pattern mixing

I tend to really shy away from pattern mixing. Actually, scratch that. Let me rephrase: I tend to really shy away from patterns, period. Now don't get me wrong, I love a flirty floral or a punchy polka dot just as much as the next gal. Patterns are, after all, pretty darn fun to wear. But that's the thing -- they're fun and if I'm being completely honest here, I'm the type of person who takes her wardrobe a tad too seriously to have much fun with it (I mean, 90% of my wardrobe is black, gray, or white). But that's all changing. Or at least, that's all trying to change. This summer, I'm making a conscious effort to wear more patterns and to not be so limited to my usual moody palette. And I'm starting with this look -- a bright and cheery summertime ensemble that's all about pattern mixing. I love how the stripes on the blouse are relatively subtle; it almost works as a neutral when paired against the eye-catching floral pattern. Plus, the blue color nicely complements the hints of blue also found on the shorts. Also, how adorable is the ruffle detail? I'm such a sucker for a perfectly placed ruffle -- it adds volume and interest without being too dramatic.

Last but not least, I topped off this look with cognac-colored accessories to offset all of the busyness created by the patterns. A miniature crossbody bag and strappy wedges (love the buckle detail!) are casually cool and make the outfit approachable yet on-trend and -- most importantly -- fun! I also wore these lovely Crystal Spike earrings that came in my latest Rocksbox. They are the right mix of edgy and glamorous -- my kind of earrings! And best of all, if you haven't tried Rocksbox yet, now is your chance: you can get your first month completely FREE by entering rivasravesxoxo at checkout. Trust me, you will love it!

Top: Charlotte Russe (similar)

Shorts: H&M (similar)

Purse: Forever 21 (similar)

Shoes: ShoeDazzle

Earrings: SLATE via Rocksbox