Fashion Neutral Colours

Aisha Abubakar
3 min readMay 20, 2020

Fashion neutrals are colours that can go with anything, and they are essentials for building any woman's wardrobe. However, just because these hues can go with any other colours doesn't mean that every fashion neutral will look good on all, so it's important to identify those fashion neutral colors that work best.

Colours considered as fashion neutrals

Basic Neutral Colors
The following colors (and their tints and shades) fall into the category of basic neutral colors:

black
gray
navy
brown
khaki
white
Tints (hues with added white) or shades (hues with added black) of these colors also comprise neutrals. For example, grays would include light, medium, and dark (charcoal) grays. Hues such as putty, sand, ivory, medium navy, and tan would all be neutral fashion colors.

Metallic Neutral Colours
True metal colors are also considered fashion neutrals. They include:

gold
silver
copper
gunmetal
bronze

Keep in mind that these are the metallic colors that are based on real metal, and they do not include colours, such as red or blue, that have been processed to have a metallic finish or look. Much of the time these metallic neutrals are worn as jewelry, but they can also work their fashion neutrality on other accessories, such as shoes or handbags, and once in a while (usually for special occasion or holiday dressing), we may wear metallic clothing, such as a silver shimmer gown or a gold sequin top.

Patterned Neutral Colours
Patterned neutrals include the following patterns when they are done predominantly in neutral colors:

glen plaid
pinstripes
tweeds
tiny checks

Even though patterned hues don't consist of just one neutral color as basic neutrals do, they look enough like neutrals that they can be treated as such in the fashion world.

Do Neutral Colors Really Go With Anything?
Theoretically neutral colours go with about anything, some look better than others with certain items. For example, if you are looking for a jacket to wear with a dress that has a colorful print on a black background, a black jacket or sweater will be the best choice. A tan jacket just does not have the same flamboyance. However, let's say you want a sweater to wear with a red dress. Any of the fashion neutral colors would work.

Neutrals can certainly be worn together though it all depends on personal preferences; for example, high contrast white and navy or white and black look great together and have a sharp and crisp. Likewise, tan and white could make a good color combination . Unusual combinations of neutrals are also workable and sometimes appear in high fashion, these might include such combos as black with brown or black with navy.

Using Neutral Colors to Build a Wardrobe

An easy way to build a
wardrobe is to select one to three fashion neutral colours that you like and that look good on you, and begin assembling some fashion basics in these neutral colours. It's a good idea to have the following items in the fashion neutral colors that you have chosen:

jacket
sweater
skirt
pants
jeans
When selecting your core neutral colors, keep in mind that dark fabrics recede and make the wearer look thinner, and light fabrics advance and make the wearer look bigger. The two neutral colors that I rely on again and again are black and navy. I find that almost all my fall and winter clothing will go well with either black or navy or both.

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