Anatomy Of An Outfit

Thanks so much for all your great suggestions on Monday. You ladies are the best. Today, I want to do a postmortem on two outfits I wore over the holidays. I’m going to explain what I observe and why I prefer one look over the other…on me, for me.fashion blogger jennifer of a well styled life wearign talbots velvet jacket and red cords

What doesn’t work for me in this outfit

As I look back at this outfit it has a distinct “toy soldier” vibe to me. I prefer a more elegant look. I love the gold buttons on this quilted velvet jacket but they needed to be considered as a piece of jewelry. My necklace and earrings are enough detail for me here so the pin is overkill.

I love a great white shirt…but not here because it chops up the outfit. The color has too much contrast and the cuffs make my arms look short.black and red outfit from talbots worn by jennifer of a well styled lfie

I love these loafers but not with this outfit. Seeing a part of my foot between the shoe and pants adds enough extra busyness to make this outfit not work for me. The jacket is quilted, the corduroy pants have a raised wale and the shoes have a velvet nap which is too much texture for my style.

What works about this outfit

I’m smaller above my waist than below. Bright red pants enlarge the look of my bottom half and the black jacket makes my top half look smaller. It provides balance.

The next time I wore this jacket and pants I streamlined the look.fashion blogger jennifer connolly of a well styled life modeling black jaket over red pants

I skipped the loafers and wore smooth black boots that tucked under the pant leg so no ankle showed. Next, I swapped the white shirt for a smooth black turtleneck. These are the same hoop earrings but I skipped the necklace and pin. I am much happier with this look because there are fewer details grabbing the eye.fashion blogger jennifer of a well styled life comparing two outfits side by side

In this side-by-side picture you can see that even though my shoes and boots have the same 1″ heel, I look a bit taller in the image on the right. Yes, I’m having a better hair day on the right too:)

I hope you found this postmortem entertaining.

I’d love to hear your feedback.




This post may contain affiliate links which won’t change your price but will share some commission.


  1. Karyn
    April 21, 2021 / 9:51 am

    This was fun and informative. Love the second look. I know I make mistakes like this too (first outfit) so I thoroughly appreciated the breakdown.

    • Jennifer
      April 21, 2021 / 3:39 pm

      I’m so glad it was helpful, Karyn

  2. Maritza
    March 5, 2021 / 11:24 pm

    Great! Thanks for the supertips

  3. amy
    January 3, 2021 / 8:22 am

    Love, love love the anatomy of an outfit!!!

  4. Suzanne
    January 3, 2021 / 7:24 am

    This is the best post ever! You could do this week after week, and compare a “sort of ‘OK’ look” with a side by side comparision of a ‘Wow’ look that you simply tweaked. This is what I need: Visuals, and your provided them in this post. Would love to see you do the same with ‘pants leg lengths’, and perhaps one on “skirt’ lengths and the kind of tops/blouses/blazers that are best suited to a particular type of skirt. Then, add the shoes to the look, also…. Visually seeing the difference, side by side, is a terrific teaching tool. Thank you very much for this terrific post

    • Jennifer
      January 3, 2021 / 3:58 pm

      Great ideas! Thanks, Suzanne!

  5. Susan
    January 3, 2021 / 4:31 am

    I love the second outfit too! Have you considered playing around with shoe color too? My eyes are drawn to the black shoe contrasting with the red pants. Great post!

  6. Barb 🇨🇦
    December 31, 2020 / 6:50 am

    As with many commenters, I love this article. I am same body type and would wear second outfit for all the reasons you said. The white at neck brings too much “up” for me. By doing these articles, you show us that fashion is a lot of tweaking, even when you know what you are doing…and I don’t…well am learning. Happy New year!

    • Jennifer
      December 31, 2020 / 8:50 pm

      Happy New Year

  7. Sandy A.
    December 31, 2020 / 4:36 am

    I have been reading your blog for several years. This is my favorite post you’ve ever done. I love the side by side and the “why” of both pictures. Please consider putting together outfits that don’t work on purpose. While I enjoy the “would you wear it” posts, this is far more helpful. Great job.

    • Julie Traxler
      December 31, 2020 / 6:10 pm

      I agree!

  8. Barbara
    December 30, 2020 / 11:40 pm

    Great post and so informative! More like this would be very helpful. Thank you for sharing your expertise.

  9. Nancy
    December 30, 2020 / 10:20 pm

    This post was excellent! Your detailed analysis was very helpful.
    Thanks for being open, honest and real on this blog.

    On a completely different subject, I bought the SMEG tea kettle you featured a while back and just love it. I bought it in the cream colour.

  10. Evelyn bailey
    December 30, 2020 / 8:22 pm

    This was so helpful! I hope this becomes a regular feature. Side by side always helps! Thanks! Happy new year!

  11. Gayle Murphy
    December 30, 2020 / 6:50 pm

    Well, in case you need one more vote, may I add mine to say that this side-by-side lesson is terrific. And while I do enjoy the Would You Wear It? segments, this is far more helpful. Far more. All the best to you and yours for 2021. It has to be better

  12. Lee
    December 30, 2020 / 5:30 pm

    This was really helpful—thank you! Seeing the pictures with your explanations made me “get” it. I agree with everyone else & would love more posts like this.

  13. Treva
    December 30, 2020 / 5:15 pm

    Great post and hope it becomes a regular feature on the blog. Looking at both pictures side by side I agree that picture 2 is the most appealing but it’s “the why” that would stump me. Love how you explained what wasn’t working and why. On another note, I must thank you for your post featuring the Nordgreen watches. My husband gifted me with the Native watch for Christmas and I love it!

    • Kay
      December 30, 2020 / 6:50 pm

      You should keep him!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Unauthorized use and/or duplication of any images or written material is strictly prohibited without express and written permission from this blog's author and owner. A Well Styled Life® a registered trademark.
| powered by chloédigital