Fashion 101: Color Review Session 4

August 16th, 2009 § 12 comments

Color Wheel of Clothes, originally uploaded by academichic.

When we first explored the color wheel and experimented with various color combinations, we found it to be extremely helpful in lending us new eyes with which to see our wardrobes. This was so useful the first time around, that we decided to revisit the color modules and to challenge ourselves to a review session using our summer wardrobes. We have recently reexamined Neutrals and Neutrals with a Pop, Complementary Colors and the Two-Thirds Rule, Triads and Analogous Colors, and are now left to go over Monochrome and Split Complementary Color Combinations.

To read more about this color mix lesson, click here…

Module 4: Monochrome and Split Complementaries

Week 4 of our Review of  the Fashion 101 Color Modules again explores two different color schemes: split complementaries and monochromatic colors.


Monochromatic color schemes use multiple shades of the same tone. Rather than dressing head-to-toe in a single tone of blue, for example, you can mix a pure hue with lighter and darker tints. This simple combination can be quite subtle and sophisticatedly understated. But, because shades of the same color can risk looking rather boring, this is also a good opportunity to play with pattern and texture.

Monochrome, originally uploaded by academichic.

E. and A. both sported black and grey for monochromatic looks but not without a pop of color in at least their accessories.

Split Complementaries:

Split complementary color schemes are a bit more complicated – they are a variation of the complementary color scheme covered here. In the split version you pair one color with the two colors adjacent to its complementary. Examples include green with red-violet and red-orange (adjacent to red) and blue with red-orange and yellow-orange (adjacent to orange). The best way to figure out a split complementary scheme is probably to pull out the old color wheel, draw a line straight across to determine a complementary pair, and then look to to the immediate right and left of the complement.

Split Complementaries, originally uploaded by academichic.


This coming week we will be challenging ourselves to master the split complementary with our summer wardrobes and to try out monochromatic schemes beyond black and grey. If you do too, drop us a comment and let us know!

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§ 12 Responses to Fashion 101: Color Review Session 4"

  1. Nadine says:

    I’m wearing dark navy satin and denim right this very moment.

  2. Luinae says:

    I’m going to try doing this challenge with you guys- split complementaries will be challenging but fun.

  3. [...] easing into our week of Monochrome and Split Complementaries with a simple gray and black outfit. I don’t wear monochromatic neutrals a whole lot, but [...]

  4. [...] started this week’s color review with a more easily crafted monochromatic look yesterday, but decided to go for the challenge and [...]

  5. [...] think split complimentaries is one of the hardest color schemes to pull off and I managed to make it more challenging by trying [...]

  6. [...] outfit is a monochrome one for this week’s color review. After looking once more at all the beautiful color combinations we received from our readers for [...]

  7. [...] I was a superhero, I think my costume would use a split complementary color scheme. As I was reminded when I looked at my outfits from February, split complements can be one of the [...]

  8. [...] loved the monochromatic looks that S. and A. have sported this week, and today’s outfit falls somewhere in between [...]

  9. streets101 says:

    the color scheme is well balanced

  10. irianne powers says:

    I like the colors on the photos . Complementary colors are nice to look at in fashion clothes and accessories . When I dress up I see to that the colors of my dress compliments with my accessories . I learned this fashion tip from image consulting group@866-565-7541

  11. Juniper says:

    I am working on a project for class and one of the things I had to find was a picture of a split complementary outfit, not easy to find. Your picture helped.

  12. Peacock Princess says:

    You guys have NO idea how much this is colour wheel thing is helping me. I have saved the colour wheel picture on my computer and literally refer to the picture every time I plan my outfits for work. You are simply the best!

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