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Matchy-matchy magic: The co-ord is back in style


Image / Shona Joy
Image / Shona Joy
Three cheers for a fashion trend that makes dressing easy.

That’s the prevailing thought around the return of matching sets to the fashion scene.

Like many trends that became so overdone they became indicative of a bygone era we thought we’d never return to, wearing a matching set has was once considered decidedly dated.

Until recently, a matching set been resigned to a donning matching sweatpants and pullover on a Sunday morning, or perhaps a blazer and trousers in a corporate office environment.

But given many of us are looking to add a bit of fun back into our wardrobes, particularly during the summer season, it makes sense embracing print and texture in matching sets has once again become desirable.

Everywhere right now? Pairing a print shirt and shorts has become a go-to for casual events like summer barbecues and drinks with friends, while pairing denim separates in matching tones has also slipped back into the fashion conversation in recent months.

L-R: Aje; Alémais; Shona Joy; Juliette Hogan; Matteau

Resort-style wide leg pants paired with a matching shirt are also carrying through into new season collections towards the cooler months.

Australian brand Alémais has made a name for itself with its bold and bright artistic prints, and event offers a category for matching sets in its online store. Designer shopping sites like Net-a-Porter and Shopbop also have an option to shop the ‘matching sets’ category.

Top tips for matching sets:

  • The easiest option is to buy separates in the same fabric. Sometimes brands will offer a skirt, shorts and pants to match a shirt, so you can choose which item best suits your style.
  • If you find matching prints too much, choose a neutral colour like caramel, khaki or cream and wear a top and bottom in the same fabric.
  • When doubling denim, make sure the colour of denim is the same, or a very close match.
  • Adding accessories is important to ensure your set doesn’t look like a uniform but don’t go overboard if you are wearing a very busy print. Try a bold gold necklace and bracelet or chunky earrings.
  • Offset very feminine items with more utilitarian accessories such as chunky slides or flat boots.
  • Resort pants however, call for flats like elegant sandals.
  • A set is perfect for travel. Simply bring along a plain white tee or jeans and wear each piece as separate outfits to increase your styling options.


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