Thinking About Color and Jeans

The closer we get to spring, the more I think of white jeans. I wear them year-round in California, but the warmer the weather, the more often they replace blue and black jeans in my outfits.

I thought it would be fun today to compare how the simple switch from white to blue to black jeans changes the look and feel of outfits.

Here are four outfits centered around these classic Madewell white jeans.

4 ways to style white jeans

Each look has a different style message which I would wear depending on my mood.

Outfit 1

Traditional look with a touch of prep and ladies who lunch vibe. I’d wear this shopping, running errands, to lunch or casual dinner and a show.

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Outfit 2

Modern sophisticate with a touch of allure. I’d wear this for a casual dinner out with the ladies, a movie, date night or anytime I wasn’t going to be on my feet for a long time.

Outfit 3

Casual and easy look that’s perfect for a warm spring day. I’d wear this all day long because I know these shoes to be comfy.

Outfit 4-

Sporty and comfortable. Relaxed and easy for the weekend. I’d wear this for a trip to Cost-co, or with a big hat to my grandson’s baseball game.

Here are the same outfits with

Each look seems more casual to me. 

Here’s what happens when you swap in these black jeans by Wit & Wisdom.

Would you wear one vs the other?

Do white jeans seem interchangeable in outfits to you?

Thanks for reading ladies and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.







  1. Great post!
    I also can’t wear white in the winter in Canada.
    I don’t really like blue jeans now that I’m in my 70s.
    But you show some wonderful looks for black or coloured jeans

  2. Great article and I love all the looks. I adore white jeans, and wear all year round even here in chilly Melbourne (although it doesn’t snow) by warming them up with boots, a chunky cardigan and a scarf. I especially love wearing them with tan in winter. Ask these days i tend to go to more casual places socially, I love dressing down dressy tops by wearing them with denim jeans. I would estimate I have at least 12 pairs each of white and denim jeans! ?

  3. White is an all year round staple where we live. So the white jeans are a yes.
    I feel most together when my clothes match. I like all the outfits shown with black and white pants.
    Blue jeans are classic but I just can’t bring myself to wear them with pastels. I don’t wear black so for me bright yellow, cream, browns , camel and white are my favorite colors for jeans.

  4. Jennifer, this was very informative. Thanks so much for showing the groupings with the different jeans. I am a visual person so this really helped me. I hope to make better wardrobe choices thanks to you.

  5. Great board/comparison!

    I am with others in the snowy north that doesn’t wear white in winter. They won’t stay clean.

    All other colours are great. I love faded jeans but haven’t found a pair that suits me at this age. I’m not sure why.

  6. Interesting…do not like the stripes(blah uninspiring) that seemingly all designers push??
    reminds me of prison (old m0vies?), circus tents and those of us that are short and not size 2 do not need stripes.
    Get more creative designers…
    Also feel a jacket indicates a more polished look so would wear a dressier shoe.
    Im with most others here the white and black jean have a nicer look with the suggestions.
    Relegate faded jeans to grocer and walmart.

  7. Am I the only one who loves faded? I love my old faded red now pink, sweatshirt. I like the soft look of faded. I like my faded jeans, One of these days faded will be trending and I’ll be ready, : )
    I like these boards and yes I like all the looks and would wear them. Some appeal more than others though. I have one rule when I buy a top. It must go with all four of my basic pants colors. Black, white, grey and blue jean. My grey would work here too.

  8. These style boards are wonderful! I will keep them for future reference since sometimes it’s hard for me to put things together differently. Thank you.

  9. I love this discussion! I have jeans in a multitude of colors and wear all colors and white year round. Of course, living in So CA we have mild winters and white is worn year round here. I think black or dark wash jeans seem more dressy than a medium wash or bleached wash jean. Your style boards are perfect examples of how the color of pants can change the feel of any outfit. I also love accessories and wear accessories daily, always a nice way to finish any look.

  10. I really enjoyed the style boards. It gave good ideas of how to utilize what I have in the closet. I live in rain country so white jeans are a summer piece of clothing. I have a pair of soft red pants I really like and wear all spring through fall.

  11. Love all the outfits – thanks for showing them!

    Wanted to tell you when I receive your blog post in my e-mail the top third is a large black area, then down at the bottom the letters and/or numbers are in long rows going up and down. Not sure what’s happening but thought you’d like to know.

  12. I only wear white jeans in the summer but I love all of the looks, except the black jeans and black blouse…too monochromatic. I wear jeans day in and day out so I love how you have styled these three types of jeans.

  13. I would never wear white jeans in the winter here. They would get ruined in the snowy slush we often have . I wear them all the time in the summer however.

  14. Love all of my jeans since retirement but do stay with black skinny or straight, dark navy straight ankle, and white, any that fit well through hips, (I have no hips).
    Usually, I pair the darker colors with Breton tees or , pretty blouse, a blazer or short trench in natural. (Cooler climate here). With white I like a colorful tee! Yes to accessories if the event or meeting is a bit more important.
    Loved this blog!

