If you read Bridget Jones’ Diary, you probably remember Bridget’s Mum urging her to ‘get her colours done’. “Mavis Enderby used to be all miserable in buffs and mosses…” At the risk of turning into Bridget, (or her overbearing mother), that’s what I did earlier this month – partly to help me choose some new fabrics to sew with.
I’ve always been drawn to colourful clothes, but recently I’d noticed that I was choosing almost everything in grey or navy. And since my son was born, I’d had so many days where I woke up looking pretty grey that I felt I was turning into a Spitting Image sketch about John and Norma Major. I’ve read the Colette Wardrobe Architect series, but I was struggling to work out which colours suited me out of the ones I like.
So I booked in for a colour analysis consultation with Meg Hanlon, a local Colour Me Beautiful consultant. Meg and I tried out lots of different colour swatches next to my face to see which ones made me look hungover and which as though I’d slept well and breakfasted solely on quinoa, organic eggs and watercress. We also looked at which ones go together well and the hair and make-up colours that would suit me best.
For those who are up with the lingo, I’m soft, cool and deep*. CMB cops a lot of flack for being overly prescriptive, but you really don’t have to take every recommendation as a rule. It definitely helped me see I’d been restricting myself to just a handful of colours, and opened my eyes to some others that suit me as well. Rose brown, for example – I’d never really considered having brown in my wardrobe, and there are so many different greens.
Looking through my fabric stash, I can see that most of my fabrics are in the colours Meg identified for me – there’s a lot of blue and grey, but there’s also some pink, plum, red and ivory. But it’s also quite a narrow range of colours. I think I can probably accommodate some more browns, purples and greens in there, and I’ve now got some new ideas for neutrals other than just navy, black and grey so I think it will influence my fabric shopping habits and the things I make.
Do you sew in all the colours of the rainbow, or do you stick to the same three or four shades?
*CMB UK has updated its colour groupings since Bridget Jones’ Mum had her colours done. They used to use groups named after the four seasons but there are now six: warm, cool, soft, clear, light and deep.