Color – don’t you just love it!

Color is one of those things that gets in the way of some of the other elements of design….like: Line, Shape, Direction, Size, Texture and value (light & dark).  And it is one of the most important aspects of design.

For example (I think we’ve done this before)

Here’s an example:

You can obviously tell I’ve photoshopped this, but the point is still there….the Reba on the right looks – well you see her cloths first and not her, and the Reba on the left you actually see Reba and her face.

This one is really obvious…again, she looks so much livier and healthier on the right than the left.

This is the difference color can make, and once you get into the habit of seeing this, it’s remarkable the difference it can make in your wardrobe and what you wear and more importantly how you look.

But there’s more to color than just how it looks and that part is very important, but the other part is how it makes you feel;  the psychological, emotional benefit and effects of color.

The Psychology of Color:

Red

Red is a bright, warm color that evokes strong emotions.

Red is associated with love, warmth, and comfort.

Red is also considered an intense, or even angry, color that creates feelings of excitement or intensity.

Consider how red is used in language: redneck, red-hot, red-handed, paint the town red, seeing red

Red in the chakras represents the base, bottom and most primitive part of the body and spirit.  Therefore it is considered the most grounding and heaviest color.

Red in liturgical calendar it is used for Maundy Thursday (representing blood), fire, the church and Pentecost, and also for Palm Sunday.

Orange

Orange is a combination of yellow and red and is considered an energetic color.

Orange calls to mind feelings of excitement, enthusiasm, and warmth.

Orange is often used to draw attention, such as in traffic signs and advertising.

Orange in the chakras represents the sex organs, lumbar plexus – the center for sex and food (something interesting going on there!!!)

There is no orange (only gold) in the liturgical calendar.

Yellow

Yellow is a bright that is often described as cheery and warm.

Yellow is also the most fatiguing to the eye due to the high amount of light that is reflected. Using yellow as a background on paper or computer monitors can lead to eyestrain or vision loss in extreme cases.

Yellow can also create feelings of frustration and anger. While it is considered a cheerful color, people are more likely to lose their tempers in yellow rooms and babies tend to cry more in yellow rooms.

Yellow can also increase the metabolism.

Since yellow is the most visible color (it is also the color seen at the greatest difference), it is also the most attention-getting color. Yellow can be used in small amount to draw notice, such as on traffic sign or advertisements.

Yellow is the solar plexus in the chakras which radiates dynamism, energy, willpower and achievement throughout the body.

Yellow in the liturgical calendar is used as an alternative for gold and sometimes at Easter.

Green

Green is a cool color that symbolizes nature and the natural world.

Green also represents tranquility, good luck, health, and jealousy.

Researchers have also found that green can improve reading ability. Some students may find that laying a transparent sheet of green paper over reading material increases reading speed and comprehension.

Green has long been a symbol of fertility and was once the preferred color choice for wedding gowns in the 15th-century. Even today, green M & M’s (an American chocolate candy) are said to send a sexual message.

Green is often used in decorating for its calming effect. For example, guests waiting to appear on television programs often wait in a “green room” to relax.

Green is thought to relieve stress and help heal. Those who have a green work environment experience fewer stomachaches.

Consider how green is used in language: green thumb, green with envy, greenhorn.

Green is the color of the heart chakra.  It is the center and bridge between the primitive and the academic…without going through the heart, the primitive and the academic can not integrate properly.

Green in the liturgical calendar represents the Season of Epiphany, beginning of Lent, first Sunday in Pentecost and beginning of advent…notice all the beginnings as symbolic of the regeneration of spring and the beginning of renewal in plants and vegetation.

Green is also the easiest on the eyes, not the most relaxing, but easiest, which is probably why most accounting paper has a light green tint to it.

Blue

Blue is described as a favorite color by many people and is the color most preferred by men.

Blue calls to mind feelings of calmness or serenity. It is often described as peaceful, tranquil, secure, and orderly.

Blue can also create feelings of sadness or aloofness.

Blue is often used to decorate offices because research has shown that people are more productive in blue rooms.

Blue is one of the most popular colors, but it is one of the least appetizing. Some weight loss plans even recommend eating your food off of a blue plate. Blue rarely occurs naturally in food aside from blueberries and some plums. Also, humans are geared to avoid foods that are poisonous and blue coloring in food is often a sign of spoilage or poison.

Blue can also lower the pulse rate and body temperature.

Consider how blue is used in language: blue moon, blue Monday, blue blood, the blues, and blue ribbon.

Blue represents the throat chakra or voice chakra and how honestly one expresses himself/herself.

Blue in the liturgical calendar is used during Advent and Lent.

Purple

Purple is the symbol of royalty and wealth.

Purple also represents wisdom and spirituality.

Purple does not often occur in nature, it can sometimes appear exotic or artificial.

Purple in the chakras is the crown chakra (although the Indigo color is connected to the brow chakra which is between the crown & throat chakra).

Purple in the liturgical calendar is the color for all of lent.

Purple also represent the unconscious, yang, feminine side or the anima.

 

Now I know I’ve given you way more than you probably wanted to know, but this can also help you immensely in working with  your wardrobe.  How?  Figuring out the right color(s) that you should use really helps in coordinating outfits and planning your whole wardrobe and look.  Knowing that red is grounding but attention-getting, helps you plan better for a business presentation;  knowing that green is restful and non-confrontational helps you prepare better in a contentious meeting;  knowing that yellow is cheerful can help set the tone for an office pep-talk;  knowing that orange is cheerful and happy makes for a prettier vacation outfit.

Granted those of us with ruddy complexions and red hair can not wear purples or blues, and with porcelain skin and black hair can not wear rusts or olives, there are still alternatives and that can be used.  But knowing all this can really give you heads up.

Thinking about your colors helps you really organize your stash and your whole closet.  You may think this takes away colors from your closet, but exactly the opposite is true.  It prevents you from making color mistakes that are never worn, don’t go with anything in your closet and worst of all make you look horrible.  As opposed to a closet full of clothes you love to wear, make you look great and make you feel like a million – granted they don’t have ALL the colors of the spectrum, but who said you have to have every color in your closet.

Well, I’m here to tell ya, you don’t have to have every color in your closet.

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