The modern elegante, seeking inspiration for the colour of her gowns, might do worse than adopt a flower scheme for her afternoon frocks. Let her take some decorative blossom - for example, the purple iris - and work out a complete toilette. The gown can be carried out in shades of pale lilac and deep violet, and a hint of pearl grey suggested in the frou frou of a satin petticoat. Filmy laces, ivory-white, can deck the throat and wrists, and a pale lilac hat can be worn, trimmed only with dark violet velvet iris. For a brunette the varying tones of wallflowers are excellent in inspiring a becoming day or evening gown. Rich browns, with here and there a fleck of orange or bright yellow, will be found harmonious and becoming, while to complete the realism, a knot of soft grey-green should not be omitted, for the leaves and stalks of wallflowers play an important part in the charm of this richly perfumed plant.
The Frenchwoman, to whom nothing connected with the subtlety of dress is unimportant, has long ago adopted the plan of using a perfume suitable to the costume. When she dons a heliotrope-coloured dress, then does she use the sweet "cherry-pie" scent; when in white, lily blossom perfume; with dark violet, violette de parme is used; and so on throughout the gamut of colour and perfume.
The tall, fair woman might find inspiration in the lily of the valley, with its fresh, cool contrast of white and green, or in the delicate pink of the briar rose. In the springtime, the pale gold of the laburnum commends itself to dark and fair alike; the deep purple of the wood violet or the delicate mauve of the lilac blossom, which always is emphasised and rendered more attractive by those touches of leaf-green which Nature herself indicates as the one means of bringing into harmony all the tints of all the flowers that grow.
For autumn gowns, again, what finer inspiration is there for modiste or milliner alike than the brilliant crimson and the russet browns of the woodland foliage; than all the wonderful gradations of gold and bronze which shine out upon us from the October trees and from the creepers which fling their gorgeous mantles far and wide ? In fur-trimmed velvets there are no colours lovelier than those which are borrowed from the autumn leaves.