Wednesday, October 27, 2021

In Praise of fashion’s colors



By Lisa Smith Wood

It’s no secret that each season new color trends are thrust upon us through runway shows as designers deem new ‘it’ colors in the hopes of creating new options for retailers and consumers. Sometimes they get it right, other times not so much.

While I’m in favor of forward fashion, I’ve also reached a point in life when I know what colors work and what will not. Granted, I am but one in a sea of shoppers, though I happen to be stereotypically bland enough to represent the masses. So when fashion’s elite issues a dictum such as “orange is the new black”, I calmly think, ‘No, orange is not the new black, peach is not the new pink, and puce and chartreuse were never options in the first place.’

In reviewing runway shows of Fall ’11 collections from New York, Paris, and Milan, there is a sense of excitement not felt in some time. Whereas historically those of us living in Florida during the winter months were left to forage for something beyond nubby sweaters offered in a cornucopia of harvest colors reminiscent of bad crock-pot nightmares of the 1970’s, Fashion Avenue has come to our rescue. The popularity of cool shades of blue, purple and gray from current Spring offerings have been translated into rich, luxurious hues of colors that complement almost every complexion.

These new shades are not merely revisions of brazen jewel tones or aggressively intense shades that beg to prove their ability to camouflage random stains. Rather they are sophisticated and bold without being overbearing. Cobalt blues, teals and turquoises, purples and magentas can stand alone in monochromatic ensembles without fear of looking like a Smurf or oversized grape. Worn in small doses as scarves, belts, shoes, or carried as handbags, a sedately neutral ensemble is suddenly current.

What a relief to think I won’t have to hold up an avocado green or harvest gold jacket and wonder how much make-up I’ll have to wear to compensate for the sallow skin I have with the colors of Thanksgiving floating around my neck. This year I won’t have to walk away from burnt umber blouses wishing I were Halle Berry nor will I need a tan to rival George Hamilton’s in order to buy new arrivals on shelves in July or October.

Whether your skin tone is porcelain, olive, pink, black, brown, red or yellow, this season’s colors work for you. Shop fearlessly for current styles that flatter your specific figure. There are color choices for all of us. This year’s palette is beautifully wearable… and we don’t even have to be Halle Berry.


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