black + black

Vince sweater, Eileen Fisher leather block leggings

“Black, I just can’t quit you.” Nor do I want to. 😉 Since I’m not going to stop wearing black anytime soon, I’ve been playing with combinations that lighten and add visual interest to an all-black outfit. One way is to work in accessories in a lighter color. Another, which I’ve done here, is to mix textures. I’ve had these leather panel leggings from Eileen Fisher since last winter, and don’t think I’ve ever included them in an outfit post. What an oversight! I love these and wear them often during cooler months. I can tone them down for the office by keeping the rest of the outfit sedate, or they can go a little sexy for date night with a pair of heels (2″ high for me these days). They’re quite comfortable, but sadly yes, they need to be professionally leather-cleaned.

As part of my long-term wardrobe refinement/upgrade project, I’ve been keeping my eyes open for a good quality v-neck sweater with some texture, and have finally found it. This one is from Vince. It’s a ribbed 100% cashmere, and has a nice shape. This style runs a little large I think, so you may want to size down. I’m wearing an XS. It’s hand washable. 🙂

Lip color is Bobbi Brown Art Stick in “Sunset Orange.”

Chanel caviar flap, French Kande necklaces

Here you can see the mix of textures. Necklaces are from French Kande, here and here. Bracelet was purchased in Paris; here’s one with a similar look. Bag is from Chanel, more Chanel flap bags here (pre-owned).

Acne Jensen boots

These Acne boots are SO comfortable and I’ve been wearing them multiple times per week. You’ll probably be seeing a lot of this sweater in the future too. 🙂

Slightly off topic, last week I discovered that someone on Pinterest had taken an image pinned from one of my earlier outfit posts, and changed it so that rather than linking back here, it linked to an Etsy jewelry listing (completely unrelated to anything in my image). That’s not cool, so I asked Pinterest to remove her pin with the incorrect attribution. In doing so, they may have removed the same pin/image from other (legitimate) pinners, and sent an email informing that they’d done so. If it happened to you and caused you any concern I apologize for that. You are always welcome and encouraged to pin images from this blog, as long as the attribution link remains intact.

Slightly more on topic, I’m requesting your feedback. I’ve had a few people tell me that the product widgets I often use at the bottom of posts cause problems for some who get posts via email subscription. I’m trying to balance everyone’s needs and provide links to similar items in a user-friendly format. Can you let me know whether you like and use the visual product widget, or whether you prefer a text link as I’ve done below?

Linking up: Visible Monday, #iwillwearwhatilike

Get the look…

Sweaters: Vince HalogenTalbots | Gap | Eileen Fisher | Eileen Fisher (Woman)
Leggings: Eileen Fisher | Eileen Fisher (Woman) | BLANKNYC | Banana Republic | Eloquii (Woman) | Sam Edelman
Ankle Boots: Acne | Frye | Marc Fisher | Steve Madden

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  1. That is a screamingly fabulous outfit. I swore off black a few years ago, determined only to wear navy because black felt too heavy in the desert light of Phoenix. But one day, about three months ago, I realized I missed my black. So now I’m “Back in Black” (with apologies to AC/DC).

    It really is about the textures–as long as there is some sort of sheen or lightness to the black, it works just fine.

  2. Yes…I was one of the people who had the pin removed from my board. I received the message with no explanation of which pin or why. Glad you brought this to our attention – Hijacking your link was wrong! Pinterest also removed 800 of my followers last year saying it was purging “spam” (I was at 2,000). I never believed them, was very upset and I’ve been rebuilding since…but that’s another story.

    1. Yes, the pin removal happened to me too – one of your most fabulous looks, by the way! Thanks for the explanation; I thought it was something like that; apparently Pinterest can work a little like a virus sometimes–with we pinners unknowingly selecting and passing on bad pins. Be more resolved to go to the source first and check.

      1. Lisa, I’m sorry about that. I’ve re-pinned it myself and it hasn’t been removed, so hopefully the bad link has been broken.

