Note: when we transferred domain names, we lost some blogs postings. We hope to eventually get them back up.
There are some things that are so wild, you can’t make them up. This Fashion Truck journey has been the most wild, crazy, and gut wrenching experience of my life. I have been to hell and back with my family (we had a micro-preemie, and other life stuff), but I can say starting a fashion truck has been the hardest journey yet. Because we have been so public about the journey so far, we’ll continue. I really hope you are blessed, and you see how normal the supernatural life is, and I hope it propels you deeper in your spiritual quest.
So what do you do when you have a “sense” about something, and you aren’t sure what to do with it? You can shelve it. Chock it up to bad pizza. Or you can write it down/commit it to memory. If you have spent any period of time with me, you’ll know that I am not a journaler by choice. But I have learned to love journaling. I don’t have time to journal everyday…so I journal when I sense there is something that needs to get out (you’ll get better with this over time, I promise!). Since returning from our CA trip, I have been slammed and haven’t had a chance to sit down to write. So I’ve been going with the committing to memory.
Prior to going on a shopping trip in LA, I talked with a friend who encouraged me to enjoy my time, and step out and try things, to see if that’s what was to be the next steps. I mulled over what she said. Stewed on it, in fact. I came back, and felt like I had a bee in my bonnet – I had an urgency to do SOMETHING. I sensed that this was the time to be moving forward! I was frustrated that I was spinning my wheels, and nothing was happening.
I decided the only thing I could do, was to look for some sort of a trailer. Nothing seemed to be quite right. Our tow vehicle has a fairly low towing capacity, as far as SUVs are concerned; and everything I found that was the right size was too heavy.
One night, while scouring Craigslist, my husband mentioned he thought it would be fun to have a teardrop trailer for our family. Now, if you have met us, you’ll realize that we are part giants, and a teardrop trailer would work for our kids, but not for our whole family. I said that what I thought would be cool for our family would be an Airstream. I pulled up a picture, and he said, “Rachael! That would be PERFECT for your fashion truck! It’s sparkly and has Sparkly Jewels (the former name of our store) written all over it! You should get one!!” It’s almost as though the heavens parted, and I had an “aha!” moment. That definitely seemed to be a perfect solution!
I have a few friends who are normally-supernatural (It’s not like we have weird conversations…we just share what we are sensing. You have this ability too… you might call it intuition…or “I was JUST thinking that”). One friend and I were talking about the Airstream, and my search for the right trailer around the country (it’s not abnormal to look for, and find, the perfect Airstream on the other side of the country). It was a completely benign conversation, and she said, “I keep hearing Western Slope.” (For those of you who are not in Colorado, our beloved state is broken up into the Front Range, and the Western Slope. If you want to get further descriptive, we also have the Plains. Poor mountain dwellers. I don’t think we have a term for them.) I said, “Huh. That’s funny. I’ve sort of had the same sense. Well, I’ll look there.” I did find one, but it wasn’t an AIRSTREAM…it was a competitor from the 50’s. When I really thought about it, though, the competitor wasn’t what I wanted.
I put a few ads on Craigslist stating what I wanted, and I picked an amount I was willing to pay (which I did not have). I had someone contact me, but their trailer was mangled, and over our towing capacity.
I also posted on an Airstream forum a question about how much a gutted Airstream weighs. I really had no idea what I was looking for. Growing up, my family had a tiny Casita trailer – about 13 feet long. I remembered it being small, and knew that my trailer needed to be longer than that. But other than that, I really had no idea what the weights might be. The responses from the forum were less than helpful. Most suggested I get a different tow vehicle. However, someone messaged me, saying he had a trailer for the exact amount I had posted on Craigslist. Coincidence? I think not. I had none of my contact info on Craigslist (other than the auto-generated email). There was no way to connect the two.
In searching nationally for the perfect trailer, it became apparent that looking out of state was going to be an additional expense that was going to add to the cost of my dream. It didn’t sit well with me. HOWEVER, the trailer the person messaged me about was less than 10 miles from my house! AND it was the same make as the one in the logo – there are a few slight differences, but there is no question that it was a divine set up! (A note about the logo: I started coming up with new ideas for my fashion truck after I ‘decided’ that an Airstream was the right thing for me. I ‘arbitrarily’ selected a model to create my graphics based on. Wouldn’t you know that aside from a few differences, MY trailer was the SAME one in the logo.)
