11th February 12, 05:36 AM
Re: All black: a safe choice?
All black can be fine if done with style, and just a hint of accent somewhere in the milieu of darkness. Personally I wear all black with my Black Isle kilt fairly regularly, accenting with grey flashes or charcoal hose with a berry red pattern in their fancy tops. If you are going with chrome/silver accessories like big belt buckle, shiny kilt pin, shiny sgian, chrome sporran cantle and shiny buttons on an argyll set then maybe the monochrome black is not the best choice. Black is a stealth color, meant to be the background for something more interesting that will draw your attention---the kilt, a tie, a pocket square, hose tops, flashes. You can soften that a bit with a mix of black and same family shades such as charcoal and various greys, or with a mix of designs and textures such as a paisley black vest or a subtle pattern tweed black and grey tie, but all that can be for naught if hidden by a lot of shiny bling over the black.
Mel Gibson in the first half of the movie "What Women Want" does a nice job of demo-ing what can be done just with the black and charcoal and grey palette, then later in the movie as his character softens starts to lighten up the palette into lighter greys and adds a bit of color flair. The palette tends to lend itself to older men (40s and up) as they also tend to have some grey in their hair or beard (if they have either), but the blacks have to stay flat black, not the shiny sharkskin black and with definitely toned down accoutrements like belt buckles, buttons, etc..
When black is worn properly with the kilt it can make just about any tartan pop, although there are still many that I would not wear it with---Ancient Caledonia would be one, my own Forrester modern would be another as it has too many colors already in it and none of them are black. If your tartan has a major or minor component of black in it you should be gravy.
Same philosophy works for solid dark blues to a degree, although since blue can be hued with other colors it can often be harder to match nearby shdes of blue the same way you can layer shades of black and grey. Solid greens too can do it, but are even harder in many ways for the same reason, and solid browns are the hardest of all, probably because most men just simply do not look that great in solid browns to begin with. The harder it is to make the color variants work together the more I tend then to fall back to mixing textures like a seater or sweater vest or corduroy to mix things up visually a bit despite the relative monochrome look. Interestingly, though the greens and blues in particular work very well with most tartans which are typically green and or blue based, and the browns and greys with the weathered tartans, for obvious reasons.
Just one man's opinion.
11th February 12, 07:18 AM
Re: All black: a safe choice?
I think you have come to a wise conclusion. With one kilt and even a small collection of accessories, you can have many different looks for many different occasions or moods. There is a thread with a sticky that illustrates that point quite well. When you receive your kilt, have a look at all of your shirts, casual or dressy, and see what works; some items that you might not think would work, might work very well.
Originally Posted by Màrtainn
Don't be afraid to match the colors in your kilt, and don't be afraid to try wearing colors that contrast one another. Have fun and enjoy wearing your kilt.
29th April 12, 06:17 AM
All black really makes the tartan stand out, so would be an excellent choice. It is, in fact, my choice.
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