Repetition as a Design Element
Let’s talk about a design principle and how you can use it to create solid outfits.
One of the foundational elements of a good design is repetition. Repetition simply refers to the repeated use of a particular shape, color, texture, or other element to bring unity to a design. The repetition need not be so frequent as to create a pattern. The repeated element only needs to create a visual echo, if you will, to reinforce what the eye sees. The repeated element doesn’t even have to be exact. It only needs to have some aspect of commonality.
This principle can be employed in any field of design. For instance, graphic designers use this in designing a website and interior designers use this in designing a room. And similarly, you and I can use repetition to build cohesive outfits.
3 Ways to Use Repetition to Build a Cohesive Outfit
Let’s examine my fall look as an illustration of different ways in which one can use repetition to achieve a harmonious look…
First, I started with velvet. This texture is going to be huge for fall, as I mentioned in my post, Two Easy Tips for Wearing Fall Trends in the Summer. So, I paired my new favorite Laurence Dacade velvet booties with this Isabel Marant velvet top. Note that the top and boots are different colors. The velvet material is really the only commonality of these two pieces. But yet that is enough to make it work.
Second, I united my look with color. Specifically, I utilized the fall-appropriate wine / marsala / maroon hue. I did this through both the boots and the leather jacket.
Finally, I played with shape. This example is perhaps a bit more obscure but stay with me… Notice the curves of the shiny silver Dior ‘So Real’ sunglasses? That shape is echoed by the curves of the shiny silver cuff that I wore.
For more great examples of this design principle in action, I suggest checking out these two fashion friends of mine: Erica of Fashioned Chic and Tina (@the.nowhere.girl on Instagram). Both are experts at using repetition in building outfits that make visual sense. As an example, notice how Tina unified this look with the subtle use of stars.
By employing these concepts, an everyday look can go from looking plain and boring to looking interesting and enticing. Give it a try! We would love to see and hear how you use this principle.
Finally, have a great day!
Photos by Ailee Petrovic