Sunday, February 6, 2011

Spring 2011 Fashion: How to Prep, How not to Prep

A Spring 2001 "Look" that's soooo incredibly Preppy-Don't!
A Spring 2011 "Look" that's a definite Preppy-Do!

Likewise for women...a Spring 2011 "Look" that's such a Preppy-Not!

And here's a Spring 2001 "Look" that's perfectly-Preppy indeed!
(The above photos are from Brooks Brothers and Lilly Pulitzers' Spring 2011 Collections)

So far, so good....everything I've seen so far for this Spring's 2011 fashion trends has been pretty, polished and a whole lot of it is wonderfully Preppy!

But there's Preppy and then there's, um, well, an interpretation of Preppy that's anything but!

Oh my, even the stalwarts of all-things-perfectly-Preppy can go amiss when they're trying to be a bit more fashion-forward, quirky, cutesy and all those other kind of descriptives that can become all too comical indeed as these "Not To Do" photos above showcase all too well.

Can you believe that these "Not To Do" photos are actually from the current Spring 2011 Collections of Brooks Brother's menswear and Lilly Pullitzer's womenswear? Shocking at first and then disappointing but thankfully, the other two photos of perfectly-Preppy looks are also from the same purveyors so we'll forgive them a slip-up every now and then. Thank goodness it's a rare enaction of "every now and then"!

The first photo of a menswear look just goes waaaay too caricature-Preppy to be believable. Too many all-too-distinctive Preppyfied elements are in play here and the result is quite garish indeed. Any real Preppy well knows that when one wears such an obvious wardrobe item as these pink whale-motif pants are, every other piece of this outfit should go "neutral" in deference to the bold statement these pants are making. Obviously, with this er, Spring Look from Brooks Brothers, it's just simply, and horribly, about piling on the statements galore'! This is wannabe/tourist Prep and no true Prep would be caught dead or alive wearing such a garish ensemble.......

However, from the same Brooks Brothers collection comes the photo just below which is exactly what a real Preppy male would put together this spring: clean, classic and with subtle undertones but still exuding Preppy to those who understand, and actually live our cultural vernacular.

As well, the photo duo above from Lilly Pulitzer illustrates how to spot the crucial difference between what is a messy, ill-suited and clashing interpretation of using a bold print for Spring within a woman's wardrobe as contrasted to a perfectly polished styling that is Preppy-pleasing.

One thing that so many Preppy wannabees don't realize is that, barring typical teenage angst and their all too typical protestations generation after generation, no true Preppy would purposefully go around looking disheveled in public. Now while busily gardening, when out on one's sailboat, walking along the beach, layering-up for a dove hunt, yes those are reasons for not being perfectly neat but otherwise, no. Yes, us Preppies do wear bold colors and layered patterns but this er, look is no look at all, it's just what looks to be some college student who woke up and threw on whatever was on her dorm floor before brushing her hair, hmmm. Pass!

In contrast, the other look from Lilly Pulitzer conveys the polished, proper and perfectly layered while wearing a bold print savvy we all expect from our fellow Preppies.

This Spring and every spring for us Preppies is not about over-kill or messy-fying our Preppy fashion classics, not at all.

It's all about enjoying the pretty and the handsome palette of springlike color tones, fabrications and tailoring and but of course, always being the true Preppies that we are.......

*Coming up....... an overview of the Spring 2011 Trends that work well into Preppy Wardrobing*

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