Please forgive a bit of own trumpet blowing but it was such an enormous pleasure to welcome my first “in-person” client after more than a year. The lovely young lady, Helena, in the photo now possesses the knowledge that she is a deep Winter, that she can rock black and white, look terrific in strong deep, cool colours and ice pastels. She knows now that warm and muted colours will make her look ill so she probably won’t be buying orange or beige and she will hopefully leave soft pastels to others who suit them. She may find an update handy many years hence when her hair begins to go grey but basically this one visit has set her up to look and feel great in the colours she wears for a long time to come. In one way she may find shopping harder but if she edits out anything in a colour not in her palette, it actually should become simpler.
Helena's colour session has prompted me to reflect on another reason why knowing which colours really show you to your best, is so valuable. It can arm you against the words of fashion journalists. Recently I have come across two articles in newspaper fashion pages about colours which are popular this season. One article was promoting lilac as an easy colour to wear and the other suggested that, with pink featuring prominently in e.g. Zara’s Summer catalogue, there is always a shade of pink to suit you.
I love perusing the fashion pages as much as anyone but I am disappointed that the journalists don’t seem to understand the principles of colour and how different hues can harmonize or fight someone’s natural colouring so they make sweeping statements. If they did get it, you wouldn’t see a sub-heading: “In the pink – there’s a hue to flatter everyone”. NOOOO! As you must know by now I am a “warm, muted (Autumn)” and I wouldn’t go near pink with a barge pole unless perhaps it was a deep, greyed coral – a shade not included in the clothes featured in the Times article I read. Here’s another pronouncement I have seen more than once: “Every girl must have a white shirt in their wardrobe.” NOOOO!! Only people with bright, cool colouring look their best in white. Most of us will look healthier and more beautiful instead in cream, ivory, oyster or rose beige, depending on their colouring. Similarly, I wouldn’t suggest anyone with muted colouring wear lilac unless it is greyed down. See my video for who CAN wear lilac here.
So the moral of this story is don't believe everything you read in the papers!
At a recent online networking event, one lady I spoke to said, “I just wear what I like”. That is, of course, absolutely fine although I think that is a pity for how fabulous she COULD look. I do have to quieten my inner “colour police” voice and concede that the point of all this is confidence. Much as it simply delights me to see people looking gorgeous, wearing their most flattering shades, it is not about me unfortunately!
Many years ago I found learning about my colour palette gave me a confidence about my appearance which I didn’t have. It was part of knowing and accepting myself. For example, as I learnt how if I wear black, the eye of the person looking at me unconsciously seeks black in my face. Not seeing it in my eyes or hair it can't help but focus in on the nearest thing to black - the bags, wrinkles, and shadows. OH NO!! Much as I loved black, that was enough to teach me that I would be better avoiding it, unlike the young person in the photo who, with her Mediterranean colouring, can look wonderful in it; classy, chic, vibrant.
If, like Helena, you want to find out how colours can work for you, help you look your most beautiful and save you money as you no longer make clothes-buying mistakes go here for in-person consultations and here for online consultations.