Initially, this was going to be all one post, but the first part became so long winded that I decided to make it two posts. Another aspect of color in Lolita that perplexes me is the tendency to classify an outfit as a certain style of Lolita (i.e. Sweet, Classic, or Gothic), based solely on the color scheme. The biggest offenders, in my opinion, are pink, and black.
For example, my #1 Dream Dress at the moment, the Angelica JSK by Mary Magdalene. This dress, is pink. Albeit, a dusty/muted pink, but it is still pink. Beyond the color however, there is nothing “Sweet” about it. There are several other colors of the dress (including beige, black, and navy) and nothing about the dress aside from the color pink would place it anywhere near the Sweet category. Now, I think a person owning this dress could definitely accessorize this dress in a way which would make the outfit as a whole be Sweet (a Sweet looking wig, jewelry, hair accessories, or socks), but so could a person do so in a way that it could be considered Classic. Even the brand is known for being more of a Classic brand.
Okay, another example. The Music Print Torchon JSK by Innocent World (or any black and white music print for that matter). Yes, it is all over black and white. But what makes this Gothic beyond that? If the dress were a bright pink people would call it Sweet. Again, I believe proper accessories could make it Gothic or Classic, or even Sweet.
Also, in a like vein, I hate how pretty much everything in Gothic Lolita is black. Things are BLACK and white, or BLACK and dark purple, or BLACK and dark blue. I would love to see some kick ass Gothic Lolitas without a stitch of black on them. Although I think the most difficult part of Gothic Lolita is the lack of iconic elements that, for instance, makes a Goth look Goth. No, I am not talking about white make-up and such. Hair falls are replaced by wigs, you do not see a lot of buckles or straps, and there is a general frilliness or lacyness that is lost in the frill and lace of other Lolita styles. There are also common themes though, like bats, and crosses, and such; but those can be difficult to pull off.
My point is not that these colors cannot be considered one style or another, but that they should not be based ONLY on color. Now, I know. Not EVERYONE does this. In fact, I have met many other people that protest this generalization as well, but that is the thing, they have to protest it in the first place. I sort of look at it like recipe customization, three items make a recipe unique. Well, within Lolita Fashion, I am looking for at least three things to classify an item as one style or another.
Color is what you make it. The good knight can wear black and a demon can dress in pastels.