Monday, November 09, 2009

back to black

When I lived in New York, I had a very black-on-black wardrobe. In fact, there were few incursions of color, apart from the occasional gray—maybe some patterned blouses or dresses. Black was, and still is, the urban uniform. And some insist that it's slimming, but that optical illusion only exists for the few moments you are standing looking in the mirror, I believe.

After my daughter was born, one day as I was doing the laundry I noticed that one machine was full of happy bright colors and the other machine was, well, black. There was also quite a bit of brown, a color which I added when I moved to D.C. I wondered why I was letting such a boring palette rule my wardrobe. I wasn't thinking I should opt for the rainbow colors of my daughter's clothes, but the difference was visually jarring. So little by little, color invaded my closet—mostly blues of the cerulean variety, which really look good against my skin, but also some wine colors and some green. I was expanding my color horizons.


A few years later and every time I went shopping, what I seemed to find that appealed to me in design, also happened to be black in color. For a while I avoided the impulse, feeling that black might be bad luck, or should only be worn by an old Italian widow. But lately I have succumbed— and have indulged in a few new wardrobe items that I must admit, I really love.

I also have to admit, however, that there is something to the color/mood aspect of all this new black. There are things happening to people in my life right now that I am not so happy about, and wearing black seems to suit the tone and mood of my surroundings. I no longer fear the color, feeling that if I wear black I might jinx myself or someone—and I haven't shunned my peacock blue, either. But on a dark day, sometimes I just want to get a shade darker.

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