Recently, I spoke about how to pull off an effortless, casual outfit on my instagram stories (under the ‘style tips’ highlights), and I wanted to explore that a little more in depth.
To pull this look off, I spoke about the need for good quality, tailored basics. But, that’s not the whole story. So, I’ve listed some ideas in this post, for the basic items I’m wearing, to ensure you are maximising your spend, and hitting all those casual style goals. 🙂
When buying a denim jacket, keep these following tips in mind:
- Decide on what denim wash you want, so that it matches the style look you’re going for. e.g. light wash, medium wash, raw wash, acid wash, black/grey wash, bleach wash, etc. These will all provide very different looks. I tend to opt for lighter washes, as it’s a little more fresh.
- Decide on what kind of composition you want; stretch cotton, 100% cotton denim, mixed blend, etc. Again, these compositions will provide a very different look. The Levi’s jacket I’m wearing is 100% cotton, so it has a stiff look and feel. I would recommend 100% cotton so that the look is a bit more polished.
- Decide on what shape you want. I have a few different denim jackets in my wardrobe, as they all give me extremely different looks. The jacket in this post is a boyfriend fit, so it’s very casual. The bottom of the jacket also sits a lot lower than other denim jackets. A cropped denim jacket wouldn’t have given me the look I was after for this outfit. However, always play to your strengths, so if a cropped jacket looks better on you, than opt for that style.
- Choose what hardware suits your style/look. I like to have a few different denim jackets in both silver and gold/bronze hardware, so that I can mix my accessories appropriately. E.g. the silver hardware on the Levi’s jacket in this post goes well with the silver studs on my boots. BUT, don’t feel as if you always need to match your jewellery with the hardware. I always mix silver and gold!
What to look for when buying leather pants.
- Look for quality leather. If you can, buy from brands that source their leather ethically. Not only, is it in line with sustainable fashion practices, the leather also looks more refined, and lasts longer. Try these brands: J Brand, KitX, Scanlan Theodore
- Look for styles that suit you. There are so many styles now; high waisted, skinny, trouser, flared, cropped. So, take the time to try different styles based on your body type, then work around that style to create your casual outfit looks. Leather is so versatile, and you can create so many different looks with the one pair of pants.
- Look for quality craftsmanship. This is a very important point, because you will no doubt be spending a lot of money on a pair of leather pants, so you want to ensure it’s sturdy. Also, look for where the seams are situated; some leather pants have a seam that runs across the top the knee, which can give off the illusion of shorter legs. J Brand leather pants often have pockets stitched into them, which also provide a very flattering, and refined look.
- Choose quality materials. Nowadays, you can have a t-shirt in nearly any material you want. Even cotton t-shirts vary in terms of the look and feel. For a casual outfit, I recommend opting for a crisp cotton. I would highly recommend you spend a little more and get a t-shirt that will last the distance. Some of the cheaper t-shirts are prone to getting holes, as early as after the third wear. Try brands such as; Jac & Jack, Acne Studios, and printed designer tee’s from Net-a-porter.
- Know what neckline suits you. There are plenty of options, so make you sure you make note of the styles that you know suit you; round neck (crew), v-neck, scoop, deep scoop, collared, square neck, and boat neck. Remember, every brand will look different, so make sure you shop around to find the brand that suits you best. When you find them…STICK WITH THEM!
- Understand the tailoring. There is long, boxy, boyfriend, fitted, short, cropped, etc. I opt for long, boyfriend fit tees for my casual looks, and then choose shorter (slightly more fitted) tees when I am tucking it into pants, skirts, and shorts. The other aspect of tailoring, is the arms. Ensure the seam around the shoulder, in fact sits around the shoulder, properly. An ill-fitting sleeve can make the whole outfit look very unpolished. This is extends (pun intended) to the sleeve length; boyfriend tees will have a longer sleeve, whereas a fitted tee will have a slightly cropped sleeve. Trust me, it makes a difference!
In my opinion, the ultimate casual look can be paired with boots or sneakers, but for today’s post I’m going to focus on boots.
- There are so many different types of boots, but when styling an effortless, casual look, one must choose ankle boots. I would suggest trying on a variety of different ankle boots, finish at varying points on the ankle. Be aware, that some ankle boots can cut off at the wrong spot on your legs, which can give the illusion of shorter legs. The best way to find out is by hitting the pavement, and trying loads of styles on. Also, ensure you can wear your boots with various pants and jeans. It may even be worth trying on boots in-store with the pants you’re most likely to wear them with. There’s nothing worse than having a pair of boots that interrupt the bottom of your pants, throwing off the whole look.
- Pay attention to the toe. I prefer a pointed toe as it provides a little more edge to the look. Again, I would shop around to find the right fit. I understand that a pointed toe isn’t comfortable for some, so opt for something in between a round and pointed.
- Pay attention to the heel height. I often gravitate towards boots that have a slight heel, as they are more flattering, but it’s up you. Often, a little heel will elevate (pun intended) the look, and will force you to stand and walk with a bit more conviction. You don’t have to forget your posture and mannerisms, just because you’re wearing casual wear!
So, there you have it…the ultimate casual look, along with some practical ways to achieve it. Tell me what you think by writing a comment or sending me a message. Remember, follow me on social media to receive more style tips and inspo. 🙂
Thanks for stopping by,
Katrina – Leather & Soie
What I wore:
Leather pants – Viktoria & Woods
Denim jacket – Levi’s
T-shirt – Jac & Jack
Boots – Jo Mercer