I kept sensing that after Labor Day would be the time everything would fall into place. I stepped out on a limb, and contacted the seller, even though I didn’t have all the money (though he didn’t know this). I didn’t even have close. I had about a third of what he was asking. The week between talking on the phone and going to look at it, a few orders came in, and had a few parties, which gave me about 2/3 of what he was asking (which, by the way, was an INCREDIBLE deal!!) The day before we went to look at it, we had the last of our summer fairs. I felt like it was going miserably, and there was no way that I’d make up what I needed. However, $100 more than what I needed came in. Whew. What a big sigh of relief and extreme elation. My dream was FINALLY being realized!
We went to take a look at it, and it was perfect. Absolutely perfect. The exterior was in immaculate condition. The interior was intact. No water damage (which is relatively unheard of). As I have been renovating for the past few months, I’ve been amazed that at every step of the way, the Airstream is in great condition! The insulation was in good condition (but still needs to be replaced). The floor is in excellent condition, but is still going to be replaced. I’m absolutely astounded!!
Anyhow, I had the money and we picked it up the day after Labor Day! WOW. There is NO WAY I could have made it all up. And quite frankly, if I would have been writing the story, I would have had everything happen effortlessly…a year ago. However, there is something about the struggle that makes us stronger. I have heard the phrase, “It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey,” and that couldn’t be truer with this as well. Through the struggle, I have learned what I really want, it has grown my faith…yes, it would have been much easier for me to have had things happen really quickly and easily, but that’s not life. Life is about community, and getting deeper in our faith, and listening to God, and partnering with Him. I have a deeper sense of ownership.
I think we have been conditioned to think that if it’s easy, it’s from God. Let me tell you, that is not the case. There IS a difference between trying to fit a square peg in a round hole, and the struggle. When I was with several network marketing companies, I knew my time was up because I was forcing it to work. They all have a phrase, “Don’t quit before payday.” After having been around the block a few times, I realize that it is a way to keep you going when things are tough. It’s nice. In theory. What if you have a higher calling, and you are guilted into staying? What if your big break is just around the corner? Let me tell you, I made good money with my companies. But there are times that things just.don’t.fit. I’m not here to tell you why I left; that’s another story. I can honestly tell you that the struggle with finding a truck, and expanding my business has felt totally different than the struggle to make it work with my network marketing companies. One of my favorite quotes comes from Anne of Green Gables (If you haven’t read the book or at least watched the movie, you really owe it to yourself to do so). I will leave you with it, in regards to the struggle…sometimes our language is so limited…we don’t have words that express what is really going on inside. They don’t go far enough.
Let me set up the scene for you. Anne, an orphan who is to be adopted by the Cuthberts, is never at a loss for words, has been picked up at the train station by Matthew Cuthbert (who never says much), and have passed through the “Avenue”.
She came out of her reverie with a deep sigh and looked at him with the dreamy gaze of a soul that had been wondering afar, star-led.
“Oh, Mr. Cuthbert,” she whispered, “that place we came through–that white place–what was it?”
“Well now, you must mean the Avenue,” said Matthew after a few moments’ profound reflection. “It is a kind of pretty place.”
“Pretty? Oh, pretty doesn’t seem the right word to use. Nor beautiful, either. They don’t go far enough. Oh, it was wonderful–wonderful. It’s the first thing I ever saw that couldn’t be improved upon by imagination. It just satisfies me here”–she put one hand on her breast–“it made a queer funny ache and yet it was a pleasant ache. Did you ever have an ache like that, Mr. Cuthbert?”
“Well now, I just can’t recollect that I ever had.”
That is exactly how I feel with it all…wonderful…and couldn’t be improved upon by imagination. I am so in love.
Oh. You’ll never guess where the last owner picked up my trailer a few months ago (he does Airstream restorations, and picked up for a customer, and ended up not using it – so he sold it to me). The Western Slope.
This has been a really interesting year. Twice now, I have dealt with companies who say they’ll do one thing, and they do the opposite. Longtime customers will remember the Idea Café drama – it took a letter to the Better Business Bureau to get their attention –and I got my money nearly a YEAR later.
