Do you wear black because you think it’s flattering? WRONG.

The weather is getting colder and I’ve found myself drawn back to black. This does not make me hugely happy because I am usually a riot of colour. I prefer it. Especially when the weather is warm. It makes me happy. And there are other good reasons for not wearing black it would seem. I learnt this today on my friend Vanessa Raphaelly’s blog and thought I should share it with you immediately.

Vanessa writes…

Front row. Fade to black.

According to “colour consultants” (and the Daily Mail) “Black clothing can highlight dark lines under the chin, shadows around the eyes and wrinkles on the face it can even make those who wear it appear to have dark ’spokes’, or fissures, in the iris. While black does give the appearance of a slimmer figure by making the shadows from less visible, wearing it next to the face brings out the worst, explained colourist Jules Standish.

Wrinkles and sunken areas appear deeper and more pronounced, meaning the effect is more prominent in older women.”

Just one in five of us apparently have the correct skin tone to wear black well.

Well there you are then. Notwithstanding the fact that I, for one, am not sure why “colourist” Jules Standish’s opinion should be accepted as gospel, I do see some divine irony in this news. Black has long been the uniform of fashion editors, stylists and designers. In fact, at the recent shows, Erin Wilson for The New York Times reported: “At the Calvin Klein show, 31 guests sat on one side of the runway. All but three of them were wearing black.


André Leon Talley, the Vogue editor at large, wore a black turtleneck, a black suit and a black knit cap with Obama spelled out in rhinestones. Anna Wintour, looked slightly more cheerful in an all-fur ensemble of gray and brown. But even Roberta Myers, the sunny editor of outperforming Elle, seemed to be dressed more for a bank heist; and Glenda Bailey, her counterpart at Harper’s Bazaar, was wearing long black evening gloves — at 10 a.m.

Black just fits the mood, like fashion’s version of comfort food. The headline on the cover of Women’s Wear Daily on Wednesday, referring to Ms. Karan’s collection, was “Black Watch.”

“Black is very versatile,” said Klein’s designer, Mr. Costa, who opened his show with nearly a dozen all-black looks ”

So what’s the verdict on black? Versatile? “Comfort fashion?” Flattering, or not?

Does the The Daily Mail know something the experts do not? Could it be that what I’ve long believed is true?

That many fashion editors and designers are absolutely bonkers and not aware of what actually suits women?

I leave you with this image, from the Fall Calvin Klein show and let you decide….

These days, I only wear black when I want to disappear…
What about you?

Wearing black detracts from the healthy-looking golden hue by ‘flattening’ it and bringing out tired-looking darker patches on the face. The one in five who do suit black close to their faces have ‘winter’ complexions consisting of pale, cool and dramatic colouring.”

Oh look. It’s a black sack. In summer, I wear NO BLACK AT ALL. I quite got into black last winter but if I’m not wearing colour in summer I feel many shades of wrong. I’ve always loved colour. Even when I worked near the fashion world. Are you a black person when it comes to fashion? Is it your default or do you find it depressing? Aging?


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