Dark Autumn CE and Apparel

The previous post was Dark Autumn Landscapes. In 12 Season colour analysis, the Dark Autumn group has a natural colouring that is mostly defined by the properties of the Autumn colours (dark, warm, muted), and importantly influenced by a smaller Winter effect to darken more, warm less, and mute less.

The Look

Winter does more than that. It inflicts intensity and complications (which is different from Autumn complexity) on a warm, natural, functional, undemanding (Autumn) group of colours. I said a lot last time about choosing dark colours that are still fathomable and knowable, glowing and rich as Autumn is, instead of black which is too Winter in every way. Black should be occasional from head to toe. Even in footwear, the dark bay Hanoverian horse is better than black. The shadows are black but where the light strikes, it’s brown. If black is necessary, matte is better.

Photo: Brunatka

The dressage photo above says a lot to me about the intersecting line between Dark Autumn and Dark Winter. Animals tie us back to our own earth origins and many are necessarily Autumn. The horse is Autumn. The rider’s outfit cost thousands but if you stood beside her, she’d be dusty and smell of hay. The white bandages, saddle blanket, and breeches are Winter’s but the picture is about the horse. The animal is not black. He is darkest brown.

Winter does not only mean verbs like inflict. It really never graces, embroiders, or enhances, and it barely embellishes. It bejewels. Winter can be tough and mean, and endlessly brave and loyal. The rich texture of True Autumn becomes luxurious texture. As Nana said about all Autumn, you must feel it to know it – fur, suede, velvet, raw silks. The photos in the previous post were chosen because they had texture – tapestry, fur, roughness, or the scaly skin of the cobra in the music of the bellydance. Texture expresses heat just as colour does. Absence of texture feels colder.

Autumn is close enough to touch while Winter has receded out of arm’s reach. Winter can feel more modern, like a 21st (or 23rd) Century city. Dark Autumn speaks of old luxe, dignified though not monastic. Vintage-antique (the Chanel cardi with handsewn silk flowers and bronze piping) works better than vintage-kooky (the daisy skirt).

As they bridge rural and urban, old world and new, tradition and Winter’s yet unwritten edge, estate and city streets, their scope of looks is enormous. Buckles, zippers, chains, jackets with metal buttons. Riding boots (with breeches, suede knee patches and all), cowboy boots, cowboy hats, tough chic, biker, army. As long as the message expresses strong, work, utilitarian, muscular to some degree – because that’s what the colours say. Then add in Winter’s majestic and serious. Pouffy, polka, bows, round collars, to me, makes no sense. The colours are of Nature matured. It looks inconsistent and scrambled if styles are the opposite, as if the colours, the cut, and the person are all moving in different directions at once. Unstable.

Autumn is honest so keep to the natural look of things. No pink leather or leopard shearling is what I’m saying. This is the Marlboro guy (actually, he’s True Autumn to Indiana Jones’ Soft Autumn). They borrow better from the guys (RayBans, neckties) than from the theater (cat eyes, glitter gloves). Brown is the color of work, countryside, and common sense. A very difficult colour to get right but so worthwhile since it is Autumn black.


Halle Berry
Halle Berry Pictures

See how his white shirt and the white wall are greying her face and lips? Do you get the feeling that if those were replaced with cappucino brown, she’d go all five-star dark golden?

Down below…now we’re talking. Pageant Queen makeup has no place here. Pink isn’t right regardless of complexion depth.

Halle Berry
Halle Berry Pictures

Strong flavours. Mustard, spice, vinegar. There is nothing nothing wishy-washy here. A T-shirt and pants? I hope they were free. This is the legging and the dark cognac equestrian boot, the tribal or animal print scarf and ethnic earring, the leather vest, the heavy medallion necklace and the oversize belt, the bronzed burgundy suit jacket. Like a wine cellar, it’s a Season that acquires itself over time. You should hear the drums, taste the wine that fills your whole head, and feel the heat of the forge.

