Choosing Your Own Color System

Color is the most complex and stimulating of the elements of design. Today, a number of “color systems” are presented in the market places, each focusing on a specific approach for coloring in clothing, cosmetics, and furnishings. Some of these color systems are based on generalizations and sooner or later will prove inadequate for specific problems. The truth is, the effect color has varies with mood, occasion, season, personality, age, and cultural and geographical environment.

We all have color preferences, but only in extreme cases will a person’s skin tone or hair color limit the freedom to wear a broad range of colors. Furthermore, the selection of a “best” color is not more important than the selection of attractive and appropriate styles, lines, prints, and textures in clothing and accessories. An attractive appearance is dependent on the harmonious selection and coordination of all these elements.

There is no need, therefore, to lose confidence in your own color sense or to become dependent on a system to determine what you will wear. With the aid of a mirror and a knowledge of correct color principles, you can learn to rely on your own eye to evaluate the effects of color on your appearance.

Following are some suggestions that could help you develop your own personal color sense.

1. Learn to recognize the three dimensions of color. Hue refers to a specific color family and its degree of warmness (red, orange undertones) or coolness (blue, green undertones). Value refers to the degree of lightness or darkness of a hue. Intensity refers to the degree of brightness or dullness of a hue. Strive for variety of hue, value, and intensity in your clothing.

2. Learn basic color principles, including the physical and psychological effects of color. A color is seldom seen in isolation and must be considered in relation to the other colors around it—the person’s hair, eyes, skin, and other clothes. You can alter the apparent effects of any color by placing it next to or mixing it with other colors. The object should be to enhance, but not overpower, your own natural coloring.

3. Learn to emphasize your own individuality by wearing colors which repeat or contrast with the color of your hair, eyes, and skin, making them appear more healthy and vibrant. For example, a blue shirt on a brunette with blue eyes repeats the color of the eyes and calls attention to them. At the same time, the blue is a complementary hue to the brown hair and will therefore emphasize the hair’s warm highlights.

4. Consider the quantity of the color and its placement on your body. Accent colors may be used to focus attention where you want it. Your choice of colors will also be influenced by the occasion and the other people you will be with.

5. Learn how unity and harmony can be achieved with fewer colors rather than many. An economical and versatile wardrobe may be planned around two or three subdued fashion neutrals white, grey, brown, beige, camel, ivory, taupe, rust, forest green, burgundy, navy-blue, etc.) with accent colors selected for variety and purpose.

As you develop and use your own sense of color and design, you will make a positive statement about yourself and your individuality. Dr. Charlene Lind and Judith Rasband, Orem, Utah

[illustration] Illustrated by Shauna Mooney

The Conference Game

The live transmission via satellite of all six sessions of conference in October 1982 was truly a time of spiritual feasting for our family. Since we hadn’t had this opportunity before and wanted to take advantage of this unique blessing, our family planned a strategy to help us get the most out of hearing the words of the Lord’s appointed leaders. Our goal was that everyone became involved in an activity so that even Mom and Dad could feel the spirit of conference.

On Friday night we held a special family home evening, where we discussed the importance of conference. We all agreed that listening is more fun when we are active participants. Then we proposed our plan, asking for alternatives and eventual agreement. This is how our plan worked:

1. We supplied each member of the family with notebook and pen.

2. We all wrote down interesting points from each speaker’s ideas, then made up questions based on each talk.

3. We mounted a large score card in our family room. After each session we came home and took turns asking our questions, keeping track of our answers on the card.

My husband and I were overwhelmed with the children’s response to our plan. They had become engrossed in the speakers’ messages. A few questions from the children’s notebooks will illustrate.

From our nine-year-old’s notebook:

“What did Elder Reeve say about love?” (All must have love in their hearts.) “What does it say on the new Book of Mormon?” (“Another Testament of Jesus Christ.”)

A sample from our eleven-year-old’s notebook:

“Who wrote ‘We Thank Thee, O God, for a Prophet’?” (William Fowler.)

The thirteen-year-old wrote:

“What was Elder Richards’s theme?” (Hymns.) “Elder Wells said there have been how many wars since 1945?” (141.)

The sixteen-year-old was slowest to get involved, but after the first question-and-answer session, she really got into it:

“Elder Benson talked about my favorite subject. What was it?” (Family and marriage.) “When was the first edition of songs published?” (1895.)

Finally, samples from the six-year-old:

“What is Elder Monson’s wife’s name?” (Frances.) “What was Elder Reeve’s talk about?” (Loving God.)

After each session we hurried home to reenact conference highlights. Each time it took us nearly two hours to do this and the children didn’t lose interest. (Dad and Mom were ready to move on long before the children were.) We also noted times we felt the Holy Ghost witness the truth of the speakers’ words.

This method of active listening did more than accomplish our goal to help us listen and feel the Spirit. It also gave us a new dimension of insight into our children’s ability to discern the truth. Ada Carol Steenhock, Downey, California

[illustration] Illustrated by Bill Swensen

Scripture Calendar

To motivate our family to follow the Prophet’s counsel to read the scriptures daily, we developed a family reading calender.

The calendar is organized in a small spiral notebook which we keep posted on the family notice board. The first page of the notebook contains a list of fifty-two gospel topics, one for each week of the year. Most of our topics come from the manual Gospel Principles (you can order this manual through your priesthood leader). We choose other topics dealing with our own specific interests. The list includes such topics as apostasy, baptism, faith, fall of Adam, honesty, and temples. If the topic comes from Gospel Principles, we include the chapter number with the topic on this index.

Once a week, during family home evening, we plan our week’s scripture study around one of the topics in the index. We plan a different scripture related to that theme for each day of the week. (Topics from Gospel Principles have a list of suggested scriptures at the end of each chapter. This list contains the reference and a brief summary of the scripture.) Using Gospel Principles, the Topical Guide in the LDS edition of the Bible, or our own preferences, we choose the scriptures to be used and chart the week on another page in the notebook. At the top of the page, we put the theme for the week. Then down the page we list the day of the week, the scriptural reference, the topic of the scripture, and who will read it. One week’s plan on prayer would look like this in our notebook:

Week 30—Theme “Prayer”

Day of the Week


Read by

Sunday James 1:5–6

What to Pray For


Monday 2 Ne. 32:9

When to Pray


Tuesday Matt. 6:6

Where to Pray


Wednesday D&C 46:30

How to Pray


Thursday Alma 34:17–28

Pray Always


Friday D&C 88:63–65

How Prayers are Answered


Saturday Moro. 10:3–5

Promises in Prayer


We use this chart as the basis for our morning devotional. We meet together each morning to read the scheduled scripture and to discuss its application in our lives. Then we sing a hymn and have family prayer. Following the prophet’s counsel in this way has brought us closer as a family and helped us grow in gospel knowledge. Peter D. Cameron, Paisley, Scotland