Matching colors: what to match and how to match

Personally, I think, color matching is a tricky area for reasons that I am going to discuss here. This post also aims to provide a general guide of how to match colors if you decide to do this. 

One of the classic situations: you need to dress up for an occasion and  you find a red bag and a red pair of stilettos to match the color. At first glance it looks like a perfect match but once you arrive to the location, you feel that it looks strange. But why?!

First, this situation is called “anti-effortless chic”. In addition,  matching shoes with bag is a very outdated idea. I am not saying you can’t do this. You can, if you are aware of it and have enough sense of humor to go out looking as if you have spend a lot of time in front of the mirror :)) 

Another situation is when you see a very cool little red bag but decide that you have nothing to match it at home. You opt not to take it just to spend the whole afternoon regretting. But why?!

This is because your intuition tells you that you don`t have to match your little red bag with anything to look chic. Just wear it with jeans and shirt. Done. 

 

Now, how to match then? Here are few advices that one might found helpful:

  1. Match unusual items like earrings with shoes.1521435487898-2
  2. If neutrals, I do match shoes with blouse or jacket. It often gives a finished look but without overdoing. With brighter colors it becomes tricky.IMG_7963
  3. Pick matching tones for a better siluette. The trick is, however, to pick very different textures – otherwise the outfit will give an impression of a poorly and tastelessly matched look (nothing to do with effortless mess !!!).
  4. Match colors of bag and shoes if they contrast with each other stylistically ( one is sporty, another is office ).

Have fun matching!

 

 

 

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How art helps to shape personal style series. Pointillism by a non-professional eye.

So how an artwork influences dressing sense and style? For me, it is first of all the interplay between harmony of colors. The artwork  provides amazing examples  f how crossing the limits can be interesting or not at all. Kind of a study material to deal with my reactions. Here I would like to discuss a specific example of an impressionist artwork that I enjoy. I choose impressionist Paul Signac`s work as a first painting to discuss because of bright colors that I adore.
Inspired by  Instagram posts from @denis_gardari,  I aim to pay more attention to how I observe paintings. In addition, I felt like clarifying a question about pointillism – what kind of style is this?
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So here is a work from Paul Signac “Golfe Juan” (1896) as an example of pointillistic style.  The painting is currently a part of a armament collection in Worcester art museum. The specifics about this particular painting is in different from classical Impressionism structure: the canvas is “framed “ by  bay and trees. This work was painted in the South of France, showing St Tropes in the opposite side of the bay.
Many of current SS18 collections present pink-green combination. However, no matter how naturally these two colors look in nature, it is hard to incorporate them in everyday personal style without going over-the-board. And by this I mean not the brightness of the colors but the fine borderline between a great taste and kitsch. I found this particular painting to be the gemstone that provides a guidance for a very tasteful combination of these colors that are expressed in painting but are taken from nature. If you take a closer look, you ll notice that the ratio between green and pink is far away from being 50:50. There are dark green shades that rather serve as a frame and add accent. I think, this would be a great example of how to blend green and pink into an outfit. Little accents of darker green are just enough.
Discussing this painting further, lets talk about pointillism and how it is related to impressionism. Pointillism was invented by French (any doubts about it?:)) impressionist George Seurat. Intriguingly, he studied a book that was written by a French chemist Eugène Chevreul, who worked on developing oils and dyes; Charles Henry and American  physicist Ogden Rood, who worked a lot on color theory. Interestingly, color theory at first was an idea of de Vinci 9 Circle: artist-scientist-artist?:)). Anyways, the work from scientists influenced impressionists in a way that lead Seurat to come up with a new technique that he termed a “ separation of colors”- divisionism. The quintessence of this technique is in use of pointed application of pure color that results in optical mixture for a person who looks at the painting from a certain distance. The main advantage of this technique is the possibility to achieve more vibrant colors.
Signac was establishing Salon des Independents where he met Seurat. Signac followed and helped to develop Seurat’s technique and he named it a pointillism. Not so long after, however,  Felix Feneon ( a writer and an art critic) renamed this style one more time and referred to it as neo-impressionism. Therefore, divisionism, pointillism and neo-impressionism is the same technique.
In accordance to impressionniste.net, “Seurat’s first large painting (206x305cm) “A Sunday Afternoon on the Island of La Grande Jatte” – 1884-1886 may be considered as the founding masterpiece of Divisionism.”

