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Non-Jeans Outfit with Low Contrast in Intensity

October 28, 2021

Welcome to Dressed for My Day! I have an outfit to share with you. But more than showing you pieces of clothing, I’d like to share with you how and why I put this combo together. Also this is a non-jeans outfit, so there’s that. I know many of my readers like to see more outfits with other options besides jeans. But you could absolutely duplicate this look and these principles with jeans. Let’s get started!

Fall Non-Jeans Outfit with Low Contrast in Intensity
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

I’m wearing my navy J.Jill ponte pants here. You may have already seen these ponte pants in this recent post. There I styled them with a pale lavender sweater. That was a beautiful outfit, but today I’m styling one with low contrast in intensity.

Low Contrast in Intensity
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

An outfit low in contrast in intensity looks very cohesive and is easy on the eyes. It can also be more slimming. To learn more about the principles of contrast in intensity and how they work, I suggest you check out this blog post from last year.

When you’re considering how much contrast in intensity you want your own outfits to have, the main thing to think about is your own contrast in intensity. Take into account the intensity of color or shading in your hair, skin and eyes. Now consider whether the intensity level in those three things contrast greatly or just a little.

Contrast in Intensity

For instance, I have pale green eyes, light skin and light grey-blonde hair. I have low intensity in all three of those areas. So my personal contrast in intensity between those three physical features is low. Thus, I look best in outfits where the contrast in intensity is also low throughout the elements of the outfit. Whether those pieces are dark or medium or light doesn’t matter as much. The contrast between them is more of the essence.

Low Contrast in Intensity
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

So especially when I choose to wear a dark colored top or sweater, I try also to wear darker pants and shoes, too. For me it doesn’t seem to matter as much when I wear lighter colored tops. I can still wear dark pants with those, as I did in my previous post with these navy ponte pants. But when I wear something with dark intensity up top, I look better if I’m also wearing darker clothing below.

Contrast in Intensity
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

I find that working with contrast in intensity is actually more important than choosing which colors to wear. You might play around with these principles, too, and see if perhaps you can wear colors you once ruled out simply by wearing an outfit that reflects your own personal contrast in intensity.

Be sure to check out that previous post, where I explained it in more detail. But if you have medium contrast in intensity between your eyes, hair and skin, then you’ll look great in outfits with medium contrast. And if you have high contrast in intensity between your eyes, hair and skin, you’ll look beautiful in outfits like white pants and a dark pink top and black shoes. Make sense?

Contrast in Intensity

These principles affect your choices in jewelry, too. If, like me, you have low contrast in intensity, you’ll probably look best in jewelry that is cohesive. Maybe all gold or all silver. But if you have high contrast in intensity, you’ll really shine with colorful, bold statement jewelry accenting your outfit. Does that make sense?


And of course, this factors in with your makeup, too. I look best when I keep the shading in my makeup subtle and muted. My Estee Lauder Rebellious Rose lipstick is about as intense as I get! A great makeup tip I learned years ago is to only make either your eye makeup intense or your lip color, but not both at the same time. If you emphasize your eyes, wear a nude or pale lip color. Or if you keep your eye makeup a little more natural, wear a more intense color on your lips. I think this little “rule” becomes even more important when you have low contrast in intensity in your personal attributes.

Outfit with Low Contrast in Intensity
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

By the way, my deep chocolate brown v-neck drop shoulder sweater is currently 40% off with code LAYERUP. Or purchase three or more items, use the same code and get 50% off. It’s also available in a much lighter creamy porcelain beige. I love the drape and the weight of this slightly cropped sweater. It’s just the right length for me to leave it untucked and still achieve those flattering proportions.

Fall Outfit for Women Over 50
v-neck drop shoulder sweater // ponte pants // similar boots (more in the shopping widget below) // earrings // necklace // watch (use code KAYHRMS for 15% off your order) // similar shoulder bag

My ponte slim pants also come in a beautiful soft mocha shade that would be beautiful with this sweater…if you like to wear outfits with higher contrast in intensity. They are such nice pants if you like to wear other things than jeans but still feel casual and comfortable.

Thanks so much for stopping in today. I hope you have a lovely day!

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Things change. We change. People change. But the Word of God never changes. Not only is it trustworthy for every day, every generation and every situation. But it never loses its value. The Scriptures continue to shed light on our path during the darkest of times. But they also give us perspective and direction and wisdom during the good days.

