"Color is my day-long obsession, joy and torment."
We often feel the same way as Monet, especially when it comes to our wardrobe... Why do we wear the colors that we do? What colors look good on us? How do we know? Here is a little insight I've learned about colors that might help you enjoy wearing color as much as I do!
We live in an exciting time of revival and reinvention. With all the styles and colors that have come and gone and come back again, there are a lot to choose from. It is possible to get nearly any decade's fashion in the colors that look good on you.
Why do you choose to wear certain colors?
The color of clothing, as much as the style is often what draws a person to it. We have very strong, emotional responses to color. It is these emotional reactions and associations that can sometimes lead us to wear certain colors and not others. For instance I love orange because it's warm and bright and makes me happy.
What colors look good on you?
The color that is said to look good on everyone is... PINK! Of course if pink isn't your favorite or you're looking to expand your wardrobe read on...
Generally speaking certain colors look good on certain people. A person’s coloring--if they are a "cool" or "warm" person—affects what colors will look good on them. So which one are you? Warm people tend to have darker hair, and dark or olive complexions. Cool people tend to have lighter hair, and golden or pinkish complexions. When you identify your coloring, you can match what colors will look good on you.
Warm colors include red, yellow, gold, and orange.
Cool colors include blue, green, violet, and silver.
Here are some ways to tell what works:
- - Start with matching your coloring with the colors that look good with them.
- - Bring a clothing item up to your face in the natural sunlight and see if its color brightens you up.
- - What color do people say you look good in?
- - What colors are the worn out favorites you can always rely on in your closet?
- - What's your eye color? Match it!
- - If you're really unsure stick to black and white. The little black dress remains a favorite.
One thing to think about is that your overall coloring may change between summer and winter months because of your skin tone (tanning, etc.) It can also change somewhat if you dye your hair.
Besides looking good on YOU, certain colors look good TOGETHER. Black, white, gray, beige, navy, brown, and olive green are classic neutrals that you can pair with bright colors.
Adding your favorite colors even if it does not look good on you? Yes!
Just because you like a color does not mean it looks good on you. (This is a hard fact to swallow, but if you can be honest with yourself about what colors work for you, you will be one step closer to wardrobe nirvana.) Of course that doesn't mean you can't wear your favorite color as an accessory, or perhaps a variation of your favorite color that better matches your coloring.
Wear colors you don't like too? Sure!
Of course you may occasionally wear colors you do not like because they are associated with certain events or holiday parties. (ex. 4th of July red, white, & blue, my mom likes me in yellow, pink is for breast cancer awareness etc.) If you want to participate but don't like the colors, just add it as a little accessory!
Prints are colors too, sort of.
You can treat prints like colors too. If there is a particular pattern you like, you can add it to a classic outfit to work it into your wardrobe. And you can find clothing items in almost any color in any pattern whether it's leopard, stripes, polka dots, flowers, or solids.
Don't be afraid to experiment with color and pattern. The fashion industry reinvents itself so often that a new batch of color options come out almost every season, even in the retro clothing world. So you have plenty to choose from!
Good luck experimenting!
- Julie Ann