Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Building a Capsule Wardrobe by Starting with Art: Self-Portrait in a Green Bugatti by Tamara de Lempicka

Yesterday, after I worked on Camposanto, I was thinking about the inherent utility of a wardrobe that had a khaki and white core, and how virtually any accent color would work well with those 2 neutrals. And of course, I'm thinking about tossing black into the mix...

So in the comments, someone mentions this MOST elegant and compelling painting!

White would also work beautifully here:

In the interest of showing how versatile a simple, solid core of clothing can be, I kept yesterday's Core in camel, or tan, or whatever you wish to name this color.

Silk shell – Michael Kors, shorts – Forte Forte,
Sweater – Closed, trousers – Rag & Bone

When looking for the black Core, I tried to find pieces that had some swish to them. Tamara has always looked like someone who could carry off a good swish!

Band collar blouse – Vince, skirt – East,
Black sleeveless top – Mango, palazzo pants – Mango

And then some green! If you're feeling INSANELY extravagant, get the green sweater, and if you want to pile on, there's a matching skirt to the printed shirt...

Sleeveless sweater – Oscar de la Renta, lace-trimmed top – Warehouse,
Flowered shirt – Dolce & Gabbana, pleated top – Hanita

I liked the feel of an embroidered skirt, and I thought that a simple white top might be handy!

Pointelle top – Neilsine, embroidered skit – Warehouse,
Green tee – Lands’ End, white sleeveless top - Topshop

I kept some of yesterday's accessories, but today I figured we HAD to have sunglasses and a scarf. They just seem to suit the mood of our painting, don't they?

gold button earrings – Giuliana Valz-Gen, jade and white sapphire 
earrings – Mija, tan sandals – Steve Madden, bag – Longchamp, sunglasses
 – Le Specs, leather bracelet – Marilia Guimaraes, cashmere wrap – 
Stefanel, black sandals – Ted Baker London

This really could go a long way - and imagine if you ALSO had the purple and white from yesterday! Summer could thrown nothing at you which you couldn't handle with gorgeous style.

As much as this grouping is based on art, it also has some roots in hard wardrobe logic:

Mmmm, I see a warm weather vacation here!

I'd be comfortable with a suitcase that included both green and purple - what do you think?




  1. Janice,
    Yes indeed ! Combining yesterday's Mileage and Expansion items with this today's groups makes for a perfect summer wardrobe, with perhaps a cardigan or two thrown in for AC in restaurants. This combination has an elegant, chic feeling without being frilly . I can't tell you often enough how helpful I find your templates to be ! They make your posts crystal clear and have made my personal wardrobe color and item selections provide the variety I crave with minimal expense and closet crowding. I used to be stuck in the rut of too much of the same silhouettes, and then wondered why I felt bored with my wardrobe. Thank you, thank you !

  2. This is a carefully curated wardrobe and a sophisticated mix of accessories! How can anyone be bored? So many combinations!

  3. Love love love!! I normally travel with black, white, red & turquoise but I could see this being a GREAT travel wardrobe because that green works on me too :-)

  4. This is such a strong painting of a strong confident woman and it is a self portrait. Your selections do her credit. I really like the other painting your commenter added, something about hats. I would love to see your novella on that along with a wardrobe.

    Deb from Vancouver

  5. I want yesterday's wardrobe and today's wardrobe, too. I'll add the patterned skirt that comes with today's D&G blouse. And ... I want the cap that Tamara is wearing in her self portrait. This is truly a wardrobe for warm weather. Those blouse details are so interesting. I'd better get sewing!

    Louise P

  6. I wish I was comfortable in sleeveless tops! These are very interesting! This would be a great vacation wardrobe!