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Fashion Challenge: Wear Multiple Bright Colors Together

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Fashion challenge: wear bright colors together
Photo Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4

Okay, I know what some of you might be thinking: “What? This is hardly a challenge!!”

I’m probably preaching to the choir here (after all, you guys are pretty stylish), but you’d be surprised how many college-aged girls are afraid to experiment with color. For example, a few months ago, a friend and I were getting ready for a night out and I suggested she wear turquoise stilettos with her deep plum colored dress — let’s just say you wouldn’t believe the look of horror she gave me!

So for this week’s challenge, go through your closet and find the most colorful pieces you own, and think about which color pairings complement each other. Summer is the perfect time to experiment with loud outfits, so go crazy and have fun! Are you ready to take on this challenge?

Tips and Tricks for Mixing Bright Colors

  • Vibrant jewel-tone colors look great together–some of my favorite color combos include yellow and turquoise, hot pink and purple, and royal blue with electric blue.
  • Consider adding color with your accessories. Bright clutches, turquoise or coral jewelry, kaleidoscopic scarves, and candy-colored shoes are versatile pieces that will add pop to your look.
  • Makeup is another great way to experiment with color: Purple eyeliner and hot pink lip gloss are two of my favorite ways to experiment with bold hues!
  • Be careful with the number of colors you mix at once. Wearing three or even four colors at once can create an incredible look, but I recommend stopping there. Mix five or more colors and you’ll risk looking like a rainbow explosion (and not in a good way)!

Example Outfits for Inspiration

Brightly colored outfit featuring a yellow skirt and teal top

Shirt, Skirt, Necklace, Earrings, Bracelet, Shoes

This outfit is perfect for a sweet date, warm night spent out on the patio, or a daytime family outing. Tuck a soft turquoise top into a flowy yellow skirt, then add a pop of pink on your toes with these adorable buckled flats. A simple silver pair of earrings and bracelet add balance to the outfit, while a pretty purple pendant necklace will draw attention toward your beautiful face.

Brightly colored outfit with a blue top, yellow shoes, and a red necklace

Shirt, Skirt, Flats, Necklace, Ring

If you’re a little wary of trying out this Fashion Challenge, start with a dark purple or deep blue as your base: These colors are more subdued (perfect for a less out-there look), but you’ll still get the summery, bold aesthetic you desire. For the look above, I paired a simple purple skirt with a bright blue cami, yellow flats, and coral jewelry for a look that’s sophisticated yet fun.

Brightly colored outfit with a pink dress, yellow heels, and a blue clutch

Dress, Shoes, Earrings, Clutch, Bracelet

A hot pink dress will look even more summery and fresh when paired with yellow shoes and a purple clutch. Turquoise jewelry is a fun way to add more color and pizazz to any ensemble, and works well in this look to offset the neon pink and yellow with a cooler tone. This ensemble would be perfect for a summer night out.

CF Reader Looks

Here are some looks sent in by CF readers who took the Bright Colors Challenge! If you want to see your own look here, read our instructions for sending in your outfit photos below!

Brittany – Northwestern University

Northwestern University fashionista in a brightly colored dress

“I’m wearing a dress my mom gave me that she bought in the ’90s, a Forever 21 ring, vintage yellow earrings from my granny, and a belt given to me by my stepmom (also from the ’90s!). I almost never, ever wear bright colors so this is kind of a big deal for me!”

Up for the challenge? Send in your look and we’ll make you famous!

Now that you have some ideas for how to pull off this Fashion Challenge, we want to see what you can come up with! Send us your outfits and we’ll feature your photos and info here. :)

Just send in photos of you wearing a brightly-colored outfit to fashionchallenge AT collegefashion.net, and we’ll feature you here on CF! (See past examples here and here.) Include your name, what school you go to, and a description of what you’re wearing in the email. Can’t wait to hear from you!

What do you think?

What are your favorite colors to pair together? Do you think bright colors are better worn with neutrals? How much color do you think is too much? What other fashion challenges would you like to see in the future? Discuss by leaving a comment!

Posted on on July 29, 2010 / Filed Under: Fashion Tips / Tags: , , , ,

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56 Responses to “Fashion Challenge: Wear Multiple Bright Colors Together”

  1. 1
    July 29th, 2010 at 8:51 am

    Ooohh! I love bright colours together! It looks happy!

  2. 2
    July 29th, 2010 at 9:57 am

    I like coral and turqoise together! and hot pink and navy blue!

  3. 3
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:03 am

    I love all of the outfits you’ve created here. I wish I was brave enough to make pairings such as these. I love bright and saturated colors, especially jewel tones. However, I usually pair it with a neutral. I will definitely be trying this challenge.

  4. 4
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:11 am

    I just LOVE the deep blue top with the red rose. How elegant and mesmerizing

  5. 5
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:16 am

    nice work! i’ve always been a firm believer that one bright color should be worn with neutrals but the looks you’ve put together are really cute! I might have to give this a go.

  6. 6
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:19 am

    Hey can you fix the link for the coral ring?? I love it but the link for the ring is connecting me to the yellow flats….

  7. 7
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:26 am

    Lindsey – Fixed the link! Thanks for letting me know about the problem. xo!

  8. 8
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Definitley a challenge.. I absolutely love the pink dress with the yellow heels and purple clutch!!!

  9. 9
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:51 am

    can one also send in a picture if one’s in high school? love this article and colors! :)

  10. 10
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:52 am

    I’ve always preferred neutrals but lately I’ve been liking a lot of colours. Usually if I wear colours, they’re either tops or accesories (or on rare occasions, both). I like to get bags/bottoms/shoes that can go with nearly everything I wear. Right now, however, I’m on the lookout for a turquoise dress :)

  11. 11
    July 29th, 2010 at 11:07 am

    @Serena – of course high school students can send in pictures! I can’t wait to see them :)

    I’m so happy lots of girls like to dress bright and colorful like I do! Life is too short to follow the rules…I say do what you makes you feel good!