Lets talk about pink and red

Even if you are tied from pink outfits of your little daughter, it is hard to resist a temptation and use this super bright combination in your outfits. It is very trendy (although not the main official according to Pantone) SS18 color combo and even fall collections have some traces of this bright, rather “sprinish” outfits ( just take a look at fall ready-to-wear Dice Kayek). At the same time, many will object that this combo is too bright and unnatural. To wear or not to wear, here I solve this question.

The very first rule that can be useful once it comes to color combination is to check the nature. Looking at the beautiful orchid flowers, it is amazing and obvious how often red-pink combo can be observed and how natural it is. So, if your concern is to go with natural colors – go for it without hesitation!

The next question is how to wear it in everyday life? Getting one pretty dress means that you ll wear this piece once, maybe twice. And then everyone knows, this is the same dress. Does not really sound that practical. I suggest getting two different items and once in a while pair them together. For my office look, I wear red coat ( that can be all worn in multiple combinations with greys and blacks and navy) and fuchsia pink pants that similarly can be combined with other colors. This way, you invest in many looks and get many variables instead of one non-exchangeable combination. If you are concern about the outfit being too bright, use darker shades and one item that can be removed in the office ( like coat).

Have fun with coloring your inter season days:)!!

 

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Studs: a timeless must have jewelry item

Recently, statement jewelry pieces took the central stage. To balance the situation for the purpose of well-styled wardrobe, I feel the need to write about studs as an essential jewelry. Unlike large statement trendy pieces, studs are timeless. We need them to highlight our beauty but not to override it. As if you whisper instead of shouting. Sometimes, whispering delivers message better than loud voice. Same is true for studs. 

You wear a party dress with bold necklace, power suit or sporty track pants –  studs will fit to any role. Many stylists and jewelry companies recommend diamond studs. Perhaps, the investment is justified, but think that you can pay the similar price for larger diamond in your ring. Personally, I prefer simpler pieces like these London topaz silver studs that I got from overstock for $17 ( maybe now $24). They look pretty and unlike their trendy sisters –  tassel earrings –  I wear these studs for several years, not just one season.  Thanks to their price tag, I do not have any fear of losing the earring. In fact, I already did, and got another pair – so now have enough of them. One critical thing regarding studs, is that they should have some sparkle – it lights up the face.

So this post is just to remind of how we can whisper with studs to get a great effect. The beauty of minimalistic style is to highlight the personality not the dress. And the main quality of an artist is the feeling of harmony. Studs fit this role beautifully.

 

 

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What life crisis has to do with dressing up

As absurd as it sounds, the relationship between life crisis and dressing up does exists. I am not sure if there is some gender specifics in this concept, but I would suspect that both, men and women has this connection. 

Obviously, there are many reasons for life crisis, which is a very general term that has different manifestations depending on particular individual, his personality, reason, and lifestyle. One common thing, however, is the need to change something. Whether it is job, family , lifestyle or health habits – all these require lots of energy, efforts and patience. But the crisis does not wait. It is heavy on everyday life. Right now. I found out that changing the way you look and dress helps to change the feeling about yourself and add spark to everyday life. It is like a spring to a bigger change. Interestingly, it is not necessarily the better dressing up ( although this helps!), but rather a different one. It can be also a downscale for sometime – why not if it makes you feel free from rules. From the other side, extra perfume and makeup paired with nice dress does wonders to many people.

In short, to begin the life change from changing the look is easier. And clothes is the easiest way to change the look. So why we forget about this? I think, partly, because once we get into philosophy mood, we stop thinking about clothes – as it represents materialistic  and  superficial  way people consume goods. Does not look as an attractive model for spiritual development and anti-crisis therapy. I already hear the argument about yogi who do not care about their outfits. hahahah! On the first place, they will not allow the crisis into their lives, and second, they are not supposed to care about many other things as well (like job and relationships). So if you choose yogi path, clearly, my advise will not work. However, if you care about every day life, outfit change might help:) and besides, it is fun too!

