These 31 Women Prove How Awesome It Looks to Break the Fashion "Rules"

These 31 Women Prove How Awesome It Looks to Break the Fashion "Rules"
Mic
Mic

Pay all the lip service you want to "self-expression," but fashion is undoubtedly filled with rules. There are those that are spoken — no white after Labor Day, no velvet in the summer — and those that go unspoken but unfortunately ring loud and clear (no crop tops for plus-size women, anyone?). 

But the truth is this: When you break the "rules," that's when fashion starts to get really fun. Nowhere is this more evident than at Fashion Week, which has nearly completed its sweep through New York City this week. For bloggers, editors, photographers, designers, makeup artists, students and plain-old fashion enthusiasts, Fashion Week is a biannual excuse to dress up in whatever risky, daring or aggressively trendy items they please — and in the process, they end up inspiring others.

With the expert eyes of Lisa Arbetter, editor of the newly relaunched People StyleWatch, we scoured the streets of New York City to find the women and men who are throwing out the fashion rulebook in the most badass ways. Here's photographic proof, along with Arbetter's commentary, of just how much the "rules" really matter.

1. Pajamas are for indoors only.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"The pajama shirt has been happening for awhile, but full-on PJs is a bit more daring."

2. Only models can wear crop tops. 

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"Crop tops are having a moment, because high-waisted pants and skirts are so big. With the new proportions, you only see a flash of skin. It's a less obvious way to do sexy, but one that works for plenty of women."

3. Jerseys should be saved for the sporting events.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"There are two different ways to wear this one: The first woman offsets the sportiness with a cute pleated mini while the second went all in with denim Bermudas and sneakers."

4. Crayola-colored hair is for teenagers.

Source: Michelle Kinney /Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney /Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"I love how the woman with the red hair matched her flowers to her outfit. It made me smile."

5. Fringe skirts should be saved for Dancing With the Stars.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"This is actually classic 'street style.' You pair opposites: a very flirty, dressy skirt with a serious, crisp tailored top."

6. If you're going to make a colorful statement, only do it with one item.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"Print-mixing is pretty universally scary. Doing it well makes for an interesting outfit, but it is definitely an advanced styling trick — and these women nail it with bright colors and patterns."

7. Socks with sandals are for grandpas only.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"Socks with sandals may not find wide appeal, but it can look quite cute. Ankles socks with pumps or brogues is an easier way to add a quirky touch."

8. Skirts or pants — you have to pick one.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"I've been seeing this look coming back. These women both did it in a new way. The long slotted tunic is a very chic look, while the suede wrap is a bit edgier."

9. Suits are serious business. 

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"I love a suit in an unexpected color — pulled-together but also really stands out."

10. Sneakers require pants.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"Sneakers with a dress or skirt looks effortless. The simpler the sneaker, the easier it is to wear in unexpected ways."

11. Sequins, tulle, ballgown skirts — if you could wear it to a black tie wedding, you shouldn't wear it in daytime.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

"Evening for day is a cool girl go-to. Mix the dressy item with a tee, denim, sneakers or anything with the opposite vibe!"

12. Fashion Week and hoodies don't mix.

Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic
Source: Michelle Kinney/Mic

Take that, fashion rules.