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Styling a Brown Column of Color with Chambray for SIA: You Come First + DIY Bead Soup Earrings

Salazar at 14 Shades of Grey is the curator for this round of Style Imitating Art (SIA), and she picked the wood panel painting "You Come First" by Japanese-American artist Audrey Kawasaki. Salazar says that she's had the painting on her Pinterest for a long time as an SIA option but didn't have the perfect outfit to represent it...which I can understand since the dominant black and brown colors of the piece are not ones that I commonly wear together. But the multitude of prints/patterns/motifs here did catch my eye as possible inspirations for an outfit. We have all kinds of dots, swirls, lines, flowers, leaves, spider webs, seed pods, and several strands that look to me like strung beads.

Style Imitating Art selection

Between the black/brown color combination and the mix of organic and geometric designs in the artwork, my thrifted Art Deco silk scarf came to mind as a piece that could do the heavy lifting in my interpretation. It even picks up on the blue/teal color of the dots in the painting.

SIA artwork and scarf

From there it was easy to pull out a dark brown short-sleeved T and straight leg jeans to create a column of color in brown, topped with a chambray jacket that relates to the light blue color in the scarf. This formed a simple neutral backdrop for the statement scarf to stand out against.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
OOTD 10/17/23

I chose to wear my scarf untied, tucked into the neck of the blazer and hanging straight on each side (Method #1 in this how-to-wear-scarves post). This allowed the multitude of prints/colors in the scarf to be shown off instead of focusing attention on only a few of them. It also creates a frame for my (wonky-hanging) sloth necklace that I can't resist adding when I'm wearing brown.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My beloved brown leather flats by Frye completes the column of color with a pants-color-matching shoe. (122 total wears and a current cost per wear of $0.91!)

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My daily bracelet stack was created around a paper bead bracelet set (2nd and 7th bracelets) in a color palette of brown, tan, taupe, and ivory/white with gold/bronze metal. (I thought I took photos of the papers I used but I can't find them now, so who knows? In general, my organization is stronger than my memory so I'm probably thinking of a different set.) I supplemented the set with a white (real) pearl bracelet from Macy's, DIY brown tiger-eye glass bead bracelet, DIY white glass bead bracelet, rose gold spacer bead bracelet from Amazon, and a stand-alone DIY paper bead bracelet in dark brown, rust, and taupe.

DIY Bracelet Stack

My earrings are a pair of DIY bead soup earrings I made to coordinate with the paper bead bracelet set in the simple "beads on a stick" stacking design...i.e., take a sturdy head pin (mine are 21 gauge), add beads, create a simple loop at the top, attach to an ear wire. The earrings are fairly long without being shoulder dusters (which I don't like). Clearly the color scheme is one that can easily blend into my hair color, but that's OK with me; I don't need every piece of jewelry I wear to be a high-contrast statement piece. And the light colored pearls at the bottom of the stack do stand out against my hair so the earrings don't completely disappear.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

I used gold findings, spacers, and bead caps with 5 pairs of beads from my bead soup: taupe glass, beige wood, brown glass cubes, warm brown/bronze glass pearl, and ivory/white glass pearl.

Design bead soup earrings for a paper bead bracelet set

Now for the most whimsical part of today's post: our Rabbit Imitating Art selection! I took my cue from the young woman/girl's face...which to me looked drowsy and dreamy (though it seems she's intended to be a mysteriously intriguing blend of innocent and erotic). Going with my sleepy interpretation, I chose this gorgeous lady mini rex with a magnificent dewlap (bonus: it's a secondary sexual characteristic in mature female rabbits), a complex broken fur coloration pattern, and drowsy eyes. As we recently discussed, mini rex rabbits have the special rex fur that is incredibly lush and velvety, so I declare this bunny to be a sleepy loaf of luxurious softness.

Rabbit Imitating Art selection

Entering the dreamscape of the artwork with the statement "you come first" in her ears, our rabbit falls into a half-awake/half-asleep reverie of what's important in her life...and the answer is an astonishingly varied array of fresh produce! The rainbow hues introduced by our rabbit's vegetable fantasia add welcome pops of color to the piece.

SIA artwork with rabbit
You Come First "improved" with rabbit

Thanks for joining me today for this Style Imitating Art + Rabbit Imitating (and Improving) Art post!

To see other outfit interpretations of this artwork, check out the review on 14 Shades of Grey.

Is brown in rotation for you this fall? Do you prefer chambray blazers, denim jackets, or both? Do you like clothing/accessories that incorporate multiple prints within one piece?

Blogs I link up with are listed here.

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