Fabrics don’t have to be completely stiff or lines utterly straight. We’re dressing womens’ bodies after all. Drape is better when it’s not overdone and the fabric has some depth, like heavy velvet curtains.

Wear prints like stained glass. Patterns are pronounced, definitions between colour blocks are quite distinct and strong, and colours are prominent. A Rubik’s cube geometric is too repetitive. An element of antique, abstract, indigenous, or unrestrained is good.

Colour Equations

This section is taken from the Dark Autumn chapter of the book, Return To Your Natural Colours.

  • One very light colour + one medium-dark to dark colour + one medium to dark colour as accent
  • Two medium-dark to dark colours (or neutral colours) that are different
  • One light, medium, or dark neutral + one dark, medium, or light neutral + one colour as accent
  • One medium-dark to dark colour + one light, medium, or dark colour + one colour as accent
  • Little use of complementary colours, in small areas only
  • Overall medium-dark to dark effect


What that looked like in my head:


Translated into clothing:Dark Autumn casual

Dark Autumn casual by christinems featuring wide leg pants

Dark and cool recede. Here, with dark and warm, a push/pull visual effect is created that adds tension (Winter’s complications) and interest.

If you think about it, you can see some clearing and cooling. Previous fluidity is beginning to set and stiffen. We have to add in the person, her warm chestnut to warm black hair, perhaps her faint red highlights, her bronzer and flesh-tone eyeshadow surrounding her dark chocolate eyes, spiced peach lips, deeply coloured stones in warm, golden settings, the purse and shoes, to fully appreciate the dark warmth. The viewer has a lot of colour to integrate.

Icy, cold colours make sense frosted. Muted colours don’t. Muted colours are gentle and calm, not metallic. Dark Autumn colours are barely muted, so gentle gets replaced with assertive and maybe even a little pushy. Sometimes, we worry that dark=power and light=weak, which may be true in dictionaries but it’s not how others see us. What others see is probably dark=force and light=ease (but not pushover). Dark Autumn colours wears metallic well in their warmest clothing and cosmetic colours since they convey the heat that smelts metal from ore. Metallics in their colder range are less successful.

Was your first thought when you saw the Polyvore, I was expecting tribal and spicy. This looks pretty normal? It has to be normal enough to wear to the office. Try putting it on a light, sunny blonde and suddenly, if it’s not spicy, it’s at least truly weird. She’d look like she decided to wrap herself in a Bedouin tent. Your personal power is among the wonders of this world but it only works for you, and hers for her. Power fizzles like a wet match when you try on someone else’s.

So, you know your Season, you’ve been buying the right colours in clothes, is there another step? Always. Combining your colours in absolutely stunning combinations is another level. I am thankful to Stephanie, source of so many awareness expanders, for introducing me to Shigenobu Kobayashi’s books. In his Color, Image, Scale, he takes a big selection of colours and shows you twelve truly gorgeous 3-colour combinations with each one. Isn’t it interesting how 3 and 4 in the graphic above feel very different, beyond just temperature, simply from the change in accessory colour?

Whatever your Season, unless you’re incredibly creative, I doubt you’d come up with some of Kobayashi’s pairings on your own. I assure you that I wouldn’t. For Dark Autumn’s most striking use of complementary colours, insert a complement between two similiar rich colours in your palette. It looks fantastically good. The split complementary colour scheme is worth getting to know too. You pick three similar colours (analogous, colour wheel neighbors) and then add the complement of the middle one. It is worth scanning your colour analysis swatch book into a computer, or a photo of it, and using a computer program (Google it, there are many) to give you the complements, finding them in your Book, and writing the pairs on the back. Getting the complements exactly right sets up much more vibration than guessing and only being close.

Many Dark Autumns are darker than Halle Berry. How about this woman, wearing Dark Autumn’s version of white? From the clean whites in her face, you’d swear she must be wearing white, but white will grey her. It takes this colour to do what white does on a Winter face. How cool is that?

Jessica Alba
Jessica Alba Pictures

A straight body, straight across the shoulders, they walk stiff and straight, not Summer’s rolling walk or Spring’s sashay. Rectangular body, linear. Similar lines in the clothes.

