Thursday, October 15, 2009

Personal style: the coloresque post

When I was about 15 or so, getting a color analysis was all the rage among girls at my school. Let alone these "consultations" were usually done by suburban part-time shopgirls who had taken an online weekend class on the subject and whose fashion know-how could have been summarized on a fingernail at best. Me and my friends were new to dabbling in personal style and not only did we feel painfully unsure of our natural color schemes, but out of massive insecurity, we also actually figured that becoming aware of them would save us from at least some of the most obvious fashion faux pas. Hence, having a color analysis done by a "pro" seemed like an excellent, helpful idea.

Being extremely pale skinned, and not in the milky, porcelain kind of way, but rather a translucent, bluish junkie type, I was strongly advised by the color consultant to steer clear of brights, jewel tones and even black. Supposedly, "my" colors were pastels such as peachy orange, mint and powder pink. Not at all being down with this palette at the time, I was immediately calling BS. How could you possibly be better off wearing a color that you dislike and that makes you feel uncomfortable, rather than one of your favorite hues? On the way home, I dumped my personal color chart in the nearest garbage can and decided to keep adding red, turquoise and purple to my black and white basics, regardless of what this online graduate had tried to teach me. If you cannot experiment with crazy colors and shapes as a teenager, then when are you supposed to?

Over the years I learned that anyone can wear almost any color - it is all about finding the right place and proportions for it, not mixing too many colors into the same outfit, and sometimes even about having the moxie to pull it off! While head-to-toe brights are flattering only on a lucky few, most of us can certainly get away with, and even benefit from, breaking up an otherwise conventional ensemble by mixing black or gray separates with colored options. For those who will not part with their signature black and white, and feel content adding only a splash of bright, accessories in your color of choice make for a great alternative.

As for myself, I tend to favor a muted palette for separates, while when it comes to accessories, I
am all about brights! I wore red tights with my black and white outfits long before Blair Waldorf hit the screen, and have carried handbags over the years in all shades from lemon yellow to fire engine red to royal blue. However, I am unfortunately a little print-shy unless the design is Tibi or DVF. Moreover, I would never, ever wear brights close to my face.... I am now realizing maybe that color consultant's advice was not 100% lost on me, after all?! Someone, please take me to Pucci for a brain wash!

Below are some current (most of them) examples of color at its best. Photos above: Natalia Vodianova in Comme des Garcons for Vogue Korea, storefronts at American Apparel and Juicy Couture, dresses from Jeremy Scott and Lisa Perry, crazy technicolor lady on 12th Street.

Romantic.
Caroline Trentini for Vogue, Lara Stone for Bazaar, Raquel Zimmermann for W.










... Natalia Vodianova as Red Riding Hood for Vogue.










.... D&G fall '09 campaign, Regina @ Marilyn for Tush Magazine.











.... Siri Tollerod for Vogue Italia.










Preppy. Cecilia Mendez for Marie Claire, fall '09 campaigns at Payless, Tommy Hilfiger, DKNY and United Colors of Benetton.




















Cute/whimsy. Emina Cunmulaj and Cecilia Mendez for Marie-Claire.









.... Liya Kebede for Vogue, fall '09 campaigns at Volcom and Coach.









.... Swatch fall '09 campaign, Sasha P for Vogue Nippon.










Hot/sexy. Amber Valletta for... wherever I saw this, Raquel Zimmermann for W.










..... Raquel Zimmermann for W, Bebe fall '09 ad.










..... Valentino fall '09 ad, Kate Moss for Vogue Paris.










..... GUESS and Versace fall '09 campaigns.










Tailored. In color: Raquel Zimmermann for W.









.... Camilla Belle in vintage Dior for Marie Claire, Tiiu Kuik for ELLE Sweden, fall '09 campaigns at Blumarine, Michael Kors, Marc Jacobs and Trussardi.



















.... Chanel boucle runway look, Katie Fogarty and Kendra Spears in Bazaar, Masha Novolesova in Vogue Russia.










Prints. Fall '09 campaigns at Etro and Blumarine.









..... Steven Meisel's 2007 "Vogue Patterns" editorial.










Accessories. Siri Tollerod for Bazaar (image 1-2), Raquel Zimmermann for W (image 3-6).




















What about you, dear readers? Are you a multicolor junkie, monochromate, printophile.... or do you stick with black and white, adding a little color here and there whenever the need arises? And how many of you mix hot pink and red on a regular basis? I did yesterday, and I believe my color consultant would have fainted, had she seen me saunter down the street - pale faced and all....

xoxoxox

73 comments:

  1. I have to wear black for work, and I work a lot! So majority of what I own is black! So seeing colour is fresh but it also scares me! I love the colour combinations and I get it, however, I still rely on basic black! I AM SUCH A CHICKEN!

