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Experimenting With Colour

nichola english the dressing room the retreat Aug 12, 2020

By Nichola English

Understanding the characteristics of colour and the huge impact it has in your everyday life, opens up a world of opportunities with your style and the impression you create. The beauty of Colour Analysis and the Psychology of Colour is the ability it gives you to really understand the true meaning of your style and which colours suit and enhance your individuality.

Whether you opt for a delicate shade of pink or reach for bright and bold colours like yellow, the colours you choose are an expression of you. 



The history of colour analysis is an endlessly fascinating subject for me. Across centuries colour has been studied by artists, physicists, philosophers and mathematicians. They’ve all created their own theories around how colours interrelate with each other and how we now use colour in the 21st Century. 

American artist Robert Dorr is the man who transformed colour theory into the workable colour analysis system we now have. In 1928 he uncovered the corresponding effects of paint colours when mixed with either a blue or yellow undertone.  

In Chicago in 1934, Dorr began working on furniture designs using his own colour theory of undertones, and developed his ideas on colour psychology, which are evident in colour analysis today.



Colour is an essential feature of the way we dress and should always be a natural expression of our unique personalities. Colour helps us to make an immediate impact, so having true clarity on what suits and flatters you is like having the cherry on top of the cake with your style.  

I think the simple truth is that colour carries an even deeper significance with people than changing fashion trends. Colour has the power to evoke so many feelings, from empowerment, femininity, masculinity to confidence. 

So, why not spend some time finding out about colours. Which colours suit you? How could you use colour to showcase your personality and personal style or even your business brand?



When buying an outfit, the psychology of clothing and colours isn’t something most people even consider. Unconsciously though we’ll often choose styles and colours that fit our current mood.  

The next time you hit the stores (physically or online), I encourage you to ask yourself… 

·      What non-verbal message do I want the colour of my outfit to portray? 

·      Am I looking for a colour to give me a confidence boost?

·      What colours make me feel happy? 

Look beyond the style and fit and the latest colour trends and open yourself up to a kaleidoscope of colour options that speak to the essence of who you are. I love this quote from Christian Dior… 

“Black and white might be sufficient, but why deprive yourself of colour?”



As a personal Style Coach, I believe that implementing colour psychology is just as important as the outfit itself. I’ve picked a few of my favourite colours to show you how you could use colour to create your overall aesthetic… 

Red is the colour of energy and passion and tends to attract attention. Wear red when you want to be assertive. That’s why red lipsticks are such a big cosmetic seller. I must say I do love a bold red lipstick when I’m in the mood to paint the town red! 

Blue is the colour of determination, strength of character, honesty and communication. This makes it a go-to favourite for most interview outfits as it exudes professionalism. 

Green is the colour of calm, balance and nature. It soothes the eyes and produces calming effects. Wear green when you need to feel grounded. Try accessories like scarves, shoes or a blouse to see how that feels first. 

Pink is pretty and feminine and is the colour of romance and love. Wear pink on a date night or as an accent colour to help with concentration. 

Gold & Silver nothing says glitz and glam more than a metallic shimmer of gold, silver or rose gold. They’re all associated with glamour, luxury and wealth, which is why they’re the most popular colour choices at weddings. Use them in jewellery to add a pop of colour and an injection of glamour to your outfit. This is a great way to execute colour psychology with clothing. 

Black is multi-dimensional and a colour that means classic, new and sophisticated. Wear a black blazer when you want to communicate an authoritative image. 



What I’ve shared here really is just a drop in the ocean with regards to colours and their meaning. The important question to always ask yourself is, “What’s my favourite colour to wear and how does it make me feel?” Remember, the key to using colour in your everyday style is to create balance, harmony and a natural expression of you.

Don’t be afraid to let the world see your true colours! 


Nichola English is addicted to fashion. From an early age picking out clothes for friends and family, she always had an eye for style which only expanded as she got older, eventually creating her business, The Wardrobe Provocateur. 

Nichola adores working with women (and men) across the world discovering personal style, reinventing that old tired wardrobe and realising new confidence and vitality through coaching, shopping and good old clearing out of the old. You can read her full story of becoming The Wardrobe Provocateur here.

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