Prove to me you’ve got some co-ordination

Denola Grey

Denola Grey

We’ve all done this before. When it was your prom or it was date night, you felt the need to outfit-coordinate with your partner. Sure, it was cute at first, with you guys (the couple) looking like a winning team. The coordinated looks cemented your ’unbreakable’ bond through some fashion solidarity. Everyone ooh-ed and ahh-ed , it was magical and unforgettable. Putting sarcasm and cynicism aside ( I’m a recovering romantic) , the case of coordinated outfits is one that I find quite curious. Is it really the best option? Should we have left the coordinated looks at prom night, where it was still age-appropriate? Am I reading too much into it? Lets broaden the scope a bit. Coordinated outfits are not only unique to couples; friends do it as well. Does this make it any less different?

Lets flashback to a couple of years ago; my second year in college. My best friends and I, two very lovely young ladies, hung out all the time. As it is with friends, if you spend enough time together, you begin to think everything you do, as a group is awesome. Sometimes, you might end up coordinating outfits because you all have the same article of clothing. In this particular situation, we all had white skinny jeans. Someone (me) thought it would be a great idea if we all wore our white skinny jeans to school on the same day. We all did, and the minute we met up for lunch and actually saw each other, we gave each other a knowing look that we had goofed big time. We definitely got a lot of attention that day. We got called different group names because we were apparently dressed like “a pop band that was trying to make it in the world”.

Don’t get me wrong, we looked great individually, but together, It looked off. I mean our friends took pictures of the three of us walking together, and we literally looked like we had cancelled our legs. We ended up stretching the truth and telling people who had asked if we had planned it , that we had no idea we were all going to be wearing white skinnies because we were that embarrassed . That was a hilarious day.

The point of that story is, in some situations, coordinated outfits usually aren’t the best option for a plethora of reasons. Firstly, not every color or style is a good fit, or will complement everyone, I mean, we’ve all seen pictures of Destiny’s Child before they all went solo. While the entire group looked amazing most of the time, sometimes, their outfits completely missed the mark because some colors that worked for Beyoncé or Kelly did not exactly work for Michelle and vice versa. The unforgiving part of the internet has not let us forget the unflattering Destiny’s Child images with majority of the internet trolls taking it out on poor Michelle Williams who always seemed to be styled less flamboyantly and exciting than her band mates. Now, there is a website called ‘Poor Michelle’ that was created by anonymous people with the sole purpose of compiling all her unsavory fashion moments while she was meant to coordinating outfits with the group either during photo-shoots or on the red carpet. It’s mean-spirited but also kind of hilarious.

Secondly, it might be quite outdated to color-coordinate outfits. In this age of self-expression and individuality, color coordination just doesn’t cut it anymore. Personal style is the trick of the trade and finding a healthy balance while synergizing two aesthetics is the new best way to coordinate with your partner.

Of course in some cases, coordinated outfits are necessary. In Nigeria where traditional weddings call for specific colors to represent the families of the bride and grooms, color coordination is unavoidable. What we have done with this cultural norm has been nothing short of amazing. The “aso-ebi’ game has been upped on so many levels. Wedding guests are constantly raising the bar and infusing global styles into their outfits and coming out with looks that are extraordinarily original and perfectly personal.

So what is your verdict on coordinated outfits? Maybe they do work in some cases. Maybe it’s just evolved past wearing similar colors. Maybe it is something more complex. Could coordination of style be the new way to show solidarity? Whatever the case, I still think its extraordinary how it has gone from simply wearing the same white pants as your friends and matching each other to subscribing to similar style aesthetics and color groups as your partner or friends and making it work in a way that only you can pull of. Coordination has become subjective in its objectivity and its only going to continue to evolve with time.



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