    Does anyone have ideas for future fashion challenges? I’d love to hear some suggestions!

  12. 12
    July 29th, 2010 at 11:20 am

    I’ve actually been doing this a lot lately, it’s so perfect for summer!
    Your outfit suggestions are adorbs.

  13. 13
    July 29th, 2010 at 11:44 am

    This always a good reminder! I don’t wear as much color as I used to, but I’ll definitely work on it! I actually did a post on Alex Russo’s style (Selena Gomez’s character on Disney) and she uses a lot of color too! Here’s the link: http://shadesofsarah.wordpress.com/2010/07/27/fashion-inspiration-wizards-of-waverly-place/ if anyone wants to see more outfits. I always love your posts, Chelsea!

  14. 14
    July 29th, 2010 at 11:53 am

    @Sari Thanks girl!! Selena Gomez is so fraking cute! Actually if you type “how to dress like” in google search bar, Selena Gomez is the first name that pops up in google’s auto-population…pretty high achievement in the fashion world for a 17 year old, lol :)

  15. 15
    July 29th, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    I thought jewel tones were deep rich colors like emerald, ruby, rich purples and blues, etc., not hot pink or neon yellow. I love the colors of the outfits, it’s just a bit too flashy for my style.

  16. 16
    July 29th, 2010 at 12:35 pm

    I always stick with the 3 color rule even with brights. Wearing more then 3 makes you start looking less trendy and more tacky. :(

  17. 17
    July 29th, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    Aw, its hard

  18. 18
    July 29th, 2010 at 1:09 pm

    Definitely not my style… But it’s nice to see something different from time to time, considering that those are the muted tones that are chosen for fall again. Of course I’m happy, I love them, but I get bored with a certain shade so easly when I see too much of it everywhere.

  19. 19
    July 29th, 2010 at 1:43 pm

    Today I’m wearing a bright yellow bag a pink and purple print top with pink shoes. I’m going to try the makeup and accessorize great post

  20. 20
    July 29th, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    Love it! Bright makeup is my favorite – a quick swipe of bright eyeshadow under your lower lashes or right above the crease can really make your eyes stand out! Mix and match for a fun going out look!
    Maybe you could do an article on how to rock faux fur? (Since real fur is icky..) Or maybe the color red, in preparation for the fall.. It’s such a hard color to work with sometimes, I think.

  21. 21
    July 29th, 2010 at 4:26 pm

    Hey I know this is off topic but I’m not sure where else to post. I am an avid CF reader and find it extremely helpful when planning for things such as parties, dates, or my favorite THE BEACH. although all those things are great, in a couple of months I will be leaving for a carribean cruise; I’m super excited but totally clueless on what to pack. SO PLEASE CF hear my pleases and create a topic in how to look cute but stay comfortable on a HOT Caribbean cruise!

  22. 22
    July 29th, 2010 at 5:13 pm

    aah yay there I am!

  23. 23
    July 29th, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    wow…this is certainley a challenge for me! but being that its still summer i think its a perfect time to try this!
    and i love the cf reader looks idea!
    brittany- you definitly rocked that look =)

  24. 24
    July 29th, 2010 at 7:24 pm

    how cute!i love the color combinations in these outfits<3.i like the way orange,purple,turquoise,and lime green look together…crazy colors…but i really like like how the look together:)

  25. 25
    July 29th, 2010 at 10:44 pm

    I absolutely love this post!

  26. 26
    July 30th, 2010 at 5:21 am

    Love it!!
    Totally doing it, wish me luck!! :)

  27. 27
    July 30th, 2010 at 5:34 am

    not so much into it
    but after looking at the outfits i dont mind trying it

  28. 28
    July 30th, 2010 at 8:36 am

    I never dare wear many bright colors together – but I really like outfit no. 2! So cool!

  29. 29
    July 30th, 2010 at 11:26 am

    I would love to see Fashion Challenge: Maxi Dress. Please!

  30. 30
    July 30th, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    I am definitely gonna try this.

  31. 31
    August 1st, 2010 at 12:39 pm

    Ahh I love bright colors, but I never thought of wearing them together! I’m definitely going to have to try. The outfits you put together are adorable!

  32. 32
    August 1st, 2010 at 2:37 pm

    for some reason, while my style is pretty fun and clashing, this is something I never really do and I don’t know why!! i think as much as i love my edgy side i am a completely matchy-matchy girl and i like everything to look pulled together.
    but this post has completely inspired me!! I have so many bright coloured things- I really should step out of my comfort zone!!
    thank you so much for this fantastic post!!
    :DD

    Charlotte xxx

  33. 33
    August 3rd, 2010 at 6:23 pm

    After reading the “How to Dress like Blair Waldorf” blog i’m OBSESSED with pairing bright colors together but don’t know where to find such bright colored clothes or how to match them! I like the clothes posted but I’m looking for more dressy clothes to wear out on the weekends, heels, dresses, clutches (like the pink dress). Any clue CF readers where to find that stuff?

  34. 34
    August 11th, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    Bright colors are seductive. I like being colorful while wearing bright colored dress days have life.

  35. 35
    September 5th, 2010 at 8:36 am

    I absolutely love colour!!!

  36. 36
    October 3rd, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    haha this is not even a challenge at all. This is quite easy to pull off:)

  37. 37
    November 13th, 2011 at 10:09 am

    Do you think an olive green top would look good with purple flats? I’m not very confident when it comes to mixing and matching bright colors. :/

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