Styling Complementary Colors in Fashion


EMBRACE complementary colors. One may argue they may clash, but I say, send it and make that clash stand out as a fashion statement. There are zero rules when it comes to you and your style. Complementaries bring attention to you and your outfit and one of my favorite combinations. Colors have a psychological meaning and gives an individual a way to be expressive. Studies also show colors can affect someones’ mood and influence the sense of well-being. Find whatever color combination expresses you and makes you feel comfortable and confident!!

If you are familiar with the color wheel, complementary colors are oppositely across from one another. For example, blue is complementary to orange, purple is complementary to yellow, and green is complimentary to red - and that’s only getting into the basics. Complementaries are made up of one warm color and one cool color therefore making the colors pop out and appear brighter. Why not mess around with the colors and make your outfit stand out, and complement each other?

I think complementary colors are pleasing to the eye and an upcoming trend. Not to mention, good for any season. I love finding new outfits and creating new styles with what is in my closet. I put together a few new easy outfits specifically made up of complementary colors between the accessories, pants and tops.

Outfit #1: Wearing pants a muted shade of orange paired with a quarter zip that is a muted shade of blue. I decided to keep both colors of this outfit muted to have an even complement and avoid one standing out much brighter than the other. Although the shades are muted, the contrast of orange and blue creates a flattering and unique complement to pop!

Shirt- Aerie

Pants- Target

Shoes- Vans

Outfit #2: My personal favorite. I paired my favorite hat with a contrasting colored turtleneck. Purple and yellow is one of my favorite combinations of color whether it’s in fashion or in design. I brought the look together with a bright yellow purse to match the hat and accessorize the purple top. I think purple and yellow can always look good together as the complementary hues were made to be shown off and bring the best out of each other!

Turtleneck- Goodwill

Bucket Hat- Pacsun

Jeans- Versona

Purse- Micheal Kors

Outfit #3: Joggers paired with an oversized jacket and a crop top with a mix of colors. Red and green are complementary colors and what do you think of when you see red paired with green? Christmas. To avoid the immediate thought of Christmas with this green and red complementary outfit, I chose an olive-green shade paired with a bright red as opposed to a dark green. The shirt has light green and red accents in its design and is coordinated with a jacket and joggers. Even better, this entire outfit besides the vans are thrifted!

Top- Salvation Army

Joggers and Jacket- Goodwill

Shoes- Vans

Outfit #4: The fourth and final look based on complementary colors is another sustainable fashion combination of orange and blue. Rather than muted shades of color, this time I decided to pair a bright orange sweater with blue jeans and a bright blue purse. The bright orange top contrasts with the shades of blue in other areas of my outfit, accented down to the socks and watch band. Much like outfit #2, the accessories all coordinate in color and work together to contrast the color of the top. These are my personal favorite colors together and I think this outfit really pops!

Shirt and Pants- Goodwill

Purse- Kate Spade

Shoes- Vans


Written By: Sara McClintock

Edited By: Crystal Lord

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