Let me preface all of this by saying, I REALLY AM a smart woman. I don’t blindly walk into these situations.
Since this has happened twice now, I think it happens so that I can be a voice for others. It was not easy to find reviews on either company. I never found one for Idea Café. I had to do some serious digging to find any reviews on Sandi Krakowski. Those seemed to be mostly compensated reviews.
This is also a very thorough review of her Copywriting class, which is now called “Social Media Masters”. There are few reviews on the classes, other than the gushing reviews plastered on Sandi Krakowski’s website. I did find one, but he had not taken one of her more expensive classes –which I am reviewing. Side note – if you look at this class, there is now a schedule – this was not available prior to the start of class.
I have no intention of muckraking Sandi. This is an honest look into the class, so anyone wondering what it might be like has an accurate picture before they spend several hundred dollars.
Let’s start at the beginning. I had been following Sandi Krakowski (SK) for a year or so. I LOVED her encouraging posts! I LOVED her heart for the Lord! I LOVED that she was a strong Christian woman! It takes me a long time to think and mull anything over (some things I’ve gotten quicker at!). This summer I purchased her Facebook Ads Class. I have been running fb ads for quite a while, and I was BLOWN AWAY with what I learned!! It took what I had learned and spun it on its head. I raved about what I learned, etc. I take it all back now (except the Ads Class – which is good, because SK is focused, and doesn’t go off on tangents (much)).
I saw the Facebook ads for her upcoming Copywriting class. That is one skill that I had been lack. I participated in a convincing webinar that sold me on the class. I dipped into my Fashion Truck fund, and paid for the class…crossing my fingers that I’d make my money back. Let’s be honest, $531 is a HUGE chunk of change for anyone. As with any other business owner, I have to think how I want to allocate my money.
The class was sold as a Copywriting class for Social Media Experts. (I’ve been successfully using Social Media for YEARS, I am nowhere near a novice). The skills learned could be carried over to any kind of copywriting. It was sold that it would be THE ONLY CLASS WE’D NEED. I would have never purchased the class if I would have known it was essentially Facebook 101. She said that we’d be looking over her shoulder, and learning her secrets. However, during the class, when asked directly how she picks words for copy, she refused to show her methods and outright said that she would not be teaching all her secrets (and we were foolish for thinking she would)
Prior to the first class, we were required to purchase 3 books: “Words That Sell”, “More Words That Sell”, and “Phrases That Sell”. Not once in the class did we crack open those books and use them! I wouldn’t say that this was a waste of money, as I had used them before I took this class – they are really phenomenal. I wanted to learn how an expert uses them!!!! I would say that it was a waste of time, rather than a waste of money, with reference to the books.
In the first class, she ‘laid down the law’, so to speak. No whining, no complaining, and this was a ‘college level class’ – and people would be removed from the class if they whined or complained. In the Facebook group, all posts were moderated by her, or one of her team members . Fair enough. Questions were only allowed to be asked one day out of the week. ALL of the students in her class are adults, with families, jobs or are entrepreneurs. I took this class during the busiest retail time of the year, so this was the biggest pain in the rear. The class was essentially owning me, rather than me learning. It stressed me out!! (I eventually let this go, once I realized this class wasn’t what I signed up for, but I hoped that she would eventually teach what she said she was going to…wishful thinking).
Let’s talk about the folks who do not live in The United States. There were folks in Australia, England, as I recall, one in China. Questions were to be asked from 9-5 EST – That’s the MIDDLE OF THE NIGHT for some people. SK had the audacity to say that they needed to wake up in the middle of the night to ask their questions. Can you imagine setting an alarm for 3am, just so you can ask a question, and HOPE that it’s answered? SK never answered all the questions. At the beginning of the class, the questions were about copy and sales page. Hmm…these fine folks were thinking the same thing I was. Then, the questions stopped. My only guess is that they were removed; I’m assuming no refund was given. Several times, I felt like it was Mafia rule. Please hear me, I’m not saying that SK is part of the Mafia (wouldn’t that be funny if she was). She has a high need for control, and will do everything to retain that control – hence no whining and complaining. Fine. I tell my kids when they are whiiiiiiiining about something that the Bible tells us ‘to do everything without whining or complaining’. The difference? I am parenting, and I do it with love, not out of anger. I want them to be the best that they can be. I am teaching good habits.