  3. I woke up thinking about how much I am craving black to wear these days. I’ve had several phases of this in my life–then careen back towards color. Right now, I am just longing for the groundedness and strength that black seems to bring. I love your many textured ensemble!

  4. I’ve seen French Kande being sold in a antiques/clothing boutique in Dallas–thought of you. Pinterest has made so many changes lately that I find I am not enjoying it as much.

    1. I’m in solidarity with you re: Pinterest! Why must developers toy with Apps not broken! I have really begun to avoid FB too. Especially after learning links one clicks on embed cookies. My brother’s computer got a nasty worm there that costs so much to fix.

    2. Susan, yes, I suppose every platform is looking for ways to optimize their monetization. I’ve been seeing a lot of sponsored pins lately. Kande tells me that her French Kande jewelry does very well in Dallas.

  5. I was a huge fan of Vince and have sweaters from years ago that still look new. In the last several years (this year especially) the cashmere pills. After one wear! Buyer beware. The prices go up but the quality is no longer there.

  6. I love monochrome dressing and although black is still my favorite, I’ve been doing it with all navy and all gray as well. Your all black is beautiful – love the leather pants.

    1. KPL, thank you! I’ve been experimenting with some all lighter grey looks, still trying to get the proportions right.

    2. Hi KPL and Susan,
      I also love the monochrome look. I do it also with all navy and all gray. I however, do it with the dark gray palette, I saw the lighter gray on me one time in a photo, every roll every bump… Was not a pretty thing, needless to say I stay away from it now unless it is an under layer. But I would love to see Susan do a monochrome with the lighter grey, that may be nice.

      Actually today I have on grey suede boots with a bit of a heel, grey opaque pantyhose, grey legwarmers just peeking out of the boot, a tight knit tank dress and to make appropriate it is then covered with a turtleneck shirt and turtleneck sweater over top (yep office is horribly cold) crystal bangles in various grays/blues and simple strand necklace, grey stud earrings, and silver watch. All this accented with a warm cashmere fuchsia scarf and lip. I feel fantastic today really love my monochrome…..
      I have the same dress and sweaters in blue, just need to go pick up some opaque pantyhose in that shade.

  7. I, too, love how you’ve lightened up this black look. Accessories are so key in making a blah outfit (not that this one is) a “wow” outfit. This is where I feel I try very hard but often fail. Could you do a post or two showing how you decide what that extra step in accessorizing is? For example, I would not have thought to add the second necklace (the lighter one) to this outfit. Maybe some before (blah accessories) and after (wow accessories) photos? 🙂

    1. Patricia, thank you. I’ll work up some posts in the near future to illustrate how I choose accessories (and how they can really change up a basic look).

  8. One of my pet peeves is people not correctly linking through on pinned images.

    Love this very sleek look. I’m grateful for the accessories though, without which it would be overwhelmingly dark.


    1. Lisa, thanks! It’s funny how I saw it…Pinterest is now throwing in several “recommended for you” pins into the feed and that happened to be one of them. I noticed the caption the pinner had added referenced the Etsy website and clicked on it out of curiosity to find it had been redirected.

  9. I love black too…and your outfit looks fabulous! LOve love love that Chanel classic bag…
    if I won the lottery that would be on my wish list!
    The pinner was wrong to use your post in that way…it’s an unfortunate event, but I am happy that you were able to resolve the issue and the Pinterest was able to help.
    I just want you to know that I read all your posts but do not always comment…life is busy here. PLease know how much I appreciate your blog and your posts.

  10. You can never go wrong with black. It is a comforting colour and my go-to for caring for myself. The textures here are great and you always add something to your black outfits to make them sing. In terms of the visual product widget, I don’t have technical issues so I am not your audience there. That’s a shame about the Pinterest issue. I don’t use it; they make you sign up to even browse now.

  11. I like the visual links and do select them. Black. My son just asked my husband why I wear so much black. It seems the clothes that fit me and look good on my and are of high quaity come in black. Maybe bone which looks atrocious on me, maybe navy if I’m lucky. But take a look at Eileen Fisher. What do you see? Black and bone. HELP!