Comfort colours, which are often food colours, are staying in True Autumn. Dark Autumn is wild and hot and passionate > red, of course. All the reds and oranges work. Complements also raise energy, with great opportunity to use them in dark and mysterious ways, as dark olive and burnt orange/red orange/browns (dark orange).

Something about dark grey can be very warm – as Bobbi Brown was thinking when she named her eyeshadow Hot Stone. MAC Copperplate eyeshadow is a heavy good grey for Dark Autumn. I used a dark grey blouse to cool the leopard skirt. A big thick grey block can be too heavy and stuck. Add a necklace, a jacket, the coolest bag and watch, maybe the leopard skirt. Give the eye somewhere else to go. Take care with animal prints. Buy the suitcase set or the wallet. Animal prints are like leather pants, they can work against you all too easily.

Jeans are good. Keep them dark without a whole lot of orange stitching.

Dark Autumn dress

Dark Autumn dress by christinems featuring a cowl neck dress

Winter brings red and more black. Some of its blue is cooling the colours but you’re not seeing it as blueness yet.

The colour of Eva’s dress isn’t dark per se. For a light colour, it’s dark though. It has weight, substance, density, and naturalness. Maybe the colour is a little warmish and would suit a True Autumn more perfectly, but I give it to her anyhow for daring to be different so successfully. See how Alba’s above is a little cooler, a little glitzier, perhaps less burlap? The whites of Eva’s eyes aren’t quite as clear. Who cares, Eva took a step towards Eva and away from cookie cutter.
Eva Longoria
Eva Longoria Pictures


Facebook Family

Colour is one half of a most beautiful appearance. Style is the other half. In the late 80s, David Kibbe wrote a book called Metamorphosis. He outlines 13 body types and goes into great detail about every aspect of appearance pertaining to that body type. Like Sci\ART’s 12 Tone Season system, Kibbe’s is a logic system that works for me without being overwhelming or impractical. Yes, it takes time to understand and implement but when it’s right, the result is incredible. Geometry comes out of the features of your face like colours do when your palette is right. The book is so good that we talk about it a lot in our Facebook group. The next section may seem confusing without having read it.

The Dark Autumns I have met have been some type of N, C, and interestingly twice, G. They look like they have black in the way that they look like they have drama but they are more square than angular and sharp. The clothes and fabrics above are all structured because I have those women in my head when I select clothes.

I ask myself, what does a Theatrical Romantic Dark Autumn wear? I searched and searched and found one I liked. Those who read RTYNC know that for me, certain colours make sense in shapes that evoke feelings and patterns we are familiar with from Nature. Of course, there are as many versions as there are women. We all own more than one cookbook. None of us owns a cookbook from which we make every recipe, even from the very rare book where we tried them all. All I’m saying is that colour is more than just colour, the same colour on me and on you looks and feels totally different to the audience, and we all have a different idea of what looks good.

I looked at that dress (off shoulder, center, bottom row) for a long time wondering if something so filmy makes sense in a food and earth colour. How do you feel about it?

Einstein said, Imagination is better than Knowledge. Turns out it takes a lot more imagination to be yourself than to be someone else. I love about Kib and colour that both only want you to stay true to who you were meant to be because you’re already her. You really can’t not be her, ever. Your roots grew a tree that is perfect and like no other. Forget cookie-cutter. Forget, I must be blonde or size 6. If you’re clinging to those, you’re probably neither and people can see that. Why force your opposites to fit you? Knowledge of your colours and the essence of your body type is where you start. Trust the process of finding them. From there, imagination lets you interpret what hangs from your branches infinitely, always holding the truth of your tree. Renata chose the very adept words emotionally grounded to describe how knowing your colours and your style feels. So right.



47 thoughts on “Dark Autumn CE and Apparel”

  1. There is no reason why any Dark Autumn woman out there wouldn’t feel like a gorgeous steed after reading this. And your ‘ignore the cookie cutter’ comments are fantastic. When you are being the best version of yourself, people are actually relieved and happy to be in the presence of authenticity.