To be told by another adult that whining or complaining is not permitted is a little odd – I can’t say that I have heard that from any other trainer or another adult. It quickly became apparent that she used this Bible verse to help her control the class. Anyone who has studied world history, you cannot control another person – even if you try!! God has created us to think; we NEED to retain that!
I’m not even talking about grown adults who really are whiners. Isn’t that their business? What I’ve learned, is that for the most part, people try to be positive, and when they complain (especially in a classroom setting), it’s because there is a legitimate reason why!
Could she have said this because she had no intention of teaching what she said was going to teach? Could it have been because she has had issues with customers saying, “Hey! That’s not what I paid for!”? I think there is one more reason why.
In the course of the class, she talked MORE about the millions she has made, and that she is an expert, than she did about copy (or social media). That made up about half of the class. I kid you not. Then about 25% of the class was about the other classes she had; that we needed to purchase so we could learn how to do Twitter, or Pinterest. I find it VERY interesting that her Twitter class ($77) came out THE SAME WEEK that she was teaching in our class about Twitter. In her copywriting class (the one I was taking), she showed WHO she was going to follow (THAT was a waste of time. It should have been edited to take up 1-2 minutes, rather than taking 10, out of 20 minutes of teaching for the week). What was clear, if you wanted to know the ins and outs, you’d have to purchase her Twitter class. Shouldn’t that be taught in a Social Media MASTERS class??!
Then she taught Pinterest, and I can tell you that she really has no clue what she is talking about with regards to Pinterest. Her strength lies in teaching Facebook, but the examples she used for how to maximize Pinterest were very weak, showing that she didn’t have a very good grasp on how to effectively use it. She divulged nothing enlightening or eye opening. She admitted to having recently opened a Pinterest account, which clearly showed her novice. It is quite clear that she has abundant followers because of her name, and not her skill.
About 2/3 of the way through the class, she started campaigning/pitching/selling Social Media Masters 2 (but remember we were sold that this would be the only class we’d ever need. On her website, she says that she hasn’t taught this class in 2 years, and it won’t be taught again for another 2). She had NO INTENTION of teaching much in this class. Nor could she. She was too busy talking about herself, her millions, how she’s an expert, selling her other classes, or talking about other students behind their backs, jeering students WHO WERE IN THE CLASS. Her behavior was APPALING. I would NOT want to follow her Jesus.
While it may seem somewhat beside the fact, her religious stance deeply bothers me; especially as it relates to the way she directed the class and interacted. She is very overt with her faith, and lead me to believe that her faith and her business were in sync with each other. They are, but not in the way I expected them to be. She and I follow a lot of the same faith based organizations, and teachers. Her public persona is that she is a grace, and spirit filled Christian, when in reality what she says publicly and her classroom behavior are light years apart from each other. I expected that she would be kind, and encouraging – as the speakers, and teachers that she and I follow are. She parrots back the things they say, but they haven’t been taken to heart. You know when you hear 2 people say the exact same thing, and one gives you warm fuzzies, and the other gives you cold pricklies? I get the warm fuzzies from the speakers, and the cold pricklies from SK.
She talks about how she has saved IHOP-KC (International House of Prayer) thousands on their advertising, blah blah blah. I believe that she did work with them, but I would guess that she toned down or turned off her snark, while working with them. Her CEO was apparently with Jesus Culture. What I CAN tell you, is that her behavior is NOT indicative of the church I go to. I’m embarrassed for her. Jesus was loving, meek and gentle – He was not a jerk to people who were not in the know. (He was not kind to Pharisees and the religious…but let’s be honest…you’ll catch more flies with honey than you will with vinegar. And SK is not God…just sayin’) I’m not here to be a whistle caller. I’m not saying that she is a false prophet, or that she’s bearing bad fruit. That is between SK and God, and I’ll stay out of that conversation. I WILL say, that I don’t like the way I was treated, and there is NO WAY on God’s green earth that I’d recommend anyone working with her…until she changes her attitude. I will say, that I’m no longer a SK follower. I have a really hard time listening to her message when her message is one thing, and her behavior is quite another. I have no doubt that she has prophetic abilities, but that is a gift that is given to each believer. I have no doubt that she has made millions, but she hasn’t done it ethically, integrity, love or kindness. I’m quite surprised that she has a million followers on FB, and I can only attribute it to the encouraging posts on her Facebook page.
