Category Archives: Color

Art v. Makeup

Fortunately, I was invited to attend a two-hour workshop taught by the national makeup artist of Chanel.

The makeup artist was just that, a degreed artist. After the workshop, I had a different view on applying makeup and skin care. I will paraphrase the main points that I picked up that had never occurred to me. I now look at makeup application through the eyes of an artist using canvases and color mediums, and not as a quick application of product.

Your face is a canvas. Since your face is three-dimensional and not flat, your makeup should be applied to a three-dimensional canvas, allowing for shadowing and contouring in creating your beautiful masterpiece. For example, blush is considered part of the foundation of creating your face. It is not an afterthought. Products are used in creative ways to create the perfect canvas. It does not require more products, just a different application of the correct products.

Makeup is your medium. It should be applied to your canvas as paint is applied to a canvas by an artist. Look at your features. Study your face and neck. Once you know the contours and details of your canvas, your application of the medium will be easier as it has a specific purpose and not just a quick, three-step approach called makeup application.

Once the medium is applied, pull out your hand mirror and inspect your work. Look at all sides of your canvas to determine if the medium is uniformly applied to create your envisioned masterpiece. Look at the finished product as an artist views theirs.

 Skin care is applied the same way. Determine the areas of the canvas that need treatment and treat only those areas. A minor blemish on a canvas does not require the entire canvas to be treated, just the blemish. And different treatments may be required on different areas of the canvas. Remember this is art, not just a smacking on of product onto a flat face.

Treat your face as the masterpiece it is, and you will enjoy the rewards of your beauty.

Stay Real,

Julia

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Guess What I Did!

I decided that yesterday was the day to change my hair color. I wanted to change the naturally-dyed brown hair of yesteryear, to the naturally-stripped white hair I have today.

Boy were my eyes opened! I had no idea how hard this task would be. It only took a team of four to do this. Kudos to my hairdresser and team, because they succeeded.

I had decided the day before, on a whim, that it was time to be a big girl and accept my “natural” hair color. Now, I have not seen this natural color except when the roots begin to show. In fact, I have not worn my natural hair color since I was 18, but I have reached a point in my life where I want to wear my “natural” hair color. I see some irony here.

Since my hair was dyed its natural-brown color only two weeks ago, it was a nice, strong, dark color. And just two months before that, I changed my nine-year red color back to my “natural” brown. So, at the time I scheduled my appointment, I did not realize that taking dark-brown hair (over nine years of red color) to white, may take more than a couple of hours. In fact, I never realize the extent of time and effort of any of my undertakings until they are complete. Hind-sight is great teaching tool.

After three processes and six hours later, my hair is now stripped to its natural, white color. I love it! Maybe nature does know what it is doing.

But remember, hair color is an accessory and can always be changed on a whim. I am living proof.

Stay Real,

Julia

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The Color Wheel

A color wheel is a definite closet must-have.

Think of getting dressed as creating art. You are the canvas, and your clothing is the color medium used for creating the work of art. The color wheel displays the colors, defines the various combinations of color, and shows how the colors work together.

Let’s look at some examples of how a color wheel helps me put together a wardrobe that uses my best colors, while putting together outfits that go.

I have a pair of dark purple pants that I adore. They are the starting point of my outfit. Now, what do I put with purple pants? I pull out my color wheel and see that the complimentary color to purple is yellow. Guess what? I have a yellow jacket in my closet and it pulls together my basic “suit,” so let’s move on to the blouse. Well, I have a silk blouse with gray as the background. The blouse pattern contains the colors blue, red, and green. The print is large, so the gray basically fades away. Blue and yellow makes green, so the yellow goes. Green is the complimentary color to red, so that color also goes. And blue is close to purple on the color wheel, so that combination also works. I have just created a beautifully-colored outfit that is uniquely mine.

Now, let’s pull out that color wheel and see how many other “suits” or outfits we can put with that one blouse. Since I am big on mixing prints with pinstripes, this blouse goes with a navy pinstripe with ease. I also have a gray suit, three if I remember correctly, so this is a no-brainer. Black or white suits would definitely pop with this blouse.

What if I were to pair the blouse with jeans and throw on a red cardigan or jacket? And let’s not forget the yellow jacket. What a color combination!

The color wheel saves many a closet meltdown. You are running late, and you grab the first suit available that happens to be navy. Grab a blue or green blouse. Those colors are beside blue and will look polished and understated.

Color is used in art. Color is used in nature. But mostly, color is used in creating a beautiful style – yours.

Stay Real,

Julia

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Does this Match?

How many mornings have you had a closet meltdown because you couldn’t find anything to wear? You tried on different combinations, but they just didn’t match, so you just picked up whatever you could find and put it on.

Rather than asking the question: “Does this Match,” what if you replaced the word “Matched” with the word “Go?”

You do need your “black suit” to match, because it is the basis of your wardrobe. But, when I shop for non-suit pieces, I view each piece I add to my wardrobe as a work of art. These pieces do not always match, but they always “go.” Somewhere in the subconscious, I pick up on an underlying theme, be it color, style, or some other attribute. I know it will go.

