You may recall that in my intro post on 12 blueprints, I mentioned that my personal color journey started with a blog post, but that the rest was too long to share in that space. Today, I'd like to continue where I left off.
After lurking on yuku for quite a while, I finally decided to take some pictures of myself "draped" in various colors (many of you know exactly what I mean) and post them so people on the forum could help me discover my season. I wondered how anyone could see anything from them, as even though I stood in the same spot at the same time of day in each one, the lighting shifted dramatically, but I posted them nevertheless. I could have posted any pictures of me and would probably have heard the same response; as a dark eyed dark haired woman with fair skin, most people inevitably saw me as Dark Winter. A few suggested to try Dark Autumn lipsticks too, and maybe one or two felt Soft Summer was possible, but mostly not. I went out and bought myself some makeup and a swatch book, and started living as Dark Winter.
A few months later, I started feeling like something was wrong. I was struggling terribly with dark circles under my eyes, and at first I just bought some more concealer and told myself I was getting older, but eventually I started to get the idea I might be in the wrong season.
Around that time, I ordered the Color Me A Season analyst starter kit, as I knew I wanted to do color analysis and that at the time there was no training available in the Sci/Art System. Reading through Bernice's book, I came to a bit about searching for your body colors in the fan, and having looked in my eyes with the included magnifier, I could not find the yellow in my eyes in the CMAS Winter fan. I did find it eventually though - in the Spring fan. That made me wonder - could I be mixed with Spring?
I went out and bought Cherries in the Snow, and very happily posted pictures of myself wearing it on yuku... Only to be told it was too bright. Frustrated, I finally did what I had been dancing around for months - I booked an appointment with Nikki Bogardus for a Sci/Art PCA. I drove myself to her home one October morning, fully expecting to be a Dark Winter, but hoping I might be a Bright Winter.
Nikki is a very charismatic and lovely woman, and we got on right away. I told her about my background, and that I wanted to be trained as an analyst and she was very enthusiastic. Eventually, after some chit chat, it was time to get down to the draping. We started with the same thing I start with in every one of my PCAs - the key drapes. I have very reactive skin and I certainly saw things right away. No one liked brown or gold all that much. I preferred black, though I could see it was too dark, while Nikki told me she preferred silver. Admittedly, I know we did some version of a further test of the 4 true seasons after that, but I can only remember some of that bit. I do know that after that, Nikki determined my heat level to be cool neutral with the "blood color" drapes.
At that point is where the process truly diverged from what I currently practice. I was tried in some luxury drapes from Dark Winter, where Nikki liked some things, particularly the ice pink. Then, a sapphire drape from Bright Winter was tested and the entire season was rejected in half a second. Next, True Summer was tried. Then, the Soft seasons. Then for some reason, Light Spring, where Nikki saw something she liked - a medium value coral drape. Afterwards, she tried Light Summer, and True Summer again. Finally, it came back to deciding between Dark Winter and Light Spring, and after going up and back a bit, she decided on Light Spring. We tried some makeup and snapped a couple of pictures, and that was that. I honestly don't know on what basis this was decided, but at the time I had no reason to doubt it, and probably I didn't want to. Nor did I ask Nikki if this was her usual method, or any more penetrating questions. I had blinders on and I ran out of there with my palette like a bank robber who was getting away with something and not sure how but sure not going to question it.
I'll admit I was ecstatic with Light Spring at first. I did find it a bit hard to make outfits, as the neutrals in the palette never seemed to look right. When I finally got my draping pictures emailed to me after a terrible storm hit NJ, I was disappointed with how they looked, but blew it off, deciding you can't see how something looks in a picture. However, I mostly wear dresses and didn't think of it much, until I decided to go see David Kibbe the following March. I knew he used a four season system comparable to Color Me Beautiful, and I had a strong feeling that there was no way I would be any kind of Spring to him. Everything I'd ever read had discounted 4 season systems as not having accuracy due to the lack of neutral categories, and I already knew that he decided immediately upon seeing you what you'd be and that any comparisons he did show you would be under poor lighting and intended only to show YOU, as he already knew. I decided to see him anyway, and just planned to ignore his color advice, as I wanted to confirm my type and see how he worked.