I can’t remember the last time I wore the color yellow. I’ve never really gravitated towards the color until this year when yellow showed up everywhere. On red carpets, clothing stores, and style bloggers. And it wasn’t just one shade of yellow-it was the whole spectrum. You have your pale yellows, bright citrus yellows, and deep mustard yellows. And it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere for Fall.
Photos are clickable 🙂
But I still wasn’t sold on the color yellow. Is it practical to wear a color that basically demands to be seen? But then I had to pause and ask myself: what about the color yellow is really holding me back?
I don’t remember the first time I “learned” to associate the color yellow with the color of my skin. It might have been the first time I was referred to as a “Twinkie”-yellow on the outside and white on the inside. This is typically used to refer to Asian Americans who don’t live up to outdated stereotypes and are then viewed as less Asian and more “White” or “Caucasian.” The idea that children of immigrants won’t grow up to integrate both cultures into their identities and way of living life boggles my mind. Doesn’t “(insert ethnicity here)-American” inherently indicate that there are at least two cultures at play here?
But since race was something society tells us we need to use to categorize ourselves, and I was clearly not “White” then “Yellow” it was. But it never felt right. Why were people simultaneously using the color yellow to categorize me and put me down for not being what they thought of me?
So I did a bit of googling to look into both yellow the color, and yellow as the color assigned to my skin.
According to colormatters.com, yellow represents “happiness and optimism” but there’s also a “dark side” that represents “cowardice, betrayal, egoism, and madness.” Hmm…where might the negative stuff come from?
History reveals that because of fear, Western civilization created the idea of “Yellow Peril” a “racist-color metaphor” used to justify the colonization and discrimination of East Asian people. (Wikipedia).
So to conclude this very brief history lesson, East Asian people did not come together and decide that they wanted to be referred to as the “yellow” race. It was assigned.
Well, I guess now I know where my aversion to the color yellow really comes from.
Back to my earlier question: Is it practical to wear a color that basically demands to be seen? And my answer is YES. Not only is it practical but it is necessary. Especially, in the current state of our country as shown in Charlottesville.
If fashion is a form of self-expression, then I want to express that yellow is a color I choose to wear because it demands to be seen. It makes me feel empowered, hopeful, and optimistic. “Yellow” is not the color of my skin and “Twinkie” is not how I define myself.
I am the only one who gets to define me.
What color empowers you? I would love to know!
Thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you in my next post.
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