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  2. I don't agree with the colourist people generally, but I do think that too many women wear black as a neutral when it doiesn't suit them (with my fiery locks and pale skin, I am not one of those - black is a great colour for me!). Those colour things always say I'm "autumn", yet I don't wear browns, oranges, earthy greens. BORING. TOo hippie and just not me.

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  3. I love colors, but then again sometimes I think wearing all black with a hint of gold jewlery is just so classy and chic. So I guess I'm just an all around color kind of gal.

    I wear bright scarves, would that count as wearing color close to my face? I also love bright earrings, especially with dark hair.

    I have tan skin and black hair, and I was always afraid of wearing light purples (kind of like the color of your blog background) because a friend once told me it drained me and made me look "yellow". I experiment with all colors now.

    I love pink and red!! It's a great combo. And what I love even more are your candid pictures of people in the streets, I look forward to them every time! I'm searching for your post on the designer collabs now. I would love to read it.

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  4. ahah a fellow paley! i too am blessed with milk bottle skin, but i always thought it would be better to wear bright stirking colours, not shitty mint - bad consultant woman!

    im definitely a red sort of girl (partly why i fell in love with the little red riding hood pics above...) and definitely a monochrome palette, and dark navy blues

    and i am a sucker for a pretty print ;)

    sugar
    xoxo

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  5. I love prints but I always wear black! That Etro fall campaign was flawless!

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  6. color consultant? never heard of such!

    my colors are blacks and whites. like i said before i have been trying to add color to my wardrobe, so then there would be lots of blues as well.

    not alot of colors tend to look good on me, my skin tone is so mixed up. my whole body is tan, but my face is rutty white. unless i put makeup on, ha. oh to be perfection. :)

    great post.

    xo ash

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  7. great post, I definitely agree most people can wear any color as long as it's done right or as an accessory

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  8. Fabulous post ! I love colors !
    http://mimietnini.canalblog.com/

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  9. fun post. i have a ton of neutrals in my closet and love adding pops of color to my outfits. i've been loving more & more color lately

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  10. love this post and your amazing sense of individualism from a young age xx

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  11. beautiful colored images! I love them all!

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  12. I am boring with my colors but a little more exciting with my accesories. I agree with you on the placement of certain colors having a lot to do than the actual colors themselves. :O)

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  13. What a gorgeous, well-researched post, darling!
    I am such a color junkie ~ I love all the brights you pictured, especially in coats and dresses!

    xoxox,
    CC

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  14. Hi CC! You now me, I'm a black and white girl. I do add a splash of color just to liven the ensemble but I stick to my tried and tested all-black or black/white or black/gray combinations. The color analysis is interesting but I can't bear the thought of having a result that would say that black/white/gray don't suit me.

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  15. This is such an insightful post; and I so adore how you related your trip to a "colorist." I have always wanted to go to a colorist myself; but I'm truly frightened that they'll tell me that I've been wearing all the wrong colors for my entire life!

    I think that it's best to feel out what looks good on you. I'm an accessories lover, so I tend to stick to neutral colors (charcoal, black, white, gray) for my main outfit, then use bright colored scarves, hats, accessories, to create a look all my own. In general, however, I prefer jewel tones when I do buy colored tops - purples, blues, greens; they look the best on me. Though I have branched out slightly - I bought a pumpkin spice off the shoulder top last month which I adore! :)

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  16. Monochromate! Not too big on too many colors in one outfit/editorial.
    Great post. :)

    Xx

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  17. Sherrlyn of http://www.lovesimplyhappens.blogspot.com says...I love colors and have been greatly influenced by the colors of Latin America. I just did a monochrome bridal shoot though with all light colors and one colored head wear. The bride is a redhead and you would think pale tones would not look so great on her but it's gorgeous
    By the way what did you mean BF that you wrote on my blog?

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  18. i love bright colored accessories and signature pieces, like jackets! so cute!!

    -Meredith, SCC

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  19. Yes never go down the I can only wear or suit x colour. It is too limiting and where's the fun in that at any age!

    you see the collage of colourful clothes is gorgeous.

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  20. Couldn't agree with you more on finding colors you feel good in.

    I sometimes have trouble convincing myself to buy colors when shopping, but usually it ends up being the more colorful stuff that I wear every day.

    Great post!

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  21. Uhh i remember colour consultation thingys, all my friends and their mothers used to talk about them. I much prefer duller/ darker colours personally as opposed to like florescent or really bright. But I think it really depends on what you feel good in.

