“Without black, no color has any depth. But if you mix black with everything, suddenly there’s shadow – no, not just shadow, but fullness. You’ve got to be willing to mix black into your palette if you want to create something that’s real.” — Amy Grant
Ever since I started blogging, I have been meaning to write about the ‘colour’ Black and the power it exudes in my choices of fashion. Black is authoritative and powerful; because it can evoke strong emotions, and too much of it can be overwhelming. Black represents a lack of color, the primordial void, emptiness.
In color psychology, black means power and control, hanging on to information and things rather than giving out to others. Black is intimidating, unfriendly and unapproachable because of the power it exudes.
No other color conveys as many contradictions as black, and that’s probably why it’s arguably the most loved color in fashion. Besides its ability to slim and instantly make anything look chicer, black throughout history has represented a number of opposing ideas: power and elegance—but also humility and submission, especially when worn by priests and others who don a uniform. Culturally, there are also a lot of differences in how the shade has been interpreted. While it’s long been a signifier for mourning in Western culture, the Japanese see it as a color that represents seniority and experience.
That being said, designers, tastemakers, editors, and even country-music icons have all waxed poetic on the color—whether it’s their love or hate for the hue or even just a simple statement on the complexities of it.
The inventor of the now-iconic ‘little black dress’ and ‘little black jacket’, Coco Chanel was a famous lover of the colour. Known for pioneering a wardrobe for women that eschewed the restrictive clothing of the 1910s, the house of Chanel’s eponymous founder championed simplicity over superfluity – something which spilled over into her colour palette. Before her intervention, black was seen as a colour of mourning and reserved for funerals.
Black for me is a synonym to power dressing. Yes , it has an overwhelming ability to make the subject look visibly leaner but there’s much more contributing to my affinity for this ‘absence of colour’. Dominance, confidence, elegance and sophistication. These are not just a couple of words , rather an onomatopoeia of exuberance.
“Black is modest and arrogant at the same time. Black is lazy and easy — but mysterious. But above all black says this: I don’t bother you – don’t bother me”
Until next time,
Stay Stylish, Stay You