For those of us in the Northern Hemisphere, summer is over. In the U.S., Labor Day has passed, school has started, the sun is setting sooner and we're getting ready to tuck away our white clothes and shoes until spring--well, at least that's what we've been told to do.
A suggested ban on white clothing and shoes after Labor Day, the first Monday of September, has been a rule of etiquette since the early 20th century. But is it really all that important by today's standards? Fashion--and even an etiquette expert or two--doesn't think so. In recent seasons, white has become an all-year hue. And a few other formerly fatal color combinations--brown and black, black and navy--have moved from fashion don't to fashion can-do territory, too.
"For centuries, wearing white in the summer was simply a way to stay cool--like changing your dinner menu or putting slipcovers on the furniture," wrote TIME's Laura Fitzpatrick. In the early 1900s, clothing covered a lot more of the body than it does now, so summer whites, with their reflective qualities, made sense. But beyond practicality, white had a following in high society that may have led to the no-white rule.
"In the early 20th century, white was the uniform of choice for Americans well-to-do enough to decamp from their city digs to warmer climes for months at a time: light summer clothing provided a pleasing contrast to drabber urban life," Fitzpatrick wrote." Labor Day, celebrated in the U.S. on the first Monday of September, marked the traditional end of summer; the well-heeled vacationers would stow their summer duds and dust off their heavier, darker-colored fall clothing."
Of course, this theory is hotly contested by some--Judith Martin, aka Miss Manners, told Fitzpatrick not every rule of etiquette has to be attributed to "snobbery." But whether the rule was meant to be snobby or not, the fashion world hasn't been ruled by it. And perhaps that's why etiquette queen Emily Post says it's OK to throw this rule out with the last of the summer barbecue leftovers.
After being considered a faux pas for so long, the black-and-brown combination--which has been given the go-ahead--is actually a fresh one. According to the Ralph Lauren Style Guide: "When properly executed, the combination of black and brown is a very modern and sophisticated look that’s instantly elegant. Start by adding touches of brown via accessories: the hint of a leather belt beneath a black cardigan or suede boots under slim-fitting pants."
For women, Ladies' Home Journal says, "Pair rich brown wool trousers with a black turtleneck, or wear black shoes and hose with your brown skirt. For evening, try a brown cocktail dress instead of a black one." And a great tip for mixing-and-matching your shoes and handbags?" Try a deep red, hunter green or soft tan bag, or go for shoes in similar shades, all of which will work with your brown and black staples."
Navy and black make for another recently edgy combination--good news for navy lovers who may have had trouble matching shades of blue, or black lovers who have the same trouble matching blacks. This combination works a lot like black and brown in execution--try pairing a navy dress with black tights and shoes or skinny black pants with a navy blazer for a runway-worthy look.
Black shoes are also a good choice with a navy suit, though some advise a deep brown pair--GQ Style Guy Glenn O'Brien says to pick a pair at least as dark as your suit. But he also said, "Not long ago, I read a little manifesto in the catalog of the talented potter Jonathan Adler that stated, among other things: 'We believe colors can't clash.' I am coming to this view more and more."
Looks like others are, too.
Fearless color combinations from the library:
I love cool, creative outdoor spaces. Today I happened uppon an article at somewhatsimple.com on making a non-weighted, no-fly-away tablecloth for an outdoor table. That's not the only good point about it; it's also plastic (but tasteful) so it's weather wearable, will protect metal or wood and definitely washable for easy cleanup.
I really enjoyed reading how this cute number was born - pure spontaneity. Initially, she bought the table at Target for $34, but you could use anything you have, yard sale or craigslist, etc. Anything that will fit under a shower curtain! Yes, that's what I said, this is made of a shower curtain!
When a social network like Twitter allows a user to select a theme to represent themselves in the digital world, that user is choosing to identify their digital persona with colors... And we wanted to look at who chooses what colors... If the world is made up of people and those people have a color preference... what then is the color of Texas? What color are mothers? What color are we?
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By looking at the more than 1 Million people who have used our Themeleon tool to design their Twitter Profile in the past 3 months, we were able to paint a picture of the world connecting colors to locations and profile data. Below is a visual guide to what we found: What we noticed first was that a huge majority of people don't wander that far off from Twitter's default light blue colors... and then we went digging deeper.
*A little note regarding the "World vs. U.S." - We know the map is of the United States and does not represent the world, we only focused the map part of the infographic on the U.S. so we had a manageable amount of data to work with and geolocate. The keywords, male & female and video sections below all use data from around the world*
A Colorful Tour of the Themeleon World
We took the colors from 100,000 profiles designed with Themeleon and geolocated them to the designers location. Although it is a little dark in this compressed video... Each location has a spectrum strip of colors... the more colors from a certain area, the taller the strip. (The US is well defined, Europe and East Asia... although you can see some outlines of other countries too.)
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So you don't have a lot of cash or a lot of time to save, and even if you did, no one in either family could afford to travel to a destination wedding if you planned one. Don't lose hope! Isn't the next best thing to create a fun version of your dream destination in your hometown (or wherever you're doing it away from the actual destination you desire)?
