4 Nov 2017

Red: A Primary Possibility



Red might be a primary but in many ways, it’s one of my neutrals.

A colour to wear alone or with the neutrals and to add to a classic palette; a shade I consider a neutral in my wardrobe. Not to mention the power of red with a palette of greys, hair in particular.

We often talk of a red lip, which I grow fonder of by the day, but what about the red accessory?

My wardrobe lacks a good red blouse and sweater and I may well be hankering for a brighter handbag. I cannot tell you why but the idea of a handbag brightening up a sea of black and waves of grey is one I may easily fall prey to.

Let’s consider the dress, not a fire engine stand out but something slightly deeper as a change from the little black or navy dress. A simple red dress can do the same work as the black or navy version but add a whole new perspective to the way we dress.

Red: A Primary Possibility on vickiarcher.com

Too much? 

Try the red in bits size pieces if you are uncertain. Begin with a lipstick or wear a sweater on weekends – red and denim make great friends. How wonderful Eveline Hall looks in this turtleneck? Invest in a beautiful tote – it will last forever and elevate the older pieces in the wardrobe.

What about a colourful toe peeping out from a pair of black or grey trousers – simply to shake it up a bit? We never have to go the whole way with colour if it makes us uncomfortable. As leopard print is for some, red is much the same; degrees of ‘wearability’ combined with the comfort and self-confidence factor.

And don’t forget the shoes, they worked beautifully for Dorothy. xv

Primary Possibilities

half way

halogen turtleneck  ||  veronica beard turtleneck  ||  rib mock neck sweater  ||  cashmere bell sleeve

all the way

michael stars midi dress  ||  lafayette 148  sheath  ||  rickie freeman sheath  ||   akris punto ruffle cuff

in pieces

tom ford ‘original sin’ lips ||  chanel ‘rouge puissant’ nails  ||  prada block heel pump  ||  balenciaga lambskin tote   ||  tom ford leather tote

images eveline hall for wagner living


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In This Post:



anita rivera

GOODNESS GRACIOUS, who is this woman? WHO IS SHE? OK, I’m not afraid to get old, but this woman is helping me embrace the day I really start to notice I’m heading into my 60s…she is magnificent. I’ll take red in this form any day! Vicki, you inspire. Thank you.

Mimi Gregor

Red is one of the main colors in my wardrobe (Black being the primary color, with touches of white and beige). I love the way it makes me feel… the confidence it gives me. It is said that red makes the heart beat a little faster when you see it. This works not only for others who behold you, but seems to work even when you are wearing it.


On my gracious! I googled Evaline Hall and she is still beautiful and sexy at 68. If only we had all aged as well.
I love red and have always had it in my closet. It makes me feel good whenever I wear it. Sometimes it is only my shoes or a scarf (exclamation mark) and other times it is full on in a coat or suit. Wear it and see how amazing you feel in red.


During the holiday season (which is as long as I can possibly make it) I wear something red every single day!!!!
Lovely post, Vicki !!


Love red too! Such a wonderful colour that lights up a room! And works so well with greys, silvers and black. Also with pink! One of my favourite dresses from long ago ever was a red mini in wool with long buttoned sleeves and front buttons (about three quarters down) and collar – finishing with a tight very short skirt. Not something I could wear today but it was fab. I wore it with red shoes and a black handbag. Many happy memories of wearing that dress.
For Melbourne Cup lunch on Tuesday will be wearing my vintage red chapeau, French straw and net from the depot-vent roadside barn – I pulled the stop cord on way back towards St Remy from Isle-sur-la-Sorgue in May! Only 10 euros. Think I’m hankering for one of those red Valentino cross body bags with the rock studs! Have fun with red! Best wishes, Pamela


I just love red and would like to wear more of it but when it is not in fashion red clothing is hard to buy. I have a gorgeous red coat bought in Seattle 3 years ago however we had no winter in Brisbane this year so it did not come out of the coat bag. Red lipstick will have to suffice for now.

Anne Wilkinson

I am still searching for the RIGHT red lipstick! So important to get the tone right. One of my favourites – Estee Lauder Vengeful Red.


A couple of years ago one of my younger friends who was in Paris at the same time bought a fabulous red lipstick that was perfect for her. Before that she’d mostly worn lighter colours. Over lunch she said she’d been to a Lancôme counter and they’d recommended it. So the next day I went to Le Bon Marche, but thought I’d try a different brand – YSL – so asked one of the consultants to select the perfect red for me. She was wonderful – turned out she worked as a consultant there only part time – the rest of the time she did makeups for special events – weddings, birthdays, parties etc. Before that she’d also done make-up for the catwalks during the Pret a Porter and also couture collections – but she said it was all too hectic and high pressure panics for her and some of the models were really arrogant and unpleasant. She’d also inherited her grandmother’s collection of YSL dresses from the past – and still wore them on special occasions. She found a beautiful red lipstick for me – and then gave me heaps of echantillons as well. I’d had such a good time I decided I might as well do the same thing with Dior and Chanel. It was such a lovely morning – just buying three red lipsticks! All rather different but all so good for my colouring. I love them all and still enjoy using them, at least what’s left. They remind me of such a happy day and our fun times in Paris. Best wishes, Pamela

Linda Boardman Kerr

Pamela, please share the names of the shades you bought! I am always looking for the perfect red!


Dear Linda
Have looked through my lipsticks (plead guilty to being a collector so there are quite a few) and I think the following were the ones I bought that morning:
YSL – 14 62N300 – it’s a very deep red and good for winter, but I sometimes wear in summer too. (Since then have also been recommended and bought the following – also by other LBM consultants for YSL –
56 62M902 – a lighter softer more coral red, and also 56 62LO02)
Dior – 999 Rouge Vedette – Celebrity Red
Chanel – Rouge Allure 98 Coromandel (also Ink lipstick – Rouge allure 152 Choquant)
I like all of these and wear whatever feels right for a particular day/outfit. I hope I’ve got the details right – because on some (particularly YSL) the print is very fine (and now a bit worn) and my eyesight no longer so wonderful – I did try to check using a magnifying glass – so hopefully will be OK. Plus of course I also have some deep pinks and some quite orange-y lipsticks.
My colouring is fair (with peach tones under skin) but with some freckles and age spots. My natural hair colouring was once blonde, then as I got older strawberry blonde with natural blonde streaks through top layers – now a streaked mix of silver/grey/white (mostly the underneath layers), blonde and some reddish toffee coloured strands on top – all natural. So because of this weird mix I can wear an unusual colour range which mightn’t work for everyone. Though pale/nude lips make me look ill and washed out.
Good luck and have fun! Try good brands in a good department store with a consultant in her 30s maybe, not a teenager, for advice. Best wishes, Pamela

Linda Boardman Kerr

Thank you, Pamela! I’ll be off to Sephora or Nordstrom to check these out. I really appreciate your responding. Our coloring’s are similar too, which will help. (Admit to being on FB if you want to see.) I agree with the age factor in the consultant.


Fingers crossed you find some colours you love! Did try to look you up on FB but when I used your three names I got a nil result. Best wishes, Pamela


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