Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1 Thumbnail

Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1

Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1

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  Today, Evangeline is concerned. She has chosen to release hair colour from her life and is faced with unexpected decisions. To overcome the feeling of a fading appearance, she wears dark colours and more makeup and wonders if she is doing one to balance the other.

Experiments with darker colours led to the concern that she has been a Dark Autumn all along. Where is the balance? Are darker clothes and makeup both helping or not, since so many people have commented in a positive way?

When she had her PCA, she thought that she had been given the Forever key. That was it, colour was settled. Check. We love those moments: I found my winter coat, electrician, workout schedule, smoothie recipe. JOB DONE.

She didn’t expect to feel back at the beginning with her appearance ever again. She asked, “Do other women go through these continuous transition stages? Why do I feel so lost again?”

But we change. Not our Season. Us and the world around us.

Today, I’ll show you some pictures that I could imagine for several women of Soft Autumn colouring. They are journeying through various life stages, have many tastes, budgets, and aspirations in terms of appearance and everything else, just like in the real world.  With the education of their Season, they’re making choices inside of a year that they couldn’t have made in 10 years before, when they were on their own.

Green for green eyes

Evangeline is not lost at all. She is only in need of a small repositioning, both in seeing herself in a new way and revisiting how she will wear her Season. From the picture she sent, Soft Autumn looked perfectly right.

My favourite thing about silvering hair, besides looking like the height of sophistication, is how the face becomes all about the eyes. They take on intensity and meaning when there are no distractions, and they sing, like beautiful jewelry in a beautiful face.

To make the eyes-as-jewelry effect even better, wear gray green a lot. Even the gray is quite green and it makes a fantastic neutral.

Wear warm greens if your eyes have avocado green. For Evangeline, wear blue green near your eyes.

There’s a warm to cool shift from left to right in the panel below. Some items might be a bit warm or cool, but attention is divided pretty evenly.

The suede jacket seems a bit heavy, and it may be too warm or simply the influence of textile on colour. On a woman with natural texture, darkness, or fairly high warmth, it could be great.

Every Season progresses into the next, including the True Seasons. We know this from the natural world, where springtime slides into Summer. The vocabulary of leaning into Seasons, which may have begun with me, may place attention in the wrong place, but as the ship sails from one group to the next, it picks up certain characteristics.  My message these days is, “Wear your Season. Your entire Season. Rely on your colour analyst to help with fine-tuning.”

Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1


We are all a story inside of our Seasons. Our colours hear and respect it, and provide whatever kind of frame we need, today and through our tomorrows.

The woman who would wear the fur coat (No Real Fur in my posts or my life) will not fuss overly much. Maybe the purse is darkish, but more about it works than doesn’t. It was from before her PCA and she loves it and the colour analyst said, “Don’t discard the things you love. Le’ts find ways for them to work.” She wears her Grandma’s wedding ring, never takes it off, but that’s it. She won’t even wear sunscreen. To pull out mascara and eyeliner, the occasion has to be big, and yes, she is wearing the black dress. It’s comfortable and the colour analyst thinks, “At least it isn’t white. Black in a muting fabric, I can work with.” The colour analyst mentioned that the purse is a bit too dark, at which point the client gave her a look of gentle pity and, nodding reassuringly, said, “You know Hogwart’s isn’t real, right?”, which is how she feels about shopping  malls. She used to be fed up to the back teeth with shopping in general and preferred discovering new bistros, but once she gained control over her shopping and she chose the boundaries, she felt better about the experience. And surprising even herself, felt better about her appearance as well.

The woman in the green dress might have tried on 20 dresses and this one worked best with her palette. She loves the decision-making process and practicing the technique the colour analyst demonstrated, and allows small deviations if they feel good. She has an anniversary dinner with her husband who took her palette and came back with these earrings. She loves them and will wear them on all their dates to express her gratitude that he is in her life. She wanted to design an outfit around them. She knows the clutch may be a bit too red but she feels that it works, though she wouldn’t choose this colour in a blouse or scarf and keeps the metal of jewelry within the yellows of the palette. She knows metallics look great on Autumn colouring and loves bling as long as the style is simple.