Maybe you pictured having a beach or tropical wedding followed with a casual, "kick off your shoes" reception with palm leaves and drinks in coconuts? Well, you can still have that! As long as you're into a little creativity, imagination and fun decor.
Music Philosophy Project
Colour Changing Lightbox, 2010
Unique Cibachrome transparency backlit with 15 concentric circles of neon; colour changing sequence, fully programmable.
Are you due for some eye-candy? Weather you want to make your own garter or buy one, this is a fun topic! Maybe you're wanting to find something more unique than that white lacy thing they carry almost everywhere (wedding or craft stores). I have concluded that any big company cannot possibly create something as cool as a hand made garter.
When I got married, I just figured what you see on the shelf is what you get. I'm not saying something white and lacy is bad, actually, you can find a number of white and lacy picks that have a lot of uniqueness about them still - simply in the quality or type of lace and/or ribbon used and don't get me started on embellishments! Peacock feathers, antique broaches and little charms are just a few used in these designs.
If you're looking for something wild or super sexy or absolutely adorable - I found that Etsy.com has the biggest and coolest, non-standard variety of wedding day garters than any average offline or online store could ever carry. You can also order a custom garter from places like mom and daughter team, Sew Unique Wedding Garters or ask an Etsy.com crafter to custom-design one especially for you. Ready for some beauties? Here we go...
SUPER SEXY. ROMANTIC. VINTAGE. SPUNKY. FUNKY. THEMATIC. CHILL. MINIMAL. OUT THERE.
(Etsy.com - pompandplumage)
The Color Strata was created by Weather Sealed. Weather Sealed (whose informative work has been mentioned here once before) is Steven Von Worley who "finds inspiration at the fringes of art, science, photography, and life" and turns it into "quality over quantity, original content, and the occasional chuckle." See it all here. The Color Strata is based on data from XKCD color survey.
The self described "incorrigible data hound" Von over at Weather Sealed who like all good hounds for interesting information keeps his nose up for new work by XKCD, another person (Randall Munroe) of the interesting sorts, who has a hilarious archive of "romance, sarcasm, math and language" comics, and a knack for research. Recently XKCD released the findings from his color study.
The Color Study
Here's a snippet from the color study results page:
Thank you so much for all the help on the color survey. Over five million colors were named across 222,500 user sessions. If you never got around to taking it, it’s too late to contribute any data, but if you want you can see how it worked and take it for fun here.
First, a few basic discoveries:
- If you ask people to name colors long enough, they go totally crazy.
- “Puke” and “vomit” are totally real colors.
- Colorblind people are more likely than non-colorblind people to type “fuck this” (or some variant) and quit in frustration.
- Indigo was totally just added to the rainbow so it would have 7 colors and make that “ROY G. BIV” acronym work, just like you always suspected. It should really be ROY GBP, with maybe a C or T thrown in there between G and B depending on how the spectrum was converted to RGB.
- A couple dozen people embedded SQL ‘drop table’ statements in the color names. Nice try, kids.
- Nobody can spell “fuchsia”.
If you're looking for some vintage color inspiration, or a little from the unusual category, check out the progress of Lisa Congdon and her project, A Collection a Day. Today is only day 155 so we still have plenty look forward from the 365 day project.
From her collection page:
This is a blog documenting a project that will span exactly one year, from January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2010. On each of those 365 days, I will photograph or draw (and occasionally paint) one collection. Most of the collections are real and exist in my home or studio; those I will photograph. Some are imagined; those I will draw or (occasionally) paint.
Eclectic Color Roundup: World Cup iPhone Cases, Palette Bookmarklet, Wallpaper Lovin' Bees & Body Sails
World Cup Collection From Uncommon
The collection has all 32 qualifying team flags and four general soccer designs. Uncommon will be knocking teams out of the collection as they are knocked out of the tournament. So once your team is out, the flag case is gone.
Bookmarklet For Palette/Pattern Browser
ycc2106 made a great bookmarklet for the palette/pattern browser a little while back. If you select a username with your cursor and click the bookmarklet it'll take you to the browser with that user's stuff. If you don't have anything selected it opens a window to enter the username. Super handy.
With permission, cuttlefish is hosting it now. Just drag the links into your bookmarks bar to use it.
Bees Use Flower Petals For Colorful Nest Wallpaper
When we think of bee nests, we often think of a giant hive, buzzing with social activity, worker bees and honey. But scientists recently discovered a rare, solitary type of bee that makes tiny nests by plastering together flower petals. - Continue Reading
Some may think the garage is merely a place to
hide the fact that you drive an SUV keep your vehicle & all the stuff you'll probably never use again safe from the elements. But remember all those other great things that have come out of garages? : bands, inventions, companies, etc. The garage is really a conveniently located creative space to explore your latest idea, so it's nice to see that some people are reflecting the creativity going on behind the door outwardly by giving their doors some color lovin'.