Back to the class, in one session she made it a point to say that they don’t give refunds (although, she said that she did give this person a refund, and the only other review I could find, also was refunded). Hmm…eyebrow raising…why would she say that out of the blue? She also talked about a customer behind their back, and let me tell you, she was NASTY! Just outright rude. WHY would someone take classroom time to talk about another person. It seemed that our class was an outlet for her to vent.
People would outright ask, “I have 12k followers on my FB page, how do I convert them to sales.” She said something to the effect of, “I have a hard time believing that you have that many followers and no conversions. You must be doing something wrong.” But never said what the “something wrong” was, or how to help. You can have a huge FB following, and no sales conversions. I think this is the case. I doubt, at this point, that many of her followers have her same success (without constantly spending gobs on advertising).
We were constantly berated if we weren’t following her FB ads class (and we weren’t really in business if we weren’t CONSTANTLY doing ads), didn’t have at least 5k followers on our page (because it means that we are unsuccessful if we don’t). She used network marketer tactics that were very overt, and frankly left a very bad taste in my mouth. I’ve been in network marketing, and I can recognize those tactics a million miles away. Everything that sleazy network marketers are known (and hated) for, were exhibited in this class.
The ONLY nice thing that she said (to me) was that I had a nice logo, and she liked my model. I have nothing from the class that I learned was beneficial.
I felt it was geared more for info-product sellers, and for network marketers. While it is true that there are some things that cross over, I don’t have a single sales page – so her tactics for sales copy (which we didn’t learn, but it was hammered in my head that I need one) and for MLM’s don’t apply to me as cut and dry. For example, she HIGHLY suggests (read between the lines) that a company should use their name (like her!). When was the last time you shopped at a store that was named after the owner – I’m not talking about Joe’s Fix It Place…instead using one’s first and last name, as she does. I can’t really think of one. I have loads of products, so to write a whole page copy to sell a shirt is a bit overkill, don’t you think?
I have asked for a refund. It was denied. I was also made to feel like I was the only one who felt that way – that is a CLASSIC hard sell sales technique. Isolate the customer into feeling like they are the only one who feels that way, then they’ll back down. Well…let me tell you…I friended a few people in the class, and they all feel the same way. Surprise, surprise. I find it hard to believe that EVERYONE LOVED the class.
The class was frankly oversold. As I recall there were some 800 students in the class. She said it was like a lecture hall university class. When I brought this up in my conversations with her son, who handles the complainers, he was quick to say that they are not accredited, or affiliated with a college. No kidding. No college would put up with her behavior. I’m not sure if she has ever been to university or not. But I have. I did have lecture hall classes. As I recall, there were about 100 students at the start of the class. HOWEVER, professors have office hours –with them or with an assistant. So. This class was a lecture hall only in the sense that there were lots of students, but there was no support. When was the last time you took a class and there was no support.
Do you know WHY they can’t give refunds? Because if they gave refunds to the people who were upset, they’d be broke. There. I said it.
Granted, if you oversell a class, and have too many students to manage, you’d HAVE to run the class militantly.
If I did business, or anyone else for that matter, the way she does business, I’d be broke, wouldn’t have friends or customers. Imagine going to a store, buying a pair of pants, and the store owner cuts off one of the pant legs, and says if you want the other, it’ll be another $80. Or, as my friend from the class said, imagine taking a cruise to Alaska, and the captain takes you to Mexico, and shows you the wonders there. That’s great, but I want to see Alaska. Perhaps I’ve already been to Mexico!
I asked her company for a refund (which fell on deaf ears); so I’ve taken the matter to my bank. Essentially what she did is fraudulent: sold one item and delivered another, and has refused to rectify the situation.
If you are reading this, and I at one point told you that I like Sandi Krakowski, I take it back. I’m sure she is a lovely person. From googling her, it sounds like she’s had a rough life. Not one iota of this is meant to take her down, or defame her. Her business practices, and her bedside manner are lacking. I would highly recommend not using her classes, unless you have money to throw away. If that’s the case, I have an Airstream I’m renovating…hint hint.
