The story of the Yellow Coat
Updated: Mar 24, 2020
I realised at some point in the last few weeks that I can’t be the only one. I can’t be the only person wearing my heart on my sleeve - literally. Somewhere out there there must be other colour ambassadors, people who know the superpowers of a red polka dot raincoat, the superpower that makes it possible to turn a rainy day into the best day of your life, every day.
When I was at uni I bought myself a yellow coat. It was the first yellow item of clothing I’d owned since I was 9, and my yellow winnie the pooh ski pants had the power to transform any day, instantly from meh to amazing. The yellow coat was a crazy move for me to make, because, until then, I wore mostly black. I was an architecture student, after all, and black was the unofficial uniform of architecture students. (My bedroom, in turn, was minimalist, brilliant white, as was every visible item inside it.)
The architecture student’s unspoken colour philosophy was that colour was only used to distract from bad design. You know, like that all white building that has a red box popping out of it, to distract you from noticing the drainpipe running down right by the front door? Or the wide purple belt that is supposed to hide a badly tailored dress?
It took me three years at uni to snap out of it - to realise that colour didn’t inhibit great design, and could be a tool one could use to accentuate it, instead. One of the many epiphanies that came out of this time was that, just because I like a minimalist painting, doesn’t mean I can't like frilly teacups with a squillion tiny pink flowers, as well. I can like what I like, even if two things contradict each other.
My life doesn't have to be matchy-matchy-monotone – it can be colourful-crazy-complimentary. I can have my house, my clothes and my mood be what I really am. I discovered that there is nothing more irresistible than being the authentic, complicated and sometimes contradictory version of me.
Maybe it's not just about colour.
It’s about our creative identity.
It’s about emotion.
Proverbially wearing our hearts on our sleeves is about loving ourselves enough to realise that it’s OK to like what we like in the moment, and acting on it by painting that wall, buying that dress and carrying that bag.
And showing the world that we are lovely, and unique, and spectacular.