I love to talk about fashion. But I guess you knew that already. I also like to listen, or read, what others say about fashion. I love a good book on vintage fashion. Or a fashion-related memoir… like Linda Grant’s The Thoughtful Dresser. Grant’s book is hands-down one of my favourite books ever. In fact, it’s one of the reasons I started writing this blog. I remember thinking that if Linda Grant, a well-respected, award-winning writer of literary fiction loved clothes and loved to talk about clothes, had even written a book about clothes, then who was I to feel ashamed that I have such a shallow passion? Linda Grant gave me the courage to come clean. I love clothes, and I love to talk about clothes.

I also love to learn about style. I love to read or listen to what other bloggers, vloggers, stylists, or designers have to say about their own personal style. I’m interested in learning about their theories of personal style, and how we can develop or define our own personal style. Like the “Three Word Method” that I had such fun with last year.

And, you know, one of the things I’ve been noticing lately is that many fashion experts have moved away from some of the trends or buzz words that were so popular these last few years. Like fashion “hauls.” In this new era of sustainable fashion and conscious consumerism, hauls are in poor taste. And take the idea of a capsule wardrobe. Not long ago you could find a plethora of current articles and videos available on how to choose ten or fifteen pieces to build the perfect capsule wardrobe.

I’ve never been a big fan of fashion hauls. Or even of capsule wardrobes… except when I’m planning what to pack for a trip. I was, however, inspired by the idea of a curated closet when I first heard the term. You know, the idea of our closet consisting of curated, carefully chosen pieces that work together to create a cohesive wardrobe. But that’s probably because I’d finally found a word that described what I’d been doing all along.

For the past year or so, I’ve noticed that many of my favourite fashion philosophers are talking more about wearing what we own, of making the most of the closet we have rather than advising what we should acquire. And that’s music to my ears. Amy Smilovic’s new slogan is “wear your clothes, the ones you have.” I love that. I need to remember that one.

Because even though I have a smallish wardrobe, there are still pieces hanging in my closet that I look at every day and rarely reach for. So that’s what I’m doing on my January vlog, my friends. I’m having a winter wardrobe shuffle. Partly to keep me interested in my closet. And partly to make sure I take certain pieces that I love and rarely wear out for the occasional spin.

By the way this is the new sweater I bought when I was in Fredericton in December. It’s kind of a throw-back to the style of sweaters I wore years ago, slimmer in fit, and shorter than I’ve been wearing lately. But I love it. The gathered shoulders, the puffy sleeves. It’s from a Canadian brand called Hatley. You can find my sweater here.

But, I digress. Let’s get on with the winter wardrobe shuffle, shall we? Pour yourself a fresh cup of tea or coffee and let’s talk about clothes. The ones we have.

So, I hope you enjoyed that. I love to have a closet shuffle every so often. It keeps me interested in what I own. And makes me excited to get dressed again. Many of the outfits I tried for this video never made it to camera. Trial and error is the name of the game. And in this case… there were lots of errors. And the outfits I did end up photographing were not earth-shaking, not necessarily cutting edge, just something a bit different from what I’ve been wearing.

By the way… that Max Mara jacket bought in 2000 was not the oldest piece I tried. The earrings I’m wearing with the jacket were bought at a small independent shop in Ottawa back in the late eighties. We should always hang onto our earrings, people. Because even if they don’t come back into style until years and years later… they always fit.

So. What’s up with you this snowy, or rainy month, my friends? Are you suffering from wardrobe doldrums? Any pieces you’ve had for ages that you might haul out and take for a spin?

P.S. Here are some links to pieces I’m wearing in the video: Blue Hatley sweater. Everlane black cardigan. Similar striped shirt from Nordstrom. Navy COS turtleneck. Black Vince turtleneck. Theory cream turtleneck, nicer than mine. Similar faux-leather pleated skirt. Purple sweatshirt, faux-leather pants, black cargo pants, all from Aritzia.

