Friday, June 23, 2017

My great-niece is a big fan of pink and purple, so this flashback is for her... I was delighted to note that a few of these pieces are still available!

Look closely at the scarf - do you see the horses with the riders on them? You might want to do some enlarging...

Hermes Cheval Surprise Remix
Hermes Cheval Surprise Remix

This was a pretty great wardrobe - chock full of cheerful bright colors and a few really bold prints! It requires a certain woman, but she would certainly stand out in any crowd!

three wardrobe additions chosen to compliment an Hermes scarf

Blouse – MICHAEL Michael Kors (similar here); rainbow bracelet - Astley Clarke; trousers – J. Crew (similar here); white shirt – J. Crew (similar here); scarf - Hermes Cheval Surprise Remix

Sorry to spring 2 "flash backs" on you on 2 consecutive days, but when I was reminded of Kiki's birthday, I could NOT avoid pink and purple. It's a little girl imperative!


A Birthday Surprise for a Special Girl...
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Thursday, June 22, 2017

This is a really old post - from back in 2012! The nice thing is that none of the garments have dated, and you could easily pull this outfit on and head off for a 2nd honeymoon looking beautiful...

camel cardigan – Organic by John Patrick (similar here), gold heart earrings – Alex and Chloe (similar here), white tee – Michael Stars, Scarf – Brooks Brothers (similar here), Denim coat – Derek Lam (similar here), camel pants – L.K. Bennett (similar here), penny loafers – J. Crew (similar here), camel bag – Vince Camuto (similar here)

In the early days of The Vivienne Files I spent a lot of time looking at camel as a neutral, because a lot of people asked me questions about where to find things, what colors to use as accents, etc. It was good fun, and I'm so happy to see that the posts haven't dated at all!

You can find this lovely flashback here; I hope that you enjoy it.


Can you Pack with Camel as your Neutral?
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Wednesday, June 21, 2017

I'm thinking that these kinds of posts could be known as "Wildly-Extravagant Wednesday..."

A Ridiculous Business Trip

She loved the ring from the moment she saw it, and now she wears it every day...

rose quartz, aqua chalcedony and labradorite ring set in gold by Ottoman Hands
Rose Quartz, Aqua Chalcedony & Labradorite Ring - Ottoman Hands

So when they told her that she had to fly to headquarters on Friday JUST TO DELIVER A FOLDER... she decided that she was going to stay through the weekend and go all-out. See an opera, do some serious dining, and people-watch...

Rose Quartz, aqua chalcedony and labradorite ring from Ottoman Hands
Rose Quartz, Aqua Chalcedony & Labradorite Ring - Ottoman Hands

She's got to go straight to the office when she lands, so she's going to fly in "grown-up" clothes. The flight's not all that long, so this will be fine - not a lot different from sitting at her desk for the morning. (except she doesn't have to do anything any more taxing than play Solitare of her phone...)

business travel outfit in navy and pink

earrings – Juith Ripka; cardigan – Acne Studios; scarf – Etro; watch - Rosefield; ring – Ottoman Hands; dress – Polo Ralph Lauren; briefcase – Brooks Brothers; shoulder bag – Catherine &Jean; pumps – Louise et Cie; suitcase – Rimowa

Maybe she's packing more than she needs if she's coming back Sunday evening. She doesn't care. And yes, she's packing a LOT of jewelry. She wants to; it's just that simple! She's going to get dressed UP this weekend...

Six-Pack in navy, aqua chalcedony and labradorite blue

green cardigan – Cruciani; labradorite earrings – Margaret Elizabeth; rose quartz necklace - Meira T; green scarf – Armani Collezioni; green earrings – Mahavir; navy silk tee – Polo Ralph Lauren; navy floral tee – Dorothy Perkins; bracelet – Chanel; ring - Argento Vivo; clutch bag – From St Xavier; navy silk pants – J.Crew; necklace – Alexis Bittar; pleated skirt - Jil Sander Navy; blue sweater – N.Peal; blue & white scarf – Rag &Bone; ballet flats – Me Too; navy loafers – The Row

She loves the elegance of her little travel capsule wardrobe!

8-piece travel capsule wardrobe in navy, aqua chalcedony and labradorite blue

2 outfits from a navy, green, pink and blue business travel capsule wardrobe

2 outfits from a navy, green, pink and blue business travel capsule wardrobe

2 outfits from a navy, green, pink and blue business travel capsule wardrobe

If her employers want to waste money sending someone to a different time zone just to do something that FedEx would do for 5% of the cost, who is she to complain?


Can You Build a Travel Capsule Wardrobe Around a Piece of Jewelry?
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Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Of course!

black and orange travel outfit

tee – L.L.Bean (similar here); earrings – Shana Gulati; pants – Uniqlo (similar here); cardigan – Olive + Oak (similar here); scarf – Nordstrom; watch – Movado; flats – Eileen Fisher (similar here); tote – Street Level (similar here)

Flash back to one of my favorite posts - based upon a montage of images of a lunar eclipse, and see how just the right shades of orange can look great with black! Do notice the way the accessories echo her affection for the moon - moonstone jewelry, a single round button on a sweater, the round face of her watch (accented with a round gold dot!)...

