10x10 Challenge SERIES STYLE Summer Fashion

Summer 10×10 Outfit 5

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

Hi, friends! And welcome to Day 5 of the Summer 10×10 Challenge! I can’t believe we are already half-way through the challenge. Woah! But today’s look is such a GOOD one! It incorporates a floral-on-floral atheistic that was professional enough for an end-of-summer presentation yet still felt super fun and bubbly like me.

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

Bringin’ back a bit of my beloved color today and I love it! I mentioned in yesterday’s post that my outfits up to this point have felt a bit monochromatic and neutral recently. But I’m happy to say that today’s look is anything but! It’s bright and colorful and full of personality.

Today’s schedule included a final presentation to my branch at NASA on all the work I did this summer, so I wanted to look and feel my best when presenting to a room full of senior-level engineers. One of the easiest ways I know to feel confident and in control during a presentation (aside from practicing the actual presentation, of course) is to dress the part! Anticipating this presentation, I saved my favorite floral top all week for just this day! And paired it with a cute patterned pencil skirt, which is the professional piece that makes me feel most flattering. Some people love pants…I dig pencil skirts! It’s all about what makes you feel your best!

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

I was initially a little hesitant to pair these floral pieces together since they aren’t two pieces I would normally think to pair together. But that’s what the 10×10 Challenge is all about–trying out new styles and pairing things you wouldn’t normally pair together to explore your personal style. And guess what?! I ended up loving the result!

This combination works for a couple different reasons…

Firstly, the top is bright and colorful while the skirt is more neutral in black and white. Had the skirt been in a colorful print too, the pieces likely would have clashed and produced a look that was too busy. But pairing a colorful piece with a neutral one means that the colors will really pop against the crisp white.

Secondly, the top has a smaller floral print, while the skirt has larger individual flowers. Pairing prints of different scales is another great way to mix prints and patterns. In this way, the two pieces can remain in the same genre of floral prints without competing for attention. The smaller print of the top becomes more of the ‘solid’ in this look, while it is the larger floral print of the skirt that grabs your attention. (P.S. – You can see all my tips for How To Mix Patterns right here!)

And as if mixing floral patterns wasn’t enough…I went ahead and decided to mix in another print just for fun with this cute navy striped clutch. I didn’t even care that the skirt and shoes were black. I think the colorful-ness of the top was able to accommodate the navy blue in the clutch just fine.

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

And to really bring the color out, I paired the top with my bright yellow cardigan. I almost went with my purple cardigan, but loved how sunny and cheery the yellow one felt. Style is all about wearing what makes you feel great. And as you know, it changes from day-to-day, and even within the same day (to be honest!). But that’s one of the great things about having pieces you can mix and match with each other in seemingly endless ways. And this top is definitely in the realm of super-star pieces that could be paired with tons of different colors!

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

At any rate, I absolutely loved today’s look because it felt professional and put-together while still feeling very me. And it gave me that extra bit of confidence I needed in a time of stress. Isn’t it amazing how something as simple as style can have an effect on your confidence?! I think that is what is at the heart of fashion and personal style for me–how combining pieces can give you the confidence to do the things you were meant to do, whether that be something as big as a presentation to a room full of people or something as small as having the guts to talk to someone new at a get-together. Needless to say, I think I’ve found my ‘power uniform’. Bring on the next big presentation, world! I got this.

Summer 10x10 Challenge Outfit 5 | www.cupcakesandthecosmos.com

What about you? What’s your power uniform?

You might also like…Bright Working Wear and Another Fun Patterned Skirt for Work.

Photos by Noah Berg


Get the Look…

Top: J. Crew (also here) | Skirt: J. Crew Factory (similar here, here) | Cardigan: J. Crew Factory (similar) | Shoes: Madewell (similar) | Purse: J. Crew (similar) | Bracelet: J. Crew (similar here, here)

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