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color coordinated

Use color knowledge to your fashion advantage!

Color is a big part of fashion. There's trending colors, seasonal colors, and there's color combinations that you never thought of! So, how do colors really play a part into our outfits every day?

Everyone loves a compliment... and complementary colors might get you one! Complementary colors are pairs of colors that when combined can cancel each other out, but they can also give the biggest contrast! In color theory, complementary colors are opposite each other on the color wheel. These color combinations can be very pleasing to the eye, and you may see them more than you think. Examples include: red and green (oh hi, Christmas color palette!), yellow and purple, and blue and orange. Think about popular sports teams, or company logos... and you may recall these combinations used! When you're putting together an outfit, you usually want to go with what "matches," and complementary colors may not be your first choice. Brighter colors tend to be paired with neutrals because you are afraid to "clash" - but it doesn't always have to be that way. Just because a pattern only has red and orange in it doesn't mean the rest of the outfit has to be the same! Add a little bit of green for a fun twist. Next time you're putting together a colorful outfit, pull up the color wheel and see what complements! You might be surprised.

Seasons change, and so do color palettes. You often hear people talking about certain colors associated with the seasons. For example, spring is lighter colors and pastels. Fall is earth tones, golds and oranges. One reason for seasonal color palettes is the feeling you can get from the colors. A fall color palette matches the colors of fall with the leaves changing, but it also can make you feel warm and cozy. A summer palette is bright and fun, which is a feeling associated with summertime. With that in mind, you probably aren't choosing a pastel purple sweater to wear in the fall or a red shirt to wear in the spring. This is also reflected into stores, as you can usually find season-typical colors during each season. Close your eyes, and see what color you imagine with each season. Is spring light and airy? Is summer bold and bright? Is fall warm and cozy, and is winter crisp with maybe a touch of sparkle? You can always go outside of these typical palettes, but see if you notice how you dress each season and if its similar to the colors of that season!

Colors can also play a big role in pattern matching. I know, I know... two patterns TOGETHER? Listen. Patterns can go together but you have to do it *right*. Meaning when you pair patterns, you match the color ways. For example: two black and white patterns, or a pattern with red and pink mixed with a pattern of pink and white! Keep it within the same color family and you can pair patterns. If you're really going for a daring look, pair complementary color patterns!

Finally... let's talk about trending colors! What makes a color trend? To go fully in depth could probably be a whole new blog post, but here's the short version: trend forecasters predict upcoming trends, including colors. Top-name designers use this information from the forecasters to create new collections. From there, the colors and trends trickle down the line until the colors are in every market. In a way, it's a REALLY long game of copy-cat, but that's how trends work! Upon a quick Google search, I was able to find Fall 2021 trending colors of bright yellow, orange, and... fuchsia! Okay, wait. Didn't I just say colors are associated with seasons? Yes, but sometimes plans change, especially when you want new ideas. These colors still fit into a fall palette, as yellow and orange are typical fall colors, just with a brighter update this time around. Fuchsia, however, is a bit different. It still fits into fall because of the richer and deeper shade, still evoking a feeling of warmth.

So what should you take away from this? You can only wear pastel in the spring? Or if you're wearing red, you MUST wear green? No, and no! Knowing how colors work in fashion can help you plan your next outfit and step outside of your box. Maybe you pair an indigo pant with a burnt orange top. Or maybe you can create mini-wardrobes for each season, so you have less of the "what do I wear" moments. Whatever you take from this, have fun and stay colorful!


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