Arielle Interviews Jack Harding of OhWowYouWoreThat
Arielle: So tell us a little bit about yourself.
Jack: Well, my name is Jack Harding and I am the owner and founder of OhWowYouWoreThat.com. I’m currently in my last year of a fashion management program offered through George Brown College in Toronto, and I am going to be graduation in April of this upcoming year. I initially started my website as a bit of a joke, to be honest. I wanted to see how much negative hype I could build up by curating a site (at the time on tumblr) that built around outfits that truly made you go, “Oh wow, you wore that?” It was essentially set-up like an anti-satorialist. It was meant to show what not to do, opposed to what was done right.
From there it allowed me to build a great audience, because they were already interested in what I had to provide next. Which is why I launched www.OhWowYouWoreThat.com. I kept the initial name I had made, because in my opinion, it’s not one you easily forget. However, I made some changes to the basis of the website. Instead of simply showing fashion crimes and mishaps, I wanted to help make fashion more approachable, and show people not only what not to do, but how to do it right. I wanted to show brands, products, outfits, and ideas that my viewership (and new readers) could connected with.
I wanted to have something with a bit more substance, than merely a site which shows either good or bad outfits. Luckily, since starting my website back in April of 2012, I have had some fantastic opportunities as a result. I have met with some fantastic people, worked with some of my inspirations, and ultimately, I found my writers voice.
Arielle: What is your favorite product that you’ve found on Tip or Skip?
Jack: My favorite item on Tip or Skip? That is a tough one. Now, I know I should go with something that relates to, or is a fashion item, but I’m not going to. My all time favorite item was one I tipped near the beginning of making my account, it’s the Fab Retro Robot Lamp. I have always had a weird fascination with robot toys, pictures, artwork, etc. I’ve never really had an idea as to why. I even did an entire series in high school of photographs incorporating a robot which looked quite similar to the one I tipped.
Arielle: What inspires you?
Jack: People inspire me. I often get the opportunity to chat with and meet some of the most interesting people, and one thing I have learned form all these interactions is, “Everybody knows something that you do not.” Meaning, there is not a single person on this earth you could not learn from. I find people to be so intriguing, and their stories can make you feel as though anything is possible.
To further elaborate, I’d say that although I have few inspirations in terms of people as a whole, I tend to be inspired by what people are capable of doing. However, there are a few people that I look up to for inspiration in certain areas. Although I have never met her personally, after reading her novels, Kelly Cutrone is someone who inspires me. Reading her life journey, her successes, her defeats, and just knowing that regardless of anything, she wouldn’t let life stand in her way was very inspiring. I like to live in a similar manner; don’t let anyone tell you no, and don’t let anything make something seem impossible. I am inspired in different ways be different people. Certain people inspire me to give back, others to create, other to live life to the fullest, and other to always think. I like to be opent to the fact that anyone can be inspiring.
Arielle: What has been your best moment while working on your blog?
Jack: The best part of working on my blog was the response I had gotten from a person I had interviewed. I wrote an article essentially covering their life story, what they do, who they are, and how they got to where they are today. I was an especially difficult article for me to write, for I found the person to be such an inspiration in my eyes, that I wanted to make sure I got the piece right. It took me weeks to complete, but when it was done, and I sent it their way, I got an email back saying that they were so touched it made them cry. Up until that point I knew that my blog had the ability to influence ideas and decisions, but I never knew that it had the ability to touch someone. It was a really fantastic memory for me and I will never forget it.
(Masterful) Pattern Coordination
The latest episode of our second season, titled “Eccentric Style”, comes at a good time for me. I’ve been wanting to talk about this fantastically good Styleforum thread on the subject of complex pattern coordination. Not that combining four or five patterns necessarily brands one an eccentric. Indeed, one of my personal style heroes, Luciano Barbera, often mixes numerous patterns without making it seem unusual at all. On the other hand, Tom Wolfe, who arguably has a bit of an eccentric style, is often seen carrying no more than one or two patterns at a time.
Still, a high level of pattern mixing is more in the realm of eccentric style than not, and learning how to pull off complex combinations is worth discussion.
The rules are basic enough, and the principles for mixing many patterns stem from the ones we have for mixing just a couple. For example, two patterns of the same design (stripe on stripe, or checks on checks) can be combined if their scales are as different as possible. This avoids that terrible vibrating effect that can strain the eyes when too many patterns are present. So, a repp stripe tie with thick block stripes can be put on top of a Bengal striped shirt, or a puppytooth check tie can pair with a large windowpane suit.
Mixing two different patterns (stripes with checks) has the opposite rule. Rather than differ, the scales should be similar. This allows some contrast while still maintaining harmony. The only exception is particularly small-scale patterns, which can again distort the eye when two are placed too closely to each other.
From there we have the principles for mixing three or four patterns. Things should contrast, but also harmonize. If mixing three patterns where two are of the same design, vary the scale of two of the players – for example a hairline stripe shirt with a widely spaced chalk stripe suit. The third pattern can come in the form of a paisley or repp striped tie, so long the colors are complementary. For mixing three patterns of the same design, make all three vary in scale, perhaps letting them graduate from small to large as your ensembles moves outwards (shirt having the smallest scale; sport jacket medium; tie large). To get a fourth pattern, you can swap out the tie for a dissimilar design, and throw in a pocket square with a complementary pattern for final effect.
Of course, scale isn’t the only dimension to consider. There’s also texture, vibrancy, and color. A patterned woolen will look quite different from a patterned worsted, for example, and these things should be taken into consideration. But that entails a treatise that I’m not prepared to write, which is why your best bet is to follow the discussion here and observe the examples that some of the more astute StyleForum members have posted.
Speculation about indie chanteuse Lana Del Rey fronting H&M’s fall fashion campaign reached a fever pitch in June, but the Swedish retailer has remained mum on the subject. Until now. H&M on Monday confirmed to WWD that Del Rey will indeed be the global face of H&M’s fall advertising — with a second campaign planned for winter. Del Rey’s retro look — Sixties-inspired minidresses and long “ironed” hair has invited comparisons to Priscilla Presley’s early days with Elvis. It has not gone unnoticed by the fashion industry. For images & more
Great colors and an all around great look.
Flowers in your Hair
The Midsummer Festival may be over, but the sun has yet to set on the floral crown trend. We love a good hair accessory and flowers are no exception. We are humming “Flowers in your Hair” by the Lumineers as we are writing!
We spied a few incredible shots of some great blossom headdresses. This first we spied on Pinterest (are you following us yet?) How lovely are the soft and romantic tones? Next is a flower crown from gla.MAR.ous that will only set you back $30. Not bad for a summer romance waiting to happen. If you are more of a DIY person, here is a tutorial from Who What Wear (those girls always have our back!) Next is an incredible look we spied on Lookbook.nu from user Mandy C. We are kind of obsessed with how she created a charming yet not overly-girly look with a flower crown. Kudos! Lasty, a gorgeous outfit from one of our favorite bloggers, Keiko Lynn! In a field of flowers, Keiko embraces the true glory of the budding trend.