Dressing For Yourself

I am still firmly entrenched in my Dressing Your Truth experience. Being a 4/3 is natural and effortless for me. There is still some conflict, however.

I still love Kibbe’s work, and remain actively involved in it. I know, however, that he would never place me in a season that gets black and white. The crux of David’s work is to look at yourself with enlightened subjectivity, and to accept yourself as you are. It is easy for me to accept myself as a Flamboyant Gamine. My coloring, however, is a little more complicated in that regard.

I know that based on online photos, he sees me as a Spring or Autumn. In real life, he may switch to Summer, but Winter would just never happen, based on his color theory. But shopping for Spring and Autumn clothes, I’ve discovered, just does not bring me the joy that the T4 saturated hues do. I am happy to open my closet and see bold, high contrast colors.

So here is the conundrum: is it lacking self-acceptance to not wear the season your coloring dictates, or is better to match your inner self, which DYT T4 does for me? With style, it is easy: once you accept your Image ID, you can now express yourself in any way you’d like. But with color, it doesn’t really work that way. You can express a certain mood with any of the palettes, but some things will just not exist for you–like black for anyone but a Winter.

While the T4 palette also limits what is available, it limits to me what is already speaking to me. It expresses my inner self.

So there is a conflict here between what my coloring is dictating, at least according to David’s theory, and what my inner self is satisfied by. So far, the inner self is winning out, because it is just so much more fun for me to dress in T4 colors every day. But again, I have to wonder if it is the best presentation of my physical self.

How do you deal with conflicts in different systems? In the meantime, I have these VERY 4/3 glasses on my wishlist!

12 Comments on Dressing For Yourself

  1. Elizabeth Stewart
    April 20, 2019 at 10:19 am

    Great post – thank you. I don’t know as much about DYT as you do, and I could be wrong, but my take on these three systems is that while DYT and Kibbe seem to correlate in terms of lines and energy, which would express our inner self, the dimension of colour is quite separate and our colour palette can be used to express both DYT and Kibbe types. At least, that is what works for me. I have seen a number of posts elsewhere about DYT that have confused me, because they link that system with colour analysis, and for me, that does not work. I see colour analysis as completely independent of any other system, even though PCA and many others, from Caygill onwards, try to link it to personality. I do not see how this could possibly be true. I have known so many people whose colouring has been correctly analysed, yet whose personalities are completely different from what PCA and others suggest. I am one myself! I am a True Spring in colouring, look my best when wearing warm and light-to-medium colours, but am anything but bubbly and extraverted. My DYT Type 2, which I checked out thanks to your previous post, corresponds to the INFP type on the Myers-Briggs scale (are you familiar with that system?), and works well in terms of being Romantic and even Theatrical Romantic at times. My Kibbe type is indeed Romantic with a subtype of Theatrical Romantic, as detected by an analyst trained by Kibbe. The R and TR work with DYT Type 2, with rounded, draped and harmonious lines; that all fits together. But any Kibbe Yin-dominant or balanced type, such as the Soft Gamine or Soft Classic, would probably work with the DYT Types 1 and 2. So I do think there is a general connection between physicality and inner self, as shown in Kibbe and DYT, though I’m not sure exactly what that is, but colour analysis is complete in itself. I believe a Flamboyant Gamine like yourself would look fabulous in T4 styles and lines, to suit your own energy, and that Winter would be an excellent colour scheme in which to express yourself. Our colouring seems to me a random gift, the medium through which we may express our inner self so that it appears harmonious and complementary. So there need not be any conflict, really. I now think that both DYT and Kibbe type are connected, though I appreciate you know a lot more about all of these systems than I do.

    • stylesyntax
      April 20, 2019 at 3:48 pm

      Actually, DYT and Kibbe look at entirely different things. For DYT, facial features are the most important thing–they are the clearest, most unbiased indicators of your movement. There are too many variables in body types to draw any conclusions–Carol touched upon this recently. David, on the other hand, ignores face, and it’s really all about what you have to accommodate in your body, your body lines. I see the combo of opposites in my face, but you if you put my face on a 6′ woman, she would not be FG. Think of FN Shirley MacLaine’s adorable face.

      I also don’t think there are correlations between energy type and Kibbe Image ID. I don’t think T2 is particularly suited to R and TR, actually; R and TR are not draped and elongated. If you were an R or a TR, I’d suppose you would make it work, but there is definitely not a 1-to-1 match there. (I see T1’s light fabrication as being the most natural fit, actually.) I would say that the DYT expert team is overwhelmingly FN, and yet you have all kinds of type and secondary combos among them.

      The best approach, I think, with all these systems is to take them separately, and go through the proper process for each without your biases from other systems coloring where you think you’d fit. Then you can end up with a the combination of who you are in the systems that resonate with you that creates something that is uniquely true to you. I know T4s of all Kibbe types, and having both sets of information helps me know what is right for me, as an individual.

      (I think this is what my next blog post will be about…)

      My personal issue is that Kibbe is really a complete system onto itself, and David has told me specifically where I would fall in terms of color in his eyes. Many people seem to just take the line portion of Kibbe and use another system for color, but really, he has both components. If I follow DYT for color (which isn’t Winter but hues), I would only be doing part of his system.

      • Elizabeth Stewart
        April 21, 2019 at 10:26 am

        Yes, that makes sense. I like the Myers-Briggs psychological system as a guide to what our truest, deepest self is – and then, try to express that self in the outward form and colours that best suit my physique. I have read that someone – Imogen Lamport, I think – is also looking at Myers-Briggs and seems to be coming up with a set of themes for each of the 16 types. Not a description of what actual lines and colours suit each one, because that would be impossible to guess at, but what each type wants their outer appearance to express. I am going to look at that website when I can find it!

