Does wearing only black make you more creative?

There comes a point in life when you find yourself looking at how creatively artistic everyone else in the world can be and wonder, why aren’t I that creative?

I’ve always thought of myself as a simple person. I never thought of my life as creative or artistic in any way, and I’ve always seen all of my art projects as below average. Seeing people creating cool work and thinking super creative ideas made me think I wasn’t trying hard enough.

I’ve always seen fashion as an art, so when I read online that some artists feel more creative when they wear all black, I decided it would be a fun experiment to see if I would become the next Van Gogh if I wore all black for one week. Just to be clear, I have never painted anything other than a hand turkey in the third grade, and even that ended up looking like a slaughtered cow with feathers.

I didn’t know how wearing all black would improve my creativity. I just knew there had to be some artistic version of Bianey inside of me that I wasn’t letting out, perhaps because of the colors in my wardrobe, or so I thought.

I was put in a box and had to think outside of the box to figure out how I could create fashionable outfits with all black. Furthermore, I was completely intrigued by the idea that people actually only wore black every day of their lives.

I decided to go to one of my old art teachers who I noticed wore black to every class. She was honestly one of the most creative people I have come across in my college career.

Kathryn Watson is an arts professor at MSU Denver who coincidently happens to wear a lot of black. Watson admitted that she doesn’t wear black every single day, but the majority of the time she opts for an all black style.

She can trace her dark closet back to graduate school in New York. Rather than endure a long commute back home after classes to change and go back into the city for another event, Watson found that wearing all black saved her precious time. Watson realized that an all black outfit looked more professional for her internships and art practice. Plus, it was an easy day to night look without having to go home and change.  

“I do think to one extent or another, black will always be classic in some way, and I think that’s part of the appeal,” Watson said. “I really admire people who can use color really well in their wardrobes, but for me, it is one of those areas where you just want to cross something off your list, and getting dressed in the morning is one of those things for me.”

Watson said wearing black made her more creative in other areas of her art. Deciding what to wear is something that she doesn’t need to worry about.

I, too, found myself incredibly surprised when planning my outfits was a breeze instead of my usual routine of Pinteresting and trying on different patterns and colors.

The real question I wanted to answer by the end of the week was if I had become a more creative person because of my black wardrobe.

Monday

Photo by Kayla Klein

To begin my experiment, Denver weather greeted me with a bitter cold. This meant two things: pants and puffy jackets. I decided to go for a black sweater with some glitter lining to add a little pop to my outfit. Since it was Monday, I was late, therefore my hair and makeup were simple, but I added a choker to make up for it.

Tuesday

Photo by Kayla Klein

Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday (other than my birthday), but unfortunately, this year, it looked like I would be going on a hot date wearing all black. To make up for the fact that I had to wear all black, I decided I couldn’t go wrong in a little black dress with a high neckline and bedazzled in diamonds. I accessorized with a vintage velvet shoulder clutch from a thrift store and burgundy velvet pumps. (I didn’t specify that my shoes also had to be black for this challenge, oops.).

Wednesday

Photo by Kayla Klein

After a night of stuffing my face with Valentine’s Day candy and champagne, it was literally impossible to wake up on time and be creative with my outfit, so I threw on a black bodysuit and yoga pants with mesh patterns. To make it look like I actually tried, I added heeled boots and rocked last night’s curls.

Thursday

Photo by Kayla Klein

I woke up in a great mood, and the sun was actually shining, so I decided to go for a body con dress. The black dress had white geometric stripes that accentuate curves on anyone. To say I was feeling my inner Kardashian on Thursday is an accurate statement.

Friday

Photo by Kayla Klein

I made it to the last day of my challenge feeling creative AF: you can tell by my flower crop top, ripped black jeans and a classic chunky black heel. All sarcasm aside, I was dying for some color in my wardrobe by Friday, which is why I went for the floral print top.

At the end of this experiment, I realized a few things. First, I’m not a minimalist at all; pink and glitter are my favorite colors. Second, my outfits are my creative outlets in life. Wearing all black didn’t necessarily make me a more creative person. It made me realize that I already am a creative person. Using color, patterns and textures in my wardrobe is the way that I express myself, and taking away one of my tools limited my creativity and showed me what a creative badass I already was.

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