P.P.S. The book link and all clothing links, except for the Aritzia links, are affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking an affiliate link, I will earn a commission which helps to pay for the blog. The Aritzia links are not affiliate links because Aritzia does not reward bloggers for recommendations. These links are included as a courtesy to my readers.

Subscribe:

Would you like to have new posts automatically delivered to you? Sign up below, and when new content appears on the website, we’ll send the story to you via email. 

* indicates required

Subscribe:

Would you like to have new posts automatically delivered to you? Sign up below, and when new content appears on the website, we’ll send the story to you via email. 

* indicates required

From the archives

fashion

Closet Edit Follow-Up: Blue Shirt Revival

As follow-up to my closet edit last week, I’m trying to rekindle my love for this old blue shirt, and finding out how my style has evolved.

fashion

State of Grey: One Year On

On the one year anniversary of my first post-lockdown haircut, I’m examining the state of grey, and my journey to white hair acceptance.

fashion

Shopping Memories: The Indulgent Years

In between being a poor student, an underpaid young teacher, and an aspiring ethical shopper, I had a few indulgent years. The years when I had enough money to buy what I wanted. And did.

38 thoughts on “Winter Wardrobe Shuffle”

  1. I’m with you in preferring the Everlane sweater with the leather pants and not the jeans. For me, I like my outfits better when I don’t have so much color contrast around my middle – maybe you’re the same?
    I also worked in education, and I’ve wondered if you ever had problems combining your love of fashion/cosmetics with your career? Was there jealousy or a problem with not being taken seriously?

    1. Well… now that you ask… I did a little. And funnily enough never from my bosses, principals, or superintendents, but more from colleagues. I never felt that my bosses undervalued my ideas or my ability to do my job. But I sometimes felt that some colleagues pigeonholed me as a bit of an airhead. I remember one male teacher in my own department, which made me his boss in a way, asking with a smirk if I was going on the staff camping weekend, and saying “I’m sure you have an outfit for it.” Ha. How little he knew me. Pompous so and so.

  2. Great vlog Sue . I don’t follow many fashion folk – just you . I’m wearing looser trousers now sometimes with shorter tops , usually fitted on the shoulder then with a little flare at the bottom . Though I like a big chunky jumper too . For myself I’m not keen on full blouson sleeves . My arms are too short & the effect isn’t good – disappearing hands . Like you , I’m uncomfortable with the cardy over blouse feel , though it looks good . I love the tweed jacket & you’ve made it look very current . I’m feeling that brown is ready for a come back now after being offstage for a long time . I loved it years ago & I have some brown bits & pieces hidden away . Including a quality brown herringbone tweed coat I found in a Scottish antique shop , of all places . A bonus of keeping treasures is you don’t bump into anyone wearing the same outfit , it becomes unique in time . When friends say ‘ where did you get that ‘ you can say ‘ this old thing , I’ve had it for years ‘ Not that we’re smug of course 😉

    1. I haven’t worn a sweater with sleeves like that since the eighties… maybe even the seventies. But I like how the full sleeves contrast with the slim body of the sweater. And I like to wear it with a bottom that has more volume. Instead of waiting… let’s bring back brown. I’ll wear my brown tweed and you wear yours. 🙂

  3. Enjoyed your post and video! Those leather pants look fabulous on you and help make everything look “current” – which is one of my “3 Style Words”. This month I will also be doing a wardrobe shuffle to rediscover items that pair with current styles (such as wide leg and cropped jeans) and colors (ie, winter whites and brights). Looking forward to reading Linda Grant’s book. And yes indeed, am hanging on to my earrings, as long as they still fit and are comfortable!

  4. You always look so pretty in your videos. Love the colour of your sweat top as well.

    My comments could second Wendy’s above. I also can’t wear blouson sleeves well, though I do like your new sweater (and the flecks in particular). I also like the brown tweed jacket and how you’re using it. Just yesterday I pulled some brown out of my fabric stash that I bought at some point to make a suit. I also feel as though brown is going to make a comeback. Not sure why.

