Black and white are two colors that always look classic and make an outfit look pulled together.
But there are good and bad ways to achieve this look. Remember that other fashion rules still apply.
How NOT to Wear Black and White
The biggest fashions don’t in black and white dressing is to wear black dress pants and a white button down shirt together. Not only is it very plain, it is the basic wardrobe or waitresses, hostesses, and bus boys everywhere. When going out for a nice dinner, you don't want to look like the help. Simply switch things up with white cigarette pants and a ruffled black blouse with a keyhole opening in back.
Another important thing to remember when dressing in black and white is that the rules of black being slimming and white adding width still applies. This can be used to your advantage if you wear a top that has more white on top if you are small chested and have narrow shoulders, and vice versa. A white and black dress should have a black belt at the waist as opposed to a white one. White shoes are fine if you are wearing white bottoms, even after Labor Day, but if breaking that out-dated rule makes you uncomfortable, opt for metallic shoes such as silver or gold. Black tights are a yes, but white tights should be left to little girls.
What's Black and White and Fabulous All Over?
If your black and white clothing is polka dots, make sure they are oversized. Small polka dots will date you. Any large graphic black-and-white print is popular, and you can kick it up a notch or tone it down a notch by what you pair with it. A lime green tank with a black and white floral skirt draws attention, while the same skirt with a black sweater calms the look down. Put the tank under the sweater and you are ready to go from work to a night on the town.
Black and white is generally a more pulled together look, but if you want to wear black and white dressed down, pair a black-and-white checked shirt with your favorite jeans. Or wear a black and white print t-shirt under a black jacket with white piping.
Black shoes are versatile and probably something you already own, but black shoes with white details pack more punch and help pull the outfit together. For your jewelry accessories, you can go all the way with black and white enamal bangles or cuffs. Otherwise choose to add a shot of color with multicolored strands of necklaces or add some shine with a mix of silver and gold.
Black and white is always in fashion, but use your good style sense to play it up, down, formal, or casual.