Sunday, September 12, 2010

Purple & Turquoise: The Colors of Fall

Often times I select a color to be my “signature” for the season, both in fashion and decorating.  Usually it has nothing to do with current trends, but rather based on my mood.  However one of my season’s colors happens to coincide with one of two colors I feel will be especially trendy this fall.  This season I'll be using more purple tones, and I think if you look carefully, you'll see both purple and turquoise playing a major role in the colors used this fall.

Questions always arise as to the whys and hows color trends come about.  What follows are my thoughts and analysis on such questions.  Additionally, I will provide suggestions as to how you can use these colors yourself.


Plum always makes an appearance in the fall, but I feel that plum, indigo, grape, and possibly even in deep violet will be heavily utilized this coming season.  Why purple?  Purple offers a feeling of relaxation and comfort.  With ties to fruits like grapes, plums, black currants, and pomegranates, purple offers a feeling of abundance and recalls the images of a good harvest.  Purple is popularly associated with wealth and luxury.  In a time when luxury is imprudent, the simple use of purple can give the impression of wealth without the investment.

I’m not a fan of this color, yet I feel it may make a comeback this fall.  Jewel tones frequently show up around this time of year, but jewels have the obvious association with spending, and as thrift is an ongoing trend, I think jewel tones may not be at the forefront this year.  But turquoise isn’t so much a jewel.  It’s more of a gemstone, and gemstones have done quite well in the jewelry market due to their affordability, yet still make a splash and sparkle despite their lower cost.  Turquoise, as a member of the blue family, offers a calming effect, while still giving a pop of color.  It also has ties to the 1950s to early 1960s, imparting an air of sophistication and optimism.

There is a relationship between the colors that trend and the major events society goes through.  In this case continued economic turmoil influences the colors we choose to use in fashion, accessories, home furnishings, decor, and even advertising.

So how can you use these colors?  There are a variety of ways to use each.  While keeping financial constraints in mind, the more cost effective options include wall paint, small accessories, smaller home accents, and the occasional “basic piece” for fashion.  Your best bet is to pair these trendy colors with larger, neutrally toned items you may otherwise own.

Consider a purple vase or a turquoise lamp instead of a couch or chair. 

Perhaps plum colored gloves or a turquoise head band instead of a major investment piece like a dress or coat?  

Painting your walls is a great way to refresh a room with minimal costs.

All that said, occasionally a splurge is necessary a nice treat… Perhaps on Kate Spade?

In summary, purple and turquoise are so easy to use, you have no excuse not to be seen using purple and turquoise this fall.  Besides, MObama thinks you should.


I hope this helps you when you're planning on your fall colors!  Consider yourself informed and trend-ready!

As a quick side note, though slightly related, I did an interview for with Project Runway: Season 4's Johnathan Kayne as a precursor to the American Cancer Society's Cure By Design event that took place this past Friday.  For more information on trends, fashion, the fashion industry, design, and of course Kayne, please check it out!


  1. Jess, I swear I posted this a.m. about all the beautiful brights and colors and how glad I am to see you here again---like everything, I seem to have misplaced that, as well.

    Anyway, glad to see you, and hope to see more and more of your posts!


  2. Babybear, you are BACK! Great post and wonderful pictures! I'm with you on the not so loving turquoise, but LOVE the combo with my beloved purple! And Mrs. O looks gorgeous in BOTH!

  3. Incredible story there. What happened after? Take care!
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