THE LESSON ABOUT WEARING COLORS
It takes some time to find yourself, and decide what your "look" is going to be like. First you have to determine what signals you want to send the world, and match that with what you feel comfortable in.
We've probably all had our wardrobe issues and beauty bleepers, leading up to that unavoidable; "what was I thinking" moment. Sometimes it's a "slave to the trends" kind of problem, or maybe you just don't want to draw too much attention to your self, and last but not least, there is the classic "rebellious phase". The common denominator of these styles is that they all represent a way of hiding yourself, and aren't really a projection of who you are. Only when you are comfortable in your own skin, can you truly use clothing to express your true self, and feel free to actually not give a s**t.
Ultimately, figuring yourself out, is a challenge that will leave you with a lot of hilarious and embarrassing "old" photos (probably reminding you, for evermore on facebook).
Personally, my biggest beauty bleeper (besides from bangs), was a poor choice or hair color.
At first stroke of rebellion, I decided to color my hair mahogany red (which was kind of fab on me, actually). But, soon I got too comfortable with dying my hair, and that combined with a bad case the classic, and always dangerous, "idol-fever", it ended with pitch black hair, closely followed by about six years of period appropriate, "Christina Aguilera, circa 2003", moments.
This particular case of "idol-fever" was caused by my older sister. Naturally, I thought she was really pretty, so growing up I wanted to look like her. I wanted black hair, brown eyes and snow white skin. Myself being the exact opposite, having golden brown hair, blue-green eyes and a naturally tan skin, I ended up looking orange with black hair (Or so I felt, and don't get me started on when I experimented with pale foundation, or the annoying obsession with dying my roots).
In theory, I'm a big fan of bringing out what's unique about an individual, and personally I love an exotic look
(I mean, the black hair really brought out my eyes. Just, not the rest of me). But in reality I looked like the love child of Snooki and Wednesday Addams, and some people thought I was the kind of person that would pick a fight. (Which brings me to....Why do people always tell you this stuff afterwards? That info would have come in handy at an earlier stage, but then again, maybe I wasn't ready to listen.)
Many years later, after a friend finally talked me into growing my real color back. Not only do I feel more comfortable knowing the only "fake part" left is my makeup, but I've been told that I look more inviting, pleasant and wholesome with my natural hair color. And although I still like that edgy and spicy meets Bollywood look, it's so much easier achieving my goals, when people aren't afraid of me (Especially, since I've mostly been nice).
I think we all have do's and dont's, beauty wise. We just can't follow the same rules.
I look better with dark hair than blond, but my intensity dictates that I should draw the line at dark brown.
The lesson is, just because you like the look, doesn't mean the look likes you.
It's hard to figure out what will work for you, or what kind of colors that will compliment you best (Beautiful people look good in everything right?).
What looks good on us, is defined by a series of small variations and combinations of depth, brightness, softness, warmth, coolness, and so on. And in contrary to popular beliefs, just being dark doesn't make you a winter, a redhead an autumn, or ashy blonds a typical summer.
The good news is that many of the colors we like, is our subconscious picking up on what flatter us, but the rest is more a matter of taste.
These days, I just wear black clothes (instead), even though it's not my best color. But when you really love something, some rules are made to be broken. The same way you can break a rule hear and there concerning your body type, the most important thing is the overall look, and there are some tricks that can help you get away with fashion obstacles.
For example, when wearing black; I always wear eye liner, blush, something fresh on the lips, and make my eyebrows a little darker. That way I can handle the high contrast of the pitch black. It doesn't really give me a glow, but I certainly feel classy-cool, and thats the look I'm going for. If I want to be makeup free and fresh, there is only three choices; Ivory, mint green or lemon yellow. But that sunny colored and sweet look, is just not my kind of everyday look. (That said, I am working on finding the mythical creature called cool clothes in fresh colors. Just haven't been very successful yet).
The first thing you need to know, is what does and doesn't suit you, so that you are in control of what you are doing.
The best way to start is by getting a Color Analysis. Just as Body Typing helps you decide what shapes to wear, Color typing is that first step towards accepting your naturally born gifts, and get rid of unflattering fashion items (Better to give that stuff to someone who will use it for something other that closet decoration, right?).
There are many different color analysis systems to help you determine which colors best suit your natural palette, but unfortunately, both myself and many of my slightly "mixed" looking friends, don't fit into any of them. And if one fits me, it certainly won't work for my sister, and so on. I always feel like something is missing, and it seems that the typical color seasons are based on the more typical color combinations. So, in other words, if you have the "wrong" combination or intensity, you will have a hard time finding your group.
I have determined what colors work for me, but I still try to pin point my exact season (ever since I discovered my mothers, "Color me beautiful" book). Also, I'm sort of in love with organizing, so I need a system.
Finally, I just decided to do something about it. Colors have always been one of my better skills, so I thought, "Why not?".
I have pondered on this subject for a whole year, and eventually come up with my own Color Typing System, one that is both bigger and smaller than the regular ones.
The already existing ones are great, but they didn't fit my type of logic, and apparently my looks didn't quite fit the logic of those systems either.
I started on this project a year ago, and it has taken me a really long time, a lot of obsessive thinking, cross checking, trying it out and reorganizing. It basically took over my life for some periods. But now, finally (as all creative people, my gut is telling me that ), I'm finished. Everything adds up (the way I see it), and if it doesn't; there's a system in place for that. It might need some tweaks here and there, but a test drive is imperative before you know if it works smoothly.
And, the rules of wearing colors, is exactly what my next series of post's are about.
So stay tuned, if you too want to figure out what Color Group you belong to.
Photography by: www.camillastorvollen.no
ETHICAL AND PERSONALIZED STYLE, FOR A "GOOD FOR YOU" WARDROBE.
Idealist style is a website and "slow blog" dedicated to ethical fashion and personalized style, including tips on how to find your very own "slow fashion" style by using color analysis, the body types system, and other slow fashion tips.»