Colour conversation with US colour consultant, Wendy Jacobs
In our latest Colour Conversation, Wendy Jacobs, colour consultant for Hilton Head/Bluffton, South Carolina, talks about the power of colour analysis and why life is better in colour.
What first inspired you to become a colour consultant?
Pure curiosity. And a little bit of envy. I was working in corporate America with a team of 15 brilliant women from around the world. We were having our annual week-long meeting in London where four of my colleagues were based. During the long workdays followed by late nights on the town, those four British colleagues came into the meeting each day looking fabulous. They were confident. They were stylish. They were comfortable in their skin. They had a secret. And I had to know it.
“You lovely British ladies look great every day despite these long days and late nights. What’s your secret?” I whispered to them during a break. In near unison, they declared, “House of Culla” (what they were actually saying was “House of Colour!”). After some back and forth to educate me on the phenomenon of Colour Analysis and Personal Style I knew I had to book an appointment right away.
What I discovered during my own colour analysis changed my life. I saw myself look healthier, younger and more approachable with the mere flick of a coloured drape. I vividly remember turning to my stylist and saying, “I’m going to quit my job and become a stylist like you.” She smiled knowingly. It was that powerful an experience.
What season are you and how does wearing your colours make you feel?
I am an Autumn. Visualise walking through the woods on a sunny Autumn day in New England. The changing of the leaves are at their peak – the earthy and warm reds, the vibrant yellows, the varying shades of moss and lichen, the rich browns of the tree bark, the entire forest floor. Now imagine a peacock with its iridescent blues, greens and copper plumes on full display wandering around in those woods. That visual represents the Autumn palette. Wearing the Autumn colours makes me feel beautiful, approachable and warm. And, like I have a secret.
What advice do you have for women considering colour analysis for the first time?
Do it, don’t delay. Consider Colour Analysis as a form of self-care. You are worth the investment. And your new-found knowledge will serve you well for the rest of your life.
Women have the power to change the world. We all need to show up, be heard and be strong in our convictions. When you look good, you feel good. And when you feel good, people relate and respond to you in a positive way. And besides, we all have to wear clothes – why not wear the ones that make us look our best?
Do you have a typical client?
I don’t have a typical client, but I do have typical outcomes. Becoming empowered. Increased self-confidence. Lots of compliments. Clients range in age from six to 86, students, moms, professionals, retirees – it’s really for everyone.
Most clients come after seeing someone else’s transformation. Once one person within a group – a book club, girlfriend group, a family, the office – has their colours analysed and others see the outcome and they call me.
Some typical client responses I receive from clients after colour analysis “I should have done this years ago!”
“My skin looks so good!” “I can’t believe how much better I look.” “This is like magic.”
How is colour analysis perceived in the USA?
People in the USA are becoming more and more intrigued and interested in colour analysis. Besides the impact it has on your appearance and self-confidence there are other powerful side effects: you buy fewer clothes, so you spend less money; your individual wardrobe pieces go together so you have more outfits; and you are doing your part to reduce the landfills of unused, unworn, unsold clothing.
Do you find people are more receptive to colour in the Sunshine States?
Yes, I think so. I am a big fan of sunshine myself! My husband and I recently moved from Massachusetts to South Carolina and I can see the difference in the amount of colour people wear here in the near year- round warm weather.
It’s well known that people in large cities tend to wear varying shades of black and white believing that that black makes them look younger, fitter, and that it goes with everything. That is not true unless you are a Winter where black is included in the palette. But if you are not a Winter, rest assured we find the “better than black” shades for you. For Springs their better than black is Chocolate Brown or Bright Navy, Summer’s is Airforce Blue or Smoked Grape, and for Autumn’s it’s Dark Olive or Warm Navy.
How does your love of colour penetrate into other areas of your life, e.g., your home?
Once you understand which colours work together and why, you will never again leave a colour choice to chance. You will know what to choose and it will be right.
My husband and I recently finished building a home. Understanding colour theory and the four seasonal palettes informed our every decision and made the often-stressful decisions enjoyable. First, we considered the general feel we wanted our home to have – warm or cool, muted or bright. We chose a warm neutral palette. We focused on the largest components first – the colour for the exterior, the interior walls, the wood floors, carpets and countertops – all in warm greys, coffee and soft white. Next following the overall warm theme it was on to selecting the medium-sized elements – shutters, furniture, art, barn doors – all still in warm but more impactful colours like barn red, dazzling gold and warm navy. The colours of the smallest elements are equally important – the stripe in a pillow, the vase on the shelf, the candles – and bring it all together.
I also methodically choose the colours for everything in my life – my bike, my coffee mug, my beach umbrella, my car, flowers. Yes, I’m obsessed!
Do you have any stories about how having their colours done has changed your customers’ lives?
Oh, there are so many! But one of my favourites came from the husband of a client who was transformed after her colour analysis. I was at a fancy party where several of my clients were among the 100 or so guests. As my husband and I entered the hall I noticed several heads pop up out of the crowded room and point to me, break out into a great smile and then point to their outfits with an enthusiastic thumbs- up. Over the course of the evening five husbands came over to me one by one to chat about colour and how their wives had been affected by their experience. But one man in particular said this:
“I have to tell you, Wendy, that I haven’t seen my wife look and feel this good about herself in 20 years. She looks amazing and is suddenly getting compliments wherever we go – the post office, walking the dogs, in line at the grocery store – every single day she gets compliments. Look at her tonight (pointing to his wife across the room), she looks beautiful!”
(He paused, I beamed).
He continued: “You know, every single day we all make choices. We choose what to have for breakfast, what to wear, where we are going, who we are seeing… Well, I need my wife to keep choosing me. Do you do that colour analysis thing for men?” He came to get his colours done the following week. True story.
And finally, if you had to pinpoint your favourite colour, what would it be?
Oh dear! Don’t make me choose! I love them all!
If you would like to contact Wendy you can do so by following the link on the House of Colour US website here
You can also follow her on Instagram here