Trend Watch: Resort Color Trends: High-Voltage Colors That Demand High-Karat Gold

Resort wear: The very concept brings visions of happily abandoning the conservative colors and styles of the city for tropical fruit punch colors and easy, comfortable styles of dress. This year designers have gone wild in embracing the brightest citrus hues, with the color orange leading the pack. The December 2008 issue of Harper’s Bazaar calls “candy colors” a key look in the feature “The Best of Resort” and leads off the feature with “neutral” orange and camel color combinations by the designer Etro. “Blood orange” is the intense hue being touted in the January 2009 issue of Lucky magazine.  



[Orange looks by Etro, left, and Ann Demeulemeester, right.]


Lest you think this color trend is a flash-in-the-pan, Pantone, the “global authority on color,” has named as its official Color of the Year for 2009, Mimosa, a bright orangey yellow. According to British Vogue, this color “represents hope and optimism—buzzwords for the new year after a 2008 full of instability and upheaval.”



[Mimosa looks by Ossie Clarke, Paul Costelloe and Nathan Jenden.]


These colors, and particularly the color Mimosa, are not for everyone. First, they require warm golden skin tones, whether the wearer is a fair blonde or has the darkest of skin colors. Quoting Elle Woods in Legally Blonde, “Whoever said orange is the new pink was seriously disturbed.” Wearing orange against cool-toned pink skin can make the wearer look physically ill.  


Second, these colors require a vibrant personality to carry off this kind of brightness. If the garment is wearing the woman, there’s something wrong with the picture.


Nothing sets off these high-voltage warm hues like high-karat gold. The orangey hues of gold in the 18- to 22-karat range is the perfect complement. Less intensely colored metals can’t hold their own against the brashness of orange or other almost neon-bright candy colors. Mimosa is the color of high-karat gold translated into textiles.


Happily, there’s a chic alternative in colors. According to Bazaar, turquoise is back as another “Best of Resort” option. An almost universally wearable color by individuals with warm or cool skin tones, turquoise can be accented beautifully with either yellow gold or white metals.


And it’s not just the color turquoise that is back in force. “Relish raw, earthy stones in sophisticated settings,” urges Bazaar. Turquoise stones set in yellow gold make for an especially rich combination. A statement necklace is one beautiful option. The lavishly beaded clutch adorned with pearls and turquoise set in golden flowers by Valentino pictured below is a different angle on accessories that quite takes my breath away. 


Santa, any chance? In any case, I prefer to sip my mimosas.

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