Maximalist Fashion the M.M. Way: Luxe Looks for Real Life
Seven outfit ideas that bring out a bolder side of your style.
Like so many of our customers, I’m constantly trying to create more balance in my life. I’ll have a busy day at the office, then draw a bubble bath and revel in the time offline. I’ll sign up for an extra-challenging yoga class, then ease onto my couch and order from my favorite take-out spot. I’ll pop on a brightly colored top, then complement it with a neutral pair of pants.
Maintaining balance is my default way of being—and dressing. But some days, I crave the extreme. Once in a blue moon, I’ll stay at the party until 2am. Every now and then, I’ll binge-watch an entire season of reality TV in one afternoon. When my outfit rotation feels a little stale, I’ll spice it up with pairings that are noticeably unexpected.
Lately, in light of the abundant spirit of our holiday collection, I’ve been inspired to spice up my looks even more than usual. Normally, when I wear a bold style, I’m inclined to balance it out with strictly muted pairings. But over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been pushing myself to amplify the opulence of my statement pieces. The result has been a slight deviation from my more minimalist aesthetic, but I’ve learned that as long as I stick to a few golden rules, I still feel like myself—just a little glitzier.
Below, see seven ways I’ve been wearing statement styles from our holiday collection with pieces that are decidedly not demure, yet still incredibly refined.
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Maximalist Styling Tips
Tip #1: Don’t Be So Literal
To achieve a luxurious look, you don’t have to maximize the number of bold pieces you put on your body—that’s one of the most common fashion mistakes. To start, commit to one conspicuous piece, and create a maximalist look by pairing it with items that make a statement in a way that isn’t visually overwhelming—think: sumptuous fabrics and striking silhouettes.
Tip #2: Avoid Clash
Wondering how to wear patterns in more creative ways? Try mixing and matching them with something other than just neutral, solid-colored pieces. That said, be sure you don’t pile on pieces willy-nilly. Be intentional about it as you would with any other outfit, and opt for complementary colors. If you’re working with a colorful pattern, opt for pairings that match back to one of its featured bright colors.
Tip #3: Remember to Accessorize
For a look that’s luxe but not overly complicated, put your accessories to work. Look at embellishment as an art form; shoes and jewelry should be key components of maximalist outfits rather than afterthoughts.
7 Maximalist Fashion Pieces
1. A Satin Blazer
Combine our boyfriend-style O’Hara blazer with gorgeously drapey washable satin, and you get a lustrous yet laid-back layer that instantly brightens up any outfit. To play up the O’Hara’s light-reflecting quality, I recently wore it over the also-subtly-shiny Montean top, which features a unique geometric knitting pattern and a sophisticated mock neck. My cherished Horton pants and the cognac Rowan flats rounded out this warm, bronzy look, and the crystal Tia earrings added glints of other eye-catching colors.
2. A Winter-White Dress
More white after Labor Day? You bet. Sure, many people still subscribe to the antiquated idea that white is reserved for spring and summer, but that just means your off-white dress will stand out as the crisply chic piece that it is. To winterize it a bit, add a wine-hued layer, like the Yiyan blazer in Shiraz. Coordinating burgundy boots, a bold gold-link necklace, and sparkly pavé earrings enhance the richness and warmth of your gorgeously contrasted palette.
3. A Jacquard Jacket
When I first saw a sample of our Bengal jacquard, I was both surprised and delighted. I don’t wear a ton of bold patterns, but this one spoke to me. It’s incredibly eye-catching—but also shockingly easy to pair, due to its burgundy base and spots composed of multiple muted hues, including pale yellow and sky blue. For my debut outfit in my Nicky jacket, I opted for an all-black base, which sounds simple but looks strikingly elegant if you pick slightly exaggerated silhouettes, like the wide-leg Milo jeans and the fitted Axam turtleneck. Crackle-embossed gold pumps and costume-jewelry-inspired earrings take it to that next, more opulent-leaning level.
4. A Festive Cardigan
It’s time to trade in your ugly holiday sweater for something that’s equally festive and a lot more refined. Our new confetti-inspired sweaters, the Cookie cardigan and the Tish sweater, feature pops of embroidery in citron and mahogany, as well as tinsel-y spots of ice blue and silver. Rather than counteracting the Cookie’s charisma with super-subtle pairings, I went for more maximalist styles—choosing dramatic silhouettes and embracing the sweater’s multi-toned palette. My tie-front Darcy blouse and pearl Lillie earrings shone along with the sweater’s spots of silver, while my wide-leg jeans and sharp Lana boots paired back to the blue and mahogany quite beautifully.
5. Fancy Pants
This one might just be my favorite. Blue is my favorite color, and our brand-new sapphire shade is utterly stunning. Add it to our perfectly tapered, straight-leg Smith pants in washable satin, and I could drink them up. Even better? They can form a full suit along with the matching O’Hara blazer—or provide a gorgeous pop against cool-toned neutrals like light gray. To create a luxe cold-weather look, I paired them with the nipped-waist Gaia jacket and tucked in my oversized McKenzie sweater. As if the sumptuous, slouchy cashmere turtleneck wasn’t enough, I layered the Blige necklace on top for some extra adornment around the neck. For additional shine, I wore a pair of glitzy sandals and matching bold hoops.
6. A Colorful Sweater Set
There’s nothing cozier than an oversized cashmere turtleneck with an oversized scarf, and when they match, it’s hard to think of anything more winter-chic. Our Rajni sweater and Nash scarf create the plushest set imaginable, which almost looks like a painting, thanks to splashes of pale blue, tomato red, camel, and olive. To fill out the rest of your relaxed yet lavish look, opt for the Champagne Smith pants, the cognac Rowan flats, and the sculptural Yuna earrings.
7. A Jewel-Toned Dress
With a mock neck, elbow-length sleeves, and strategically placed darts, the Farnoosh dress is the picture of understated elegance. Feeling not so understated? Play up the dress’s sexier side by defining your waist with the bold leather Beebe belt, and slip on the over-the-knee Nina boots, which both replace your need for tights and also look a bit avant garde compared to your average footwear.