Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Building a Capsule Wardrobe by Starting with Art: Still Life with Bottle by Samuel John Peploe

Ah, this made me think of warm weather, leisure, simplicity, being outdoors...

Still Life with Bottle by Samuel John Peploe

Yes, it's a cardigan, but it's relaxed, and it's linen! When choosing loafers for this trip, I would make sure that they were low enough cut over the foot so that they would look nice with shorts, worn without socks. I'd even travel without socks, although I think I'd want some sort of little socklet/footie for in the airport. Barefoot in the airport gives me the willies!

Navy cotton trousers – Moncler, bar earrings – Elyona, tote bag - Brooks Brothers, green tee – 
Dorothy Perkins, navy linen cardigan – Mint Velvet, silk scarf – Hermes Les Courses, watch – 
Elgin, green driving moccasins - Fabi

If you're only going away for a few days, a Six-Pack is the perfect way to pack. These clothes would fit into the smallest tote...

(No, this dress has not been made to measure for someone - the brand name is Custommade. Sort of like Juicy Couture - it's nothing of the sort!!!)

Striped dress – Custommade, gold hoop earrings – JC Penney, shorts – Uniqlo, navy and white 
long sleeved tee shirt – T by Alexander Wang, sunglasses – Wildfox,  navy and white short-sleeved
 tee – Velvet, red trimmed tee – Topshop, clutch – Park House, white canvas flats – Keds, capris
 – Croft and Barrow, navy flip-flops – Vionic

And if you're going away for longer, add in a stack of tank tops, another pair of shorts, another dress, and a cotton skirt (as well as a pair of espadrilles for some footwear variety), and you're good to go.

Striped dress – Custommade, gold bracelet – Alicia Marilyn Designs, gold hoop earrings – 
JC Penney, gold bar pendant – Sarah Kosta, green shorts – P.A.R.O.S.H., navy shorts – Uniqlo
navy and white long sleeved tee shirt – T by Alexander Wang, sunglasses – Wildfox,  navy and 
white short-sleeved tee – Velvet, red trimmed tee – Topshop, clutch – Park House, white canvas 
flats – Keds, capris – Croft and Barrow, navy flip-flops – Vionic, red skirt – L.L.Bean, tank tops – 
Uniqlo, navy slingbacksBella Vita, navy linen dress – John Lewis

This would make an excellent summer wardrobe! While I'm not showing all of the possible combinations, I think two dozen is a pretty comfortable start...

Does anybody else remember the writer Laurie Colwin? She wrote two EXCELLENT food books: Home Cooking, and More Home Cooking, as well as quite a bit of fiction. She lived just a few blocks from where Belovedest lived in Manhattan, and she was well-known for wearing striped tee shirts ALL THE TIME. This makes me think of her...


Halcyon Days


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  2. What perfect timing! Switch out coral for the red, and you have my basic capsule. I was wondering how to incorporate stripes and/or dots, a pair of green ankle skinnies, and a pair of coral capris; I was afraid my patterns and colors would be too limiting. Thank you for putting that fear to rest!

  3. Janice, this is beautiful. Instead of navy dress, I would add one with floral pattern (red roses with green leaves).
    I am following you on a daily base.
    Best wishes,
    Maja, Belgrade, Serbia

  4. The linen jacket is perfect. I can see the fun in the wardrobe plan.

    Deb from Vancouver

  5. I think you could live with this collection for the entire summer! Great inspiration piece.

  6. I DO remember Laurie Colwin! She wrote a column for Gourmet magazine which was always a delight to read. I remember Gourmet's note attached to her column when she passed away, something to the effect of "in typical Laurie fashion, she had already turned in her columns for the year." So we got to continue to enjoy her columns for quite a while.

    Love this wardrobe, and I have to put in a good word for the Vionic Tides. I developed plantar fasciitis a couple of years ago, and Vionic Tides have done more to heal my foot than anything else. Before I bought them, I NEVER wore flip flops, even around the house. I hate the little strap between my toes. But when researching footwear that would be comfortable to wear with pf, I kept seeing these mentioned. So I threw my doubts aside and ordered a pair, in natural (I have the original Tides, not Tides II), and what a relief! They were amazing. So I ordered another pair in cherry, and also a pair for my daughter who has bunions, and they make her feet feel good too. I can't recommend them highly enough (and this from an avowed flip-flop hater!)

  7. Love how you translated the bold lines of the painting to stripes. So chic for spring and summer. In fact I'm wearing a striped blouse with a navy cardy as I sit and type this. :-)

  8. So lovely to see a Scottish artist's work as the inspiration. Great post, roll on summer! Love Beth x

  9. I have a striped shirt with a little neck detail and 3/4 sleeve that I wear a lot. At first I thought it was so basic, but it fits perfect and the fabric wears like iron. I've dressed it up and down.

  10. I've read everything Laurie Colwin ever wrote, cover to cover. I loved her columns and food writing--but it was her wry, understated novels that made her one of my favorite writers. With all that zest for food, she was never, however, in my wildest imagination slim enough to wear stripes all the time; certainly, I, could never make a summer wardrobe of horizontal stripes, no matter the camouflage of that stunning navy waterfall cardigan!

    1. She really DID wear them all the time! At her heaviest and lightest.

  11. I really enjoyed Laurie Colwin's fiction in the 1980's. Looking at your choices today, makes me wish that I had brought me linen dress. I am in the second week of 10 weeks away and I think that I have brought too little!

  12. Very chic and very resort wear in vibe. Perfect for lounging near a lovely pool, with a cocktail, or for strolling the pier.

  13. And you're covered for St Patrick's Day on the 17th March as well! (I find all green overwhelms me so just a bit here and there would be cool) Thanks again for a great post. Carol S

  14. Very cute for summer. This color scheme is very appealing! I could not wear all those stripes but I still like it! :) I will also say that the Vionic brand of shoes is very good if you have any foot problems. I have several pairs and find they really provide good comfortable support.

  15. I LOVE this! I could see myself in this all summer. We live on a small lake, and it looks very nautical. I usually end up with red, white and blue in the summer anyway, but I love the addition of the green. I remember a post you did last summer with green and navy. I bought the green and blue Patagonia shirt you showed, and I've really enjoyed it.

  16. There's nothing like the perfect marinière to set sail in the perfect summer wardrobe. Love the colors and the combinations. Now, if only the weather would cooperate. I still see piles of snow when I look out my windows. (sigh!)

    Cheers, M-T

  17. LOVE Laurie Colwin; Family Happiness is one of my all-time favorite books. Kater at All This Happiness used to do occasional Wearing the Book posts, although they related more to the cover than to the content. Feel free to start something similar with Laurie! All the paperback editions I've seen of her works are beautiful, and I would be surpassingly inspired to dress like Polly, or Jane Louise... In fact, my first ventures into curated wardrobe were inspired by a minor character in A Big Storm Knocked It Over: “She breezed into the office…wearing the sort of clothes girls might have worn in French convent schools in the forties. No one could identify where she got these clothes which, as Edie pointed out, were killingly lovely. Today she was wearing a heavy white shirt, a knife-pleated black serge skirt, heavy black stockings, and flat suede shoes like ballet slippers.”