 

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Why this year tassel earrings will save your wallet and outfit

In the times when the transition between a workday and a dinner is narrowed to the  distance between the workplace and the restaurant, an ability to modify the outfit in no time is precious. Statement accessories are the key to such transformation. Below is  the solution to this “no time –  pretty me” dilemma. 

Whether you wear yellow scale high heels or a pair of sneakers to your work, going out requires a little of an upgrade. Jewelry is one of the best ways. However, nobody will carry extra golden pieces in their bags the whole day. A super-hot trend that costs very little and provides plenty of room to experiment is tassel earrings. Tassels earring represent a simple and beautiful way to upgrade most of outfits. For the cost of a fraction of a jewelry, they make a statement and boost the mood.

I also found out that wearing tassel earrings with very causal clothes (grey pullover for my yellow tassels) helps to create the everyday cozy chic. Bold colors and textures are the key. At the same time, the simple shape and less kitch always is an advantage. Have fun!

 

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When you don’t know what to wear, wear Boho. Here is why.

It happens very often: you are invited to meet for a dinner ( housewarming party, birthday or a baby shower) and you have no idea what the crowd will be like! How to dress up ? I found that Boho chic style is a solution for almost any scenario. 

Except for corporate event where the dress code is defined, multiple occasions involve people from different occupations, backgrounds and professions. As interesting and intriguing it can be, choosing the dress for such an event is always a challenging task. You know that someone who comes in a cocktail dress and another someone who wears pajama pants (not as a fashion statement). So what to wear to feel chic and comfy and to fit everywhere?   By experimenting, I found that Boho style works the best. There are few features that make this style universal:

  1. Layers: practically and stylistically this is an easy way to adjust to any environment.
  2. Bohemian roots ( more history of this style is discussed below): a symbol of freedom and free spirit – sure it is going to fit everywhere!
  3. Any, even very bold accessory does not look as “too much” but at the same time allows you to look chic.
  4. Boho can be easily adjusted to any economic situation and be chic despite historically being a budget-friendly style (in contrast to evening gowns). It has a lot of flexibility and individualism in it.

A little bit of a history. While we agree that the first association with boho chic comes from “make love and not war” statement,  roots of this style are much older than popular and never-out-of-fashion 70s. Boho chic style goes back to Bohemians and here the things are getting complicated. Bohemians are believed to be Bohemian Romanies that originated in Eastern Europe from Northern India about 1000 years ago (Kendrick, Donald (2007). Historical Dictionary of the Gypsies (Romanies) (2nd ed.). Scarecrow Press.).  Bohemian Romanies (“Gypsy”) gave an idea of free spirit and expression to poor artists much later (18th century) in France, especially after french revolution lead to lack of art support and patronage by wealthy people. Bohemian style at that time represents a different approach to artistic expression.

 Here I am citing the article about history of Bohemian style written by D.Monet https://bellatory.com/fashionindustry/BohoTheFashionHistoryofBohemianClothes:

“With their long flowing hair and rich, though threadbare fabrics, bohemians stand out in a crowd representing a colorful counterculture based on creativity, poverty, and an indifference to social structures and traditions…. A new cult of personality emerged with the artist as hero and individual style expressed in the way one dressed. An artist became a special type of person, not merely a crafts person, but a kind of eccentric genius whose creativity was displayed in the way they lived and looked. The artist himself (or herself) was a piece of art.”

 

 

Fast forwarded history, the ideological basis of bohemian style got transformed from the initial idea of expression of art and individualism in it`s non-materialistic version with presumably poor hygiene into a pricey fashion statement that dominates runways (Desigual is one of the companies that promotes the beauty of this style, see also Chloe SS18 collection). At the same time, during it`s 200 years history, boho style did not change the general principles of clothes style like it`s characteristic flowing dresses and layers with ethnic motifs from natural fabrics.

So what happens now? In my opinion, today boho chic is a way to express comfort and individualism more than the intellectual and artistic class. The visual attractiveness perhaps, is one of the major reasons that detached boho style from it`s initial poor economic but artistic origin. Such detachment  ironically, once more allowed this style to  gain its freedom from social cliche.