one solid piece to avoid looking like a kaleidoscope. Whether it’s a single-hued cashmere sweater that you team with a printed trouser and jacket, or classic denim with layers of patterned tops, jackets and cardigans, keeping one piece plain keeps it easy but still interesting.
Keep accessories minimal: If you’re going bold with a floral blouse and equally bold jacket, keep your jewelry to a minimum; save your statement necklace for that LBD or a classic button down. “I like to do one or two bracelets and maybe a simple chain necklace if I’m wearing multiple prints,” suggests Amy.
For more ideas on styling prints on prints, head over to our September catalog.