Happy day, reader dear!
Isn’t the answer above frustrating? If you are the kind that likes rules and life in black and white, I apologize. I’m all about the messy middle (As Brené Brown calls it.) That place where things aren’t Yes or No, but Yes AND No. The place with lots of shades of grey… And all the colors of the rainbow, too! I’m happy to dwell there, but not everyone is. If you aren’t, this may not the be blog for you…
Have you ever wondered how some women can colorblock without looking like a clown? Or pattern mix? It’s all about the colors! AND about the person. That’s where it gets messy. Because there is more than one moving part. Color consulting and color combining is part science, part art, and part personality.
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When I work with a client on a color consultation, it starts with the purely physical part. The science of color. What does their coloring look like? Is is light, dark, or somewhere in between? Is their coloring bright or more subdued? Is their undertone cool, warm, or something not quite either. (Which isn’t neutral, btw.) What is their Value Contrast? What is their Color Contrast?
Then there’s the pesky personality piece! It’s also the most fun! Different style personalities are drawn to different colors and combinations. How do you create drama (for Ms. Dramatic) with a soft and warm palette? You create arresting color combinations. How do you create a Relaxed look with a cool and bright palette? Let’s find the cool, bright colors that nature gives us and use those as our starting point.
Art of Color
The art part is about what colors to choose, how to combine them, and how to wear them to create a focus on the wearer rather than on the colors themselves. It’s about thinking of the whole person as a work of art. Art is about line, design, color, and composition. How do I take their colors and create harmony with the person and the personality?
How Many IS Too Many?
Now we’re back to the original question and you can see why it’s messy! I always recommend starting with the physical, your Color Contrast, and playing from there. Align the number of colors in your outfit (or your print/pattern) with your personal coloring. If you are Dramatic, Rebellious or Creative, or high energy, you might add an extra color, or two or three! If you are Feminine, Relaxed, or even just very quiet, you might remove a color to create a more subdued look.
Note: For more information on how to count/read the number of colors in a print or pattern, read this post!
So How About YOU?
What colors are you drawn to? Are you a color lover or color loather? When you open your closet, what color predominates? Does it make you look amazing? What color do hear “WOW, you look great today!” in? Are you comfortable wearing more than one color in an outfit? (Neutrals don’t count!) Do tell… I love to hear from you!