Wearing: Yellow

Last summer I wrote about my surprise at a newfound attraction to yellow. Since then, I’ve taken some baby steps toward incorporating it into my wardrobe.

I’ve been very protective of my wardrobe color palette. Eliminating certain colors from my closet was one of the best ways to narrow down my choices to just clothes I know I will like. Of course, tastes change, so it’s important to allow for that change — carefully of course. Yellow is an intense color, so a little goes a long way. It’s tempting to go all out and get ALL the things in a color after you decide you like it, but with my focus on keeping a minimal closet, I wanted to make sure anything I added would work well with what I already have.

The first yellow purchase I made was in the fall — a linen boxy tunic tee from Gravel and Gold in San Francisco. I was wooed by the mustard shade and sale sale sale pricing. But when I got home, I couldn’t get over the fit, how the sleeves bunched up a bit and the cut was really long. At first I thought I’d crop it and be done with it, but with cold weather coming I took a pause and let it be.

Over the winter I added a secondhand J Crew sweater to my rotation. The bright yellow color and fitted style were a welcome addition to my neutral palette. My winter uniform was basically jeans+sweater+boots, so now I feel like I’m set for cold-weather yellow clothes.

This spring I succumbed to Instagram marketing and bought a pair of Rothy’s flats. I’d been hunting for a neutral/beige flat but it is SO hard to find the right shade in the right shoe. In the meantime, I spied a woman on the train one day wearing the Rothy’s point flats in yellow, and that was when I decided that a colorful pair of shoes might be the way to go. I hit “buy” the same day. I love these shoes because I can be wearing a very neutral outfit, and then POP — yellow! But not too much.

So that linen top? It kept staring at me from my closet all winter and I felt like a turd for buying something that I didn’t end up loving. I kept not wearing it and not wearing and thinking about selling it until finally I decided to take the plunge and do some surgery. See, I prefer a sleeveless top to a short sleeve top nine times out of ten, and I love a swingy tank — in the Georgia heat, I want as little as possible touching my body. So this weekend it went under the shears and a boxy tee became a sleeveless tank, based off of Grainline’s Willow tank pattern.

Well I’m in deep now.

Yesterday, I went all in and did yellow shoes with a yellow top…


So much color!!! But what I like about this is that it’s just one color. Paired with a very light wash pair of jeans (secondhand Madewell Perfect Summer Jeans), the palette is actually very minimal and perfectly springy. It works without overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, it is a look, but Just Enough Look, and not the dreaded A Lot of Look.


So a minimal wardrobe doesn’t have to mean minimal color. If you are careful and intentional with what you choose, you can give yourself options without overloading the senses. Do you have rules about what colors you will wear? Have you ever tried out a new color and found you liked it?