The Chic List: ‘Yes, black really is my happy shade’

Colour can put a smile on your face, brighten up your complexion – and an entire room.

However – and perhaps it’s my dark soul! – this summer when I fling open my wardrobe doors, something rather surprising has been happening.

Out and about in summer black. Dress, Cefinn; Bag, Drag Diffusion; Shoes, Ancient Greek Sandals.

I’ve been choosing clothes from my small but hardworking collection of black pieces – maxi skirts, dresses, polo shirts – gliding right past all the bold colours and prints that scream summer.

I imagine them wagging their fingers in reproach – ‘It’s our season, you must wear us.’

But my stubborn brain refuses to play ball. It wants a hiatus from them this year.

Over the past few summers, I have overdosed on prints and florals and now I crave something different, purer, for a while.

Often people think that if your favourite colour is black you must be depressed or unimaginative. Quite the opposite in fact.

Black is the colour of fun, sex and celebration. It complements and elongates your figure. For a party, it transforms you into an elegant silhouette bursting with mystery and allure: someone who might not be all that they seem, someone hiding a secret playful side.

I love this quote by Coco Chanel, one of the most famous connoisseurs of the shade: ‘Women think of all colours except the absence of colour. I have said that black has it
all. White, too. Their beauty is absolute. It is the perfect harmony.’

In summer, black looks fantastic against a blue sky, with a tan and a glass of something chilled on a balcony.

And it can be mixed so easily with summer pastel shades such as pink, blue and lilac.

I’m not remotely despairing about my new fondness for darkness, in fact I am very happy about it.

I suspect when I finally get to travel the world more freely, my yellow dresses will seem a lot more appealing against a Mediterranean coastline and a chequered taverna tablecloth.

I also know all is not lost on the colour front because as well as indulging my dark side, I have been hankering after a perfect red dress to pair with white sandals. And, gosh, I haven’t thought about wearing red so seriously in over a decade. But that’s the beauty of fashion – it keeps life interesting. And perhaps it’s the beginning of dressing for a brave post-Covid world.

If I had to put money on what’s going to be hot next season, it would be daring red dresses. And that leopard-print coats will rule once again.

You heard it here first…

Necklace, £135, Missoma

This will give your outfit an edge.

Dress, £95, Me & Em,

Just add large glasses and white sandals.

Trousers, £310,

Another great basic by Helmut Lang.

Dress, £79,

A chic go-to for easy-going days.

Neck scarf, £64, LeScarf,

For that extra special touch.

Shoes, £49.99,

Pair with a red dress for a sleek summer look.

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