        • stylesyntax
          April 23, 2019 at 6:54 am

          I actually find Myers-Briggs to be more like thought processes, and Enneagram, to me, is where the deepest self is…

        • Silverroxen
          April 23, 2019 at 5:08 pm

          “I have read that someone – Imogen Lamport, I think – is also looking at Myers-Briggs and seems to be coming up with a set of themes for each of the 16 types.”

          Ooh this sounds interesting! As far as I know my type, ISFP would be creative in dress being the artist/composer/adventurer.

  2. Jaenice Palmer
    April 22, 2019 at 6:36 pm

    To be sure, it’s a debate that has raged since who-knows-when–if you look at home ec textbooks from the 1910s through the 1960s, the common denominator is that the emphasis should be on the face, though opinions certainly vary on how best to get there. At least one book I’ve read explicitly follows the Northrup-McJimsey yin/yang approach; another book by Bernice Chambers further divides types into six in all (pretty blonde, college girl, fashionable sophisticate, Ms. Average, etc.)

    As for color, well–trial and error, although don’t rule out wearing a color until you’ve proven to yourself and your friends that it is, all hopes to the contrary, horrible and unredeemable on you. (Chartreuse and periwinkle, I hardly knew you!) And by all means do your own research. I did and the results are downright scrumptious, though I says it as shouldn’t. Hope that helps a little.

    • Elizabeth Stewart
      April 23, 2019 at 3:55 am

      I actually think colour is the most important factor of all. Whenever I wore black or white, my kids would ask me if I was coming down with the flu! I was colour analysed but was called by one analyst a Warm Spring and by the other a Warm Autumn, so now I use both palettes and they work. Wearing my “good” colours from Spring and Autumn helps me feel more confident, knowing that at least I look healthy. And it does bring focus on the face, which I believe is the key to looking good.

      • stylesyntax
        April 23, 2019 at 6:52 am

        I think this is one of those things that is dependent on the individual. I know some people who are firmly in Camp Color, and some who are in Camp Line. I am in Camp Line; I find that color doesn’t make a huge difference to how I look, and I am certain I would probably get a wide range of seasons from various analysts. I know some people who have a very tight color space, and color is incredibly important for them. For me, outside of colors with too much white added, I seem to be fine.

    • stylesyntax
      April 23, 2019 at 6:57 am

      There is no Northrup-McJimsey yin/yang approach. 🙂 McJimsey’s way of using yin/yang actually contradicts Northrup’s. Kibbe is closer to the spirit of Northrup than McJimsey is. I don’t find much/any contradiction with where I am with lines and style; you just need to consider the different approaches if you want to figure out your place in these two systems.

      I have been doing trial and error for years and years, if you read the archives of this blog 😉 As I said to another commenter, I just don’t find that color makes a huge difference for me. I do have the porcelain, reflective skin common to T4s.

      • Jaenice Palmer
        April 23, 2019 at 6:29 pm

        I sit corrected. I was thinking of a third author–here, I’ve got my notes with me, let me double-check. Ah! Grace Margaret Morton. I don’t know whose system Morton is following, but she urges the reader to consider the usual: body structure, traits of movement, coloring, skin, hair, eyes, temperamental aspects (intuitive/objective, idealistic/realistic, ingenuous/sophisticated). And that’s the first table. The second table: lines, silhouettes, spaces, scale, fabric design & texture, color & value contrast. So yes, lines do have an edge over color, but Morton here argues, it would seem, that the student of dress needs both in the long run.

        A personal note: I have the reflective porcelain skin you describe, but with a warm undertone (and hair and eyes to match, but that’s something else again). Ergo, clear bright values look insipid, summery pastels and weathered gray washes likewise do me no favors, and overstated cool colors make me look like death warmed over. The upside: I can still wear punchy dramatic colors, so long as I remember to look for tints, tones, and shades that echo and reinforce what I already have in my natural coloring. (Examples: Eggplant, deep cerulean, bottle green, goldenrod, tawny orange, brick red, rosewood, copper, bronze, old gold.) And…that’s that, really. I do, however, remain aware that my experience isn’t yours.

  3. Daga
    April 24, 2019 at 3:39 am

    I have pale skin that allows me very little, I look ill in seasons other than mine 🙁 Different lines are bit more forgiving. So I’m camp colour and do believe it is the best to stick to only your season. But I still cheat nonetheless! For me it is just too hard to miss on cool clothes I like… and the opposite – wear things I don’t like only for the colour. In my opinion Bright Spring has the least selection of clothes in real life. Hardly anyone wants (and wears well) bright and warm colours… Clothes manufacturers do know it :/ Bright clothes in shops tend to look tacky or come with very strong, straight lines which sometimes I can work with but often the scale is just too large for me. So I find myself wearing “wrong” colours quite often and fixing things a bit with makeup. Despite my love of colour it’s better than drawing ppls attention (bright colours…) in clothes which are making me feel uncomfortable. Idk is it lack of confidence for me, maybe to some extent, but more than that it is about feeling happy and good in my clothes. Not just trying to be perfect at all cost.

  4. Bla31ze
    April 28, 2019 at 2:58 pm

    I don’t experience any conflict at the moment, at least in the way you have put it. In the future, if I ever go further with the suspect that I am a DYT T2, I’ll have to face the challenge of incorporating its palette in my otherwise deep, neutral-warm one. I know I can go “safe” with soft colours, but I haven’t learned yet how to use them in effective head-to-toe ensembles.
    Moreover, despite the fact that I am neither a winter nor (I think) T4-influenced, I also have difficulties with excluding black and white. Not only I consider them stylish, but in my city avoiding them in stores seem close to impossible, with all the obvious consequences in terms of wardrobe consistency. I really need to become a better shopper! 😀


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