Monday, November 30, 2015

Choosing an Accent Color for Olive Green

Oooh, olive is a difficult color to find, and when something turns up that's called olive, it could be anything from a nasty yellowish green pond-scum color, to this lovely deep and dusty green:


trousers – L.L.Bean; turtleneck – BLK DNM;
 jeans – Madewell; crewneck – Tommy Hilfiger (sold out - similar here)

You will, I'm sure, note that these colors don't match absolutely exactly perfectly. I don't have too much trouble with that, so long as they're lighter and darker versions of the same shade of green. It's a difficult color to find and to match, but well worth the effort. By virtue of being so uncommon, you will never blend into a crowd when you wear it! And it can be madly flattering...

First up, what neutrals look good with olive? I'm quickly learning that marsala/wine/burgundy goes with EVERYTHING - a change of accessories for a bit of freshness, and to include the perfect scarf. And camel/beige is a wonderful option...

Khaki vestL.L.Bean; pearl earrings – Majorica; infinity scarf – Renee’s 
Accessories; gloves – Johnstons of Elgin; chukka boots – Tory Burch; garnet 
stud earrings – JCPenney; dark berry vest – Eddie Bauer; maroon print scarf – 
Sylvia Alexander; maroon gloves - Orciani; maroon boots – Leonardo Principi

Bright colors were a little more challenging. I looked at red, but it felt too Christmas-ish, so I tried a more muted rust, which was ideal. There might be a plum color that would work well, but I couldn't find a vest anywhere in the color I envisioned, so I'm shelving that color scheme for another day. Turquoise, however, was abundant, and perfect. Again, the scarf was one of those things I stumbled upon, and couldn't believe how much it felt like it was made for us!


Rust fleece vest – L.L.Bean; carnelian earrings – Panacea; feather scarf – Echo;
 rust gloves – Yerse; rust loafers – Charles David; turquoise earrings – Lauren 
Ralph Lauren; turquoise vest – L.L.Bean; ruffled infinity scarf – Rising Tide;
 turquoise gloves – J. Crew; sparkle slip-ons – L’Autre Chose

Muted colors should have been more straightforward than they turned out to be, since olive is definitely what I would consider muted. I didn't want another variation on red or rust, so I then thought about the yellow color family. The gold fluffy vest was impossible to resist...

And then I really stuck my neck out and tried this slate blue color. I almost gave up, because finding a scarf took ages, and shoes were impossible. But I took my own advice and found understated, classic olive shoes to "ground" this outfit, and it all worked out well. I think that might be proof that if you really love a color, you should just be persistent and it will eventually turn up, somewhere!



Gold fleece vest – J. Crew; earrings – Sorrelli; fingerless gloves – Johnstons 
 of Elgin; striped infinity scarf – Pistil; suede boots – Steve Madden; blue earrings
 – Marco Bicego; hooded fleece vest – North Face; square scarf – YSL; blue 
gloves – Portolano; olive loafers - Pluggz

Pastels were surprisingly not tough - the sand/off-white vest is truly one of those items that can be worn with virtually any other color! And I finally decided that I really wanted to bring back this absurdly extravagant blush vest; this is the outfit for someone who only wears trousers and down vests grudgingly, while really wishing that she could be in her boudoir wearing swans-down mules and a satin negligee... Even the most delicate among us have to go out into the real world once in a while; a beautiful color and a swishy scarf can keep our soignee selves content until we can return to our hothouse environment!

Sand vest – J. Crew; abalone earrings – Kate Spade; scarf – Lua; ivory gloves –  
Portolano; chalk loafers – Coach; gold blush vest – Moncler; earrings – Kendra 
Scott (sold out, similar here); floral scarf – Mangrove; gloves – 
Lauren Ralph Lauren; penny loafers – Tod’s

Tomorrow, I'm going to look at my favorite grey/gray, and then camel... Other neutrals requested, before I move on to other inquiries in the world of wardrobes?

And to a bit of business:

Laura in Canada - do you still want to buy the blue L'Hiver Hermes scarf? If so, send me a note at theviviennefiles@gmail.com...

DBQMary - do you still want to purchase the red L'Hiver Hermes scarf? If so, let me know: theviviennefiles@gmail.com...

AND Francine Forestell - send me your mailing address - you won the Diana Vreeland book!

(I spend a LOT of time packing things - it makes me so happy...)   

love,
Janice


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22 comments:

  1. Dear Janice, that blush vest is so beautiful, I wish it was winter here. However I look back to posts from summer... Have you any posts for an Aussie summer? In black and white.. And a bit of red/ pink/ coral ..Congratulations to the winners! Chris from Australia X

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  2. An amazing job with the turquoise, never would have thought looked good. But they blend in well

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    1. I agree and the burgundy too; suddenly my wardrobe options have expanded!!! Laura in Toronto

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  3. Now, now.. You know someone's favorite color is "nasty" yellow green pond scum ;-)

    (Not mine, but someone's..)