    (Happy about the snow, too! Now if only the canal could open for skating…)

    I’ve been shopping my own closet well in recent months, so I’m pleased with that, but my style has always been eclectic so it’s not unusual for me to wear a vintage jacket or something I’ve had in the wardrobe for a long time. One thing that makes me chuckle is that the young ones are apparently bringing low-rise jeans back (although with a bare mid-section (not copying that!). I wear high-waisted pants, but I’ve always rather liked low-waist pants, so I have an old pair on with a green cashmere sweater I wore to the interview to work with my current organization twenty years ago!

  5. I enjoyed your vlog today. My favourite is the purple hoodie and turtleneck. The colour with your complexion is beautiful and the frame of the hood/collar around your face is very flattering.
    As well, I really liked seeing the Hatley sweater three different ways. All gorgeous. It would be a great trio for a weekend conference or other short trip. The sweater with cargos and boots for walks. Sweater with skirt for dinner. Sweater with other dressier pants for meetings/lectures/sightseeing, etc. That could really work for me.
    Back to the hoodie, of course the jewel tone is in the sweater too so accessories and other layers will work well together. The colours are so cheery for this darker time of year. Enjoy.
    Happy winter from Calgary!

  6. This weeks post was so inspiring for me and I loved the fun ending.
    My closet has been on my mind lately and you’ve inspired me to get in there and reorganize and clean out. I need to donate items I never wear so I can literally see what I do have.
    I totally agreed with you on the outfits you put together. Outfit number 1 was my favorite. Jacket was fab with those leather pants. Leather pants made everything elevated and chic.
    I only have one suggestion you might want to try that is actually a go-to favorite of mine when layering.
    I often layer with a classic white shirt or white crew neck tee, either tucked, half tucked or untucked. The touch of white seems to brighten and add a crisp layer for me with my gray/white hair and fair skin.

    1. Thanks, Paula. You are right, white is so good with white hair. I wear a lot of white tees in the summer. And in the fall under jackets or sweaters. I tried my white blouse with the tweed jacket and it was too bright and made the cream in the jacket look off.

  7. I don’t follow a lot of blogs,maybe a couple of you tubers,from time to time
    Lovely video,colours are beautiful,especially your hoodie
    The leather trousers are wonderful,they suit you well,just a right cut and lenght. I love your new sweather too,it is lovely and looks a bit festive and happy at the same time(can a sweater look happy?)
    What to say about MM jacket :)? Don’t have to say that I love it! I have the jacket (it was a suit with knee lenght pencil skirt and I weighted 59-60 kg back in the days-so,skirt was donated to my friend’s daughter,she was happy) in similar colours ,only checked, and similar years of origin.
    Beautiful Prada ankle boots!
    I wear cardigans very often with t-shirts (or silk camisoles),usually with a scarf,too
    Love to see other women wearing interesting sleeves,but I don’t feel comfortable (and can’t work anything) if they are not pretty simple.
    I’ve got Massimo Dutti navy trousers/leggings for Christmas from a friend and wear them with Cos navy/winter white striped sweater similar to yours(although:I wanted the sweather to be oversized,now I find it too oversized,but-I wear clothes from my closet!)
    It is so fairy tale to see snow around your house ! Please,keep it there 🙂 and don’t send it here (our winter is very mild so far)
    Dottoressa

    1. Ha. I know you know my Max Mara obsession. Our local Massimo Dutti store has closed, sadly. I love their styles but found it hard to get a size that fit me so I don’t dare order from them on-line.

  8. I enjoyed your winter shuffle and your video. I have a similar brown tweed jacket that was part of an old skirt suit also. My jacket has leather trim and the skirt, which I have donated already, was more of an a-line with a pleat in front. Except in the fall when I wear a blazer as a coat, I don’t really wear jackets like that in my everyday life. Not sure if this is your style, but I have seen others wear a tank or cami under cardigans, instead of a blouse. It might give a smoother look? The color of your hoodie looks great on you.

    1. I don’t wear jackets much in the winter either unless I am going out somewhere and know I will take off my coat. They’re too constricting under a winter coat otherwise.