  15. I know it’s ok to wear white jeans in winter, but the weather here is just too crummy most of the time. I don’t want to splash nice white jeans with slush on my shoes-you never get those stains off. But I like all the outfits with white jeans, even the leopard one. I might just do a solid beige neutral top or sweater set with them, with a red purse and neutral shoes as shown. Some of my fave outfits are just combinations of neutrals with a pop of color somewhere.

  16. I can’t wear white jeans here in the winter (too slushy) but I love them in the other seasons. I’ve found denim with no metal rivets so I’m back in blue jeans again and I can’t tell you how happy that makes me! You’ve shown some great outfit options.

  17. I loved this post!. Most of us have these or similar items in their closet but just need someone to tell them how to put together these items in various ways to expand their wardrobe; at least I do.

    I live in Southern California where it can be 70 degrees in Winter. I then wonder, “do I dress for Winter or Spring?” The answer is to dress for the weather, duh!

    But how do you dress for the season “intentionally” as they say. White jeans in Winter with a sweater and boots or white jeans in Spring with a stripped top and tennis shoes or something casual using the pieces you already have.

    This old lady, 76, is going to print out this post and refer back to it and hope you will do similar posts for different seasons. Thanks again.

  18. I could not wear outfit 2 with the white or blue jeans. To me those colors just do not work together. I could wear it with black jeans, but not those black jeans, much too casual for me. I am beginning to think I am a bit —something not stodgy but not willing to push some things to far. Oh my.

  19. All of the outfits are great. It’s always a challenge for me to find jeans. Prefer a mid or low rise fit with a boot cut – not always easy to find. Skinny jeans don’t work for me.

  20. Ah, hah! I learned something today! l got rid of my white jeans because I felt like a painter in them. I was wearing head to toe white. The key is just ONE piece. The same goes for wearing bright colors, just one piece. Tone everything else down with simple, neutral pieces.

  21. What a great post today! Love seeing the variations with different colour jeans. I hardly ever wear jeans, but I will wear a white jean on a cooler summer day, but only as a casual look.

  22. Love, love my white jeans but don’t have the confidence to wear them year round in my area. I have pretty much given up on “blue” jeans. I wear black or white exclusively. Nice board you put together.

  23. What a fun blog today! I am sold on the white jeans in each scenario and I also think the black works very well too. I would probably layer the denim shirt. I love all the accessories you used today. It’s really fun to see how you can elevate a pair of jeans by just adding pops of color and fun accessories. Thanks again for a great conversation Jennifer!

  24. Thanks for comparing and contrasting the different colors of jeans. I love the white jeans with all four tops but echo Sue’s comments that living in a northern climate with hard winters, white jeans become dirty very quickly with our snow and slush. The blue jeans make the outfits more casual. Have a great day!

  25. Living in the northeast, I only wear white jeans in the summer. WhenI do break them out, they’re now waist-high with a straight – not not not -slim leg. (Have you noticed that the new “straight leg” is a lot slimmer than a decade ago? Bad for me cause of thick legs all the way down!) If I’m wearing a print, it’s usually one with white in it. I’d only wear the leopard sweater with black jeans for that reason. I often pair the white with navy, but not horizontal stripes for my 5’ body. Of course tops are tucked or short.
    I wear monochrome a lot, but feel a little nurse like in all white. Any suggestions?

    1. My opnion — All white looks great on a hot day (too hot for a scarf) with a colorful necklace or colorful bracelets and sandals that are not white.

  26. I think the ankle length of the denim jeans, along with the faded effect makes them more casual looking than the white or black jeans. I wear all three colors, white during the winter in Florida and in warm weather in Ohio. I’d be uncomfortable with them on a 20-degree snowy day.
    I like everything you’ve put with them except the ”crystal” necklace with tennis shoes. I’d go with something lucite and funky there.

  27. I’ll take all the handbags and the black sandals, please.
    White jeans are not for Chicago winters — they will be ruined quickly. I only wear them in summer.
    Black jeans – I have a pair (Rag & Bone sweet clearance) that I love to wear. The problem lies in washing them so they don’t fade.

  28. White jeans may work year round in Florida or California–but not in Canada! I like the look in summer here, and your 4 outfits are all great. But
    I seem to have moved away from blue denim–I only ever liked the dark wash but I got annoyed with the dye rubbing off on my car seats, white sweaters, light colored purses. ( why can’t manufacturers set the dye?). So now my everyday go-to replacement is black slacks or leggings, depending on the type of top.

  29. I can’t overcome equating white jeans with summer, not year round. However, I think your styling is right on the money matching the look to the occasion. IF I were a denim wearer (which I never have been for some reason) I would have the black and the white jeans for the styling options. In my view the blue seems off and too casual.

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