Sunday, 20 December 2015

Bright LIghts Small Town

In my colour testing mood, and grabbing any moments when the lighting is decent, I have tested some of my brighter items.  (All two of them)

I have to admit I am aware that I look rather amazing in this pink.  The right colours clear your complexion and brighten your eyes like no makeup can.  It's very bright on me, and looks duller off me.  It's a strange phenomenon.  On a hanger it's dark dusty rose and on me it's fuchsia.

And my other brightly coloured garment (Notice they are all soft, lightweight sweaters with no shine.  I have a strong preference for that.) is a bright blue.  A close look shows the individual threads are different colours, mauve and aqua blue.  I love that sort of effect. 

I find that texture matters to me a great deal, not just for the comfort of wearing it but for the effect it gives to colour.  Some colours do not appeal to me if they seem too opaque and solid.  I like a heathered quality, or silvery, crushed velvet or some sort of matte linen often appeals but with a colour that I really want in a silvery tone, such as aqua, I find it appealing in satin.  Perhaps this is because I find aqua it's most beautiful with a sort of translucence like water or glass and somehow the satin or taffeta gives that look. 

I have a confession to make.  It's probably not the big secret I think it is.  I have been running away from certain aspects of myself for a long time.  Look at me.  I am all ivory and pinkness.  I like sweet fragrances.  Roses, peonies, pearls, yup I love them.  And soft fluffy kittens, cashmere sweaters and lop eared bunnies.  I was afraid of the message pastels might send and confused about colours that I see as bright.  Bright is a somewhat subjective term, and some colour brightness is overwhelming to me, both emotionally and on my body.  But there are softer brights, slightly lighter but on me they stool look bright.  I have begun to find them  I had no idea I looked this pretty.

I had no idea my skin was all this porcelain bisque and roses.  I did not know my eyes were this light or that they could sparkle.  Heck I didn't even know they were this colour.  I think I'm quite used to seeing myself with enlarged pupils.  I thought I was a bit mousey and that I had to present myself as stronger, darker, tougher in order to survive in this world.  I'm not what you might call girly but I am very classically feminine.  I am soft and gentle and generally not loud and I was ashamed of that.  It's not really cool to be that way right now and when I was younger I thought that I had to put that aside in order to be grown up.  Then I got stuck there in dark colours, the dark version of any colour I like.  If I ventured towards a pastel I took a greyed version because I did not want to remind anyone of cotton candy.

Clearly my colouring is very cool, slightly soft, and mostly light though my hair is dark in comparison.  I am almost a winter if you are into seasonal colour analysis but I am a bit too delicate for winter.  Black and white are too harsh on me.  I am a summer.  And I am ready to embrace the colours of summer.  I don't have a lot of them in my closet but it's a new goal.  I have a few sweaters and a few scarves.  It's a start.  I am visible even though I am not loud.  I am amazed.

I love this colour.  It's probably technically a pastel and yet it feels strong to me.  Strong but in a good way.  It balances me.

Squinting into sunlight here.  This colour feels very strong to me but I think it is working.  I've had this scarf for two years and not worn it.  It might be a little too intense for me but it's definitely not bad.   I'm less sure about it though.

Maybe not as good as the other pink but I think this is a keeper too.  It's better than darkness.  I didn't drape the silver scarf below quite as carefully but you can still see that it works well.  I would not have guessed that such a pale silver grey would be good and I would have bought a medium grey but this time I asked the opinions of a few people in the store and the light one was the unanimous choice.

I'm wearing a bit of mascara and some hastily dabbed on under eye concealer in these photos but these colours make me look like I've applied pink blusher.  I am a bit distracted by how much lighter my eyebrows are than my hair but colours that do this much good for my face should be colours I wear regularly.  Maybe I'll have to start doing eyebrows but I think I can skip the blusher.

Obligatory Digression:  Isn't it weird how much hair colour changes with the lighting?  In the first picture I almost look salt and pepper and in the second last one I have auburn highlights.  My hair has darkened with age, but I'm not actually salt and pepper just yet.

