Are You An Autumn?

Sundance Horizon Duster, $198

I’m obsessed with color, having started out as an artist long before I realized I was actually a designer, and could get paid for selecting a color palette. All I’d have to do was follow a few simple rules, when planning the next big color trend. First, I’d ask myself, does it make sense? Meaning does it already exists in the collective fashion unconscious of endlessly recycled seasonal color stories? Then I’d check if the fashion industry was on board with let’s say turquoise and coral (they are for Spring 2010).

Like A Prayer Collection, Fall 2009

But when it comes to my own wardrobe, trends need not apply. I’ll stick with colors that are best suited to my fair freckled complexion, thanks. After decades of wearing colors that looked simply hideous on me, I discovered there were a few basic rules, which when followed would bring lasting harmony to the contents of your closet. These rules were published in 1981, although I didn’t catch on right away. Color Me Beautiful is a personal color guide for dummies, using the seasons of nature to identify your unique coloring and which colors look best on you. Everything else just looks wrong. Like all my 80’s fashion choices: the Stephen Sprouse inspired day-glow chartreuse cap, which made my face look greenish grey, and the lipstick red high waited peg leg pants I paired with a jade green Ralph Lauren cavalry bib shirt that made me look like an anemic traffic light.

Like A Prayer Collection, Fall 2009

This fall, 80’s color palettes are hot again (think Nancy Reagan red) but they still make me shudder. Thankfully, as an independent designer, I don’t have to follow those rules anymore. I wasn’t convinced about Pantone’s top 10 fall ’09 colors, choosing instead a universally flattering palette that’s earthy and bright for my Like A Prayer collection, pictured here. For myself, I fell in love with a variegated striped sweater coat from the Sundance catalog, noting that the unexpected mix of earth tones with orchid pink was just what I was thinking! It’s finally starting to make sense. I’m an Autumn.

Cynthia Rybakoff sterling silver and Japanese waxed cord Like A Prayer necklaces, $88 and bracelets, $68, at Supermarket.

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