Picture the scene: there is an event coming up and, man or woman, you are picking out your best outfit with every intention making an impression the moment you arrive. After picking the perfect outfit, you turn to the shoes and pick out your favorite pair. It is here that a problem arises – you love the outfit and you love the shoes, but you’re just not sure if they go together. Perhaps they do, perhaps they don’t, but you find yourself fretting anyway and wasting a good amount of time trying to coordinate your outfit and your shoes. It is a difficult task.
In fact, so difficult is this task that fashion experts the world over and for decades have been advising on the topic of outfit coordination, and shoes are no exception. The reason why this is job undertaken by primarily fashion experts is that precisely what pair of shoes go with a specific outfit is a matter of fashion. In other words, it changes with fashion. This makes things even more complicated for the super fashion conscious among shoe owners. ShoeFresh, shoe care experts, note that for such people, having fashionable shoes is just as important as owning a shoe deodorizer spray, a shoe tree, or an innovative storage solution for their mountains of footwear.
The Eternal Principles of a Matching Outfit
The reason why you should not get too hung up on fashion is that the only way to advise about which shoe-outfit pairing is the most fashionable is to be meticulously up to date with the latest trends. But not everything about picking the right shoes for that outfit is so fickle. There are in fact some essentials when it comes to coordinating shoes and an outfit. This is the place to start, and you can worry about being at the cutting edge of fashion when you know the basics.
How to Coordinate Shoes with an Outfit
As it happens, there is a solid process to successfully coordinating shoes with an outfit. Here’s what to do:
Use the S.O.F.A. Method
The S.O.F.A. method doesn’t just apply to shoes; it is a solid way of deciding upon any sartorial matters before you head out the door. S.O.F.A. stands for season, occasion, formality, and activity. Consider these four things and make sure they square, not only with what you are putting on your feet, but on the rest of your body too.
Then Consider Color
The S.O.F.A. method is terrific way to begin, and it will alert you to what type of shoe you need. After that, it’s time to consider the colors involved. There are two distinct tips here. A neutral color like black, gray, or white, is sure to go with most outfits (and it will be pretty clear if it doesn’t). If you want to pick another color, try to make sure it is represented somewhere else on your overall outfit. A great trick is to, if your outfit has a pattern, pick the lesser represented color in that pattern and go with that for the shoes.
Patterned Shoes Take Precedence
If your shoes are themselves sporting an elegant or ostentatious pattern, it’s best to match the outfit to the shoes and not the other way around. This also applies if there’s some jewelry or bling like a gold buckle or an anklet involved in your footwear. Pull a color from the pattern or print and go with that for your overall outfit.
It’s a shame that the prettiest shoes and the prettiest outfits don’t always go together. But by knowing these simple principles of coordination, you can shop smart and look smart.