Pink Monkey Knits

Using my opposable thumbs to knit up a storm!

Thursday, August 31, 2006

Ode to Black 

It's the last day not only of this Project Spectrum Neutral month, but the last day of the entire endeavor as well. Apart from knitting my brown Carla, I haven't been particularly active this month. While the thought of neutrals isn't totally exciting to me as a brights lover, PS is supposed to expand how we see these colors in our surroundings, so I thought about the neutrals in my life. I instantly thought of my wardrobe, which is strongly dominated by the darkest color of all...

For as long as I've known her, my mother loved to wear black and white together with a splash of red - perhaps with jewelry or shoes. I've inherited a bit of this sensibility except in my version, I've taken out the white since I constantly spill food on myself and don't want to get messy. I love to pair a bright color with black, the perfect canvass to show off any shade without looking too clown-like.

my black shoes

I love how adding black to other colors often gives an ensemble an edge: a nice black skirt or pant can make any bright tone seem sophisticated. My favorite way of using black, particularly a few years back when I was really into pink, is to wear tough, punky black clothes with soft feminine colors, which sends a message that "I may look sweet, but don't fuck with me because I'm really hard." Maybe that's why black is always such a wardrobe staple for women; we want people to know that we can be nice, but have teeth when we need to.

A few years ago, I think it was uncommon to see black treated equally with other colors in variegated yarns. It seems that now, as more people are dyeing and trying out their own combinations, more colorways including black are available. Some of my most precious knits and yarns use this combination to great effect, including my Basic Cable socks and this skein of Tess' Designer Yarns Superwash Worsted.

Black may be associated with death, gloom and doom in our culture, but I believe that it's a shade that not only has its own levels of hue, depth and beauty, but one that is a perfect friend for any other color. Viva noir!