    Great post!
    x

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  22. wow, what a great post, darling!
    sometimes I am totally afraid of colors... my favorites are black, white, nudes, powder pink and gray- not very colorful :))
    have a great day, xoxo

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  23. love the colours - there's quite a bit of red isn't there ?

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  24. wonderful post! yeah i wuld like to branch out more and wear more colors, for the most part i just stick to neutrals. i love how you gathered nearly every ad campaign. really nice to see them collectively.

    www.amoreeggrorr.blogspot.com

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  25. Love this post Miss Cookie, the images you selected are just gorgeous, full of vibrant, beautiful colors.

    I am actually what they called a winter, dark hair and very fair skin with dark eyes. Despite my moniker, I do wear more black than one would expect, but also adore pink in almost every hue and tone. Neutrals are not my friend, other than black and white, so we avoid earth tones like the plague.

    This has to be one of my favorite posts, the comments are fascinating, they make a fabulous read too!

    Smiles to you,
    tp

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  26. Thank you all so much for your comments! I agree with TP: it's so much fun to read about your color preferences and natural colors! :)

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  27. awesome post!!! i'm pretty much a monochromatic kind of person, but i've started wearing more color lately!!!

    thanks so much for your comment :) if you need a new long-strap shoulder bag, DEFINITELY get the sasha bag. it's sooo worth it!!

    neutraltuesday.blogspot.com

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  28. What an awesome article, really. I'm super pale too! Go pasties. (:

    Personally I'm stuck in this horrible stage of my life, where all of my peers are wearing crazy prints and bold fashions (I'm in college! Surprise!), while I'm trying to look ahead and not break the bank supplying polished fashions for a career in business (aka business suits). I want to buy clothes I can wear as a 30 year old, you know?! Generally, I tend to stick to classic cuts and neutral colors, and then add a splash of hue to make things interesting.

    I'm a huge fan of the coral color -- I think it brings out my complexion well. A lot of people tell me I look darling in red, and while I love the color, I never seem to have much of it in my wardrobe. Hmmm...

    -Tracy

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  29. i will wear colors. i am fortunate to have an image consultant BFF so she gives me great tips on what to wear and colors that suits me.

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  30. i remember that picture of D&G! love it

    MAISON CHAPLIN, the internationally recognized most stylish and glam fashion blog by some fashion houses!

    @ www.MaisonChaplin.blogspot.com

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  31. LINDO POST!!!
    UM LUXO!!!
    AMO RAQUEL!!!!..ELA É SIMPLISMENTE...INCRIVEL!!!

    bjos
    :)

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  32. I have a big Raquel crush right now... can you tell? ;)

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  33. I know the colors I look best in but lately I've been branching out and wearing some things that might not be the greatest colorwise. However the dress is fun, or serious vintage, or interesting in some other way.

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  34. i love the little red riding hood outfits!
    i tend to wear black and white just because it's easier to wear.
    but with the colours, i sometimes mix and match.
    but that's only sometimes.
    cause i find it hard to mix and match.

    love annie, xx

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  35. hello! so nice to discover your blog through random clicking :) i am usually a dark color person, but lately have been experimenting with more colors and prints. my bases are usually dark, though-- black, navy and grey-- with dashes of color. and never too bright-- although i'm working on that as well!

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  36. yes, the pink satin shoes are gorgeous, but i still love loubs :) i've been dreaming of owning the peep-toe platform privé (ahah alliteration) ones in bright pink and pairing them with black tights and a basic black shift dress. a girl can dream, right? haha :)
    xx
    neutraltuesday.blogspot.com

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  37. I quite dig colors and experiment with them frequently, when I'm not on mommy duty that is. Ah ha

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  38. Love color! I've recently mixed aubergine and magenta; would happily mix red and hot pink . . .

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  39. I am obssesd with leopard at the moment but too much can be overwhelming!
    AND tye die!.. i love making tye die clothes.
    thankyou for commenting on my blog :)
    i love it when i get nice comments, makes my day :)
    XxxX Lola Vee

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  40. What a fun post! I'm always saying this, but I really want to add more color to my wardrobe. I think my closet is 80% with black clothes. At the very least I should go out and buy a red top!