The woman in the chevron print dress has X amount of time. Yes, she is wearing those shoes, and the image analyst thinks, “At least they’re not sneakers.”

The woman in the off white turtleneck is running the kids around.  This beats the black yoga outfit she used to wear to the  moon and back.

The woman in the animal print skirt and black boots is more receptive to her friend’s advice than her colour analyst’s, and for sure more than her mother’s. Looking like her friends matters to her as a form of mutual support. When she was young, sparkly pink was her favourite colour, but her Mom is a Soft Autumn too and this young woman is reality-based. She knows that sparkly candy pink is not Mom’s power look so he chose this blouse. The colour analyst left a Like when she saw the photo on Instagram.

Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1

Improv Your Season palette is a formula that always works and it can be applied in many ways. To find yours, you try some things, just as we have we everything else in life. We know the tastes and scents we love because the experience of those that we didn’t love as much provided us with the necessary contrast to make a choice.

The women below didn’t love today’s outfit so much. Doesn’t  matter because they knew what to ignore in their experimenting and they now know how to improve tomorrow’s combinations.

The first woman, on the left, is being driven bananas by that bracelet. She much prefers the blouse and clutch, they have the same calm energy that she does. Someone in the morning coffee lineup said how much they love the spontaneity of the look so she’ll wear it for the day. Then, it’s back to the cuff bracelet.

The second woman loved the way the neckline of the yellow blouse looked under that jacket and how the fabric is flowy in a Summer way. She read that Autumns look terrific when they mix textures but this didn’t quite manage the day. She switched the top for a crewneck sweater in the same colour, and congratulated herself on the jacket and glasses.

Woman 3 feels pretty good. She loves how the jacket looks like an adult’s jean jacket. Nobody except her might know that the dots in the top are the same colour but it gives her a lift when the meeting babbles on.  She is happy to have gotten red, darkness, and gradual colour transitions into one outfit. No way she could have come close to this pre-PCA.

The fourth woman is feeling really good. Some of the colours in the bag might be bright but she sees how much of it works. The top might be a bit cool but the strength of the reds in the bag tip the balance to a warmer overall impression and the top didn’t lose energy next to it. She sees the bracelets as grounding and just right for today’s schedule of flea market > farmer’s market > beach.

Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1

  In Part 2

Autumn needs darkness to appear. For the face to have a frame and a shape, some level of darkness matters, possibly even more across-the-board than it does for Winters as a group. It  makes sense that Evangeline is experimenting with darkness.  Next time, we’ll add some items that might be more belonging to Dark Autumn and see what happens. We will also address a few more of her questions and solutions

Colour analysis is here to make your present day better. Once the future arrives and becomes reality, our answers are still nearby in our Season home.

My sincere thank you to Susan for sharing her beautiful photographs with us, including the fall leaves after the rain image that frames the title.


11 Thoughts on Soft Autumn with Silver Hair Part 1

  • Christine

    this comes in the right moment bc me as a DA now thought do I grow out grey or not. and I was so much thinking that you once said, going grey is difficult for warmer seasons. Im so happy you now have new thoughts.

    Also, what I never understood, is, that eiterh its all about skintone/undertone or not. why woudl haircolor matter so much, if its about that? it wont change. ok, a bit, with aging, but…

    I can see that I wear more purple of the palette and cooler shades. bc haircolor matters. but overall I hope so much I can go grey and look still good and still wear my DA colors. And can stop dying my hair, bc it always goes a bit too warm, not good.