  2. I grew up in Southern California so yes there were blondes everywhere…some natural, some not. I thought I was a winter up until a year ago…but know I can’t wear winter colors because they are too draining and no black. I love the colors, however, finding the right colors in the store is a challenge. I love how you incorporated Kibbe into the DA design…I was trying to fit the build for Kibbe Dramatic Classic but it is to severe. I did not really think there was a correlation between body shape and season (even though I have read it several times) but I am a Contoured Rectangle …between and hourglass and rectangle. hmm Interesting to hear what Kibbe you think a DA could be.
    Love the color combinations :) Thank you for our research and your elequent writing me…makes me feel I am that much closer to getting it right.

  3. My daughter and I, both DA’s, have been waiting for a week for this! We even snuck over to Polyvore ahead of time to see what you were up to. Thank you so much for your hard work and for so generously sharing your expertise.

    Christine, you mentioned that you had never seen a blue-eyed DA. I am one. I tend to choose more teals and navies and charcoals to complement them, but it works so much better when I warm the colors up with rust and bronzy-browns. I’d like to try more of the DA blues, but blue can be SO WRONG when it’s wrong, and I’m afraid to try. And I don’t wear light colors at all.

  4. There I was, slowly adjusting to being a (dark) Soft Autumn, and not a (soft) Dark Autumn, and then you write these two articles… and suddenly I am jealous of the Dark Autumns, all over again.

    Looking at my wardrobe… hmm… I am still not buying soft enough… and I am still too drawn to the rich, luxurious, sensual earthiness of the DA. The colours in that Polyvore are the colours that fill my wardrobe – minus the reds and oranges.

    Sigh. More mental adjustment obviously necessary.


  5. “It takes more imagination to be yourself than someone else.” Love that. Something to teach our children.

  6. Christine, thank you for this other amazing post about DA! I was smiling when I read ” The horse is Autumn.” You have a great sense of humour.
    I started to have doubts regarding me as DA looking at too dark colors of clothes. Well, the main thing is to know which colors suit you better than others than to think all the time about a type of Autumn season (SA, TA, DA) you belong to. I am talking only about myself. After my color analysis ( not Sci\ART) I had more than two years ago I still do not have a very clear picture only some questions….I wish I to have my color analysis this time when I know much more about color and color seasons. I would ask my consultant lots of questions. It is neccesary to have unbiassed attitude of a different person.

  7. Thank you for this wonderful analysis! Im a pretty young girl who is just starting to get into this and I love your analysis. I think that I am a dark winter but sometimes I get confused if I’m a dark autumn. Do you have an analysis on dark winter, and if not, are you planning on making one?

  8. Thank you Christine for two lovely articles on DA colors. It amazes me how much effort you put into these things. I always learn something new from you.. I have those gray and taupe-gray shades in my closet, stumbled upon them accidentally and they suit me fine (which I was surprised to see the first time I tried them on..). I love the equestrian style, and boy do I love vintage with antique feel to it. Left to my own devices I wear a lot of dark denim. I love dark greens and blues, dark warm browns, bricky reds, tobacco range of shades. However, I have a very curvy, x-hourglass figure, wide shoulders, but with longer limbs, long narrow feet and hands and slightly elongated oval face (no pronounced cheekbones), so most of the jewelry shown here would probably look too chunky on me. Again, I like somewhat antique pieces (I adored that DA pendant you had in article on pendants for 12 seasons), garnets, peridots, lapis, red corals. I need fitted clothes, sleek if somewhat vintage feel cuts, I fare well in pencil skirts, the correct a-line skirt, cowl , scoop, v-neck lines, fitted jackets (I often have to take jackets and blouses I bought to the tailor if I want them to fit just right). For very formal occasions I will likely choose to channel the more power-and luxury, detached kind of message- a well cut black suit (black with a slight green tinge, mind you), black shiny beaded buttons, not noticeable, but still there. It looks kind of wicked, but it looks good:) What else? Ah, bags, I favor the rectangular shape, bags without pronounced structure just look messy to me. On the off shoulder dress: it looks fine; have you ever eaten hazelnut parfait cream? Maybe some slightly heavier, more “drapy” fabric would be even better, maybe.. I really like that long Lanvin dress, it looks gorgeous.