    This has been a fun exercises- that can be used in so many more outfits (meaning instead of pants and vests, use the same theories for pants and sweaters, or skirts and blazers, or.... Different items, but same concepts. )

    I've learned so much from you! :-)

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  4. Love that blush pink color with the green. I would not have considered it. Thanks!

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  5. I am channeling this post......wearing an olive sweater with an orange skirt.......and an olive and orange scarf tying it all together!

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  6. That scarf by Mangrove has me breathing fast. I use sage green as a neutral (lighter, less muted than but equally elusive as a true olive green), so a lot of these combinations would work for me. I have discovered that I LOVE winter clothes so looking at these cozy outfits is a pleasure.

    Gwendolynn

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  7. Janice - I sent an e-mail to you that I do want the scarf.
    These are my favorite types of posts as they have opened my eyes to so many new color combinations that I would never have thought to put together, but end up so striking. I look forward to reading your posts each morning. It is such and enjoyable way to start my day, along with my morning coffee.
    Thank you - DBQMary

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  8. PERFECTION ! Thank you, Janice !

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  9. Love this version! Like Gwendolyn, I also use sage as a neutral. I actually like all the 'neutral' sheets in these posts, so maybe an all neutrals capsule would be interesting.
    Alice

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  10. Olives and muted greens are my new neutral, so this is very appealing. I like that it is hard to find because then the hunt is more fun. Black, navy and grey are too easy and there are too many choices. I also find it adds value to other autumn type colours just as you have illustrated here.
    Deb from Vancouver

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  11. I absolutely love the olive with teal/turquoise and slate blue! I wear them as layers with other neutrals, but see that I should use it as one of my neutrals. I gave up a while ago and started incorporating dark teal (petrol?) as a neutral. Could you do a "Choosing an Accent Color" post for dark teal/petrol? Thank you for all your wonderful ideas! Lesley

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  12. I love working with color and your ideas have made getting dressed every morning a fun and enjoyable adventure. I also like the fact your examples are classic styles, and so have invested in classics to fill in the holes of my wardrobe this year. I think your advice is practical and saves us money by shopping for the basics and appreciate your suggestions as to accent colors and how to put the whole outfit together to look balanced. I like your small earrings and interesting accents from Novica. I like wearing real stones, and they have lovely jewelry in semiprecious stones that can be worn everyday. I want you to know that you make a difference and are helping many of us look better and use the clothing we have in more ways. Thank you for your work and thought that goes into these posts!

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  13. Olive is one of my neutrals - love that blush vest but Ooolala! Gasp! Grey is also one of my neutrals but I did not see taupe on your list. Could you do something with that lovely not grey not brown color? I find it challenging to work with in winter if the taupe is too light, summer and linen color is much easier. Thank you.

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  14. Really surprised by the versatility of the olive, particularly that it plays well with chilly colours. This makes me think about an olive wool jersey wrap dress if I can find the fabric.

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  15. I have a pale pink satin puff vest - from Lands' End a few years ago, so not nearly so pricey! I love it and wear it a lot. Pale pink/blush is a very flattering color for many people.

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  16. Your photographer friend lover this color! My other new hat matches this scheme!

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  17. I have been enjoying your neutrals series. One accent/neutral color I love with black, navy, or charcoal is the caramel/cognac/saddle family - so rich and warm and classic!

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  18. One of my favorite neurals which I wear with taupe/beige/camel and for color: true red (I don't find it Christmas-y), corals/shell pink, aqua, white, and lime green, depending on the season in So Calif. I have been wearing olive for several years now and though often hard to find, it IS out there! I wear no gray or teal/burgundy, etc (I am a warm, low-contrast "spring") and a little black and navy, away from my face. This fall I bought olive Keds, which I love! Thanks for this wondeful display of gorgeous color combinations! Kirsten

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    1. I just figured it out and will be emailing you directly. Attention to detail...failed. Missed your email address in the,post itself, sorry.

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  19. I am thrilled to have won the Diana Vreeland book! What a wonderful way to continue down this newfound path in my life. Though I am late entering into this world of style and color, I very much appreciate your insight and guidance.
    However, social media is rather recent exploration in my world. Since this a busy time of year, I would humbly ask that you only mail the book when it's most convenient for you, which can be any time next year. Rest up from your trip to Paris and enjoy the holiday season. If you can tell me how to email my address to you, it would be much appreciated.
    Thank you so much for offering the book! Olive and black are my wardrobe basics with maroon/burgundy and deep teal as accent colors. My fear is finding spring/summer weight items in these colors, but explore I will!

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  20. I am thrilled to have won the Diana Vreeland book! What a wonderful way to continue down this newfound path in my life. Though I am late entering into this world of style and color, I very much appreciate your insight and guidance.
    However, social media is rather recent exploration in my world. Since this a busy time of year, I would humbly ask that you only mail the book when it's most convenient for you, which can be any time next year. Rest up from your trip to Paris and enjoy the holiday season. If you can tell me how to email my address to you, it would be much appreciated.
    Thank you so much for offering the book! Olive and black are my wardrobe basics with maroon/burgundy and deep teal as accent colors. My fear is finding spring/summer weight items in these colors, but explore I will!

    ReplyDelete