Tuesday, December 1, 2015

High Versus Low Contrast

Do you enjoy wearing black with pure white? Maybe that seems like way too much contrast for you.

Imagine a woman with high contrast in her own coloring, for example, a woman with pale porcelain skin and dark hair and eyes. She has a natural stark contrast within her own coloring so she can easily carry off high contrast looks such as the combination of stark white with pure black. 

Alternatively the woman with soft gray hair, pale skin and blue eyes might find various shades of gray a better level of contrast for her color choices.

Each person will have their own set of color tones that are best for them. For example your best red will be the same tone of red found on the inside of your bottom lip.

Look into the irises of your eyes. Do you see any gold there at all? If not, perhaps silver is your best metal color.

If you enjoy wearing black and white, your personal contrast level is likely high. If you are more comfortable in the gray and white combination your personal contrast level is likely on the lower scale.

Learning what colors and intensity of colors work best for you is a large part of creating a successful wardrobe. There is no magic formula that works for everyone and I don't claim to be a style expert, but I do hope that what I share will help you to think more about the details and pinpoint what works best for you.

Thank you for joining us on this journey through midlife and beyond. The second fifty years are truly the best!

Susan Street is the President of VintageJewelrySupplies.com.

Represented by Talent Trek Agency in Knoxville TN.

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Brandye Scotton said...

Oh my gosh!!! I wore black and white yesterday!! I have dark hair, blue eyes and fair to med. skin (fair but not pale). It's not a "usual" choice as I just love color. However, my ever so stylish great aunt (and former model in the 1940s & 50s) always wore black and white, well into her 70s. It's classy and makes a statement. It's not something my sister can wear. Her complexion is ruddy and black is just too harsh.

Speaking of my aunt, she would have LOVED your style and blog. Aunt Evelyn was rocking her high heels until the doctor had her daughter hide them---at 76!

Anonymous said...

This was very helpful, Susan. Formerly, my natural hair color was dark blonde with honey-colored highlights (with fair skin and light blue eyes). In those days, I could easily pull off the high-contrast look of black-and-white. However, my natural hair color is now various shades of warm grey and, you're right! - high contrast no longer works for me. I've learned to embrace the beautiful shades of heather, dove-grey, smoke and slate (punched with aqua, dusty pink and kiwi-green) in my clothing choices. Good post-thanks!

Janis H said...

I think that I remember awhile ago that you were getting rid of your black items of clothing because you felt that they weren't flattering. Now I see you in black again (which I think looks great on you). I'm low contrast (naturally blond hair, blue eyes, fair skin) and don't wear much black because of that. I've had other people tell me that I look good in black. How did you make that decision to go back to black based on your coloring? Great tip on red, by the way. I had never heard of that way to determine ones best red.

christy said...

I don't know how you do it Susan, but another great post. Thank you.

Susan said...

Hi Janis, Thank you for your note. I was working with a styling program for a short time that lead me to believe black wasn't a good color for me. After doing more research, I realized I was putting myself in the wrong category and that black was indeed a good base color for me. Sometimes it takes trying on the wrong clothes to be able to see clearly what is right for you.

Unknown said...

Interesting! I looked at the inside of MY bottom lip and I'm pretty sure there isn't anything out there to wear that looks even remotely like what I saw!?