We are in the deep freeze here this week, my friends. Cold and sunny, cold and cloudy or snowy, very cold and windy. Notice the pattern there? And unless one wants to stay permanently planted in front of the fire, one has to adjust one’s wardrobe to the temperatures. So earlier this week, I realized that a winter closet edit was in the cards. The deep freeze edition.
I turned my closet for fall months ago. But I did not unpack my heaviest knits. And hanging in my closet were the pieces which worked well under a blazer. Light cashmere sweaters and long-sleeve tees that slipped under a blazer and were still warm enough for November winds, if worn with a scarf. Wool hoodies that worked with a tee shirt underneath and a light coat on top. You know. Fall stuff. But my heavy turtlenecks that were too bulky to wear under a blazer, and the really bulky knits like my hand-made purple woolen sweater, I left packed in my storage drawer.
And the other day when I wanted to be warm and still wear a skirt even though I was only going to run a few errands and pick up a drive-through coffee, I realized that a bit of a closet switch-over was required to make my closet ready for cold weather dressing.
My faux-leather skirt (similar here and here) looks great with my short down jacket. But in this weather the jacket is not warm enough with only a light knit underneath. I needed a chunky knit, or one of my heavier cashmere turtlenecks. But all my chunky knits were still in my storage drawer. I dug out this short, charcoal cashmere turtleneck from Theory (similar), and pulled it on with the skirt and my knee-high black boots.
I really like this combination. I’ve always loved a long full skirt with boots and a short sweater. I pinned at the neck of the sweater a vintage brooch that I bought at a flea market outside of Paris in 2015, and wore small silver hoop earrings, my grey AllSaints cross-body bag, and the new mittens that Hubby bought me for Christmas. I was toasty enough to brave the cold, and comfortable enough for jumping into and out of the car, and carrying bags across snowy parking lots. By the way, you should know that I have my ski underwear on under the skirt. Ha.
And hauling out that grey sweater started me wondering why I should have to unpack sweaters that I want to wear right now. Sweaters that should be more easily accessible and either hanging in my closet, or folded in my sweater drawer. So this morning I effected a sort of mid winter closet edit. Below are the tops I packed away. Three light cashmere sweaters, and three long-sleeve tees. I also packed away a couple of fall jackets that are not really suitable to wear under a coat. I kept out the rest of my fall blazers. In a normal year I’d wear them under a coat out to dinner with jeans and boots and a turtleneck. Or out shopping and to lunch where I could take off the coat. That will probably never happen this winter. But, I left them out, just in case.
The turtleneck sweaters below, which are lightweight but still thick and warm, I hung in my closet. My grey Theory cashmere. A cream, woolen mock-neck sweater from Gap, bought on sale years ago. And a navy, cashmere turtleneck from Uniqlo. These are the sweaters I will no doubt reach for on cold days to wear with jeans and boots and my down jacket or coat.
And these heavier, chunky knits I folded away in my sweater drawer. My lovely burgundy mock-neck from Akris. An investment piece, long searched for, and never ever regretted. My Vince chunky, heather grey mock-neck from two years ago. My purple handknit sweater that I knit eons ago and rediscovered in 2020. And the ancient Max Mara wool, cable-knit, zippered cardigan that I talked about in a video in the fall.
So that’s done. The easiest winter closet edit in history. Took about half an hour. I can more easily see the pieces I need to stay warm. My closet and my sweater drawer reflect what I will be wearing right now. Plus when it warms up in March (hopefully), but is still too cold for spring clothes, I’ll have a few pieces stashed away that I won’t have seen for a couple of months. And I can shop my storage drawers for something a bit different.
This is what I wore the second time I left the house this week. Woo hoo… look at me… going out and about twice in one week. Under my old grey and black animal print scarf, I have on the same Theory turtleneck. And over it, my new down coat from Aritzia, and a Mackage cross-body bag. On the bottom, my Aritzia Melina faux-leather pants, and my lace-up Stuart Weitzman ankle boots. And believe it or not I’m wearing my ski underwear again; these long-johns slip so easily under faux-leather. Seriously, lightweight ski base-layers are the secret ingredient for cold weather dressing.
I realize that I’m wearing an awful lot of black these days. Black and grey and cream or white. But I love this black coat with my old grey and black animal print scarf. And I love the charcoal sweater with the faux-leather pants. Despite it being all black, I think the different textures of the coat and pants, and the pebbled leather of the bag give the outfit interest. It doesn’t feel like boring black. But like interesting black. If that makes any sense.
Plus, I find myself thinking of my hair as an accessory lately. I know that sounds weird. But the grey and black outfit with my white hair makes a kind of statement. A statement of what, I have no idea. Ha. I just know that, in recent years, when my hair was still brown and blonde, I’d never have worn all black and a bit of grey like this.
Now, let’s talk about bags for a moment, shall we? I bought this Mackage cross-body bag back in 2016. I looked high and low for a small-ish, cross-body bag, in black. One that did NOT have gold doo-dads on it, or a big bright logo, or coloured chains. A simple, well-made, leather bag was really hard to find. And apparently it still is. This one from Longchamp is as close as I could get today. I almost never see a bag in a store that appeals to me anymore.
British YouTuber and influencer Emma Hill has a style aesthetic that is very similar to mine. She’s way more cool than me, but I aspire to her style. Or to most elements of her style. She is always talking about her Celine bags on her YouTube channel. They are what she calls “old Celine” when designer Phoebe Philo was still running the fashion house. Emma’s bags are lovely. Simple, elegant, really chic. She bought most of them second-hand on the internet. And even second-hand, those Celine bags are way out of my price range. Still, maybe it’s worth having a troll through some of the used designer bags online. Maybe I’ll find one I love, and can afford.
That’s it for me today, my fashionable friends. I wore some warm clothes this week. And I felt marvelous doing so. Gosh it felt good to up the outfit ante even if I was only going to the drug store, the mail box, and to MacDonald’s for a coffee. Or the bank. The second time I went out, it took me longer to get dressed than it did to do my business at the ATM. So I made sure to walk back across the parking lot to my car REAL slow. Ha.
So, how are you doing these days? Fashion wise… and otherwise? Are you in the deep freeze where you live? Or are you gasping in those hot, hot temperatures down under? What closet edits do you find necessary this time of year?
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