Can I wear Black and Orange and not look like Halloween?
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Monday, June 19, 2017

A few people have asked me recently about packing for early autumn - needing a jacket, and probably a sweater or two, but still wanting a few lightweight tops. And others have been eager to see denim switched out for the navy that we've looked at for weeks! And then there are questions about how denim and khaki might be too... boyish?

So I'm starting with this color scheme:

travel capsule wardrobe color wheel in denim, khaki, soft mauve pink and dark pastel blue

The first thing to be addressed is the need for something warm to wear on damp, cool days, or in the evenings:

A travel capsule wardrobe neutral core in denim and beige

denim jacket – L.L.Bean; watch – Rebecca Minkoff; cardigan – L.L.Bean; heritage stone pants - L.L.Bean; jeans – L.L.Bean; loafers – Ugg; sandals - Børn

Realistically, I should have included a pair of dark blue walking shoes... But these four pieces have lots of possibilities - one could include shirts and tee shirts in literally any possible color and you'd be able to get dressed pretty simply!

But let's start with that delicious muted pink that often shows up if you search for mauve:

travel capsule wardrobe additions in shades of muted mauve pink

tank – Gap; earrings – Stephen Dweck; bracelet – Alexandra Alberta; tee shirt – Gap; sweater - Aragona

Note of course that these pieces don't have to match exactly; if you're not planning to layer them together, they can vary quite a bit. And even if you were going to layer them up, a little bit of variation adds visual interest and can look really nice!

Next up is this blue, which is plain difficult to track down! So don't discount the possibility of looking at printed and patterned tee shirts to find the perfect color hidden within a flower...

travel capsule wardrobe additions in medium soft blue

tee– Uniqlo; sunglasses – Tory Burch; floral tee – Uniqlo; earrings - Gurhan; sweater – J.Crew; necklace - Gurhan; top - Oasis

After putting all of the pieces into the 13-Piece Template, it's clear that two more neutral "bottoms" are needed. I'm including a denim skirt, for that "sort of dressed up" evening that might occur. But if you're really opposed to skirts, either shorts or capris would work equally well here.

travel capsule wardrobe core pieces in khaki and denim

beige cropped pants – L.L.Bean; pouch bag – J.Crew; tote – L.L.Bean; denim skirt – J.Crew

Next, the elusive but always super-important scarves, that tie things together so beautifully. I looked for a long time, but I'm pretty thrilled with these 2! And note, for no reason known to me, the plaid scarf is a man's scarf. What in the WORLD gives a scarf gender? What we learn from this is that when we have a particular color in mind, check the mens' department. Because scarves have gender...

adding 2 scarves to a travel capsule wardrobe in denim, khaki, mauve pink and dark pastel blue

plaid scarf – Missoni; square scarf – Irene Paris

I ALWAYS check that the pieces that I've chosen will fit neatly and happily into the packing template. This, to me, is the absolute proof that the choices will work together. The equivalent, at home, is to spread everything out on the bed, or hang together on the shower rod. When you do this, you should see if you can quickly and easily put together LOTS of outfits from what you see in front of you.

  • Does each piece fit in?
  • Will each piece be wearable with a variety of pieces?
  • Can each item be dressed up or down? (within the limits of what you consider dressing up or down - for a casual vacation, dressing up might be sitting in the pub for dinner!)

13-Piece Whatever's Clean Travel Wardrobe in denim, khaki, soft mauve pink and dark pastel blue

This might be the most important thing - when you put together outfits, either in reality on your bed, or just in your mind, what accessories will you need? Here, as I said, a dark pair of walking shoes would be handy as HECK...

a travel capsule wardrobe in denim, khaki, soft mauve pink and dark pastel blue

Walk your way through your itinerary, with a notepad in hand, if you think it would be helpful. What can you do with your khaki capris if the morning is cool? If it's warmer?

2 ways to style khaki capris from a travel capsule wardrobe

I want to wear my denim skirt, but it's not really ALL that warm. Do I have things with sleeves that will work well with my skirt?

2 ways to style a denim skirt from a travel capsule wardrobe

My pants are obvious for cooler days - but it could always warm up A LOT during the day. What will I wear then?

2 ways to style khaki pants from a travel capsule wardrobe

What if I want to wear jeans but still look pretty? (Of course we all know that a happy smile is the best way to be pretty...)

What if there's frost on the ground when we wake up, but the temp is supposed to get up into the upper 20's?

2 ways to style jeans from a travel capsule wardrobe

It's often said that anticipation is half of the fun of a vacation; it might also be the best part of making certain that you're packed appropriately and completely!


Can I Pack Denim and Khaki and still look Pretty? What about including Mauve Pink and Dark Pastel Blue Accents?
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