The Power of Grey

If black is a powerful color, red is bold, orange is happy, and purple is regal, what is grey? I’ve mentioned before that black is not my go-to, grey is. Grey is smokey and blends in; it’s mysterious, aloof, but still kind of cool. It’s neither one color nor the other, but a mixture. Grey it is.

Not that I fancy myself as being aloof. I have too much of a puppydog personality to manage that level of indifference. But grey is my go-to color. This is only important because, in the act of decluttering my closet and minimizing the amount of unnecessary objects I have hiding in boxes, I realized that I have a collection of grey clothing for every season. I think I became the poster person for minimalism (as in, I need to practice this) right about the point where I counted my third matching grey t-shirt in exactly the same cut and shade as the other two. Was I thinking that I’d have backup when I spilled food on my shirt? Probably.

I have been organizing my closets in part because I don’t particularly like overcrowded storage areas, but also because I couldn’t remember what some of the boxes contained. To my nontangibly sentimental brain, this means those boxes could go away without taking up space or being missed. This is a process that’s been happening over time. I am not going to konmari myself out of my sentimental junk, I just like the idea of knowing where to find the objects I’m seeking.

Same thing for my clothes. I am not one of those people who has clothes with the tags still on them. Rather, I like multiple looks from one piece; grey suits my needs just fine. I would be perfectly happy with five grey t-shirts and five grey blouses in different cuts and shades, dark slacks/jeans, and various scarves and accessories in my favorite colors to add a little eye interest. That sounds wonderful. It would be my working and playing wardrobe reminiscent of smoke and ash. I have goosebumps just thinking about it.

So why don’t I do this? I really don’t know. I admire versatile wardrobes and the people who have them. Their lives seem so much more put together for the simple reason that they don’t have to spend so much time worrying about what to wear. Shallow? I honestly don’t think so. There’s a quote in the first fashion book I ever read (Chic Simple: Women’s Wardrobe, 1996): “The more you know, the less you need.” This is attributed to an Australian Aboriginal saying, and the way I interpret it is this: when you know who you are, you don’t have useless stuff lying around mucking up your decision-making process.

Other people have the power suit, the power ensemble, superninja red, clean white, neutral beige, and sleek black. Me, I have grey.


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