    Im seeing forward to the next video. Thank you so far 🙂

  • Jonna Stone

    Ah, yes. This is exactly the thing I️ think we need more of in PCA. Life is one big improvisation. We can save all the perfect color examples in the form of fashion and landscapes, and it’s nice to get a feel for the aura of each season; HOWEVER, the reality is that life is one big improvisation and not nearly so spot-on as we would like. So, this idea of thoughtfully finding clothing that is “ well enough” is far better than a pursuit of perfection. Perfection is boring. We cock our heads in curiosity and admiration at the exceptions people make to their own rules because that is what makes us human, unique, and authentic.
    Here’s to many more of these improv articles for each season. They are so helpful in the real world. Thank you sharing your vision.

  • Jan

    Fabulous info on being silver in the Autumn category. The color of the clothing examples you’ve shown absolutely make my heart sing – they are my favorites and have always brought me compliments.

    Although my skin tone remains neutral leaning warm and my eyes are a warm blue-green, my natural hair color has changed from a metallic light auburn to a gray/silver/brown mélange. It’s an extremely difficult transition fraught with doubts, experiments, and loss of direction. Adding to the confusion are others noting that one can’t wear warm colors if they have gray/silver/white hair. Turning “gray” is definitely a momentous event in an Autumn’s life.

  • Sue

    Nice to see this – a warmer skin tone and silvery grey hair, hazel eyes – it has been quite a challenge – I seem to need to walk a fine line between the cooler soft summer and soft autumn. The hair color really does matter. Finding the right depth of color is also a challenge – some pales work, some don’t, most dark and very dark do not but that middle range is elusive. Quite a challenge – requires persistence! Thank you for the tips – those first soft grey greens are gorgeous!

  • Josephine

    Dear Christine
    I keep returning to your wonderful blog. It is
    I have something I would like to ask : what seasons do we turn into as we grow older? I believe I once read here that our colours become cooler. So would that mean moving one season on the colour wheel? And towards the cooler side?
    Can you give us more information about this for those of us who went for a draping 20 years ago and now are mixed up about our season? Thank you.

    • Christine Scaman

      I don’t believe that Seasons change at all, Josephine. With time and experience, what I continually saw was the reverse, that Season stays the same and the way that we enjoy it changes. I hope that Part 2 of the Soft Autumn with Silver Hair pair will help.

  • Josephine

    Thank you for your answering my question. But let’s say a person is a True Autumn, can she or he become a Soft Autumn because her complexion becomes a littler cooler if for instance assuming Soft Autumn is cooler than True Autumn.

    • Christine Scaman

      I suppose it’s possible, Josephine. That would be one set of Season neighbours where cooling and softening would be possible (and lightening). Speaking only from impressions and experience and not from any reliable set of data, I doubt that it would happen. I certainly see mature Dark Autumn women drift nearer to True Autumn but they never move fully into it (perhaps because it would require warming). Between TA and SA, there is a progression of colours and it may be that a mature TA might find more use for warmer, darker SA colours than she did in her younger years. I hope I’ve answered, please don’t hesitate to ask if I can offer a clearer explanation.

  • Sandi

    I was a dark auburn with hazel eyes and mid to dark brown hair with plenty of red highlights when I was in the sun. My hair is now white and my complexion has also lightened. I can no longer wear my browns, tans, or ivory. I was a dark auburn. I’m wondering what colors I can wear now…grays perhaps but stick to my DA or move into a TA. I’m puzzled on which colors to add to my wardrobe.

    • Christine Scaman

      It’s a question that many women have, Sandi. I’m not sure I can answer your question with general statements. If you really are a Dark Autumn, it seems unusual that brown, tan, and ivory no longer work. People can sometimes appear more settled in a lower level of colour intensity (within the same Season) once hair silvers, but it would be the extremes of Dark Autumn (near-black, chartreuse, near-jewel-tones) that might become challenging. The neutrals are usually more welcomed than ever. Suggesting True Autumn, or particular colours within it, would be a bigger leap of assuming your Season than I am willing to make in your best interest. You may well be correct but the colour reactions are then individual enough that the person to consult would be the colour analyst who observed your colour reactions, and would have a better sense of your ranges and boundaries.

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