March 30th, 2010

Color challenge(d)

My Neutral Overload

When I look at my wardrobe I realize that I am color challenged. In my house I have pale yellow walls and red accessories abound. I adore a chinese red side table and if something can be slipcovered in a floral chintz, I won’t hold back. But my clothing and accessories are all neutrals. I always feel that color is too overwhelming on me and screams “look at my red dress!”.  A friend wore a red Halston dress to a coming out party and sure enough no one could take their eyes off of her. It didn’t help that she was this tall gorgeous brunette…

Being short and blonde I have stuck, almost militantly, to a wardrobe of white, tan, camel, dark brown, grey, black and a little navy. Neutrals are important this spring. As I talked about before, the stores are full of brown sandals and every earth tone imaginable. Instead of being delighted, I am disappointed in my limited palette and have decided to challenge myself to buy and, more importantly, wear a few colorful pieces.

After I wrote the post on Belgian Shoes I called the store to see what they had in my size. The woman rattled off the color combos available and to my surprise, I opted for a pair in pink with white trim. This is the first step in my self imposed challenge. I also promise to pull out and wear my collection of gorgeous Hermes scarves. Every year Eileen Ford gave me a scarf as a thank you for judging the Super Model of the Year contest for the Ford Model Agency. I would tuck them away thinking that one day I would turn them into pillows and many have gone to my mother and sister. But this spring I am going dig them out and wear them proudly!

My new pink Belgian Shoes!



what's new


Capri cotton-poplin shirt


Leather knee boots


Shaw wrap-effect ribbed organic cotton-fleece top


+ NET SUSTAIN We're Not Done wide-leg jeans


Striped cashmere sweater


The Pouch leather clutch


Hiandra toe-loop leather sandals


Logo-engraved stacked ring


Cleo ruched swimsuit


Jimmy logo-embroidered leather slides


Print jute tote bag


Very Boogie 60 suede ankle boots

view all

  • Thanks Preston for your post on being color challenged. Like you, I stick to a neutral palette, although mine is probably even more limited: black, charcoal gray, or camel. I usually throw in accents like bright scarves or silver and turquiose jewelry, but I really stick to the basics. When I decided to go out on a limb and buy a Coach handbag that Coach calls “quartz” but which I call more grayish/pink, I wasn’t sure I loved it when it showed up. I mean, it’s pink… Now, after a couple of weeks, I truly love it. This doesn’t mean I’m about to go out and splurge on a new wardrobe of spring colors to match, but every time I carry this bag it reminds me of the other options I have.

    Thanks for your blog, it certainly makes me think.

    EricaMarch 31st, 2010  1:37 PM

  • I LIVE in my Belgian shoes. In my mid 40s and am done with heels during the day. Nothing is more comfortable and yet still so stylish in an old guard sense (as in the Algonquin’s hotel rooms before the f*ing rehab). My grandmother has worn Belgians since the 40s, and I started off just wearing my mother’s when I was in college. Lately, I’ve opted for some decadent lizard skins and for the divine leopard print. Love your pinks – may have to make a call!

    AlexandraApril 1st, 2010  11:12 AM

  • question for Preston….like you I am a neutral girl…love the shoulder bags in this post..afraid to ask…are they Hermes?? any ideas for something similar but not as pricey. Difficult to find handbags without logos, hardware, etc…

    mary bethApril 3rd, 2012  10:17 AM

  • Color challenged? Guilty as charged. In my case they just work so well and I know I won’t look back at a neutral outfil and wonder what I was thinking or who I was dressing as that morning…then the Jcrew catalogue comes and I wonder… I dare?

    SusanMay 18th, 2012  11:26 AM


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