Tuesday, May 15, 2012

rethink neutral

I am currently talking on a thread via facebook with some friends who share my affinity with the color teal. Actually, I should say I'M sharing with THEM since I believe they discovered the color's magic long before I did since I swore off any shade of blue from ages 4-28. I'm a convert, though. And blue is my new favorite thing.

Side note: Does that happen to you? You hate a color so much that you refuse to have anything to do with any shade of it? That's what happened to me with blue and purple. I think they were so popular that I went the opposite way. And I refused to do what everyone else was doing. Story of my life! Ha! So I am just now learning to love blue and I can't get enough. Still,in spite of those gigantic steps forward,  lavender is the only shade of purple I can do. I'm learning- it's a process, you know.

But our  current conversation got me thinking because I made a comment about teal really being a neutral- and I smiled when one of the girls agreed with me because that statement is usually met with raised eyebrows. If you find yourself also raising your brows, this next statement is going to blow your mind. Are you ready?

I truly believe color makes a better companion to color  than "neutrals."

Black, white, gray, brown, and khaki are the colors I have thought of as neutrals (the term "neutral" referring to a color that matches most other colors) since I was a child. Those were the colors that I chose for my  pants and then I picked one other color for the shirt and you're done. And you wore either silver or gold jewelry to match. For me, it was always silver. I have only loved gold a short time but it is a STRONG, loyal, eternal kind of love now. And that's how I dressed for basically my entire life.

But recently- as in the last 2 to 3 years or so- I've started realizing that isn't the case. Those five aren't the only colors that play well with friends. And often they aren't the BEST colors that pair well with others. I just googled "define neutral colors" and I smiled when I read the definition: having a color that does not attract attention. That's perfect. That's exactly what happens when you wear one of those three colors with another. It causes no attention. Sure, sometimes getting attention is a bad thing but sometimes it's a really good thing. Because that attention can make you feel really confident and successful when it's positive.

These are my new neutral colors:


bright royal blue




 bright red




And in general right now, I think ANY pastel with ANY bright color are genius. That is, in my opinion, the best way to embrace the current color blocking trend. And if you're going to do true color blocking, they do not need to be related at all. :)

So if you want to start playing with colors, try my new fab 5! And if you need a safety net because you're unsure of how to mix color successfully, stick them with a neutral pant and use jewelry to bring in the second color. For example a pair of black dress pants, a colored shirt (let's say yellow in honor of spring time) and a necklace in any of these colors! The shade of yellow will help you determine which color you pick. If it's a canary yellow the royal blue would be sharp but if it's a buttercup yellow why not go bright red? See what I mean? And if you're ready for the big leagues, replace the "neutral" pant with a color- red pants, pale yellow top, chartreuse scarf.

Done and done.

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