Color theory is not new to most people. Designers and marketers have worked hand in hand to utilize the emotive power of color for logos, signage, branding and retail spaces for decades. The 'subliminal messages' we are not consciously aware of encourage purchasing behavior, personal preferences for brands and even how we feel about people when we meet them for the first time...
Rarely do we consider the impact of the colors and the patterns that we wear. Fashion trends in color or the desire to 'look thinner' in black usually prevails. However, the color of our clothes and the patterns of the fabrics affects not just how other people see us, but also how we see ourselves - and even our emotions on any given day.
You can find out all about color and emotion/energy on this fabulous graphic on Pinterest.
Roses are red, violets are blue...
In choosing both the base neutral colors and our highlight colors for our Capsule Wardrobe, we need to consider a few things:
Now as you may have already guessed, this is a hell of a lot of color and pattern theory to put in one little'ol blog post!!! So, I will cover the absolute basics and let you know where you can find more detailed information if it is something you are truly interested in finding out more about. 😉
What are base neutral colors and highlight colors?
A base neutral color is a color that we use for the foundation (base) of our wardrobe. It will match any other color in our wardrobe including the highlight colors. For example, black, grey, white, cream, navy, beige, brown, khaki, denim blue.
A highlight color is any other color that isn't a neutral!
1. What colors and patterns suit you?
Not too surprisingly, the colors that suit us the most in clothing tend to be the ones we actually like the most. They are dependent on our skin tone, hair color and eye color.
But clothing colors that are ideal for our eyes, hair and skin tone can change - because we change our hair color or we spend time in or out of the sun!
Refer to the comprehensive resources on Pinterest to determine the recommended colors for your current appearance - this will help you collate ideas for your wardrobe.
2. What colors and patterns do you love?
We have a natural tendency to prefer certain colors and patterns - whether in fabrics, artwork, photography style, or home decor - all of these are indications of what we like and can be transferred to clothing.
And as you can see from my dress collection above - I chuck in the occasional floral if it fits my color palette.
What do you love to take photos of? Flowers, sunsets, buildings, shadows?
What art work do you prefer? Monet, Degas, Picasso?
What fabrics do love for home wares, cushions? Stripes, knits, floral, graphic prints, tweed, block colors, animal?
3. What will all match back together to maximize outfit options?
Now we get into the technical part - how to match all the things you love back into each other.
Fortunately, someone fabulous has come up with a wonderful graphic that explains how to match patterns together on Pinterest here.
And another smart cookie has created one about matching colors, right here.
To use my wardrobe as an example, my color and pattern code is represented in the collage below.
To make things as easy as possible for myself, I tend to choose 2-3 highlight colors: Blues and pinks, 2-3 base colors: black, white and denim, and 2-3 pattern preferences: stripe, check and floral patterns.