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Mixing Metals: Fashion Forward or Fashion Faux Pas?

Updated: Feb 15, 2023

By Carolyne Croy

Millennials have been accused of breaking many fashion “rules” that were once considered set in stone. Our mothers, grandmothers and aunts would never consider wearing socks with sandals. They wouldn’t dare wear ripped jeans to Sunday brunch, or even think about wearing sweatpants anywhere besides the gym.

I grew up in a household where once the clock struck midnight on Labor Day, no single article of white clothing was allowed to cross the front door, and mixing prints was always considered a fashion-don’t. But perhaps the recent trend of mixing metals when accessorizing is a trend even our conservative grandmothers can get behind.

Rules were made to be broken, but there are still some guidelines that can make mixing metals a wearable trend.

#1 Layering

KATE HARTNER / UP Photographer

A great way to incorporate both gold and silver into an outfit is through layering. Combining dainty gold and silver necklaces is a discreet way of mixing metals while still adding flare to an outfit.

#2 Add to the basics

KATE HARTNER / UP Photographer

Adding gold and silver accessories to a neutral colored outfit is a great way to have your accessories make a statement without going overboard. If your favorite black purse has silver detailing, add a pair of gold earrings. If the ring you wear every day has a gold finish, try adding a silver bracelet or watch to add contrast. Small additions of different metals is an easy way to incorporate this trend in your wardrobe.

#3 Make a statement

KATE HARTNER / UP Photographer

Many high end brands such as David Yurman and Kate Spade have come out with statement pieces incorporating both gold and silver. David Yurman released a necklace with interconnecting gold and silver disks, and Kate Spade released a watch showcasing both metal finishes. Mixing metals looks like its a trend that’s here to stay, and these high end brands seem to be taking the ‘go big, or go home’ idea to heart.

While your grandmother might not ever wear socks with birkenstocks and your mom might keep her white jeans tucked away until the official first day of spring, mixing metals might be a rule us millennials could talk them into breaking. Gold and silver look great on their own, but if you put them together they’ve never looked better.

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