Take a multifaceted approach to wearing colour this season in sumptuous jewel tones.

Winter's cold snap has well and truly arrived and while it's tempting to delve into muted tones and faithful black, jewel tones make a convincing case for thoughtful colour this season. It's a colour palette celebrated in the art world from vivid 17th century Dutch paintings of merchants and their wives swathed in rich emerald and ruby red velvets or perhaps the citrine and tourmaline tones of orange peels and grapes found in still life settings by Pieter Claesz.

These tones highlight a sense of richness and lustre that manages to find its way on equally luxurious fabrics from duchess satin to languid silks, the perfect inspiration for those impending special occasions from winter weddings to cocktail events and ball season.

Several designers have injected vivid gemstone hues, from emerald green and amethyst to ruby and sapphire for a hit of elegant colour, working well as a statement on their own or pared back with black and white. Key jewel-coloured pieces for the season not only encourage dressed-up colour, but provide the perfect opportunity to play with high-low dressing. The exquisite oversized taffeta "Les Levres" coat by Penny Sage (#2) works just as well with a tonal red dress underneath as it does with a T-shirt, mid-length skirt and a pair of trainers. Fully lined with silk cotton and cut with a modern shape, it's a standout piece that highlights that deluxe look that jewel tones provide.

1 Camilla & Marc dress, $710. Ruby heels, $299.
2 Vaughan Geeson knit dress, $196. Penny Sage coat, $490. Skin heels, $180.
3 Cybele dress, $389. Skin knee-high suede boots, $300.
4 Company of Strangers cardigan, $460 and slip $255. Zambesi culottes, $425. Louis Vuitton monogram belt, $645. Ruby heels, $299.
5 Ruby dress, $200. Mi Piaci loafers, $280.

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Stockists

Camilla & Marc
Company of Strangers
Cybele
• Mi Piaci (09) 309 8360
• Louis Vuitton (09) 358 0422
Penny Sage
• Ruby (09) 522 6658
• Skin (09) 368 1981
Vaughan Geeson
• Zambesi (09) 303 1701