Summer is the time for bold colors and fabrics, but colors like this summer’s primary orange, emerald green and the occasional neon blue need extra TLC for both wearing and washing. As with any trend, indulge your self wisely; less is always more. Unless you’re wearing festive or ethnic dress, layering on bright after bright piece can be overwhelming. Instead, choose a single bold accessory in a hot hue, and make it your trademark piece. Go for a fire engine red bag, turquoise blue drop earrings, or a wrist-full of purple bangles.
Always fabulous, prints are back in a big way this summer. How do we count their fabulous ways? First, they can distract the eye, so gazes won't linger on body spots you would rather conceal at the moment. Similarly, prints in strategic spots can call attention to your finer points. For bright colors, the bolder the print, the better, especially in a short dress (think vintage Pucci) and a v-neck style lengthens and slims. To wash prints, turn them inside-out to help reduce fading.
Bold but sheer is an eye-popping yet flattering way to wear brights. Layer a gauzy silk top or knit sweater over a white camisole, or wear a cover-up over neutral-tone swimwear. Try bright super-sheer hose with a black dress. Pick pieces with shape; sheer peplums, balloon sleeves and high, ruffled colors take the playful effect to new heights. Care tip: Wash these items with care; they will always require a gentle cycle and garment bag, if not hand washing or dry cleaning.
Draw attention to your pretty face by framing it with color. Have fun with a psychedelic hat,bold shades, oversized cotton tie-dye scarf, or elegantly knotted silk scarf for the office. Play up a colorful topper by pairing it with a dark outfit. If you're experimenting with headwear, don't feel bound by the typical bandanna shape amp#8211; try using a long scarf as a headband.
Summer is time to wrap on the sarong, one of the world's most flattering and versatile garments and particularly popular this season. It's also an item that is, by definition, brightly colored. So have fun with it; knot it around your waist for a pool-side cover up, or over black tights for funky day look. Pair a sophisticated print with heels and a miniature jacket for a night at the club. Wash tip: Many imported sarongs are batik, which means the material is hand-painted and especially delicate. Wash batik material in cool water, soaking first along with a tablespoon of table salt to help set the color. Wring out gently and air dry flat.
To keep your brights and prints vibrant, be sure to wash in cold water, followed by air drying or using the low heat cycle. Don't store clothing in bright sunlight, which can cause fading. And use Tide TOTALCAREamp#153;, specially formulated to help protect clothing color. It helps keep your clothing new for 30 washes - or Tide will give you your money back.*
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Because color fashion changes with the seasons, invest in the latest eye candy with an inexpensive piece of clothing in a casual fabric like cotton. You'll still need to stay on top of care to keep the color you fell in love with, though. Always wash colorful cottons inside out, which will also help reduce fading. To prevent shrinkage, never clean cotton clothing in hot water, and be careful not to overheat when machine drying.