    1. Hi Sandra, I think there’s nothing wrong with black, and with your lovely silver hair and colorful jewelry, it makes a good backdrop. As you mentioned in your other comment, black can be lightened up with accent pieces, and a bit of skin showing.

  12. I enjoy all your outfits – black and otherwise! And please, i prefer the widgets – you can tell at a glance whether it is an item you want to “click on” – sorry to hear they are giving issues.

    Thanks for all the work you put into your blog – a fave of mine!

    1. Kristi, thanks so much! The majority who have responded seem to prefer the widgets, so I’ll continue to include them.

  13. I love black on black, and this outfit is fabulous on you! I’m in my 60s & grew up hearing “never wear black when you’re old”, to which I saw: pshaw! [well, actually that’s not what I say because I swear a lot but this is a family-rated blog]. I look great in black & wear it a lot, one reason being I also love dramatic silver jewelry & black acts as the perfect backdrop for it. You can also dress it up & down with equal ease & go from very casual to boardroom to sophisticated to drop-dead sexy with no more than a change in accessories & footwear.

    1. Ditto that Janet, I used to wear gold jewelry sometimes and sometimes silver, but now that I have a silver streak in the front of my shoulder length hair, I almost never wear gold anymore, it is hard because some of them are very dear pieces not costume jewelry.
      I also love that dramatic look with black and a bold silver piece of jewelry. I do alot of turtleneck fitted sweaters with black pants, or skirts and boots. It makes me look longer and leaner:) Girl has gotta find the skinny where she can at my height.
      I recently bought one of those crystal type long bead necklaces and at the bottom it has a fuschia tassle, the crystals are shades of burgundy/fuschia and black. I wear this with the black turtle and I also bought an awesome dress from French connection with a shorter turtleneck very thick knit material above the knee, sucks everything in:)
      Anyway this necklace is getting its moneys worth. I match my lipstick to it and keep everything else very simple. It makes for a very dramatic look.

  14. I do use the outfit widget. I want to see what I’m clicking on before clicking on it! This outfit is simply fabulous. Love the layering of the necklaces, the sweater and especially the leather pants. You’re rockin’ it!

  15. Fabulous, sassy outfit. You look great! Love the lip color on you. What do you think of the Bobbie Brown Art Sticks? Do they stay in place? I tried another brand’s chubby lip pencil, and was dismayed to find that it smeared.

    1. Aniko, thank you. I find the Bobbi Brown art sticks do stay in place and are a bit matte. I can’t wear them every day as I tend to have dry lips, but they are perfect for a high-impact look.

  16. Hey Susan,
    You rock in this outfit! Great lip color! I love the whole black outfit thing, and then it can change completely with different jewelry and lipstick. I would love to see this switched up with some gunmetal color cuff bracelets that matches the color of the metal on the bag and boots rest of the jewelry simple. That would be fantastic for night time. Of course with a red lip:)
    I really love those boots. Leather pants I always found so cool on others but was afraid to try them, number one if they loose shape and sag, number two, I am a clean freak, so special cleaning each time I wore them would probably not be good for them.
    Lovin’ it Susan, your style is fab.

    1. Hi Melissa, thanks! I do have some gunmetal pieces, will give those a try next time. The thing about the leather pants is that they don’t need to be cleaned after every wear. I’ve only had them cleaned once in the year I’ve had them.

      1. Thanks Susan, maybe I will finally try on a pair at 47 years old!:) I have seen some that have a combo of stretch material on the side maybe they would hold shape better.
        Also thanks for the compliment in your other post. I would love to be able to dress other people for a living, style them or whatever, personal shopper for the everyday woman…. Train has left the station on that one I think. But I am working towards a lovely European retirement, with travel and shopping involved, hopefully early if they quit raising the retirement age:( Is currently at 67!

  17. This is a completely chic and timeless outfit, Susan – I adore those leggings, and the Kande jewelry. I just bought a silk Vince blouse on consignment yesterday and the quality is superb. I have no trouble with your widget, and enjoy the browsing. xox