How to Look Stylish in a Kimono
Have you been eyeing those kimonos, thinking, “I wish I could wear them! They look so frumpy on me!!” I have some tips for you. I think they are one of the most stylish ‘completer’ pieces you could own (well, besides a chic blazer). You can dress them up or down. You can wear them everyday, and still feel like it’s a brand new outfit. There are very few items you can have that you can wear year round; a kimono is one!
Kimonos, like other outerwear pieces, are the icing on the cake. They pull a whole outfit together. You can take a simple top and bottoms, add a kimono, and you have instant style! For all my 5 Minute Style outfits, I share a simple formula: basic item, interest piece, and completer item. The completer is what makes the outfit, and is the most important part of an outfit.
You can wear a kimono with a monotone outfit. Select a kimono that is a lighter shade, and wear a top and bottoms that are darker. The top and bottoms should be the same color, and skinny jeans are preferred. Why this works: This outfit works because the single color (paired with the kimono of a lighter color) on your base layer creates a more elegant look, tricking the eye into making you look taller and thinner. This isn’t to say that wearing more than one color will make you look short and squat. In this instance, you are tricking the eye. The kimono creates a light and airy look.
Wear with a Swing Dress
We’re particularly obsessed with Kelsey Swing Dresses over here. Whether you wear your kimono and Kelsey with leggings, naked legs, or a top extender, you’ll be soooo stylish!!
Why this works: The combination, while a stark contrast to the previous outfit, works because it creates a carefree look. A kimono is not the right outerwear for a professional look. It has a lighter and looser feeling, and is more casual. It can be dressed up for a lovely evening out, but isn’t right for a professional environment.
A word of caution: If you are petite, it’s best to not wear a Kelsey, with leggings, and tall boots. Opt for mid calf or short boots. This will allow you to look taller.
With Boyfriend Jeans
These are the unsung hero in pants world, IMHO. You can wear them year round, but I digress…
Why this works: Because a bit of skin is showing, the outfit balances skin around the neck, and the arms, keeping the eye moving.
Bonus tip: I am not a fan of matching colors exactly, but having similar colors has the same effect: keeping the eye moving. I also love my boyfriend jeans year round – in the summer with flip flops…in the winter with Uggs (I DID just say that. I have discovered the beauty of warm feet. Boyfriend jeans are the perfect length where I don’t have to tuck them into my boots.)…in the fall and spring with my ankle booties.
If you are looking for the perfect piece for a relaxed summer outfit, add a light weight kimono! In the summer it can be sooo hot, and a completer piece to pull the outfit together may be the last thing on your mind.
Why this works: By wearing a lightweight kimono, it is the icing on the cake. It pulls the whole outfit together. Do be sure that you wear shorts that fit your body well. Frumpy or bulky shorts won’t work with this look; they need to be well fitted (if you are a pear shape, investing in a tailor is a great idea – it should only cost you about $10-15 to have your pants altered to fit your body).
With a Long Sleeve Top
Again, this look looks best with pants that hug the body. If you wear boot cut jeans, it will have a 70’s flair to it. If that is your goal, then mission accomplished! If you’d rather look more put together, skinny or straight leg jeans are best. Even if you have a bit of extra fluff, this outfit looks best with skinny pants.
Why this works: Just like with the shorts and Kelsey, it works because you are adding a simple layer that pulls everything together.