  9. I love this site, the writing, the holism of each article… and the polyvores get to me – such a wonderful way to see the possibilities. After being mistyped as a summer years ago (I looked like a winter with dark hair and eyes and looked okay in black but much better in brown) I’m finally coming to the realization that I’m an autumn. But which one? My brown eyes have orange and khaki green in them and my brown hair starts showing copper and orange in daylight. I know that hair and eyes don’t determine anything, so I was wondering, Christine, whether there were particular shades of drapes that can help someone determine TA vs DA vs SA? I think I may be a DA and fighting it a bit. Thanks!

  10. Jo, I feel your pain! I could have written your post.

    I would love to read Christine’s thoughts on how SAs who feel drab can make the most of their approved colours to achieve a richer effect without overwhelming their own softness, as the wrong colours would do.

  11. Ahh so much pressure! I’ve always worn mostly black and dark colors, but I favor jeans anytime I don’t “have” to be in dress clothes for the office. Now I find I can balance all these amazing things and I realize my jeans and I are going to have to step it up because of our SA and TA cousins who would (and should) smack us soundly for not dressing up to our potential. My Ed Hardy skull tennis (black and dark red…of course lol) are on my feet looking at me mournfully. I’m going to have to order Christine’s book now. As I said in the Reserves, “Proceeding.”

  12. Lindsay,
    I have to agree – especially the SAs (like Jo?) who choose to leave their hair dark may need some help finding a place that’s somewhere between the low-contrast SA look and a look with stronger contrast that’s closer to DA. My analyst struggled between DA and SA for me, finally concluding that I was a darker soft autumn. She suggested that I stay with the darkest of the SA colors (there aren’t many!)

    Christine, these are absolutely terrific articles!

  13. I do not think soft autumn is drab! !! No way! What do you think about blue (approved one) with wheat yellow, or brown and moss and brick, or some soft plum with brown?

  14. Thank you, Christine, for a wonderful job! These two DA articles are awesome as always! I’m almost sure i’m a DA since pure cool white makes my face very reddish, with a red nose as Santa’s, lol, but you are saying here that white and cool make a grey face.
    As for me, winter colors are good, but not so as DA’s, Summer defo really greys me, washes me out, but pure white – red awful face)) Black is good but it doesn’t really correlate with my energy.
    I’m Dramatic by Kibbe and that styling fits better for a Winter, actually i appear quite cold outside (but feel warm inside) and even my mom has a hard time believieng i’m a ‘warm’ Autumn, she says i would make a good Winter but she can’t neglect ineffective white and overall perfection of DA.

  15. Denise – interesting that you mention darker hair. I’m SA with dark brown hair (but it’s a drab, quite ashy brown) and very pale skin so there is a big light/dark contrast there.

  16. Deana, Not really easy to sort the 3 options once you have the main True Season right. It gets into subtleties. The thing about DA is that you would look better in the darkest Autumn colours.

    Lindsay, There’s a fair bit in the site on that topic pertaining to S Su and T Su but it applies to SA too. Remember that for the Soft Seasons, the magic is very much in how the colours look when combined, so fire up your imagination and collect some beautiful accessories. Two blocks of muted colour all by themselves, you’re right, less interesting. Also, think of someone who looks like you and dress her. When she looks right, so do you.

    Nicole, Wrong colour brings different things out of different faces. Too cool drapes can bring out red or grey. Sometimes, you can see more than one false overtone coming out at the same time. I see this a lot in Springs.

