• something so non-excellent and average and draining about the very word. Dr. Seuss had an opinion about it, I am sure.


    And yet. Ask anyone who knows anything about style and they will tell you: if there is one color that it is compulsory to wear right now, it is just that – gray.

    Why? Perhaps because it complements the whole obsession with menswear tailoring, but whatever the case, as a color it was all over the Fall 2014 runways. From Richard Nicoll to Lanvin, Vanessa Bruno to Haider Ackermann, everyone was using it as a “platform” from which to spring. And here, you see, is the beauty of gray – using it as a base or a springboard from which to creatively spring.

    An analogy? Okay. Do you remember the joy of “spicing-up” your school uniform? Getting away with a slightly shorter skirt, higher heels on your shoes, maybe a little makeup? How much more exciting and creative that was than what

    you wore on an all-out Casual Friday as a student.

    Gray gives you the freedom to go all out in other ways, too: hair, makeup, nails, shoes, accessories, and so forth; without ever looking tarty. But it’s not just that. Dove gray, charcoal gray, etc, in beautiful fabrications, are in fact hugely flattering colors for most of us.

    Some ideas: a long gray waistcoat by Victoria Beckham with a crisp duck-egg-blue shirt underneath – I saw my friend Alice do a version of this the other night, blond beach-girl hair cascading over her shoulders, and I can’t TELL you how sexy she looked. Oh my. And what about an oversized, open-backed sweater in gray cashmere from Christopher Kane, teamed with a pair of gray tailored pants by Miu Miu?


    “Gray gives you the FREEDOM to go all out in other ways, too: HAIR, makeup, shoes”

      Or gray cashmere with a white shirt collar? Mmmmmm. Or what about a fitted gray black-buttoned dress from Altuzarra, worn with a slash of red lipstick? Ditto a gray tuxedo jacket with black lapels, like the one offered this season by Theory.

    In many ways, gray is the stand-out shade for evenings, the silver lining in all the dark, if you like. Gray paillettes, I like those, too – so much less obvious than black. And a gray flat-pleated skirt, with black lace-up high-heeled brogues (just got myself a pair from Tod’s and I have barely taken them off since), sorry, but with a reasonably good pair of ankles and a lingering tan from summer, this is a fresh take on what used to be considered so regulation.

    Right, that’s it. Another lovely gray day full of promise, full of energy with which to make some huge pronouncements. I think, from now on, I’m not going to buy anything unless it is gray. If it was good enough for six years of school, it will be good enough for the rest of my life.

    How to do

    the GRAY scale

    SLIP INTO NEUTRAL IN tailored
    pieces with everyday appeal

    tux luxe

    A fitted tuxedo dress is sexy
    yet refined.

    red hot

    Vamp up the look with lips in a vivid hue.

    classic buy

    The mannish shirt reinvented for this season.

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