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  41. i'm everything! love to switch it up. cool post!
    xo

    ps. Enter my fab fall giveaway!
    http://ahautemess.blogspot.com

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  42. Ooo this is so intriguing, CC! I guess I hadn't really thought about it too much before. I know I look good in turquoise and lavender, but I've never been too critical- and I think I should think about it a bit more. I do tend to stay away from patterns like you- I think they make me look too young. I'm going through my closet tomorrow with this post in mind ;)

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  43. great post! hmm i used to be more navys,blacks, whites, greys but now as my style has developed Ive decided to experient more with colours so I think now I'm more colourful then I was.
    olivias-pizzazz.blogspot.com
    xx

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  44. halloween is coming up! Im going to take a leaf out of Natalia Vodianova's book and go as little red riding hood! great blog xo

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  45. Great post! I love all of the color palette examples you presented. "Romantic" & "Preppy" are my favorites. I tend to stick to subtle colors, but I love to accessorize with bright nails, necklaces & bracelets.
    Have a great weekend!
    xx

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  46. I do think the whole color consultation thing can be a bit tricky, especially those who still adhere to the outdated 4 seasons typecasting (how can you possibly categorize so many different ethnic groups and types of people into just 4 groups?). I basically know which colors wash me out and which don't. Thankfully I can wear almost anything, and I do wear prints or block colors depending on my mood. I have a lot of black and grays, but I also love jewel tones for tops and knits. The only thing I rarely wear is white, orange and yellow, just because I don't love these shades as much!

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  47. all of these pictures are so extremely gorgeous! =)

    http://pinkchampagnefashion.blogspot.com/

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  48. Great post darling! I'm quite careful with the colors, I love black, white and beige and very much also red. Maybe that is why I adore those pics from Natalia Vodianova for Vogue!!!

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  49. This post is amazing as always. I love the hot/sexy look!

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  50. I can't wear many colors,not because I don't like them but simply because I think that they don't suit me.I stick to the basics but sometimes I do some experiments:)

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  51. Though I love black & white, color is a must for me. I enjoy the variety of new colors and prints.
    -Tawney

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  52. as always love your blog

    and i tend to go for black/white/grey/beige and go crazier with accessories. but i love colour for fancier outfits!

    myglitteringcreation.blogspot.com

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  53. colours all the way.
    i agree a colour consultation is very restrictive indeed... chuck it away!

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  54. Fab post & I love all those colors!

    Enjoy your weekend.

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  55. Colour is too much fun I would never eliminate one!
    XOXOX
    Libby
    http://fashionconfectionairy.weebly.com

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  56. This is so cool!! I love the Cute/whimsy editorial! It's more my style! That's great you're going to a Fashion Show!!! Please share some pics with us :)
    Thank you for the sweet comment on my blog :)
    Have a lovely weekend!!
    xoxo
    Giovanna
    www.bohomarket.blogspot.com

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  57. Congrats! You’ve been nominated for the Creative Blogger Award. Come on over to my site and join in the fun!.

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  58. you are so talented !
    I Love this post ! much more than the last one !!
    very inspiring !
    great colours*
    thx*

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  59. Darling, don't follow trends, follow your tastes. You can wear anything you want, since you do the right combination. ;)

    MAISON CHAPLIN, the internationally recognized most stylish and glam fashion blog by some fashion houses!

    @ www.MaisonChaplin.blogspot.com

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  60. I'm obsessed with the d&g fall ad campaign!

    Great post, I'm all for fashion empowerment!

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  61. My boyfriend is trying to convince me to wear more colors. I have a wardrobe full of black, but it's so hard to pair things together...

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  62. Great pictures, great post!
    I'm endlessly attempting to put as many colours as possible into one outfit without looking mad. I dont feel comfortable without at least three different colours on!
    Miss Erinna
    xxx

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  63. wunderful list. i love to wear black or gray. but colorful is alsways good to mix up the outfits.

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  64. Hey there. I hope this finds you doing well. I also hope you've had a great weekend so far. Take care. Have a nice week. Cheers!

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  65. I remember that "Color Me Beautiful" book everyone was addicted to in the 80s. I think we all kind of know what colors look best with our skin tones but it's more about what's closest to your face, right? There are colors that wash me out -- white is one of them -- but that doesn't mean I never wear white. Just not near my face.

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  66. Great post. I'm more the romantic. i always tend to lean to those colours.

    Love your blog x You wanna exchange links?

    Missy
    Enter my giveaway:
    http://thefashionfusion.blogspot.com

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  67. I'm really partial to neutral colors but occasionally, a pop of color is good.

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  68. some lovely pictures here.
    What a blog!
    70 comments bh you must be proud!
    Tomorrow x
    www.inthebedroommirror.blogspot.com

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  69. Gorgeous pics! I tend to be monochromatic with neutrals and black. BUT I did get some fab Christian Louboutin shoes today in pony. And a purple swing coat.

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  70. I am an obsessive colour junkie or a black and white junkie. I love wearing lots and lots of colour with an outburst of darkness, or wearing black and white with an outburst of colour. For example black trousers, white vest and bright pink shoes. or bright pink skirt, sky blue corset with orange spots , a pink jacket and giant gothic dark accesories.

    nad xx

    Please check out my blog
    http://naddysfashionaspirin.blogspot.com

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