Choose a Medium Shade
The first secret is to buy a dress or top in a medium shade with a matt finish. This is a material which feels flat and smooth to the touch. A shade that is lighter or darker and a material that has sheen or sparkle will not be as versatile. You need a shade and a flat texture that creates a good base for other colours and textures to shine.
When you pair red with neutrals accessories like mid-brown, mid-grey, cream or nude, you soften the red. An example of this would be a red dress with a mid-brown belt and brown or nude-coloured shoes. An alternative is to wear a red dress with nude shoes and a necklace in shades of light and dark brown. These colour combinations show your inner self-confidence without screaming power red.
Wearing red with black, white or a multi-patterned black and white heightens the contrast to a more dramatic level. You can do with a red dress, black shoes and a patterned black and white scarf, necklace or belt. A red top or jumper worn over black pants with red patent shoes and a black and white scarf or necklace will look just as dramatic.
Add a Pattern
Patterns can soften or heighten the contrast and effect of a red dress or top. These can be either in a scarf, bet or shoes. Wearing subtle patterns gives the impression of elegance whereas a brighter animal print or black and white shoes would heighten the contrast to a more dramatic level.
Other options are to wear either lighter or darker shades of red accessories to create a pleasing monochromatic colour scheme. Pale pink can look lovely with red and gives a light and dark contrast which is pleasing to the eye.