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How to wear colour, whatever your style

Olivia Lidbury,
Fashion Editor

You’re either a ‘colour person’ or not, right? Wrong.

Model in a navy coat and blue dress

Colour has wonderfully transformative powers: a splash of blue to complement the eyes can be mesmerising, and an unapologetically bold coat can uplift the greyest of mornings. And you don’t have to wear it from head to toe – adding a flash of colour to a wardrobe largely composed of neutrals is a clever way to revive tired outfit combinations. Here's how...

Model wearing a block colour jumper and red skirt

Go bold with one key piece

If top-to-bottom colour feels too far out of your comfort zone, then entertain a pair of culottes or cropped flares. Red, for example, looks great with a classic Breton top – and if you’re not sure what colour best suits your skin tone, it doesn’t matter, as it’s on your bottom half.

Model wearing a red coat and neutral trousers

Choose an outfit-topping coat

Who doesn’t want a cheerful companion on their shoulders come rain or shine? You can be as serious, plain or neutral as you like underneath, but bold outerwear sends out a message of optimism and energy. 

Model holding coloured bags

Pick a head-turning handbag

The easiest way to break out of a colour-shy rut is with interchangeable accents. Fuchsia gloves or a saffron faux-fur stole are easy tools to breathe new life into a seasons-old coat. A colour-pop bag acts like the full-stop to your outfit, so make yours punchy with a shade you’ve never entertained before.

Model wearing a neutral toned outfit

Think tonally

Layering shades of the same colour across different tones is a foolproof way to add interest to an outfit. That can mean simultaneously throwing on delicious hues of oatmeal, taupe and cream for a luxe spin. On days where you’re feeling bolder, play around with combinations that fuse red with pink or navy and indigo.

Woman wearing blue jeans and red shoes

Go bold with your shoes

Elevate off-duty looks with an unexpected colour choice where footwear is concerned. Denim has a wonderful ability of withstanding any hue – even blue. Or why not shake up the classic high-low outfit of tailoring and trainers by swapping white sneakers for a colour-block pair?

Models wearing colour clashing outfits

Clash it

Forget the phrase ‘red and green should never be seen’: it’s time to tear up the rulebook. Colour clashes are rebellious but can be covetable – just look at indigo alongside mustard. Have fun creating your own compositions and reach for neutral accessories and footwear to temper your outfit.