How invested are you in God’s Word? Do you read a verse here and there occasionally? Or are you taking in large doses of Scripture on a regular basis, chewing on it and storing it away through memorization? I encourage you to invest in God’s Word. Enroll in a group Bible study, read the Bible daily (I read this one every day), memorize a verse each week and/or attend a church where the Bible is clearly taught each week.

For, “All flesh is like grass, And all its glory is like the flower of grass. The grass withers, And the flower falls off, But the word of the Lord endures forever.” And this is the word which was preached to you. ~ 1 Peter 1:24-25

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xoxo, Kay
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19 thoughts on “Non-Jeans Outfit with Low Contrast in Intensity

  1. Great message today. I too am fair, skin, hair and eyes. I do think the minimal eye makeup and bolder lipstick is a great idea so I’m looking to do that. My lipstick is currently to light. Also love your Christian message.

  2. Nice outfit . Looks nice on you. Thank you for explaining the Intensity and what that means when you put outfits together. It is a little confusing. A lot to take in.
    Like to be BFMD. Bless you both.

  3. Oh So Slimming slacks Kay…..and I love pointe knit!

    I didn’t know that about the eyes and lip tip! Great to know.


  4. I appreciated you explaining the intensity concept. I noticed my own coloring intensity changing as I get grey in my hair and my eyes seem to be paler then I recall. It seems like I need to reevaluate my own personal intensity level. I hadn’t put that together before about my intensity affecting what clothes intensity would look best. Thanks !

  5. I’m totally crushin on this color combo! Ihave similar features and I love the blue and brown together. This was very helpful and I can’t wait to start practicing. Thank you so much, Kay! You look just lovely in this outfit!

  6. I saved the post on contrast from a few months back. I learned a lot and even though my eyes are dark blue, my skin is fair and my hair is silver. I find a medium contrast looks best to me. Going light can sometimes wash me out and going dark can bring up shadows. So medium feels right. Med turquoise, med pink, med navy instead of dark. It’s another tool to have. You have to try on lots of things together to see how they work. I hate it but you do. I could never be a fashion blogger. Wears me out.?

      1. Kay, I appreciate the time and physical work it takes to be a daily blogger and that’s not even counting the mental work to find an outfit and put it all together with all the accessories and do your hair and makeup.
        That’s why I can only do Instagram posts 3 days a week and it’s not just fashion.
        So, thank you for all you do with every single post. Sending hugs to you.

  7. You look great today. I have a somewhat neutral autumn complexion (dark eyes, pale warm skin, dark hair in younger years but low lighted now with darker streaks in the mix of grey and blonde). Pale colors of almost all hues (ivory may be the only exception) completely wash me out. My challenge is to take deep colors and make them into interesting combinations, particularly in an all neutral outfit. I adore chocolate with black, browns with navy, and (less so because black is not my best color) navy and black. Eggplant and deep olive is a particular fave of mine. Please keep these dark looks coming. I think they are so sophisticated on you.

    1. Thanks so much for sharing, Linda. I’m glad to know this resonated with you. I’m actually wearing a deep eggplant purple with black today! ?

  8. Waaa another beautiful brown item sold out in my size in a nanosecond. I love wearing brown this time of year, but it can be a challenge to find in the stores. I appreciate so much you including brown in your repertoire – so I can too !

  9. Kay: Great post and a big help. You look lovely as always! I am having a challenge to adjust the intensity of my outfits as my hair color has changed. I was high contrast, which I enjoyed. Now my dark hair is making a stop at medium/light blonde on the way to white. I still want to wear all the high contrast high intensity clothes I used to look good in! My favorite combinations have not caught up to reality. Your other post on intensity is one I re-read often. Thanks so much for explaining the concept!

    1. You bet. And yes this definitely changes as we age and change. But I think if we can make this adaptation it will really help us feel beautiful again.

  10. I learned about intensity from you, Kay. I have been playing with this for a few months now, and have received complements. I am fair, green eyes, light grey hair. I find what works best is a column of color though I can also do light or small print top with a dark pant of the same general color. But, surprisingly to me, white shirt and dark jeans also work. That seems to work for everybody!

  11. I really like the idea of low contrast; it looks very classy. I noticed that adding the brown booties makes the outfit look “finished” to me. I always learn so much from your blog posts, Kay! Because I have cool coloring, I don’t have much brown in my wardrobe, but a deep, cool chocolate brown would work.