This forum loves talking about personal color analysis. I've just had an epiphany, so I'll drag the subject up again!

First, I know my colors. I love color and seek it out and try lots of them, getting ever more adventurous. I like to feel pretty! And I feel pretty in lots and lots of colors.

But also, I like analyzing the Why of it all. Why do I dislike magenta and orchid? Why do I adore terracotta pink and grass green? How do I reconcile deep blue eyes and blue veins with warm hair and warm color preferences? Why do (almost) all lipsticks go pink on me?

When there were only 4 seasons, it was simple and I thought I was a Summer. I was also a child, with lighter coloring and golden-honey colored hair. Summer colors worked pretty well as a guide.

It's changed a ton since then, and the 4 seasons are up to 12 or more. (Not exactly the same 12 on each website, either!) There is also the "flowing" concept which was a lot harder to grasp. With a lot more experience in knowing my own colors, periodically I go back and read up some profiles, take some quizzes... and I've never found a palette that really sang to me.

For someone who likes logical answers, it's tough to look at 12 palettes and like none of them. The Summers are too gray and bland. The Autumns are too dark and depressing. Dark Winter, too. The other Winters attack me, they're so cold or bright. So by elimination, I settled on a type of Spring. But even those palettes leave off many colors I love, and include lots of colors I don't.

The 12 seasons are arranged in a circle like the 4 were: The True seasons at the cardinal points, then the others "flowing" into each other at the boundaries. But I felt like I was in the middle! I like strong colors, but neither Bright nor Deep; and I like slightly softened colors, but not Muted. And both my coloring and contrast are medium.

Today I stumbled on yet another site, which introduces Tonal Color Families. This approach doesn't quite replace the seasons; but it turns it on its head. Here's my summary:

- The 4 seasons are from combining 2 pairs of characteristics

(Warm/Cool, Light/Deep)

into 4 possible combinations.
- 12 seasons come from adding a third pair (Bright/Muted)

to get 12 possible combinations.

However, people come in a spectrum. Not everyone is totally Warm or totally Cool, totally Light or totally Deep, etc. But the Seasonal model forces people to choose one or the other of all three pairs. It's limited because there's no place for people who are truly more in the middle on one or more characteristic.

To address this limitation, this philosophy has 10 families:
- 6 "tonal" families: Warm, Cool, Light, Deep, Bright, and Muted
- 4 "seasonal" families, which are blends of the tonal families

You fall into a Tonal family if 1 of those 6 characteristics is clearly more dominant than any of the others.

You fall into a Seasonal family if you are a blend of 2 or 3 dominant characteristics.

Read the link! It's way clearer than I am.

As I was reading, I immediately identified with Warm as my single dominant characteristic. I'm in between Light and Deep, and Bright and Muted.

"You probably feel that SPRING colors are pretty but they're too vivid and harsh!

"You probably feel that AUTUMN colors are stunning but too soft and deep for you!"


Sometimes I've wished there was a halfway between Spring and Autumn. And this is it! The Warm palette cherry-picks colors from both the Spring and Autumn, so nothing too bright or soft, nothing too light or deep, and always on the warm side.

"Whether the colors are the light and fresh shades of Spring or the soft and glorious shades of Autumn, it is the WARM color characteristic which always dominates."

I took the brief little quiz the site has and it easily confirmed Warm.

Now, I don't think that I'm 100% Warm. My eyes are deep blue (dark ring, rays of lighter blue, tiny bit of brown around the pupil), but no messing around with gray or green or hazel or turquoise. My veins are still more blue than green. Bright white has always looked better on me than off white or ivory. But Warm is still my dominant characteristic, as confirmed by the colors I choose to wear.

I wanted to share this because lots of us enjoy color analysis. Some struggle with it, probably because none of the seasons feel quite right. This different approach was super helpful for me, since it changes the model. It helps answer my Why, as to how I can know my colors so decisively and yet not fit into any of the 12 standard options.

These pages are the most informational: - talks about Light/Deep, Warm/Cool, Bright/Muted. "Are you _____ or _____? If it's not straightforward, it's not a major factor!" - talks about how the 10 families came from the 6 qualities and 4 blends - Heard of one season "flowing" into another? That's another way to identify the single dominant quality.

What do y'all think? Does this approach/definition resonant more with any of you than the typical 12 seasons?

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