Ideas for a What Not to Wear Fashion Show

by Angela Bakke

A professional model sports an outfit that could work in a "what not to wear" fashion show.

Victor Boyko/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

TLC's long-running makeover reality television show, "What Not to Wear" inspired a popular fund-raising trend for churches and schools. WNTW fashion shows are playful in nature and sometimes helpful to fashion-challenged people. The trick to a great show is to make it playful without poking fun of anyone in particular -- so go for the big fashion mistakes that offer the best, or rather worst, visuals.

Workout Clothes

If you can get a female participant to strut down the catwalk wearing leggings with a cropped shirt and high-top tennis shoes, you'll make a clear case to your audience that leggings are meant to be worn with long tops. If you want to create a really big fashion mistake, even for gym standards, send a male model down your runway in meggings -- leggings for men -- paired with a muscle tank top with very large armholes. If you can find a pair in animal print, you've struck WNTW gold. Accessorize with a terry cloth headband. On the opposite end of the spectrum, put a guy in too-short running shorts, tall tube socks and canvas shoes along with a tight tank top.

Tourist Clothes

Going on vacation can mean taking a break from any fashion sense. Fanny packs are a great example of this and have been on the fashion "don't" list for several years. Put a fanny pack over a bright tropical shirt with a pair of shorts or skirt in a pastel color. Be sure the model is wearing the fanny pack in the front for the best -- or worst -- effect. Tourists are also known for wearing tall socks with shorts, another big style mistake. Go over the top with the socks -- send a male model down the runway in a long khaki shorts with either dress socks or sports socks pulled up to mid-calf and a pair of lace up tennis shoes. Make sure the socks are bright and in contrast to any other colors you put in this outfit example. Add a sombrero and a shirt that has either a tropical print or the name of a tourist-driven location printed on it.

Business Wear

A business suit is an easy wardrobe piece to use in creating a severe wardrobe malfunction for guys. Find a suit that has a dark base and a very large white plaid pattern. Add a pair of tennis shoes instead of dress shoes and a short striped tie in outdated colors like pea green and rust. Create a business suit gone wrong for women with a skirt suit worn with bobby socks and white tennis shoes. Put a turtleneck under the suit and a bowler hat on her head.

Casual Wear

Socks and sandals may go down in history as the fashion error that the most people have tried wearing. Send a female model out in a sundress and knee socks with open-toe sport sandals, or a man in socks under flip-flops. Wearing a T-shirt over a button-down shirt does not dress down a professional shirt; it only messes up an outfit. Put someone in a checkered button-down shirt and a worn looking T-shirt over it, preferably one with something written on it. Add a pair of light blue, high-waisted jeans with a braided belt pulled tight as you can get it. If you can make the jeans look too short, even better. Add the socks and sandal mistake and this could be the grand finale of your fashion show.

Photo Credits

  • Victor Boyko/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

About the Author

Angela Bakke is a Los Angeles-based writer and reporter with more than a decade of experience covering fashion, beauty, the arts and entertainment. She has interviewed some of the most famous people in the world and covered stories for Beyond Cinema, Hollywood.com, ReelzChannel, CNN.com and Celebs.com.