Many of my clients have heard me use the term ‘bookending’ when it comes to wearing color, and have heard me discuss how it can help them to create harmony in their wardrobe. If you’ve never heard of this before, let me explain what I mean.
Bookending, as I refer to it, essentially means repeating your haircolor in your shoes. You ‘bookend’ your look with similar colors, which create harmony and balance in your outfit while creating a personalized look that flatters you. It is a great way to bring in your best colors and highlight your own personal coloring and can be a great way to wear one of your very best basic colors.
But is bookending really necessary? My two cents worth is this: it is important, but it's not the be all, end all. What I mean is that it’s a nice way to streamline your look, but can just as easily limit you in your choices. Here are my best secrets for bringing bookending into your wardrobe for best effect, and when to pass it by:
1/ Discover a new neutral. If you want to move away from wearing black and discover an alternative that will not only flatter you but have a lovely, personalizing effect on you, repeating your haircolor in your shoes as well as in your trousers or skirt will do this beautifully. This is great, especially if you have light-colored hair and can help you to create a look that doesn’t overwhelm your delicate coloring.
2/ Build Your Wardrobe. By bookending, and wearing your haircolor in your shoes, your pants, your suits, your skirts…you build your wardrobe around one of your best basic colors. This gives you more versatility while flattering you to best effect. Just add in some of your best accent colors to change it up and give your look some punch and you’re on your way to having a wardrobe that multitasks and gives you options for years.
3/ Expand Your Horizons. Sure, bookending is a great trick when you’re not sure what shoes to wear with an outfit, but don’t let it stifle your creativity. If you have brown hair and you REALLY want to rock your raspberry suede pumps or your leopard print heels, then go for it! You’ll express your true style and feel more like you!
4/ Create Balance. Even if you don’t wear shoes in your exact haircolor, use this hue as a guideline for the intensity of your shoes. If you have really blonde or silver hair, wearing chunky black, or very dark, shoes will look visually heavy. Wearing something in a taupe, cognac or gray would look more balanced, provided what you wear between isn’t too dark and heavy. Let your hair and the contrast it provides with your skin, be your guide in creating the perfectly balanced intensity when it comes to color.
5/ Feel Confident. If you’re stepping away from black for the first time, or just not very confident in putting your outfits together, bookending is a great way to know for sure that you’re wearing the best color for you. No more wondering, ‘does this work?’ You’ll know it does!
All in all, I say bookend when you aren't sure, but when you want to express your personal style, wear what you LOVE and mean it!