Katie Holmes tights
Katie Holmes

See Katie Holmes wearing navy blue tights. See Katie Holmes breaking the first rule of wearing colored tights. Bad Katie.

There are some basic rules to follow if you're going to bust out the colored tights this fall and winter. Of course, as always, there are some women who will make up their own rules -- and some will get away with it and some won't.

Sorry, Katie.

Read on to see what rules Katie Holmes and Katherine Heigl are breaking and how Taylor Swift and Kourtney Kardashian are doing colored tights right. Once you have the guidelines for wearing colored tights down, find out how to break the rules with style and flair!

Rule #1: Match your shoes to your tights

Matching your shoes to your tights is a safe bet, and you usually can't go wrong. Black tights with black shoes, plum tights with plum shoes, gray tights with gray shoes, and so on. If you can't match exactly, try to stick with the same hue -- a light gray shoe with white tights, a black shoe with forest green tights, etc. This continuity of color elongates your legs rather than cutting them off at the ankle.

This is the rule that Katie Holmes (above) is breaking. She tossed on some tan pumps with navy blue tights, and those shoes are all we end up seeing. Our eyes go right to those glaringly putty brown shoes. She's got on a sassy mini dress and has great legs, but blah beige shoes is the statement I'm taking away.

Taylor Swift and Kourtney Kardashian follow rule #1 and look great in their tights -- Taylor in gray patterned tights and gray lace-up boots, Kourtney in black tights and hot black lace-up heels. Good work, ladies.

Taylor Swift gray tights boots

Taylor Swift

Kourtney Kardashian Mason
Kourtney Kardashian with Mason
Rule #2: Keep it simple with bold-colored tights

blue tights dress

If you're going to bust out the electric blue tights, blazing red tights, or pumpkin orange tights this fall or winter -- and you totally should! -- keep your outfit basic and monochromatic so your tights don't have to compete with your skirt or dress. Wear all black or all gray, something like that, or this entirely blue-on-blue outfit above looks lovely, too, even if (or because) all the blues don't match exactly.

Katherine Heigl
Katherine Heigl
Katherine Heigl is wearing a monochromatic outfit alright. But first off, ugh, all that gray-beige with her blonde hair and skin tone is just wrong. Plus, she's breaking Rule #1 in a bad way wearing black stockings with taupe pumps as well. Yuck!

 

bridesmaid mustard yellow gray

This bridesmaid above sticks to a mustard yellow and gray/silver palette, which is surprising and divine. Also love the silvery tweed and silver shoes with the textured sunny yellow tights below.

yellow tights

If you're afraid you're going to be a fashion faux pas in colored tights, pair them with a knee-high boot so you get just a peek of color. It's still fabulous.

Rule #3: Break the colored tights rules with style

Now that you know the rules, let us show you how to break them.

maroon tights blue dress model yellow shoes

Love these maroon tights with the navy blue dress. The yellow shoes? If you're daring, sure.

red tights bride

This bride is rockin' the red tights. In this case, who cares if they don't match her shoes? They're not supposed to. This look is totally awesome and makes a playful statement.

maggie mason colored tights bold outfit

And if you're going to go bold, commit to it, like Maggie Mason does here. Not matchy matchy, just loads of delicious color.

Vivienne Westwood colored tights

It takes guts to stand out in the snow in an outfit like this one from designer Vivienne Westwood. And we love it. Must ... have ... pink ... tights ... now. Don't be afraid. But do run a brush through your hair.

What color are your tights and how do you wear them -- play it safe or break the rules?

 

Images via Michael Loccisano/Getty, Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty, SplashNews, Anthropologie, The Sweetest Occasion, Refinery 29, Jason Merritt/Getty, Harper's Bazaar, The Leekers, two cups of tea/Flickr, Zuma Press (via TheGloss)