These articles about wearing your own colouring and your own body lines borrow their colour palettes from the 12 Tones or Seasons of colour collections by Sci\ART founder Kathryn Kalisz, more accurate than any other I know, and the body line categories from David Kibbe’s fascinating and brilliant book, Metamorphosis.
In Part 1, we talked about who the Romantic woman is inside. It is that essence that we want to project as faithfully as possible because therein lies true beauty. We met Roseanna, our very beautiful model, in the previous article, with sincere thanks to Maytee Garza for the Sci\ART colour analysis.
In trying to get a sense of the body to choose clothes for, because Dolly Parton was too extreme, I thought of Linda Ronstadt as an example of this very sensuous hourglass figure. She always seemed lush on film, especially as her career and body matured. But I was in error. Look at this fantastic collage Paisley made:
When I opened this, suddenly all I could see was Yang straightness and angularity except for the huge eyes (and she’s 5’2″), like a little spider. I so didn’t get this before. This combination of extreme Yin (huge eyes, small body size) and Yang describes a Gamine. Smart women whose understanding of body type are light years beyond mine suggest that Linda is a Soft Gamine – so a Gamine first, with a trace of Romantic. Happy to hear I got the R part right.
When Kibbe said hourglass, he meant hourglass. He meant tip-to-toe luscious. Carrie suggested Christina Hendricks, no doubt a perfect choice. I can see that Roseanna is closer to Christina, with fuller lips that balance the size of her eyes better, where Linda’s mouth is smaller. She gives a more womanly impression than Linda’s ethereal, waif-like proportions.
Christina Hendricks Pictures
Suddenly from these photos, who these women are inside comes clearer. Colour and Kibbe are the same. It’s all in the comparisons. What you can’t see about a garment, a swatch, a lipstick, or a body’s lines can be sweet-talked into revealing its truths by placing it besides something else, anything else. The closer in colour or line the two things are, the more their particular dialects are divulged. It works both ways. Seeing beauty as how close you can line up to the 19 year old blonde model seems to really just emphasize the differences. What’s the point in being her? That’s cookie cutter stuff. You are who the world wants to see.
Getting carried away again. Let’s look at some clothes. Costume museums would have many of these outfits, the teal suit on the stand in Poly 4 being an stiffer exaggeration. Frothy fabrics, even florals, felt out of place, better placed in Theatrical Romantic.
Here is Poly 3:
Framing the face matters greatly when a choice is being made among details, but the hourglass is essential. Simpler necklines like the grey cardi-T top need a necklace or a hat or some accent around the face.
Flowing means not stiff, tight, clingy, or straight – because one could think of curve emphasis as tight but this Yinnest of people is indirect so I avoided anything that felt remotely overtly revealing or even provocative. Perhaps the grey cardi-T needs more draping or something worn over it.
These clothes remind me of the power that comes from suggestion, like a hypnosis rather than grabbing. An old-fashioned attraction rather than the modern version of seduction, the line between come-hither sparkle and the modern version, glitter, needed to be addressed. When I looked for R clothes, I held a face and body without a single masculine element. TR is similar, only more pointed, and glitter works better there, I felt. TR feels also a little more girly, girl being more Yang than woman (who is R) in that way of tomboy and still undefined sexuality (maybe why ruffles seem better there too). Could you agree? Glitter feels Yang to me and belongs with the Flamboyants and Dramatics.
Patterns appeared to distract, distort, or just get in the way of a bone structure as delicate as Roseanna’s. The 3 colours at a time Colour Equation (this comes from the blue book, RTY Natural Colours, just in the right column on this page) depends on the woman and the print. If one of the colours is from the hair, the eyes, a neutral colour, or a colour elsewhere in the outfit, any of those would reduce the colour busy-ness and perhaps allow the majesty of this face and body to take center stage where they belong.
Waist definition means a physical tie or belt. Using a print to create an hourglass (like the long dress in Poly 5 below) or just having some ruching bunch up at the side waist seam isn’t enough unless there’s an actual waistband. An interesting thing I learned from Susan is that a horizontal colour block at the waistline can exaggerate a waist. The swirling antique skirt at lower left Poly 4 is an attempt, with a cardi to the left of it (not TA colours) to show where I was going. I wondered if the sweater floating around, with the waist definition from the tank, could look suitably allusive to the hourglass , but maybe it looks sloppy. He said short/tight/clingy so I guess that’s my answer.
The purple dress, how I love bronzed purple on Autumns, has the curved neck, the hourglass, and the flow without flop in the skirt that allows the curves of hip and bust. I had some Oscar de la Renta feelings but he can be too light and airy. This is looking more John Galliano for the simple abandon to ultimate curves.
And Poly 5:
My Kibbes are Reader Beware. These are my best guess as to what he meant, and me a person with zero fashion knowledge. Please help me with those dresses 1 to 5.
Does off the shoulder work, as 5?
Must a skirt be swirly as 4, so is the skirt of 5 too straight?
What about the V-neck on 3? are rounded necklines much better than V?
Does 2 need more draping?
Is 1 too busy? at some point, all those swirls in the skirt form a multitude of vertical lines that gives a Grecian column effect? would you agree or no?
The brown skirt below, is it too flat at the waist and too floppy in how it falls? I haven’t quite understood the line between Skater Pouf and droopy looking without some gathering at the waist.
Hiding this body under a trench felt very Mata Hari in a good way, a draping classic camel. The power of suggestion is who this woman portrays.
I told you about Angie, my beyond wonderful facialist. I feel she’s a Natural with much Romantic. Here is her face. (She is about 5’3″.)
As you see, Angie is so beautiful, it’s almost distracting. Our conversations are more productive because I’m lying down with my eyes closed. She wears multi-stranded short necklaces with huge pearls all swirled around each other and looks fabulous. Her saturated darkness brings much intensity to her very curvy body, like a union of opposites. In our existence, there really is no right and wrong, no good or bad, no beautiful or ugly. Everything flows into, through, and out of everything else. Though we hold beliefs (very limiting beliefs) about these based in many life experiences, we are equally Yin and Yang. Conceptually, Angie seems to me that individual that closes the circle between the Yang Dramatic and Yin Romantic positions at the far ends of the Kibbe scale. That her many gifts would be placed in a body that resides at one extremity of colour and the opposite pole of line feels somehow rational or obvious.
As Susan showed us (on facebook), women of dark colouring can seem more dramatic than they are. They still look better if they dress in line for their body type. The drama of their colouring is expressed simply by wearing the palette, or Season, that holds their natural colours. This would feel very complete to be and to look at.
In the last two years, as we took the Colour Ride together, we learned this: It takes scrutiny that gets uncomfortably close to home. It takes many photos, conversations, and walking on shaky ground. It means taking the lid off your pot and examining what you most want to avoid, the beliefs you have about what looks good and looks bad and the value you’ve attached to these. Your hot spots and trigger points will try to stuff the lid back on. Talk yourself out of that or you’ll still be in the role of victim, a weak position that doesn’t tell the truth about the strength you know you have, the strength it took just to ask the Who Am I? questions.
I have said and strongly believe that we are Beings of Light. I mean that as much literally as figuratively. See yourself that way. Keep moving towards the hottest, most intense part of your light, even when the waters feel roughest. Don’t let yourself turn back on what you started. Take the time to be grateful for the clarity you will find at more levels of you than you ever expected. Notice that your pain, physical and psychological, has lessened. When you love your so-called good equally with your so-called bad without conditions on that love, you find the confidence to just love you.