What about black? Yes, some advise a black blazer, black pencil skirt, black pants, black, black, and more black. Next we read, “No more black,” “Don’t wear black,” and the idea is passed on without thinking, from one fashionista to another until it’s become the trend. So don’t believe it. There’s no logic and it’s limiting. The reality is that black never left! Black is a fantastic wardrobe neutral color, looking modern, mixing well with every other color, is relatively slimming, and doesn’t show soil. Black is a fail-safe option for business but it works with daytime denim and for evening too. Wear black with one of your personal body colors and you’re beautifully part of the color scheme with your clothes.

Do the same with the other rich, darker wardrobe neutrals. You’re not stuck with or without black. Consider charcoal, navy, brown, gray, olive, forest, teal, plum, burgundy, and rust to name a few. Take delight in your options. Then look around for a patterned print in a color scheme that you love, that includes your choice for core pieces and start building that perfect cluster of clothes easy to work with and easy to wear everywhere. Below are a few options we found from Ralph Lauren.

Choose wardrobe essentials in basic black or whatever rich wardrobe neutral color you prefer. With these in your closet, you will discover that many of your better quality clothes will easily intermix with them. As you add on, look for defining pieces that speak to your personal style. Add-ons might include a stylish pin-stripe vest if you like, or a chevron stripe sweater, or a colorful cardigan, and definitely patterned pieces that give life to solid colored basics. Arrange this basic cluster of clothes in your closet according to the Style Scale® and you will know what goes with what, and where it takes you looking like you belong. To get involved with creative, real-life clusters and wardrobe styling that works for you, join me for our Style for Life: Image Enhancement Retreat scheduled next for May 18-23. Love to have you with us!

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Judith Rasband
Judith Rasband MS, AICI, CIM is CEO of the Conselle Institute of Image Management (Conselle.com), residing in Orem, Utah. She works with the influence and expressive effects of dress and image on wellness and successful living.
Judith Rasband

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