#TheDress explained...

Friday, February 27, 2015

By now, you pretty much have to be living under a rock if you haven't heard of #TheDress controversy. It's all over social media, the news, and even celebrities are divided on this issue.

And yes, I know that by now it has pretty much been proven that the dress is Blue and Black, so I am not here today to convince you that it is White and Gold. I am only here to show you why half of us see it that way. It is all a matter of perception and how your brain processes information.

See the composite I created below. The photo on the far left is of snow in my own backyard, taken this morning on my iPhone. The bright parts at the top is where the sun was hitting the snow. The darker, blue-ish area at the bottom is where the house was casting a shadow on the snow. Now, I know that snow is white, so my eye sees all of it -- even the darker, blue-ish areas -- as white. That is how my brain processes that information. My brain does not say "OH, look. There's white snow and blue snow!" When I look at #TheDress photo on the right, the lighter portions of the dress look the same color to my eye as the shaded snow areas on the left photo, therefore, I process that information as WHITE.

Now, onto the gold versus black debate. I have also placed two Pantone swatches on the far right of the photo. One denotes PMS872 Gold, and the other one is Black. My eye sees the darker portions of this dress as looking exactly like the top Pantone swatch. And yes, I know lots of you out there can use the same reasoning I did above with the snow and say that the photo was underexposed, so the black areas are showing brownish/tannish. And apparently, that IS the case. But, I cannot help it that my brain processes this information as gold/tan, not black.

That is it! I am not arguing that the dress in White and Gold. Just merely explaining why some of us (or apparently most of us... 75%) see it as such.

My biggest concern at the moment is is not this dumb dress, but my fabric designs! When I think I have drawn a magenta hummingbird, is everyone seeing it as such, or are some of you seeing it in a different color? Hmmm...


  1. Which fabric collection is the hummingbird fabric from? Thanks so much.

    1. Ginger, that is from a very, very old collection of mine, called Flora & Fauna, now discontinued and very hard to find. Sorry, I didn't mean to tease you guys.

  2. I barely glanced at the dress on my facebook feed this morning but it looked white and gold. Now that I've seen the actual dress I see blue and black when I first glance at it then it changes to white and gold. So weird.


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