We all have a few little black dresses in our wardrobes, but mine have been gathering a lot of dust. Black is not a colour that flatters me in daylight… Only with the aid of a little make up and max 50 watt bulb is it more attractive against my skin tone and wearable for a night out; and as I move into a new decade it becomes harder each time.
But how to wear black in daylight too? Here is my LBD makeover.
Only 25% of us suit black au natural sans make-up. These are people who generally have the following characteristics: when their hair goes grey it does so beautifully, as a true salt and pepper, with no hint of ginger or yellow. They rarely have auburn hair, light hazel eyes and freckles and their skin is most likely to be alabaster white, olive or black. Their eyes have a dark rim round the iris (if blue or green) or may be a very dark to mid brown. People in this colour spectrum look truly terrible in any type of brown… rust, dull apricot and beige are nearly as bad.
Yet 75% of us wears black as a default uniform believing it makes us look thinner. This is only partly the case as any colour blocking can achieve a more svelte figure, be it in the shade that suits your colouring of eyes, skin and hair. If you feel you might be wearing too much black and feeling tired when you look in the mirror, try dipping your toe into navy and see the difference in your face.
It is normally the combining of colour or pattern with the sharp contrast of black that enlarges our figures, or makes us feel disproportionally bigger.
As a nation, we tend to spend more on black clothes, and I can understand why. It’s convenient, there is no trying to match colours when putting together an outfit and so many more clothes come in black, it is a default for many shops. I find as I glance through my wardrobe at rarely worn black designer dresses, that I want to get more use of these classic, yet daytime draining, monotoned frocks.
Here is an old Prada favourite. There is nothing to soften the severe denseness of the dress, and to wear this during the day I would need to apply more make up than I would like to put on. So instead I have taken a soft silk ecru shirt worn underneath to soften the harshness of the look. The dress becomes a far more flattering friend and at the same time gives me what we all crave for: a flexible, fully worn, versatile wardrobe.
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