Once upon a time, wearing the same color – or variations of it – from head-to-foot was seen as either overly simplistic or plain gauche. But this year, tone on tone or tonal dressing is a chic trend. Today I’m thrilled to join up with another fashion blogger, Kristin Sanders of My Southern Charm Style, to share our takes on this classy, fun trend.
Kristin is actually a regular reader of Dressed for My Day and even comments on my posts occasionally. She began her style blog just about a year ago, and reached out to me then for tips. But honestly, I could learn a thing or two from her! This 48-year-old wife, mom and former nurse, has beautiful style and such a sweet spirit.
She and her family make their home in South Carolina, but Kristin, like me, is a Georgia Bulldog at heart. You’ll enjoy Kristin’s warm and personable writing, her fresh style and her lovely home, which she offers glimpses of occasionally. I hope you’ll click through at the bottom of this post to visit Kristin today. Give her lots of loving and tell her I sent you her way!
What Is Tone on Tone Dressing?
Wearing a solo color top to bottom sounds simple, but it requires some thought if you don’t want to look like your four-year-old grandchild. But if you already have a lot of one particular color in your closet, you’re halfway to perfecting this trend without even shopping.
Tone on tone dressing, that is dressing from head-to-toe in multiple shades of the same color or sporting the same hue from top to bottom—dominated the fall fashion runways. While we saw some of this technique in the spring and summer, fall and winter fashions lend themselves to piling on multiple shades of one hue.
Since I figure many of my readers have plenty of blue in your wardrobes, I thought I’d show you how to work this style trend with this prevalent color. Got blue jeans? Got half the equation!
Done properly, this tonal technique can elevate a simple jeans and sweater combo to an exquisitely chic and rich look without breaking the bank.
Tip #1 for Dressing Tone on Tone
Perhaps the most critical key to creating a winning tone on tone look is to layer on not just varying shades of your chosen color, but also different textures.
In my look, I’m wearing shades of blue in:
- my worn-in denim jeans (similar)
- a soft and subtle knit sweater
- a masculine houndstooth blazer
- a silky floral scarf
- and polished resin earrings.
Tip #2 for Dressing Tone on Tone
A second key to pulling a tone on tone outfit together is to anchor the combination with one other different color, preferably a neutral. In this case, I pulled my pervasively blue combination together with my warm saddle leather accessories.
I’m anchoring my blue tone on tone look with rich saddle leather:
Because the blue and navy jacket actually has a little bit of black in it, I could have just as easily worn black accessories. But to pull off the look effectively, I did find keeping my accessories all in the same color family worked best. And trust me, I played around with this look a lot before I landed on this combination!
Tip #3 for Dressing Tone on Tone
And that’s another key. Simply play with different pieces in varying shades of the same color until you feel like you have a cohesive, flattering look. This particular trend is meant to be fun. It’s all about putting together what you once would have steered clear of combining. And it’s about wearing a favorite shade to the max!
Tip #4 for Dressing Tone on Tone
And that leads to my final tip. Go a little wild! Don’t just layer on shades of one color and varying textures, but also contrasting prints. For instance, I’m wearing a few solid blues, a blue and navy houndstooth check and dainty flowers of blue.
You can shop the links in the copy, the links in the caption above or the shopping widget below. These are affiliate links, so I do make a commission if you purchase anything through them. Thank you so much for supporting what I do here at Dressed for My Day!
Before you go…
Don’t forget to check out how Kristin at My Southern Charm Style put together her beautiful tonal look. She selected warm golden hues to mix tone on tone. I can’t wait to read her post myself. Isn’t she pretty? Let’s all go say hello! Visit Kristin here.
But if you’re visiting Dressed for My Day from Kristin’s blog, welcome! I’m so glad you stopped by today. I’d love for you to look around a bit. You can…
- find out more about me here.
- check out my other fashion posts here.
- discover the answers to my frequently asked questions here.
- start with my home page here.
- take my What’s Your Style Essence? quiz here.
- join the Dressed for My Day community here.
- follow me on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.
Thank you so much for stopping in today!
Blessed for My Day
Today let’s remember that we worship the Ancient of Days. He is the God who has always been and who will always be. In fact, it’s all about Him. This is His story. He is the Creator and Sustainer of all there is. And He alone is completely self-sufficient.
Why do we need to reflect on this? Because understanding who God is – best we can – and who we are in relation, gives us the best perspective of life. It reminds us that life on this earth is brief and not about us at all. It helps us take a breath when we become overwhelmed by what seems so weighty, but in fact, is but a vapor. The best way I know to gain wisdom and perspective is to worship God, the Ancient of Days.
As I looked,
thrones were placed,
and the Ancient of Days took his seat;
his clothing was white as snow,
and the hair of his head like pure wool;
his throne was fiery flames;
its wheels were burning fire.
10 A stream of fire issued
and came out from before him;
a thousand thousands served him,
and ten thousand times ten thousand stood before him;
the court sat in judgment,
and the books were opened.
23 thoughts on “Styling Fall Colors – Tone on Tone”
I love this look and learning how to do tone on tone properly. I’ve been hesitant to try it but not now. Thanks Kay!! You’re beautiful as always!
Great to hear Sondra. Thanks so much for reading and sharing. ?
Go Irish on Saturday!
I was drawn to this outfit immediately as cool blues are one of my signature colors and walking into a store right now so many “autumn” colors are shown; you see very little pastel colors when you walk in. You also look pretty in blues and I like the different shades and patterns you mixed. I think I need to try and put together a tone on tone!
Yes! Go for it. Especially with blues. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. ?
Wow! What a beautiful outfit! I was so drawn to this outfit and just love the blue tones! Thanks fir keeping us fashion forward and helping us to figure out how to use tonal dressing to stay on trend! You are beautiful Kay!
Thanks so much Danelle. I’m happy that you found the post beneficial. I’d love to hear if you give tonal dressing a try. ?
Such a beautiful look, Kay. Love how you added the cognac boots for a little bit of a contrast.
Thanks. I’m thrilled that you like the outfit. Yes, I’m really looking forward to wearing these boots. I bought them during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale at a fraction of the price, but they were still an investment. But I’m hoping to wear them for years. ?
Kay, you nailed it! ???
Just a perfect outfit head to toe!
I would love to wear a outfit like this! ?
Thanks. Me, too! Hurry up, fall!! ???
Beautiful in blue! I have found that tone on tone dressing can also be very slimming. Thank you for sharing tips on how to combine patterns and textures while wearing a tonal outfit. Have a blessed day!
Yes, it absolutely can be slimming. Thanks for reading and sharing Ginger. ?
I am anxiously waiting for you to dress the rectangle shape!
Hahaha! Ok, ok. You win! I’ll do it next. Probably Tuesday or Wednesday. ?
Love the tone on tone and the way you put it together. You look great! I always enjoy when you share other blogger with us. Poor Kristin having to take pictures in a sweater and tall boots when it has been in the high 90’s here in the south for most of September. Love supporting you Georgia girls.
Thanks so much, Donna. Yeah it was pretty hot here, too. But I wasn’t in the outfit long. Thank you for reading and visiting Kristin too. ?
Great post, Kay! I will be trying this once it cools down! GO DAWGS ?❤️?
Great to hear! Glad you enjoyed the post. ?
I don’t know if it is just me but the links to Kristin’s blog wouldn’t work on my computer.
I’ll check it out. Thanks for letting me know.
Love this!! This color combination brings out your blue eyes and makes them dance! Headed to my closet now to see what I can do! Thanks Kay!
You bet, Barbara. Have fun! ???