I traveled to San Francisco this week to speak on a panel with a bunch of cool marketing ladies. Luckily I had one of my typical outfits — a black jumpsuit in this case — to throw on without much thought.
I ran into the event on the late-ish side and was immediately greeted by the hostess of the event, who also happens to be from New York. We both jumped to compliment each other on our outfits. She was decked out in a sexy and stylish black dress. She commented, “Of course we’re in black, we’re New Yorkers!”
True. We New Yorkers like our black.
In my case, I think I’m just lazy and, well, black goes with everything.
I often hear I look better in color. And I still gravitate towards black.
And I’m not alone.
So what’s the deal?
I investigated it and came across an article (“Reflections of Gotham: Why Do New Yorkers Wear So Much Black?”) that goes back in time to understand the origins of our affinity for black. The piece cites a few reasons, from historical to sociological. For example, black cloth was much less expensive to produce during the colonial days and the look stood the test of time. Another interesting perspective is that while we New Yorkers are all of different shades (literally and figuratively) black binds us together as a community.
Then there’s the theory that black makes us look thinner (believe me, I have proof of this on film!)
Here’s my thinking: first, black signals power and aggression, which, for better or worse, we New Yorkers tend to emit. And second, perhaps our love for black comes from what else the color connotes. For us, New Yorkers, black is worn at parties, when we’re out at night, and celebrating. Where else can you have such an amazing nightlife, right? Perhaps by wearing black we’re anticipating the fun and excitement that’s always within reach in our great city.
Good thing I have some new black pants to wear to my client meetings tomorrow 🙂