Tuesday, 13 November 2012


Dear Reader

When you open your wardrobe doors what colours do you see?  Through my life the colours I've seen have changed. 

As a teenager and into my early twenties, black was my favourite colour to wear.  Black was my bedrock!  Then I took an active decision to not buy any more black clothes and to bring in more colour. I'm not sure when I came to a decision thatI just wanted to look brighter. 

Now when I look in my wardrobe I see a richer variety of colours.  The downside to this is not everything matches everything else!  Hence owning more clothes than ever!  This is not where I want to be right now, I want to simplify and narrow down but not back to black!

So how do we choose the colours?   Many other blogs advise on a base colour (black, grey, brown, navy) and then introduce secondary colours to compliment.  I think that is a sensible approach.  I would say my base colours for work is mainly grey (I do have some navy dresses though) and for home it is navy blue.  My secondary colours come out in my cardigans, tops, bottoms, jewellery but will mix and match with my base colour.

If you need inspiration then look no further than Pantone who bring out colour predictions for each season.  You will see these colours in clothes, homewares etc.

Pantone Autumn/ Fall 2012 Colours

Pantone Spring 2013 Colours

If you notice the spring 2013 colours are softer versions of the Autumn 2012 colours.  It's not a big variation.  The colour that has appealed to me from the above palettes is the mustard/ gold/ yellow colour.  I have a cardigan from Gap in the colour and some jewellery.  It looks great against navy blue.

Aside from finding inspiration from Pantone, I have my own favourites.  For summer for the past 2 years I've been focusing on clothes in the red, white and blue colour scheme.  I find bright colours suit me, so this is an easy look for me to wear.  Think stripey t-shirts (red and white, blue and white) blue skirts, red skirts and so on.

I quite like having a distinct colour scheme to work from, it makes shopping easier.  Also as it's warm I'm usually wearing just one layer.  I do have some other coloured summer clothes, that work with my red, white and blue clothes.  I find summer the easiest season, as you need less layers!

My autumn/ winter colour scheme is not as rigid yet.  But I am working towards a navy base (I don't want much black/ grey).  I like that yellow/ orange/ red/ pink/ green all look great against navy blue, which gives me lots of secondary interest.

Another admission is that I buy a lot of my clothes in the sales, and this means I end up compromising on colour too much (ie buying colours that don't necessarily match what i have already).  This is something I am going to rein in and become stricter with myself about.  On the plus side it can bring out clothes by adding a colour pop to the wardrobe.  For instance I have an apple green and white patterned summer top, which works well with my denim skirt/ jeans, my mustard yellow cardigan and so on.  I don't have any other apple green in my wardrobe but this went well with other items that I could put it in.

I also have a few deep pink cardigans/ tops that have been workhorses for me as they look great with my grey workclothes as well as navy blue.

My style tip going forward is
1.  Use navy as base colour for winter, and keep secondary colour purchases to match the blue and my other clothes
2. For spring/ summer, stick with the red, white and blue, adding other colours that work with those base ones.
3.  Don't get sucked in my sales, shop sensibly!

Happy reading

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