The textural characteristics of your face and hair can have a big impact when you're making wardrobe choices. Repeating your level of personal texture in the clothes you wear is almost always a winning combination.
Gals with sleek, smooth skin and hair look best in smooth fabric textures like gabardine and matte jersey.
Those with more visual texture - freckles, hair highlights and curly hair are examples - are typically at their best wearing tweeds, corduroy and other textured fabrics, or tiny prints that give the illusion of surface texture to smooth fabrics.
How much texture do you see in the mirror?
NOTE: Visual texture means the appearance of an uneven surface, even if the physical surface is actually smooth. Freckles on smooth skin, highlights on smooth hair and a tweed pattern printed on a smooth fabric are examples of visual texture.
Assessing texture in fabrics can require more thought than you might imagine:
* For example, velvet is visually very smooth despite its plush surface, but crushed velvet has a much more textural look.
* Tweeds and heathered color mixes appear textural while plain solids appear more smooth.
* Cable-knit sweaters reflect more texture than plainer knits.
* Shantung and Dupioni silks look more smooth than they actually feel (because of the shiny yarns) so they work nicely on women with nearly any texture pattern.
* The same is true of raw silk suitings - also because of the fabric's surface sheen.
* Plaids look more smooth when the colors are clear and the lines clearly defined. They look more textural when the colors and lines blend into one another.
Karen’s natural curly hair, striated hair color and fine freckles give her a decidedly textural pattern. Notice how these fabrics we chose for tops in her wardrobe echo that texture either in surface feel or printed design.
And there is texture in each of her jewelry choices too. Even the large round shell has colored veining to give it surface depth.
On the opposite end of the scale, my own skin and hair have a very smooth texture pattern. Most of my wardrobe consists of smooth fabrics, clear prints, and my favorite jewelry -- like the necklace in the photo -- is smooth shiny metal. Much as I love black and white tweeds (and they blend visually toward gray which is good with my changing hair color) I typically wear them only my lower body - away from my face - with smooth-surface tops or jackets and silky scarves at the neck..
That adaptation illustrates an important point: The more you understand what works best on you, the more you can manipulate the system, allowing you wear less-enhancing, but favorite elements successfully.
One caution: If your skin and hair are extremely textured -- I remember one client with lots and lots of cute freckles and tightly curly red hair to the middle of her back --you'll want to reverse the guidelines. Wear texture, for sure, but keep it low on yout body and wear plain-surface fabrics on your bodice area to avoid a look that seems top-heavy and just TOO visually overwhelming.