Wardrobe Renos by Kay: Blog and Business

Saturday, 8 June 2013

Using the Placement of Colour to your Advantage

Hi everyone! Welcome to the weekend.

Most of what we're going to focus on today is intuitive, but I think the challenging component is actually applying it. Placement of colour will either work to your advantage or to your disadvantage, but to go further, something that acts as a disadvantage for someone of a particular body shape will be an advantage for someone of a different body shape.

We can use colour to make you appear:
  • Taller: Wear shoes the same colour as your bottom half (assuming you are wearing a solid colour) or wearing e.g. a nude coloured shoe to match your skin colour if you are wearing shorts, capris or a skirt
    • By wearing the same colour enables your eye is able to travel quickly down the length of your body without stopping hence creating an illusion of being taller
  • Taller/Thinner: Use one solid colour for your pants and top, and add a jacket or sweater. This is called Column Dressing which creates one long vertical line from top to bottom hence making you appear taller and thinner.
  • Shorter: Wear shoes of a different colour as your bottom half 
    • To add to this you can also wear a belt of a different colour than your top or pants
    • Using these breaks of colour forces your eye to slow down, hence creating an illusion of being shorter

Examples of Taller
All of these photos are perfect examples of appearing taller - the shoes blend into the legs, making the girls seem longer/taller. One thing you have to be careful with nude shoes, is making sure they're actually nude, or that they do actually match your skin colour. You will notice with "Classic Swing Dress" example that the dark beige shoes do NOT blend in the skin colour, hence foreshortening the legs. Also note the other example - the black pants again blend into the black boots, creating a lengthening effect.


Example of Taller/Slimmer (Column Dressing)
This is a great example of column dressing -both the pants & top are black, and the jacket of a different colour. This jacket still has the black in it, but you can have a jacket in a different colour. The underlying colour, in this example is black, but can be any colour and the pieces don't need to be solid pieces. The darker the colour, the more slimming. The only change I'd make would be to replace the green shoes with black, extending the black straight through, creating a lengthening effect.

Examples of Shorter
Conversely to the "longer" examples, the colour is broken up in these examples, creating a foreshortening effect.This effect works really well for taller women who want to appear shorter, but not for shorter women who want to appear taller! :) For the first two examples, the shoes are a different colour than the pants/dress. And in the JNY dress example the beige belt, also breaks the flow of red, creating a shortening effect.

Next.co.uk: Tie Front Stud Top
JNY.com: Classic Swing Dress

Next.co.uk: Marl Jersey Maxi Dress

One thing I've noticed about each of these effects is that you notice them more clearly when you view the person or yourself (in a mirror) from a distance. You could practice these looks in the mirror :).

I'll talk to you next week. I think we're going to dive into some key pieces for summer before talking about body types.


Kay :)


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