It’s a good job that The Mom had two daughters and that L’il Sis was willing to pick up my slack in the fashion department. I’m not entirely disinterested, mind, but what holds my interest is not always what The Mom is expecting or hoped for.
But never mind. This getting one’s colours done thing has always held my interest, if only because I remember The Mom being so thoroughly delighted by the whole process. The Mom is one of those people for whom it is completely reasonable and accurate to use the word delighted. She well and truly is pleased as punch with the funniest things. Having been told by some lady wielding a colour wheel in Neiman Marcus that she looks good in rust-coloured tones is one of them.
Colour is, for The Mom, a staple. Whenever, wherever she goes she is always brightly dressed. She very rarely wears an all black outfit because she believes that dressing in brightly coloured clothes will enhance her mood, brighten up her spirits as it were. This philosophy is also used when she assesses my colour choices which include and are generally limited to blue, grey and sometimes black, but less so now that I do my own laundry (and usually a poor job of it.)
This whole having your colours done thing is having a bit of a renaissance over here – I believe it was written about in the Guardian recently, and that I have sent a link to The Mom.
When I was younger, and The Mom had hoped to imbue me with some good sense as far as fashion and dressing myself went, she tried to help me pick colours that might suit my complexion or general pallor. She tried – and failed – to get me to wear bright colours, as she herself did. Reds, purples, even greens (which I don’t like as a colour in the home or in clothes, unless it’s a sort of putrid, rotting apple green that I like just because it’s such a gross colour). Outfits were bought and presented to me, but unfortunately this way of dressing didn’t catch my fancy. I chose my clothes based on softness (as in, if they are not incredibly soft then I will not even consider trying them on let alone wearing them – I’m deadly serious about this, and when we’re browsing in the shops, I don’t so much look at clothes as touch them), or how funny they might be.
I did have one brightly coloured winter coat that I adored when I was younger. It was Bright Yellow and quite puffy, and the lining was a blue flannel and it had a pheasant pattern on it. It was soft, warm and funny, thereby ticking all the important boxes for me. I believe I must’ve looked hilarious in it, this small urchin trudging through the snow, vibrating bright yellow, and none of the other kids at my school had anything like it – they all wore either navy pea coats (Which I tried and loathed almost immediately) or ski jackets (which I eventually came around to, though only out of necessity as the yellow coat eventually got thrown away due to over wear).
Years later, in early university, I went through a phase of wearing predominantly black clothes. I was an arts student, and it seemed reasonable. And besides which, my hair at that point was usually brightly coloured: pink, purple, blue, bleach blonde. In fact, though The Mom wasn’t terribly keen on this level of aggressive hair dye, she did comment that the bright pink suited me and made me look less sickly. So you know, I may not be a spring (if memory serves, and it’s a bit patchy on this, I think The Mom decided I was a summer) but I did, sort of, embrace The Mom’s attitude of bright colours, at least as far as my hair was concerned.
But these days, I take more of an Einstein approach to dressing: I like the same things, and I don’t like thinking about what I might wear on any given day. I have a number of blue dresses, blue shirts, blue jumpers, and blue coats. I also have a series of grey outfits. I like to wear all the same colour and I don’t give a hoot about what The Mom thinks. And at any rate, she can always pick me out in a crowd as barring your average two-year old who still wears a onesie, I’m the only adult shuffling around dressed head to toe in one solid colour.