I do stand by my previous statement about her FB ads class. That was a great class, and I do recommend that one. She does offer sales on her classes, I’d recommend snagging that one during a sale. She is focused, and shows you EXACTLY HOW to do ads the way she does. She knows what she’s talking about when it comes to ads – she runs them all the time, and has amazing successes with it.
If you are looking for a great FB 101 class, I recommend my friend Kelly with Directly Successful. She has worked with women of all backgrounds. She started DS for direct sellers, but I have friends who have taken her classes, and they are not in direct sales. I do have to say that I haven’t taken Kelly’s class, because the things she has taught in her Honey Badger class, I know. I can vouch that Kelly knows her stuff, she is kind, and her character is upstanding. She cares about her students (but she is a honey badger, and not a hand holder). I HIGHLY recommend her. (PS – Kelly has not compensated me to say any of this; they are my own, truthful words. I really do think very highly of her!)
Let me tell you Sandi Krakowski, my business is my business. My finances are my finances. And to be perfectly honest, you have no right to tell me that I’m in business or not if I do or don’t place constant fb ads. I don’t need my fb page to serve as a codpiece to my success. There is very little correlation between the two. Running a barrage of FB ads is not necessarily going to help drive more traffic to my site, and if I’m doing something wrong, for goodness sake tell me what is not working so I can fix it!! At the end of the day, I’m doing what I feel is right. I have no desire (right now) to be shipping all over the world. I want to have a Fashion Truck, and party it up with women locally. I want to encourage them face to face. I want to laugh and cry with them. No amount of advertising can match that.
God has equally given me a voice, but I intend to use it to incite hope, and to encourage women. I want that EVERY person who interacts with me, leaves knowing that the God of the universe LOVES THEM, and is passionate about them – even if I didn’t verbally say that. I want every woman to feel adored after spending time with me. I will treat each woman the way that I wish to be treated, even when it means that I make decisions that are contrary to popular business practices.
It is really too bad that your class was not what you touted it to be. I really wish that I would have spent 12 weeks applying that time toward my business, or my family (and not particularly in that order). I wish that I would have saved that money, so it could be applied to my renovations. But I’m grateful that I learned that you are a charlatan. I’m grateful that I don’t have to wish I would have taken that class, because I know now that I will never regret abstaining from a class. More than that, I wish you’d read this, and take it to heart. I think you are an awesome person, and you DO have a voice for the Social Media platform. I just wish you were much nicer about it all. I wish you took the time to listen to people, instead of placating, and coming up with a cookie cutter answer, that frankly doesn’t help. I wish you toned down the attitude. I like a woman who is sassy and confident, but there is a difference between being a jerk, and being funny; I felt like you were a jerk. I felt like I was an idiot. Let me tell you Sandi Krakowski – I started college when I was 16, and I went for 8 years. I have enough credits to have 3 majors, and 3 minors. I have an intense love for learning, and I am most certainly not an idiot. I am also a strong woman who knows what she was called to do. I feel really bad for my classmates who are/were trying to figure out their businesses, and equally wasted their money. And don’t for a minute tell me that I’m the only one who feels this way. You can control the class inside the forum, but we talk outside, and I have heard (and I fully expect this to continue) from other people who feel the same way. You can take your sales tactics and try them on someone else. And I hope this saves someone $500 that they might apply somewhere else. I really don’t care that you’ve made millions, because you wasted the money I gave you. I expected you to teach me something I didn’t know (well, you certainly did that!).
Most of all, I wish you the best of luck.
Did you hear that Pantone released their colors for the year? This may be a news byte, or it might be one of those things that was in one ear and out the other. Why does this, or should this matter to you? Is this one of those things for the fashion savvy? It could be. You’re busy chasing kids around, so why does this matter to you? Frankly, it’s not a matter of life or death, and your life will go on (I hope blissfully) regardless of you keying into any of this. But follow me here.
