Black to Safety7/25/2017
Black to Safety
Color - Just How Deep Does the Rabbit Hole Go?
I am an artist, painter, thus unmistakably presumed to have deep wisdom (and swift response!) to somehow unify the infinite sequence of fashion items by putting forth an approving response to the greatest fashion question of them all: “Does this color go with that?” Ironically, matching color is my personal nightmare. I have learned of this impairment when I stepped into my closet a couple years ago and realized I couldn’t see anything - not because of poor lighting but because 99.9% of everything hanging in there was - black. The remaining .1% belonged to a white dress shirt which I never put on because it was “too bright”. Since then I made conscious effort to incorporate other colors into my wardrobe but I still love wearing a lot of black. The only difference is the change of attitude with which I wear it today.
When it comes to fashion, there are only so many times a person can play it safe before it becomes distracting. Black is slimming. It’s also classy, mysterious and sexy. Black is serious, confident, rebellious and all grown up. It’s no news that many fashion surveys as well as color psych studies have confirmed both sexes consider black to be the most attractive color adding an extra spark to their interest. On the flip side, if one is not careful, black can easily grow out of control and make a person look like a self-smothering ever depressed time travelling teenager visiting from the fringes of the last millennium. If that did not scare you enough - it should have. When wearing black, caution is mandatory. Harvested just for you from bountiful fields of the World Wide Web here are several top shelf tips:
1. Do take the opportunity to craft your own silhouette opting for tailored garments vs. relaxed, shapeless ones. Exploit the slimming effects of black by pushing the fit to your maximum comfort level. You may tap into a whole new source of self-confidence once you discover what level of visual sophistication your actual body shape can pull off. Wear it with poise.
2. Do not attach yourself emotionally to natural fiber black garments in your wardrobe- they are all eventually going to fade! As if life weren’t hard enough, this is especially true of those comfortable cotton shirts and jeans which so often fade too quickly and at a different rate. It may sound ominous, but it’s better to divorce them into separates or retire them completely before they produce an unwanted unraveled look as opposed to intended expression of style and confidence.
3. Do choose fade resistant fabrics. When it comes to natural fabrics and retention of black dye, quality wool, cashmere and silk are less likely to fade than cotton. Synthetic fabrics are even less likely to fade. Any garment you choose will have a tag with care instructions. Follow them to extend your garment’s life!
4. Do not dress in solid black from head to toe. Black is the color which absorbs all wavelengths of light. Unless your assemblage is at least somewhat dynamic in layers and texture, from more than a few inch distance you may appear as if you were trying to escape from being swallowed by a vantablack blob monster by poking your arms through its sides. (That is only if your sleeves are rolled up, otherwise it may appear you are losing the battle).
5. Do assemble your outfit to cleverly express your level of fashion consciousness by juxtaposing fabric properties such as weight or luster to create dynamics visible to refined, critical eyes - match your ensemble to the situation. Choosing black with very subtle detail will certainly fulfill its potential in well illuminated situations with the beholder at short distance.
6. Do not use black to “not be seen” and then go to a highly social situation like - a club. It’s blasé. Unless you are a head-to-toe covered ninja on a mission, you will most certainly achieve an effect in direct opposition with “not being seen”. Would you have rather stayed at home? I thought so. If you are simply playing that fun, paradoxical role for the unsuspecting - I wish you good luck!
7. Do keep your black - clean. I cannot stress this enough. To start with the obvious - don’t let your cat sleep in the laundry basket. Jokes aside - invest in a clothes shaver and always have a pocket size lint-roller ready when you are wearing black. You can get them at any drugstore for a couple of bucks. There’s nothing more disagreeable with style than wearing black clothing covered with a layer of DNA and other visible forensic evidence since the last time the garment was cleaned. Do not even THINK about doing a crazy hack you may have seen on the web such as using a black marker or painting mascara onto a stain of ANY origin - people notice. Not clean? Leave it at home.
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