Essex and London based colour analyst Eleanor Mitchell helps you to choose the right colours for you, your home and your wardrobe this Christmas, with top tips to help you work in new colours alongside your personal favourites
Get your Christmas colours right for 2019
Colour is everywhere. Even if you only wear black and grey and have off-white walls, colour still counts! Every season the fashion industry and high street will announce the latest on trend colours, but these are not always right for everyone. Whenever choosing colours for your home, it is important to remember that if you don’t love what you choose you will soon tire of it and find yourself redecorating sooner than is necessary. Meanwhile, colours for clothes can be more transient but it’s still important to remember that if you don’t like what you are wearing, you won’t feel confident and happy in it. This winter you can take inspiration from new colours and here is how you can work your favourites into how you next shop for clothes or decorate your home. At Christmas time, why not choose something different to the little black dress and brighten up the home with splashes of colour in time for your arriving guests?
COLOUR AND YOU
Think about the one thing in your wardrobe you are always complimented on and I guarantee that will be one of your ‘wow colours’. The right colours make our eyes pop, hide a multitude of
dark circles and shadows, and is a powerful way to look good and feel good.
Colour analysis is used to find your wow colours and show you what is right for you. We base colour analysis on the colour wheel which is used across the design and fashion industries. It shows that colour is made up of three components comprising undertone (warm or cool colour), depth (light or dark) and clarity (bright or muted).
We all have our own unique make up – incorporating our hair colour, eye colour and skin tone. Working with what you have naturally through colour analysis shows you exact matches for your individual colouring by testing different coloured drapes against you. Have a think about how you look. Do your hair and eyes contrast in colour (like Courtney Cox or Danni Minogue) or are they blending together (like Kylie Minogue or Kate Moss)?
Your unique make up impacts on your look. If your hair and eye colours contrast, then wear the bolder, brighter colours of the season. If your hair and eye colours are more blended, then opt for the more muted shades. This is a tip for colours close to your face – the wrong colours will highlight shadows, so if you want to wear the bold colours opt for more muted make-up or add a necklace to soften the look. Have a think about what you are wearing now. Is it exaggerating the dark circles or lifting them? You want to see you and not the colour first to ensure you are always looking your very best.
Now let us look at the key colours for this season and who they will suit the best. The right colours will pull you up, while the wrong colours will drain you. The colours for the season are in all the shops, so it’s a great time for picking up a few bargains if you are nervous about colour.
Each season Pantone releases its colour trends for home and fashion. They
always marry up with what is on the catwalks and in the shops. Colours are bold, autumnal and bright.
As you can see, these are typical for autumnal shades for this season – red pear, russet orange, poppy red and olive. But there are brighter hues like limelight and crocus petal that are stereotypically thought of as summer colours. If you have blended colours, try Olive, Muted Reds, Quetzal Green, Teal, Mustard or Ceylon Yellow and Russet Orange. For contrasted colours, try Limelight Yellow, Violet, Blue and Poppy/Red.
This is great as some of us suit lighter colours and some deeper, however, there is a combination for everyone. Match your trusty favourites with these current ones and you are sailing through this season looking and feeling fabulous.
Style trends this season are leather (the shinier the better), tweed and checks, pleats and layers. For the catwalk some of these were taken to the extreme, but they can work cleverly on you. If you are nervous about colour, then introduce it through a pattern.
For men and women, the colours are the same and trends are similar. Checks, leather and shearling are making a strong appearance in men’s clothes.
When shopping for your Christmas outfits, don’t be afraid to experiement with different colours. Why not try a gold (warm skin tones) or silver (cool skin tones) sequinned number instead of trusty black? If colourful clothes are not for you, add a colour pop with accessories such as a festive pair of red shoes or a green scarf. These classic festive colours will make you feel ready for the season and be wearable beyond it too.
The Pantone colours will be in the shops, so choose a Poppy Red if you suit bright clear colours or the Red Pear colour if deeper tones are what you look best in. Both are very festive reds so you cannot go wrong this Christmas.
COLOUR AND THE HOME
When it comes to interior design, are you in a land of beige or is your home a colourful paradise?
Colour is powerful and has a direct impact on a person. Think about walking into a black room, a white room, a red room or a yellow room. These colours throw up immediate connotations for a person, black equals depression, white equals clear or crisp, red equals passion while yellow equals brightness and cheerfulness. The colour trends for interiors use the same pantone palette as fashion. This season there is a maximalist approach to colour, yet most of us tend to fear colour in the home.
Choose colours you like and are drawn to, then you won’t grow tired of them quickly. Pick a bold or pale shade depending on what you like. The key here is to not simply follow trends but to make them work for you. If you love burnt orange but think it will overwhelm a room then use it as splashes of colour in cushions, vases, pictures, rugs and throws. These are all quick, affordable and easy updates to a room that can bring a powerful change to the feel.
When decorating think about your space and what function it has? Can it take the colours you like and where does the light come in? A dark colour for a small room can maximise its cosiness or enhance the darkness. Think about accent colours. What colour will make it productive?
Christmas colours for the home can now be very diverse. You have the traditional reds, greens, silver and gold, but also new schemes to try out. If you go traditional, green, red, gold and silver, or variants thereof, are a gorgeous combination and cannot go wrong.
For modern, bright colours, think rainbows (available at Liberty London) and then base your scheme around that. Mix and match the rainbow colours for bright pops around the home or pick a few to centre it on. Pink, green and blue or black, white and a rainbow colour (purple for example) are great combinations. Mix these with some sparkle such as gold, silver, clear glass and you have a bright modern scheme.
For a simple look think white, clear glass and just one or two colours for an elegant Christmas. This is a grown-up, luxurious way to decorate the home, perhaps with some pastel shades to keep the elegance.
Whatever your design, remember to make it fun too, Christmas is not just for the kids and there are loads of fun, colourful pieces to add a smile to the decorated home. Find out more Eleanor Mitchell is a colour analyst covering Essex who can help you select colours for you and your home. You can share pictures of your new colours on Facebook or Instagram @eleanormitchellcolours Essex Life readers receive 10% off first consultations. Quote Essexlifecolours. Visit www.eleanormitchell.com
PANTONE 16-1255 TCX RUSSET ORANGE
PANTONE 13-1520 ROSE QUARTZ
PANTONE MANDARIN RED 17-1562 TPX
PANTONE 17-1664 TCX POPPY RED
PANTONE 15-0952 SPICEY MUSTARD