What is your favorite color? Mine is tangerine. We’ll ignore the fact that I look TERRIBLE in tangerine…I still love it. Some years tangerine (or colors that are close to it) are on the Pantone color list, other years they are not. If I LOOOOOOVE a particular color, and want to wear that color, chances are, I’m going to have a doozy of a time trying to find it. Like when I was shopping for my bridesmaids dresses (forever ago). I wanted eggplant/plum (I also wanted it for my bedspread), but I couldn’t find it anywhere. Why? Because designers tend to use the same color palette, and Pantone clues into the colors designers are selecting, and they create their colors of the year based on the colors that are shown the most. (This is in theory, and I tend to disagree with it slightly. In any year, there has been an official color, and what I call the “unofficial colors” – those are the ones that you see most.) For 2014, the color of the year was Radiant Orchid (in between purple purple, and lilac). I hardly saw it anywhere – believe me, I’m trolling designer’s websites like no one’s business. What I did see in 2014, was that olive came back (It was on the color palette for 2013, but not for 2014.), coral was the unofficial color for the year, and we are ending 2014 with navy being a hot color.
Depending where in the US you are reading this, will also impact the trends you see. In Colorado, we tend to lean toward muted colors, and not very bold prints (COME ON!!!! There is so much more than navy and beige!!). If you are in the South, chances are that gals around you may wear brighter colors (even chevron prints). The West Coast tends to be one of the trend setting areas, where anything goes. But you know what I’ve noticed? The styles are bold, but the colors are not. Hmmm… So who pays attention to the Pantone colors? I’m really not sure. What I CAN say is, if you see your favorite color for sale one year, GRAB IT and hang on to it. Chances are you won’t see it again for a LONG time.
We have woven a tangled mess, and chances are, you are probably more confused now, than before you started reading. It comes down to this: designers pick and choose what colors they are going to feature in their clothes – some may, others may not follow the Pantone colors. However, if you are looking for a particular color (and it might look incredible on you!!) and the colors for the year are opposite (bright vs muted), chances are you might not be able to find them.
So who follows who? Do designers follow Pantone, or is it visa versa? For the most part, Pantone is looking at the world’s top designers, and taking cues from them. HOWEVER (a big however), designers are currently planning NEXT FALL’S outfits – spring styles are currently in production (would you believe I know what I’ll be purchasing through February (at the very least)). But designers get pretty intuitive about this, sort of how you can see a temper tantrum starting a million miles away.
Essentially, Pantone is chasing designers (who can change their minds, or not even follow the ‘trends’). It’s sort of cyclical.
What does it mean for you? You’re busy chasing kiddos, creating a meal plan (perhaps you are like me, running a business, and homeschooling). I’ve said it earlier, and I’ll say it again. You’re life will continue if you don’t pay attention to the top colors, but if you are dead set on a particular hue (shade) of coral, you probably won’t be able to find it (easily). If you LOVE LOVE Marsala (Pantone’s Color of the Year) AND it looks good on you, live it up! If you love coral, love it and own it (it just won’t be front and center). At the end of the day, it’s better to wear the colors that look amazing on you, rather than ‘trendy’ colors.
If these colors are not really your season, select colors that are better suited for you. For example, Marsala is a FANTASTIC color for Soft Summer, and the Autumns (Soft, Light and Dark), but is a TERRIBLE color for Springs (Bright Spring may be able to pull it off), and True and Bright Winters. You’ll look like you are trying too hard if you wear the wrong color for the wrong season.
At a recent fashion trade show, I DID notice that charcoal, navy, cement gray/dusty blue, white, and camel were top colors for spring 2015. So you can see that there is a slight nod to the Pantone colors, but it’s not really intense.
Some of the Spring 2015 trends: Florals will continue, with a vintage twist. Meaning, they’ll be less 1980’s and more 1950’s type prints – BUT! They always come with a modern twist.
Lace will also be a BIG part of spring style, as will stripes, mid tones of denim (not a dark indigo wash.). We’ll still be mad for plaid.
LASTLY, you don’t need to rush out and get a new wardrobe to look hip and current. Sprinkle in trends and fresh colors – it’s amazing what a new shirt will do for your wardrobe! You’ll find all sorts of cardigans and jackets to layer with it! Take a Marsala shirt, and pair it with a floral scarf. You’ll look on trend, and it was effortless!
What I will say, and I do appreciate, these colors are timeless. You CANNOT go wrong with neutrals (if your wardrobe is ALL neutrals, we need to talk!).