How do you feel about the color purple? It’s one of my favorites.
Thrilling or perplexing, the color purple is capturing cultural attention. Since the purple clothing around inauguration looked really good in the media, it’s reasonable we’ll be seeing more purple fashions.
Purple politics aside, let’s take a closer look at purple and how to wear purple gemstones and clothing in an energizing way.
Blue + Red = Purple
Regal, exotic, and a bit mysterious, purple is a combination of varying amounts of blue and red. Purple is the color of creativity and said to have the calm surrender of blue and the sensual passion of red.
On the chart from LLC below, you can see “magenta” is a reddish purple and “violet” is a bluish purple. We can lighten purple to create a lavender tint or darken it achieving an eggplant or mulberry shade.
ABOVE: There is a wide variety of gemstones in purple hues.
Are purple gems the best way to accessorize purple clothing? Yes and no…
Have you ever thought, “I love this Amethyst, but I don’t wear purple clothes?” You do not have to match your jewelry to your clothing.
I tell my clients since clothing is ephemeral and jewelry has longevity, start with the jewel and build your clothing around your jewels.
A purple gem doesn’t “pop” or show best worn with purple clothing – it gets lost in the monochromatic sea of purple.
For a gem to stand out from the clothing, the two must contrast yet balance. See below how Amethyst looks with navy, chocolate, marigold, burgundy, evergreen, gray, cream or olive.
ABOVE: Amethyst “pops” against non-purple fabrics
ABOVE: Tonal color layering
The key to color combinations is to balance colors of similar strength and “feeling.” This can be done in two ways: combining contrasting colors of equal strength or by layering tonal hues for a harmonic, monochromatic look.
Composing your Color Symphony
I have a neurological superpower called “synesthesia”
where I hear colors.
Here’s How I Wear Purple
If you mix the vibrant or icy with the muted and dusty, the effect can deconstruct or cancel each other’s affect. When this happens with our wardrobe, we don’t feel powerful.
Look at the colors around you. Some will be vibrant or icy glimmering in the light; others are muted or dusty dulling the light. Think of icy glacial blue versus slate blue or cotton candy versus dusty rose or mauve.
Combine Colors that Balance Feelings, Power or Weight
LEFT: Purple jewelry a bit heavy for blouse color & texture;
RIGHT: Purple-toned jewelry just right for blouse.
ABOVE: The same bold jewelry ensemble from the lavender blouse shown above
is better balanced with heavier fabrics in deeper hues.
ABOVE & BELOW: Jewelry combinations that work withthe lavender blouse -notice the jewelry doesn’t all match in color. The key is to mix colors of similar depth and strength so they don’t over power each other. The first photo on the left,the tanzanite, is borderline overpowering with the light lavender blouse.
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