Is denim on denim okay?

Elizabeth Duswalt, Columnist

Denim on denim? Last year, I think I would have answered the question with something dramatic like, “I would rather eat glass or put pins in my eyes.” Now I’m starting to rethink it. As fall has drawn to a close and we’re entering the spring season, I’ve seen some looks that I’m pretty into, especially with boyfriend jeans being in style.

We’ll start with the basic what not to do and that is clearly Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake circa 2001 at the VMAs. The early 2000s were not a good time for anyone when it came to style, but Spears and Timberlake iconized the period with their matching outfits. Timberlake most likely cites this outfit as his reason for now only wearing suits and ties, while Spears is probably thinking “Eh, I did worse in 2007.”

Mixing different shades is crucial to making denim on denim work. If your outfit consists of identical shades of denim, then the outfit isn’t broken up well. It will probably look like a denim jumpsuit. But this could be the look you are going for, so in that case, you do you.

Fancier or statement accessories work really well with denim on denim outfits. Big sparkly necklaces or fun heels pair well because the denim shows them off well. Accessories with a bold print work perfectly too. Cheetah and floral both pop and add color and variety. (I have a pair of cheetah slip-on Vans that work perfectly in this sense).

Distressed denim mixes nicely with other denim. Ripped and distressed jeans, and boyfriend jeans in particular can look cool when paired with a denim shirt. Other styles of jeans, such as skinny jeans, work too. Or maybe now that the ’70s are back you might be bold and wear flared jeans?

Like any trend, denim on denim has to be done right if you do it. Otherwise, you will end up as the face of an entire generation of bad fashion. Could this be an exaggeration? Yes, but you will have some pictures when, upon looking back at them, you will ask aloud, “Why did I ever wear that?” No one wants that. You can trust your own judgment (or if you’re unsure, trust mine). As long as your denim on denim is as far away from 2001 as possible, you should be fine.

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