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Creating a Column of Color with Spring Hues

March 4, 2019

Hello, and welcome to Dressed for My Day! Susanne and I are kicking off our brief spring collaboration, Styling Spring. I’m so glad you’re here, and I hope you enjoy this three-day series. We’ll both be posting spring outfits with styling tips today, Wednesday and Friday. Today I’m sharing how to create a column of color beneath fresh spring hues.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

One of the easiest ways to create a slenderizing silhouette is to utilize a column of color underneath an outer layer in a contrasting color. This styling technique also elongates, so it’s perfect even for you gals who are shorter than me (I’m 5’8″)

To do this, simply wear a coat, jacket, cardigan or kimono over one contrasting color head to toe. My head to toe color here is black, but you could achieve the same slenderizing effect with white, navy or any other color that looks beautiful on you.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

In my new style series for 2019, Building a Wardrobe that Works for You, I’m encouraging us to select and stick with just a couple of neutrals (black, grey, navy, brown or camel – your choice!) long term. I’ve decided to narrow my wardrobe neutrals to black and navy. Of course I can still wear white. (And you may see me style other neutrals for the purpose of this blog. But my personal wardrobe has been narrowed to these two versatile neutrals.)

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors
Nic+Zoe Wonderstretch Pants (size 8) // Seam Detail High/Low Sweater (size small) // tortoise shell link necklace (similar) // Leopard print foldover clutch // Gemma Pointed Toe Heel Pumps (TTS)

I received this lightweight high/low hem sweater in my most recent Trunk Club trunk and instantly fell in love. It’s soft and easy to wear, draping nicely over the body. I’m wearing a small, so it’s true to size. It’s available in several other pretty shades.

My wonderstretch pants are also a favorite. They came in a Trunk Club trunk last fall and I’ve worn them almost weekly since then. They have such great stretch, but they’re also crisp and keep their shape beautifully. They’re also available in a dark navy. They may be a little pricey, but I know I’ll be wearing these for years.

Finally, make sure you keep your shoes the same color as your top and bottoms for the most elongating effect. My black pumps are a great find from Target. These shoes are affordable, but also comfortable and classic.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

Now, to create that slenderizing effect with your column of color (whether it’s black, white, navy or whatever), simply wear a hip length or longer coat, jacket, cardigan or kimono over it. I’m wearing my pretty pale pink trench coat that I styled in this post originally with jeans. I generally wear mediums in coats, but this one is a small and fits perfectly.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

I just love pale pink with black. For some reason it makes me think of Audrey Hepburn. Did she wear that color combination in a movie? This blush pink is definitely hot, hot, hot this spring and summer. I’m seeing it everywhere. And most of us can wear it beautifully.

In my 9 Keys for Building a Wardrobe that Works for You, I also talked about signature colors. While you might want to limit yourself to two neutrals, you can select 3-5 signature colors for your functional wardrobe. And your signature colors can be personal favorites, ones for which you receive lots of compliments or the current color trends.

Pink is one of my signature colors, but another trending color that I’m collecting right now is true green.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

You can see that this column of black looks just as lovely under my willow green boyfriend cardigan. It’s just a different look for a different day. But that’s the beauty of creating a wardrobe that works for you…one built with classic essentials in a limited number of neutral shades with pretty “now pieces” in your signature colors sprinkled in.

How to Style a Column of Black Between Spring Colors

For both outfits, I kept accessories to a minimum, preserving that column of color. I just added a tortoise shell necklace I’ve had for years (similar – tortoise is still trending big!) and simple tiny hoop earrings. I carried my truffle colored satchel (similar) with the pink coat and my leopard print foldover clutch with the green cardigan.

What column of color do you like to wear under an outer layer? Or do you have any questions about this styling technique? And have you decided on your two neutrals or your 3-5 signature colors? I’d love to hear from you today.

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Be sure to visit Susanne!

Don’t forget to visit Susanne to check out the spring outfit she’s styling today. Susanne began blogging about the same time I did and we’ve really enjoyed taking this journey together. We talk on the phone occasionally and text back and forth. It’s so good to have someone who speaks your language! Anyhow, I just love this gal and her style. So check out Susanne’s spring outfit and tell her I said “hi!”