  17. Christine, what a TA and TSp skin suppose to look like in stark white? Is it grey, red, pale? Give a hint please!

  18. A very well-thought out article with wonderful examples. I, too, would like a DNA transplant to Dark Autumn!

  19. I don’t know about the rest of you – but I wanna be whatever season Christine is writing about at the time!!!

  20. Denise – I wholeheartedly agree! Whichever season Christine writes about ends up sounding so magnificent that I want to trade places! (Although, I have to say, I am thrilled with my post-PCA True Spring colors after half a lifetime of missing my potential dressing as some kind of Summer!)

  21. Depends on the person, Carrie. In both TA and TSp, the Winter white you describe (stark) looks aggressive, glaring, and very demanding in the mirror. If you look at the whole image, there is a sense that the white and the head attached to it don’t belong together on any level. The face can often be pale or grayish, drained of vitality that flushes back into the skin and face when the colour is warmer.

  22. Thanks, Christine. Now i think i’m an Autumn, probably SA or TA.
    What do you think about black mascara for SA and TA if a woman is of sharp contrast like Rosalie de Colores from Facebook (recently draped SA), she looks Winter-ish.

  23. Carrie, you will have to wait for Christine’s answer for a piece of good advice, but here is my experience. I am a sort of “sharp contrast” myself – quite pale skin, chestnut hair (have not the faintest idea what season- not a winter, very likely). However, I cannot wear jet black mascara. It looks so very black-then one can easily see that my eyebrows are brown-and my eyes look actually smaller. Brown-black however is good.

  24. Hi Carrie,

    I’m fairly dark hair and fair skin for a SA, and I confess that I wear black mascara. It is for very practical reasons – I can only wear 2 brands of mascara without getting sore eyes – and those brands only make black. So I wear black, wear falsies, or wear none.

    Black it is.

    Honestly, I don’t think it looks brill (but better than the bald eyelash-less look without mascara), and I can improve things dramatically using SA eyeliner and brow pencil.

    Seriously, don’t even try to wear dark mascara on a Soft face without eyeliner AND brow pencil – you will look completely unbalanced – just keep them Soft.

    (sorry to hijack the DA thread folks, but we Softies, who share the lack of drama, need to share the solutions too! Grin)


  25. Oh, and Christine recently made a fab point in an article. It was about how the lip shade should balance the eyebrows, with both having the same level of contrast to the paler skin of the face. How brilliant is that? It absolutely explains why I do better with soft-but-deeper-than-middling lips.

    Presumably, the same advice sort of applies to mascara colour, and matching mascara colour to brows, and balancing mascara colour to lip-skin contrast…

  26. I agree with Inge. I haven’t seen the SA who looks better in black anything that brown or black-brown depending on her inherent darkness level. Teddy bear brown liners, golden brown shadows, pinked cider lips, and B-L-A-C-K. Not what my eye likes to look at.
    Jo is so right, the whole picture has to balance or we feel off kilter. Her natural hair colour is surprisingly dark. Her overall look is surprisingly cool for a SA, so she might cheat in black mascara because her hair can balance it and her eyeliner is darker than teddy bear.

  27. Christine, i wonder about Julia Roberts. Do you have any ideas on her Season? TA, DA maybe? I recall you’ve never mentioned her on your celeb season lists.
    And Cindy Crawford might be too.

  28. Can DA’s be low-contrast? Or does their coloring seem lower contrast because the colors are browned? Say olive/purple vs. cream/dark brown…

  29. Jeannie,
    As you know from your time here, my answers always seem to be relative. DA is lower than the Winters in contrast because the colours are more muted, just as you say, but also because to create light/dark contrast, you need to have really light lights, which DA doesn’t have. Since darkness is the TMIT for DA, they can wear outfits that are lower or higher in contrast, like the 2 combinations you suggest and look absolutely great. Olive and purple is a really beautiful example.

  30. Thanks Christine,
    I was questioning because I seem to do much better in olive/purple than cream/brown. I am also light for a DA so I am sure that has something to do with it.

  31. Estee Lauder has a couple of fantastic LE mascaras at the moment in the Sumptuous Extreme, for people who shouldn’t wear black: Teal is so gorgeous I bought 2 tubes, and Copper is a warm, not-too-black but not reddish, brown. On naturally dark lashes they don’t appear freakishly 1980s coloured.

  32. Have you seen a DA that at first glance has the color intensity of a Soft Summer? A DA who is better in the analogue colors, monochromatic or all one color vs contrast.

  33. Tricia, Thank you so much for putting together the Mac makeup palettes for each season. Beautiful! Can you tell me the list of eyeshadow colors you used for both the Neutral and colored Spring palettes? Thank you.

  34. Christine- I love your writing. I had my colors done this week by a CMB lady, since there are no Sci-Art locations in my parts. She said without any shadow of doubt I am a DA, but I couldn’t help but feel…disappointed. I’m a very soft person, and really struggling with the colors. Looking at the all the dark oranges, mustard’s, mosses and olives make me feel ill. I had thought perhaps I had a home with the darker soft summers. Is there perhaps a bridge between the two?

  35. I want to say that your articles are simply amazing! I am a dark autumn myself, and I must agree with every point you made. DA needs time to accepts her true coloring, as I needed it.
    As a child, I instinctly chose quite right colours – oranges, dark greens, khakis – saturated and tribal. However, growing up, when teens want to identify with their peers, I felt completely lost! My look stood out, which was highly undemanded then :) A teenage DA ha got VERY hard time,believe me, finding its colours. I felt rather winter-ish, to be honest, but still, the colours didn’t make much sense. Now, when I’m returning to my skin- burning colours, prickling and unsettling, I feel that lost power.
    DA lours are, as you said, not traditionally feminine, and this is a hard thing to get used to. I’m still getting crazy envious over my warm, soft spring friend wearing candy colours and looking so girlish, so eye-catching, so light and flying…that’s something completely unknown to me; I am neither light nor girlish. She’s my perfect opposition to utilitarian boots, leather, richness. And we enhance each other’s look just by standing near.
    But Ibelieve that our colours may change with time. M another friend is a perfect example. She used to be warm autumn, with rich brwn hair, but over years she astoundingly evolved into dark winter! Now shes got black hair (natural!) and knitted sweaters simply don’t make sense any longer, same as those warm colours! I think it’s also connected with a change in one’s character. I evolved, too, but within same season – as a 5-8 year old, looking at my photos, I seem to have been a perfect soft autumn.
    I also want to share my experience with hair colour. My natural hair is very dark, ashy brown, somewhere near black, but not yet black. There, my eye colour plays essential part. That is, my eyes are much lighter than hair, but normally they gets darker through the neighbouring with hair. They are a mix of green and brown, with darker circle, with bothyellow and orange places. When I lightened my hair to an onion yellow, leaving dark roots, t repeated my eye colour,and gained a HEAP ofcompliments. Simultaneously, I got warmer and lighter. Those, who hd known me forever, said that I lostmy true dark self, but hose who have known me for just a while, were amazed. Easy to say, I got lost, and dyed my hair rich, warm brown. Technically, it should suitmy dark autumness. But, only technically. That onion blonde was far better, beacuse it suited my eyes, whereas rich spicy brown was a different tale than yellowish, greenish brown of my eyes. Those two colours argued. Only hair suit, only eyes suit, but together it doesn’t make sense. Now I’m back to the colour similar to my natural one, only less ashy, but as dark as it used to be, and now i feel the fire! DA is a mix of warm and cold. My natural hair are nowhere near classic warm autumnish hair – that’s misleading, but you’re right: nature knows the best!
    Thank you for your amazing site. It’s like the enlightment. I’m anxiously waiting for more articles! Best regards, Anne

  36. Dear Chrisitine, I have a question. Can a DA have very light skin?
    All the examples are either women of colour or latino or the mediterranean type…
    I’m more like Snow White (but with freckles ;-), with dark eyes (however it’s not the orange-reddish brown of winters) and dark hair. My skin is ivory or cream but is not at all rosy, nor pale.
    And I look good in daaaark colours. I was draped some years ago within the 4 Seasons method and came out as Autumn, with mostly dark drapes. I can wear black but very dark brown or charcoal is better. I look good in orange, auburn, brick, mustard, dark chocolate. Jewellery – gold is better, but ancient silver is ok too.
    I read your articles back and forth and am more confused than ever now.

  37. You bet they can, Corinne. It can look pinkish, probably more pink than it is just because of the effect the eyes/hair/lips will have on the skin colour. Put that skin on a Spring and it would probably look more tawny. The pinker skinned DA seems to happen regardless of the level of muting in the eyes or hair, meaning the person is not necessarily close to Winter when this happens. And the reverse is true, that a tawny DA can be quite close to Winter. You should get draped in 12 modern Seasons if you really want to understand yourself. Reading for a year won’t get you what that experience will. DA is way more different from TA than just being darker.

  38. I love this: “The Dark Autumns I have met have been some type of N, C, and interestingly twice, G. They look like they have black in the way that they look like they have drama but they are more square than angular and sharp.”

    I’m still trying to find my place (have no Sci/Art analyst nearby), but somewhere at the border of BSp and DAu seems about right, so I’m seeing a lot of myself in this post.

    You ask about the fluidity of the one dress…and I’m mindful of what I’ve sorted out for myself. I have some things that are favorites that either have more flow to them, or more curve to the designs (like wrought iron filigree) that are favorites, and I’ve analyzed them to death trying to figure out WHY they aren’t too Romantic, too Summer — why do they not clash with all my other choices. And I’ve decided that it’s because they’re ORGANIC. Some of these things, when paired with the right colors, textures, materials, etc., have a simple, organic feel to them that feels right. (I also have found that soft, fluid fabrics can often work well if they’re textured and not smooth or shiny.)

    Just like a color will look different depending on the context of the colors immediately surrounding it, so fabrication, line, and texture are impacted by the other elements involved.

  39. This essay is amazing, it really clearly describes one of the dimensions of dark autumn that doesn’t get addressed in most season/color articles I’ve read (TEXTURE) and after years of fumbling around wondering if maybe I was just sort of weird-looking (since so much of women’s clothing is too delicate or… frivolous for me) I feel like I finally have some sort of understanding of my season! And of why sometimes things just look so silly on me even if they are the right color and material… I didn’t realize the cut/drape of a garment is sometimes also part of the season it aligns with. Your descriptions of the mood that this season conveys are very beautiful, and makes me (finally) happy to be one of the dark autumns! Thanks for writing this.

  40. Hi Christine,

    If a man were Dark Autumn, and lived the kind of life where he only needed one suit – for weddings and for funerals (and so needs formality in the color choice), what color would he pick? Dark, rich brown, which seems like the natural choice to me, is considered informal.

  41. I suppose the answer is Dark Autumn’s version of navy blue? And that would be true for any Autumn – that they would use their own version of navy? Would any of them be able to pull off charcoal?

  42. Dark Autumn looks outstanding in navy blue, particularly if there are red-orange tones in the hair and eyes. If they are Winter-looking, charcoal is terrific. Soft Autumn has two versions of navy. One is medium-dark and slightly to the green side, though it does look blue, like medium-dark denim. The other is quite dark and slightly purplish, and I am not sure how it would work as a full suit. True Autumn is so golden that real navy blue is rare, replaced with a very dark teal that I could easily see as a suit (or dark olive/tobacco).
    For a colour that spans all three Autumns, I think it would be dark brown though I agree that the colour is sometimes everyday-looking. In the same way that Winters need great items when they wear black, or Summers with soft grays, Autumns distinguish brown by choosing outstanding textiles that may have some texture, excellent details, and fabulous ties or accessories. This is a big range of colouring, from Harrison Ford to Richard Harris (of the BBC series, Hinterland), who might be Softs, to Orlando Bloom or Tom Selleck, who might be Darks. I’m not saying these men are these Seasons, just that one colour that conveys glamour in three Seasons is challenging, depending on how particular one is regarding the result.

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