When you are blind, putting an outfit together could be a minefield. Especially when so many people are telling you different things. My advice, keep it simple. The fact still remains that you cannot see what you are wearing and until you feel confident enough with your understanding of how colours work together, don’t go trying to match pinks with reds because some fashion expert says they’re in because you need to know that perfect shade of pink that goes with red, or that perfect shade of yellow that goes with orange. I haven’t found that perfect colour detector that tells you these things so I’m keeping this simple.
Here are some tips I would like to share.
1. Colour detector:
I could not live without this device. Get one from the RNIB. I think it costs about £84. This device will tell you the colours of your clothes simply by switching it on and placing it on the item you want described to you and ensuring that the lights in the room are on. Mind you, it does get confused with pale colours like, cream, pale pink, pale yellow, white, etc. It may just tell you that those things are “(light grey olive green” but it would recognize bold bright and dark colours and save you from going out in totally mismatched clothes.
Please note: it is not great with patterns hence the need to ask people to describe your clothes to you at the initial stage of purchase or receipt.
You can get it here:
For those in America:
2. If you are blind, it is always useful to own black or navy blue trousers or skirts. This is because they will go with just about anything. If you are the type to want to look striking, then team these with any bright coloured tops such as: Red, Orange, Pink, Purple, Yellow, Green, white, Gold or Silver and you will be sure to look great. For men, you can wear similar coloured shirts for leisure but for a corporate look, I think people prefer it when you are in white, pale blue, black, pink, or maroon shirts. You could also have shirts with pin stripes or checks in any of these colours. you can wear v neck jumpers over your shirts for work if you wish to keep warm in the winter. It helps if the jumper is the same colour of the trousers you’re wearing so that the light or bright colour of your shirt peaks out at the top. If you’re going casual, you can still team the dark coloured bottoms with nice jumpers in your preferred bright or dark colour.
3. Avoid wearing separate pieces of clothes with patterns: So If you want to wear a top that has any patterns, be it floral, stripes, aztec, swirls or checks etc., ensure that the bottoms you choose to wear are of one colour. The same applies if you choose to wear bottoms with patterns, then you should ensure that the top you are wearing is plain. It’s OK to where a whole outfit of patterns if the shop sold them together as a pair. This way the patterns would be the same or complement each other. If you can, try to ensure that the plain top or bottom you are wearing has one of the colours in the pattern of the other item.
4. If you are in a situation where you are unsure of two pale colours you have, always team the pale coloured outfit with a dark coloured clothing item. For example, if you have tops that are pale versions of pink, blue, green, grey, or just cream, you’re safest wearing it with dark coloured trousers. This is where dark grey, dark brown or maroon bottoms could also complement the pale top you are wearing.
5. You can also team pale coloured tops with white or cream trousers or skirts if you want a fresh spring or summery kind of look. Lilac, turquoise or aquamarine are colours I do not quite understand but they go with these as well as pale pinks and blues. (please note: sky blue is pale blue)
They are by far my favourite item of clothing as you do not have to worry about matching them. If you are the type who likes dresses, get a few of them as your staple clothing items as they rescue you on those mornings when you can’t seem to find those trousers or that top you really want to wear. In winter, I particularly love to wear jumper dresses either with V necks, cow necks, scoop necks etc. In summer, I go to town with dresses that have lots of lovely colourful patterns or just one bold bright colour.
7. If you are buying any items of clothing, or you are being given any, do not be afraid of asking the person to describe it to you. After all, they liked the look of it, that’s why they picked it for you so why shouldn’t you have the pleasure and delight of knowing what it looks like? I often find that having items of my clothing described to me in detail gives me confidence because I feel I have made an informed decision when choosing to wear it.
It is often helpful to buy clothes with various textures you can feel so if you are in a hurry, you can tell which top you are pulling out of the wardrobe. For example: Zara and Gap do these ribbed thin jumpers in different colours. If you know the colours you bought, and you pull it out, simply find any trousers or skirts you have (because you know they are dark colours), and team them together and you’re ready to go. Winter clothing is great because of all the knit patterns you can feel. Cable knit, crochet knit, ribbed, etc.
Keep it simple as you don’t want to have too many scarves to choose from each day. Think of the colours that dominate your wardrobe and pick the most common colours you have. For example, if most of the things in your wardrobe are dark, pick a bright scarf to give your outfit a lift. Especially if you are wearing a black or dark coat. If most of your outfits are bright, then it’s safer to pick a dark coloured scarf except on occasions where you are absolutely sure that the bright scarf you’re choosing goes with that particular outfit. If you have a patterned scarf, it’s safest to team it with outfits that are plain. It is helpful if the outfit has one of the colours in the patterned scarf.
With regards to shoes, I am afraid to say I remain conservative and mostly wear dark coloured shoes. In the summer, I do experiment with colours like sparkly gold, or silver because again, they are neutral and can be easily matched with many things.
I once recall buying a pair of sparkly pumps that reflected all the colours of the rainbow. I’m afraid to say that I can count the number of times I have warn these pumps as I was worried they wouldn’t go well with my often multi coloured summer outfits.
I thought to share these tips as they are guidelines I use for myself and they have worked wonders for me. It helps if like me, you have a good memory as I can describe to you, every single item of clothing I own. Having been sighted before, I can still see things in my mind. I do hope though that I have helped with this post.
Have you got any tips you would like to share? Comment below. I would like to hear your thoughts. Until the next post, have a colourific week! :)