So, it is my goal to lighten up.  The Pantone colours of Spring 2016 will be useful in that goal.  I've already lightened up my neutrals, favouring mid greys and taupes though I still have a lot of navy.  Handbags and footwear are always a challenge as I would ideally like grey or taupe or even a greyed blue but it's rare.  I only carry one style handbag and I only buy leather so I've yet to see the right bag in grey, taupe or a mid-blue but I'm always looking.  Brown does the job for now.  It's a bit softer than black and I've always loved it.

Breakdown of the ultimate goals for colour in my wardrobe....

Cool tones, slightly softened, medium colour value with some lights and darks making outfits always a medium value contrast.

Medium grey, grey-blue or medium taupe for classic shoes and bags.  Brown is easier to find than grey but it's still a challenge to get cool browns.   A dark charcoal or very soft and faded black will work, especially for formal shoes.  A matte texture makes black look softer.



Not that I can't and won't wear dark colours.  The darks in the chart above also suit me well but they are familiar and I tend to rely on them too often.  The second darkest are also in my comfort zone.  It's going lighter or brighter that I am eager to pursue.

This is the enforced stopping line.  Not for you dear reader but for me.  I must now shut up about colour.  At least until next time.

I will allow myself to say something about my other obsession though.  Fragrance!  I finally found The One in a local shop and bought myself a bottle.  Now I am in scented and coloured bliss and to link up with Patti and the gang at Visible Monday.


  1. Yes, you look amazing in that pink. And in all those cool bright pastels. You should wear them more. Ok, maybe I'm a bit biased: my colouring is very much like yours. But that pink really makes you glow.

  2. Shawna you really look beautiful wearing colour. I think colour makes us all happy!

  3. Wow, yes, these colors are beautiful on you, Shawna. I love this experiment,a nd thanks for sharing it with us. xox


  4. I love this post. I'm horrible at enforcing color goals, especially because lime green is, for some reason, a color I love to wear. It's going to be hard with cosmetology school coming up- ALL BLACK EVERY DAY with only accessories as the allowed color. I think that pinky color works so beautifully on you and I love love love love your hair. (Short hair envy, really really want to cut my hair again.)

  5. Yes!!!
    That is all :-)
    No, actually, I also see you in a winter white softly fluffy jumper/sweater.
    I've always said you have porcelain skin! Now didn't I?
    I agree the darker green scarf should work due to your eye colour, but somehow doesn't lift you like the others.
    I have been surprised that I can wear a pale icy blue. As a Winter, mostly pastels wash me out so I avoid them. But some icy clear colours work for me.
    What a great discovery for you. A whole new colour world to explore.
    So happy you found your scent...even if it is old fashioned!! :-D You trend setter, you! Xo Jazzy Jack

  6. I think you do look lovely in these colours, especially the first two- they are really beautiful!!!x

  7. You definitely need to wear more colour ... I LOVE the pink, bright blue and lavender ... my least favourite is he silver.

    Your hair looks lovely and I certainly cannot see any salt and pepper anywhere!!!

  8. YAY for colors!!! YAY for lightening up!! Shawna, you look amazing - stunning - gorgeous in these hues. You are Summer! I am such a rookie compared to you in terms of understanding/knowing colors. I do everything intuitive, I have almost zero knowledge what colors goes well with what, and I also have a poor visual memory. I can easily mix up turquoise, teal and aqua, for instance. It seems you know colors inside and out, and I am at awe with your abilities to understand them so well, to really feel them.

  9. This was very very inspiring to read and thank you for being this often we are afraid to wear what makes us look well...why is that? Sometimes we just need to find out what shades look best for us and sometimes deep inside we know but are afraid to admit it...for example, I look horrible in black. That is why I will usually have a colourful scarf on when I wear a black coat. I only wear total black for funerals and only for close relatives and friends because if I wear it for people I don't know so well, I feel like I'm imposing myself.....long digression sorry!!

    You do look amazing in fuchsia...and all of these pastel and light shades are just gorgeous on you. I didn't know your eyes were this shade of blue either...maybe I did notice it on some photographs, but now there is a definite change (and I did notice it in a previous post) in your eyes...there is a twinkle there that has to do with your embracing your own beauty not just with finding the right shades for yourself (althought that is always good).


I love visitors and I love comments. I will try my best to respond to everyone! Thanks for stopping by.