Blessed for My Day

Are you a saint? Well, you may not feel like one some days, but you still may be one. The Bible teaches that a saint is simply a person who has been set apart by God for the purpose of sharing the grace of Christ with others. It’s a person who has chosen to live a life that reflects the goodness and glory of God.

If that still sounds holier than thou, reflect on the fact that the apostle Paul called every person in the churches to whom he wrote a saint. If you are a Christ follower, God desires for you to live a set apart life that reflects His grace and truth to the world around you. How will you do that today? 

Greet every saint in Christ Jesus. The brothers who are with me greet you. All the saints greet you, especially those of Caesar’s household. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit. ~ Philippians 4:21-23

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xoxo, Kay
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27 thoughts on “Creating a Column of Color with Spring Hues

  1. Very nice outfits Kay! I still have to pick my 2 neutral colors. When I’ve worn a black top and pants with a long cardigan in another color, numerous friends have commented on how slenderizing the outfit was, even with flats on.

    1. Yes, I should have mentioned that flats definitely work too. So much to say! And I’m trying to write shorter posts!! But I should have mentioned that and that this effect also works beautifully for shorter women. I’m actually showing this sweater again with jeans and flats.

  2. Hello Kay ~ I just joined your blog from Susanne ( Thompson Hill) ! I too live in AZ (we just recently moved here) and am loving it. As soon as I saw the firecracker cactus (I think that’s what it’s called)…….I had to read “about you” and then realized you did live in AZ! I am a Christian and currently looking for a church we can attend.


    1. Great, Holly! It’s so nice to meet you. We moved here 14 years ago and it was an adjustment, but we love it here. I’d love to hear more about where you live. I might could even recommend a church. You can email me at

  3. That green sweater is absolutely gorgeous on you! It’s hard to think of spring in New York. We have snow again today?.

    1. Hi Deb! Yes I’ve noticed much of the country has snow today. Here in Arizona we’ve actually had our coldest and wettest winter in a long time. I live right on the border and we’ve had 4 big snows this winter. I’m counting on NO BUGS this summer! Hahaha!

  4. A question. I receive your daily emails. However, when I’m reading your post, a pop up screen appears asking if I want to subscribe. The problem is, when this happens everything locks up and I have to close out of your post. And I’m not sure why this happens since I already subscribed. Any way to fix this?

    1. Hi Mary. Let me work on that today. Thanks for sharing the problem with me. And thank you for subscribing! ?

  5. Lovely Spring outfits! I have a Gap pink coat like your trench in pink. I need to have it cleaned even though it says washable , last time I did that it had to go to the cleaners to get the wrinkles pressed out. Don’t you hate it when that happens. Then I had a red lightweight one that I loved and lost it somewhere moving here. The green is great on you…… that color! Pink is your color too . Have a great day! I am off to the dermatologist today.

  6. Green is such a great reminder of spring (she says as there is new snow on the ground…LOL). That’s why I’m so excited to be coming out to AZ tomorrow…I hear it’s warm!! Yippee!!
    Can’t wait to meet up on Thursday….I’m still looking forward to it.

    1. Yes, I’m looking forward to meeting up with you too Jodie! You’ll have great weather in Arizona ??.

    1. Hi Joan. They have the sweater in petite so definitely go with that option. Then definitely wear it with a column of color. That’s actually a very elongating look for shorter women and should work beautifully. Make sure you wear shoes in the same color as the column of color too. That could be as simple as wearing blue jeans with a navy or blue top and navy Keds or loafers or heels. The column of color doesn’t have to be dressy.

      So YES. In fact when shorter women ask me how to wear a kimono or long sweater like this, my answer is always to use a column of color. Go for it!

  7. Hi Kay
    Awesome blog again today. I follow both you and Susanne! I am wearing your exact outfit today only hot pink instead of green. It is one of my “fashion formulas” for going to work! Keep up the good work

  8. You look great in both outfits, my fave is the one with the green cardigan. It really dded some zip to the overall outfit with your light blonde coloring.

    1. Thanks. You know, I don’t really have that much green in my wardrobe for some reason. But I’m working on fixing that!

  9. I just love this column of color day! I am drawn to that green color, i went and visited suaane’s Blog too. It is fun to think about spring. But I am still wearing my winter snow coat in my home town.