Let’s talk about colour. Ah yes, a favourite topic of ours. We’ve touched on this theme a number of times over the years; why we love colour, why we think it’s important to incorporate it into our lives and why people shy away from it. This last statement, why people avoid colour, particularly in their wardrobes, is something we have always been interested in.
It’s as if something happens between childhood to adulthood where that desire to wear brightly coloured clothes disappears. But we don’t buy that. In fact we believe that is a load of crap. We think what is really going on is that people, especially women, have been brainwashed to believe that darker colours are more “flattering” on the figure. Because, you know, women are life-sized dolls meant to be dressed up for the entertainment of others, and we wouldn’t want to offend anyone by wearing unflattering clothes.
But do you know what is truly unflattering? Feeling depressed all the time because you only wear black and varying shades of black until one day you look in the mirror and realize you have been in mourning your entire adult life but no one has actually died! Except for your colourful wardrobe, that definitely died in your tween years. Most likely murdered by a fashion editor somewhere who has made their entire living off of statements like, every women should own a little black dress (insert eye roll here).
But guess what? Wearing colour is like riding a bike, you don’t ever forget how to do it. You may be a little rusty at first, but soon you will get the hang of it and be flying down rainbow road with hot pink streamers billowing in the wind! But first, baby steps, which is where we come in. We are going to take you through our guide to incorporating colour back into your wardrobe.
Step 1: Accessories
Start with a neutral outfit, something you are comfortable wearing in your every day life. Think of this as your blank canvas. Black, white and brown will do the trick. Feeling good? Still inside of your comfort zone? Great, let’s step out a tiny bit shall we? Focus on accessories; a bight necklace and colourful bracelets should do it, if you want to get a little crazy try a screamin’ purse. The trick with colourful accessories is if you happen to be overcome by the sheer amount of colour you are wearing you can save yourself a panic attack on the c-train and remove them as quickly and discretely as possible. Or rip them off in a frantic manner with a look of complete terror in your eyes. Either way try to work with small, easily removed items for your own comfort.
Step 2: Accessories and partial outfit
Ok, deep breathing, you’ve conquered Step 1 and nobody mistook you for a clown. Hmm, maybe this colour thing might work after all. Now let’s up your game and add more to the mix! Try to add colour to HALF of your outfit – bottoms or tops, your choice. The idea here is to increase your commitment to colour. You won’t be able to rip of those pants at work if you are feeling uncomfortable. Unless walking around Porky Pig style doesn’t make you feel uncomfortable? In which case bravo M’lady, our hats are off to you.
Step 3: The whole shebang!
Now it’s time to get your colourful big girl panties on and go all in. You’ve slowly been building up to this moment! This is what you’ve trained for! It’s all or nothing baby! (Insert other motivational sporting quotes here!). At this point there really are no rules, we say just go hog wild. If you put enough colours together they will all seem to match, like a Jackson Pollock painting. Take your inspiration from a rainbow, because that’s what you are, a goddamn rainbow!
Well there you have it, the NEAT guide to reintroducing colour back into your wardrobe. It may be a little tricky in the beginning but don’t be deterred. Stick with it and one day you’ll look down and be wearing a pair of technicolour floral pants and think, my god I’ve done it, I’ve learned how to wear colour again! And all will be right again in your world. Now go get em’ you colourful tiger you!
Photos by Sarah Knorr