Written by Emma D'Arcy
Life in full colour. What does that mean to you?
There are so many different ways to interpret the idea of a life in full colour. I consider it to be a life rich with experiences, adventures and travels.
I think of bold, beautiful head ties worn by women in South Africa, the stunning decorative fabrics at the souks in Turkey, or the turquoise blue ocean and golden white sands off the coast of mainland Australia. Travelling to different countries and cultures around the world makes everything appear even more striking, vibrant and alive – an everyday occurrence to a local becomes a colourful spectacle to travellers. My memories are all the more vivid for the colours displayed in nature, the unfamiliar yet majestic far away landscapes, and the striking clothes worn by the local people in the countries I visit.
Colour represents the excitement and vibrancy of these memorable moments that I like to see reflected in my home too. Recently I dabbled with interior design – my first time decorating my own home. As I started with a completely blank canvas, I didn’t know where to begin, so I began with the expert guidance of an interior design specialist who understood my tastes and requirements for neutral tones mixed with splashes of bright, bold yellows, oranges and a mixture of fabrics. Given the space I am working with (to give you an idea: white walls, navy kitchen cupboards with brass handles and marble worktops) I have decided on a navy velvet sofa with contrasting accent armchairs – the furnishings will fill the room with joyful moments of colour. Through the journey, I have learned it’s a process, but one I am all too happy to take my time creating! My favourite task will be filling the walls with treasured paintings, photographs and memories.
When I finally move into my new home, I’ll also have the slightly daunting, but delightfully rewarding task of working through my wardrobe to clear out belongings I’m not wearing anymore – every six months I try to be disciplined and take bags of pre-loved clothes and accessories to local charity shops, or I sell some accessories online. Depop has been an excellent source of stunning preloved handbags – I recently found a tangerine orange Lulu Guinness crossbody bag that has already accompanied many a spring outfit to add a cheery tone to my go-to stonewashed denim and white T shirt wardrobe.
Historically I have stuck to neutral tones for my working wardrobe, but increasingly enjoy contrasting staple pieces with bright colours. I have always preferred to stick to block colours rather than patterns, but I’m now far more adventurous with my accessories. Think bright stilettos, vibrant nail polish and jewellery, teal coloured silk shirts and burnt orange scarves.
How we dress ourselves is such an integral part of our identity, and we gain inspiration in so many dierent ways. My greatest style inspiration is my wonderful late Nan Dorothy, who always dressed beautifully and knew how to enjoy a splash of colour with her signature red lipstick and classic gold jewellery. Her iconic, timeless sense of style matched her personality – glamorous, graceful and elegant, always with a sense of fun and laughter! So whenever I wear what has now become my signature red lipstick, this will always remind me of her and make me smile.
So whilst this is a selection of my interpretations of life in full colour, my take on it is as individual as my sense of style! Colour represents so many different emotions, and inspires many different experiences that are as unique as each one of us. Next time you visit an exhibition and pause to take a moment to admire a painting, or or glance at an outfit passing by – take a moment to enjoy experiencing life in full colour and what it means to you. When you stop and think about it, you might surprise yourself or learn something new.