How time flights – another week has passed and it is Sunday morning – time to look at colours and their effect on us. Today it’s all…..
….. ABOUT BLACK
Black makes most people think of long evening gowns, of deep decolletages, of silk and satin—in other words, of elegance and sensuality.
Because black is the most important of all colours, it deserves some extra attention. Black is becoming to every complexion and suits every figure. It can be worn during all seasons and looks attractive in all types of fabrics. It is elegant, authoritative, sexy, and sad. In the late nineteenth century domestic servants, shopgirls, clerks, and elderly people of modest means were only considered properly dressed when in black. It can be worn equally well by men and women.
Black is a colour worn by rich and poor, by the clergy and by call girls. It can show positions of social standing high and low. It is both serious and worldly. It is the colour that is universally the most appropriate for all occasions. Most important, it never really goes out of fashion. Around 1930 Gabrielle Chanel brought out the famous ‘little black dress,’ which since then has never left us.
Whenever someone asks me to describe the greatest error in dressing, I have to answer that it is the co-ordination of colours—or rather the lack of it. The other day I looked in disbelief at a young woman who was dressed like this: black coat, light grey trousers, beige shoes, blue cap, dark brown handbag, burgundy attaché case, and, to top it all off, striped gloves in bright red, yellow, blue, green, and mauve! From the various fashion components one could see that this woman purchased items of the highest quality but because of poor colour co-ordination she looked messy and unappealing. Unfortunately, this kind of dressing is not rare. Many women wear up to five or more different colours at the same time. (Just look around you.) In the winter the problem is worse, since people wear more clothes .
Women speak with respect of someone who is well co-ordinated: ‘She’s so well put together.’ There is really no secret in looking that way. It just takes planning. The same day I saw Ms. Striped Gloves, I saw another woman who also wore a black coat, but her accessories consisted of beige handbag, a black attaché case, beige boots, black gloves, and a beige hat-and-scarf set. Everyone looked at her admiringly. She wasn’t wearing anything special or outstanding, but what she did have on fitted together.
I am often asked, ‘How can I learn to co-ordinate my wardrobe better? ‘If you think about what you have in your wardrobe and only buy clothes that will fit into that colour and style scheme, you will have no problem coordinating your look.
Most of us know that brown goes with bone, and black with red. But for new ideas, fashion magazines are a real eye-opener. Study the way they combine colours. You would probably never think of wearing a royal-blue blouse with your tan suit, but seeing it in Vogue will convince you that it can look fabulous.
Since we all know that brown and beige or black and red go together, the following chart will help you to find more unusual combinations. Colours that harmonise well are:
- Black and orange
- Black and maize
- Black and lilac
- Black and pink
- Black and slate
- Black and royal blue
- Black, yellow, and crimson
- Black, orange, and blue
If you have never tried any of these combinations, it’s time you do. You will be surprised how becoming a Black dress with a Pink Jacket is. Or you can add life to a black dress by wearing it with a bright coloured scarf
Another source of inspiration are the combinations of men’s clothing. The colours and prints used in men’s wear are as appropriate for women as they are for men. Many women say they envy men because they always look well co-ordinated . The secret is that the colours used are fewer and stay mostly in the same colour family, with shirt and tie adding life and colour. This should translate for us into wearing neutral basics and adding colour with accessories: scarves, belts, and blouses or other tops.
Until next Sunday when we will talk about PRINTS
And never forget – A Smile Changes everything!