Because You Can: Winter Brights

Don’t think “pops of color”—think EXPLOSIONS!

Left: Christina from For Show; right: Kate from Scathingly Brilliant.

Every winter, I get into a goth phase where I want to be “dressed in all black like the Omen” (hat tip to Lil’ Kim), but after a while that can get pretty boring, especially for someone who table-hops around with her style, like I am known to do. Sooner or later I start to long for the warmth of spring and COLOR! Everyone gets that itch after the holidays, right? So let’s karate-chop those winter bores, mah boos!

The first thing to do is get a bright peacoat. I offered some options back in October. You probably have to wear a coat every day if you’re in the middle of a cold winter, so this is your easiest way to inject some cheer into your daily clothings. But let’s not stop there. Let’s parade around in every color of the rainbow, like a gang of happy clowns.

Top row: Owl Face Jumper and Raccoon Jumper by Emma Cook for Topshop ($120 each, Topshop). Bottom row: Peaked Collar Rose Shirt, $52, Romwe; Knitted Crazy Bobble Jumper, $80, Topshop.

Another easy way to incorporate the rainbow an outfit is by layering like a maniac, and winter is the perfect time to do that. Start with thrift-store button-downs in crazy prints—Christina from For Show does this lewk well—and throw a patterned cardigan or loud sweater over it. Don’t think “pops of color”—think EXPLOSIONS!

Left: via Fashionist; right: Eline from A Fluffy Blog

Next step: tights. You can have a whole lotta fun with brightly colored and/or patterned hosiery. So much variety, so many options! Look for fun novelty prints like these octopus socks from Sock Dreams; I’m also in love with two-tone tights like these and these.

Top row: two-tone tights, $13, Alex Blake; Over the Knee Socks, $9, ASOS. Bottom row: hot-pink opaque tights, $11, ASOS; Multi Poppy Floral Tights, $20, Topshop; Opaque Fairisle Tights, $14, ASOS.

We Love Colors makes tights in every color imaginable. For extra warmth/colorfulness you can layer bright knee socks, or even these long, scrunchable socks over your tights.

L-R: Nicole from Fashion Forestry, Lydia from Style Is Style.

Finally, jazz up your hooves with some fun shoes. I’d kill for those vintage fringed gold-lamé rodeo-babe boots that Nicole is wearing up there on the left. Until she loses her mind and gives them to me, I’ll make due with Irregular Choice, my favorite source for crazy shoes. Look at these kitty boots! These bubblegum Docs look like the thrifted H&M boots Lydia from Style Is Style is wearing on the right; in my opinion they go with everything.

Now all you have to do is paint your nails a bright color and put your Smiths playlist on pause (listen to something light & happy like the Crystals instead!). And once you’re ready to cleanse your color palette, it’ll be time for you to pull all your black stuff out again to get your summertime goth look going. ♦


  • caro nation January 11th, 2013 7:19 PM

    MARIE, I love you bunches, but what happened to Leeann?

  • katiestarrynight January 11th, 2013 7:31 PM

    I wear brights all the time, no matter what the weather or season! Wear what makes you happy :)
    Katie xx

  • Emma January 11th, 2013 8:00 PM

    I did something with bright colors today! My favorite outfit for cold days is a black pea coat with a bright red scarf and matching red lipstick. The scarf and the lipstick together really make your lips pop!

  • Eryn January 11th, 2013 8:20 PM

    This is great considering I wore black every day this week. Thanks Marie! (I luv u btw)

  • LilySew January 11th, 2013 9:27 PM

    This is fuelling my problem of wearing winter clothes in the summer, considering its summer for me right now & 103degrees Fahrenheit. I just can’t resist layering all year ’round! :D

  • Feli-city January 11th, 2013 9:33 PM

    I have recently forced my black tank top with black opaque tights and shorts self to wear a neon green ski jacket from the 80s (it matches my hair!) and colorful shoes with every outfit. I should get out my hot pink old lady lipstick.

  • llamalina January 12th, 2013 1:10 AM

    i so do the same thing, where i begin to dress in black all winter, without even realizing it. so i bought a really colorful (and warm!!!!!!! i just want to emphasize this because it makes me feel like an eskimo) coat to make sure i remember to take my daily dose of colors.

  • Teez January 12th, 2013 6:59 AM

    i know a lot of what you encourage thrifting and whatnot but i often find that when you do a style piece, the clothes you feature can be quite expensive…i get that perhaps you put them up there for inspiration/aspiration or whatever but it’d be nice if you featured your picks from low end stores too

  • Mary the freak January 12th, 2013 7:37 AM

    Oh god I love this! I will go thrifting next week and search for some… oh, man, I already own a crazy colored shirt! And vein tights… oh I think this is the best article! Thank you so much for all the inspiration. Rookie just opens my eyes in fashion topics. UGH SO AMAZING.

  • limegreensunset January 12th, 2013 10:28 AM

    god i love this!

  • asylum January 12th, 2013 12:17 PM

    These tights are perfect. And I LOVE the animal jumpers!
    It would be so refreshing if everyone wore bright clothes all winter long. I think that colours can really cheer you up

  • Tyknos93 January 12th, 2013 1:37 PM

    I have this weird thing were I have NO idea how to dress weather appropriate, because I dress for like 60 – 70 degrees year round. So, this is a sort of wake up call.
    I also love that nearly every blogger you’ve included in this post I stalk (*ahem* ‘follow’) religiously.

  • farawayfaerie January 13th, 2013 5:07 AM

    the summertime goth link leads to the bubblegum docs again! but this is sooo pretty, maybe i’ll feel bold enough to pull it off soon. x

  • mayaautumn January 13th, 2013 12:20 PM

    oh myyy. SO bright. like, the brighest article i have ever seen. luvluvluv

  • BritishFish January 13th, 2013 4:12 PM

    Am I the only one who feels out of place not wearing all black? It’s not because I am afraid of color but I only like the way I look in leather, black lace, or band shirts..

  • StrawberryTwist January 13th, 2013 9:18 PM

    I love this article! I think I may need to brighten up my wardrobe a bit. I tend to wear a lot of earthy tones.

  • Cactus Woman January 14th, 2013 1:30 AM

    I dress like this EVERY DAY! Colors forever. :)

    This post made me want to submit some of my own outfits. But I think other readers should submit their awesome outfits, too. THEREFORE, I am making a proposal. I think Rookie should do a call for submissions of personal style outfits and then put them all together in one big photo album like you guys did with the open journal entries.

    Good idea, no? XD I hope the staff will at least consider it…

  • all-art-is-quite-useless January 15th, 2013 12:08 PM

    IRREGULAR CHOICE SHOES!! I worked in a boutique-y type shoe shop, where we stocked this brand, and I fell in love. Now to persuade my mum to but me a pair for prom…

  • Cutesycreator aka Monica May 29th, 2013 3:13 PM

    Color! Oh, how I love color! Color color color! Color! Cooooollllloooooooooor. It doesn’t even look like a real word anymore

    PS Those three sweaters + one shirt in the second picture killed me!!! ♥~☺~♥~☺~♥