As a lover of menswear fabrics, I match tweed with herringbone, hounds-tooth, glen plaid, etc. Do these fabrics match? No. Do they go? Yes.

I mix prints with pinstripes. Again, does this match? No. Do they go? Yes. In fact, many compliments are given on the creative use of fabrics in creating the looks.

So when purchasing items for your wardrobe, ask yourself, “Does this Go?” You might be pleasantly surprised by the difference.

Stay Real,

Julia

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Color: Nature v. Neutral

Several years ago, I found the perfect neutral purse. The color was sky blue. Perhaps, most people would not consider sky blue a neutral color, but look up when you go outside on a clear, sunny day. You just might see a blue sky. The purse style was similar to a doctor’s bag; some might even consider it more of a mini suitcase. But it was made of the softest pebble leather, and in fact, the sky blue did go with absolutely every item of clothing in my closet. My family considered it an impulse purchase, but to me, it was a once-in-a-lifetime find.

This gave me pause to ponder, if the sky goes with everything, then perhaps it is a neutral. As I looked around me, I realized that the sky goes with the grass, goes with the flowers, goes with the trees, etc. This opened up a whole new world of neutrals. Looking around nature, I rarely saw black, taupe, or saddle brown. I saw vibrant, beautiful color.

Now, yes, I do have the obligatory neutrals of black, taupe, and saddle brown in my closet for the professional events where some might not appreciate the beautiful colors of nature. But looking at my purses in the closet is like looking at a beautiful rainbow of neutrals.

Stay Real,

Julia

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Color Your Style

I – am – so – excited. I just completed my color analysis on the computer and guess what – I am a Winter! So, the report says to run out and buy all my seasonal clothes and makeup so that my eyes will be brighter, my teeth whiter, and I will be amazing. But wait, the analysis only asked a few questions. What color is my hair? Brown. What color are my eyes? Blue. What shade of white-out is my skin? Translucent.

Based on these three questions, how does the computer, or anyone, really know my exact colors to make me lighter, brighter, smarter, and perfectly polished? Guess what – the computer forgot to ask my age.  It forgot to ask me if my “real” hair color is brown, or is it dyed my natural-brown color. Are my eyes still blue, or have they faded to a gray-blue, but I am still in denial and fudging on the real answer. Is my skin the same smooth color of translucent that it was a decade ago? What happened to the questions relating to my profession, personal preferences, and fashion style? Perhaps there is more to this seasonal magic than meets the eye.

As an image consultant, I want to be that special person that takes the three infamous questions and transforms them into your image, not a homogenous product.

Your color analysis and image are more than a mere short questionnaire. They are the perfect you waiting to emerge.

As decided above, I am a winter. My colors are black, white, red, and various other jewel tones. But wait, my black is no longer black. My black is now charcoal gray. And I have noticed that I have been purchasing my suits in navy (three of them), gray (again, three of them), and only one black. My famous red accents have slowly moved to a more claret color, and fuchsia softened to raspberry. Why, because I have aged and the softer colors provide me the same powerful look, without washing out my remaining translucent skin, or flaunting my emerging wrinkles. The colors also complement my naturally-colored dyed hair. I was unaware I was making these subtle changes, but subconsciously something just screamed that the changes were needed for the newly-aged me.

So we will begin with the answered questions, and start creating the perfect color palette. Although there are as many different ideas on color analysis as there are authors, the fact remains that you will fall into one of the four seasons; winter, spring, summer, or fall. There will be a season for you representing your best colors, but your colors may have softened within the season. Again, this is a normal procession of life. You will find that you are more confident in certain colors from your season, making you more in charge of your image. Using paint chips, yes I borrowed this wonderful idea from David Zyla, look and compare the colors to your personal likes and dislikes, as well as what will work with your life. This will become a mini package you can keep with you at all times to arm you with the correct tools for your purchases. In many cases, a need for an impulse purchase for immediate gratification is sought. This impulsive purchase for purely immediate gratification happens to everyone.

Maybe you fall into my target market of ages 40+, who has reached an executive or top professional position. You need the correct color wardrobe to enhance your credibility, wear the correct colors to your professional events, in order to create that critical first impression in any situation in which you may find yourself.

I see so many of our professional peers fall into the “black hole” as I call it, which is not as becoming to 40+ year-old skins. The color black becomes harsh to clients as they age and a new color may need to replace black. This is the age where you need to present yourself in your correct and most becoming colors to give you an edge over the other “black hole” professionals.

The color Black does not necessarily mean that you made it to the top. Black signifies that you may have lost touch with yourself and your station in life or simply that you have not taken the time to improve you. Your black suit need not be black, but your best color, be it gray, navy, chocolate, or other suitable professional color, or maybe it is black.

Your colors are confident. Your colors are fun. Your image begins.

Stay Real,

Julia

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