  9. Hello Sue, not sure that I wished you a great 2023, hope you will have one ! Just looking at that snow outside your window made me feel chilly, we have had a cold, damp winter so far but no snow, if it comes I hope it won’t linger!
    Like you I love fashion, ever since as a little girl I would look at my mothers’copies of Vogue, I don’t think it’s frivolous, more life-enhancing. I have a shelf of books on style and closet-curating, and have just ordered a copy of The Thoughtful Dresser, look forward to reading that !
    Your sweater and cardigan are gorgeous, I think I prefer them teamed with the fabric pants, for a softer look. I’m not keen on leather trousers, you look good in them, but I do like a leather skirt.
    Those tweed skirt suits from the 90’s, I can’t help wishing they would come back into fashion , I still have mine, the jackets still fit , but the slim cut midi skirts not a hope ! My waist has expanded quite a lot since then !

    1. Happy New Year to you too, Maisie. Hope you like the book. You know, there were lots of skirt suits in the Chanel fashion show that I drooled over last fall. Nineties fashion is back. And I for one am happy about it!

  10. I’ve been following you and watching your blogs for some time now and wanted to say I really liked the idea of really looking into my closet and try to find outfits to wear with items I’ve had for awhile. If an item is we’ll make a a classic you like to try to use it.
    I also really want to complement you on that color of the sweatshirt your wearing. That color looks so nice with your hair coloring. I really like your hairstyle. I also have hair that same color and it took me awhile to get used to it. I may have to get it cut.

    Also I understand completely about the wine run. I’d do the same especially if I’m snowed in.

  11. Your blog is always my favorite to read, Sue!
    Thank-you for being unashamed about your love of fashion and style! And thanks for reviving one of my favorite Carol Burnett characters: Mrs. Wiggins! 🤣

  12. I love your style! Do you happen to have a link to (or other info about) those black chunky shoes you’re wearing in outfits 2-4? I’m looking for shoes like that. Thanks.

  13. Margaretanne Clinton

    Haha!emergency wine run.
    The tweed jacket and leather pant look remarkable. So great.
    The film was fun to watch. Thanks.

  14. Sue, I appreciate your thoughtful break down on how you wear your clothes and what you buy. I’ve ditched trends and what’s in style and focusing on what actually looks good on me. Boxy, oversized, cropped, slouchy tops don’t, but wider looser legs do. As much as I like the oversized trend it doesn’t suit me. Many years I ago I had two color analysis (Gifts) done and staying with these colors helps narrow down my color palette. So, my closet shuffling for now, is put away the no’s and work with the yes’. There are some editions I need to make but I’m being extremely picky about adding them to my closet.

  15. Totally enjoyable vlog. I love to watch how much pleasure you get playing around with your clothes. And great suggestions about actually using what’s in your closet. I plan on trying some of them.

  16. Sue,
    Really enjoyed your vlog. Loved the tweed jacket with the cream turtleneck. I also searched for your “indulgent years” blog. My first real paycheck (I was a dishwasher in a restaurant), went for a brown tweed skirt suit in 1976, I think. I was 15 and wore that suit to school. Loved it. Got it at JC Penny’s. I’ve never been able to afford high priced clothes, but have scored 2 Eileen Fischer pieces at resale and thrift shops. A green and taupe boiled wool short jacket and my latest score, a black wool fitted jacket for $4. I’ve also been making an effort to “wear what I have” and enjoying finding new ways to wear things I haven’t been wearing. I wear blazer’s a lot with skirts and dresses so I don’t wear them for casual outings as much. I’ve always wanted to implement less pieces, better quality, so you are motivating me to actually accomplish that. I have to turn my closet every season as well and usually make a list for what I actually need. I’ve always shopped that way. Whenever I try to go out of my comfort zone I end up regretting it. My 3 word description for myself; Classic, Comfortable and right now maybe Minimalist/Colorful. 4 words, I know! Thanks for the inspiration.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *