Wednesday, January 06, 2016

Build a Capsule Wardrobe by Starting with Nature: Black and Yellow Broadbill

You've very possibly seen a Photoshopped version of this photograph, which made the colors really BRIGHT... and I'm not sure why someone would have bothered - this photograph is quite beautiful just as it is!

Allan Seah's BEAUTIFUL work can be found here

Weeks ago, someone asked me, on Facebook, to work with this photograph. It's about time I got around to it, because it includes lovely colors! I did NOT include the yellow circle around the eyes of the bird, except for a bit in one of the scarves, and the yellow gold in the jewelry. And while I don't always pick up the background color of a photograph, this one was really the perfect color, in the ideal intensity, for this color scheme...

Yes, I really, TRULY believe that if you find a color scheme you love, you can live with it, and wear it, no matter what the origin. There is no reason in the universe that something put together in the natural world should be anything except harmonious and beautiful. And if you love it, that's all you need to know!

She Flies So Easily...


 That's what they said, when they decided to send YOU to figure out what the auditors were seeing, when they kept calling... In all fairness, they are young, and they DID sound pretty panic-stricken. It should be an interesting couple of days...

They all think that you fly so easily, as if you were a bird, and not a hard-working accountant! Every time you travel with any of them, they remark that your luggage is so small, you seem so relaxed, you always look so nice etc. etc.

Little do they realize that it's just the result of the same sort of organization and planning that makes you such a good accountant! That, and a color scheme with an unusual source, and a heart-felt grip on your personal style...

You're leaving Monday night, and will be home Friday evening. While everyone promises you that it's much warmer there, they can't tell you for sure how casual the client's office is... so you'll take both jeans AND a skirt. It seems the simplest solution, and you'll be prepared for casual evenings on your own, or for a nice dinner (with or WITHOUT the client, or the young audit team).
A travel outfit in black and coral, with a coral bag and multi-colored scarf.
Top – Diane von Furstenberg; peach sapphire and black diamond earrings
 – Mociun; trousers – L.L.Bean; cashmere cardigan – L.L.Bean; Sol y la Vida
 scarf – Liz Nehdi; watch – Skagen; ballet flats – Geox; tote - Fornarina

Keeping your favorite bird in mind, and considering the possibility of a range of temperatures, you realize that you can easily get by with six pieces of clothing. You'll either alternate the black trousers and the skirt, or the trousers and the jeans. Either way, the variety of colors in your travel capsule wardrobe will be sufficient that nobody's going to notice any repeated things!

Square scarf – Hermes Under the Waves; shell pink tunic – Quartier Latin
blue chalcedony earrings – Alexandra Alberta; pink earrings – Kate Spade
aqua top – Michael Kors; green top – T by Alexander Wang; tea rose sweater
Lands’ End; green chalcedony earrings – Latelita London;  cotton skirt
 – J. Crew; jeans – L.L.Bean; bracelet – INC; loafers – Robert Zur
slingbacks – Calvin Klein

Having these things in your hotel wardrobe gives you a good feeling of being prepared, and having a beautiful assortment of things to just enjoy...

There are more than 16 combinations available, but this gives you an idea of what's possible:

The first thing that you find, before 9 a.m. Tuesday morning, is that your young auditing staff is confusing dollars and Euros... No WONDER they were in a panic... You'll have to break the news to them that the dollar is not always larger than the Euro...




  1. Oh my goodness, what a treat! I do love your stories! X Chris from Australia

  2. From Margie in Toronto - I had no idea where you were going when I saw the title of this post - not the colours I was expecting at all but so pretty! I just love that Hermes scarf.
    When out browsing this past weekend I noticed that the early colours out for Spring seem to be a soft turquoise, along with an almost mint green and a soft yellow - very close to two of your accent colours above.

  3. A request - would you please do a wardrobe that uses a yellow in place of the pale green - the colours of the bird without the background. Thank you - I love your posts. My first comment, though. Antonia.

  4. Not being a cardigan person, I just love all the SIMPLE tops and bottoms here. I need to assess whether I own enough of these tops, and why I own any other sort of top!

  5. Janice,
    Oh that Hermes scarf ! I shall be cruising for a week next month out of Barbados and this whole post makes me want to start packing right now ! It was 8 degrees here in PA this morning !

  6. I really enjoy these colours on other people as they don't suit me. This is so pretty. And, that Hermes scarf! Oh my! So nice to have a story for the New Year.
    Deb from Vancouver

  7. Ooh these are so exotic...I like the coral shades and can wear them too.
    We could use some warm weather here. Love the Hermes scarf!

  8. Love this story! :) And love the unexpected color combo!

  9. Love this story! :) And love the unexpected color combo!

  10. Kelly in North Carolina here. This would be perfect to transition into spring when I am awfully tired of wearing black, gray, and red. Thank you. And, loved yesterday's post with, yes, black, gray, and red!

  11. Kelly in North Carolina here. This would be perfect to transition into spring when I am awfully tired of wearing black, gray, and red. Thank you. And, loved yesterday's post with, yes, black, gray, and red!

  12. Delicious story and colour scheme Janice! I so enjoyed it. And my planning for winter (it's summer here in Australia) is still being inspired by the pretty northern bird you started with last year. You're so right about the colours in nature offering unexpected but entirely workable combinations. I'm lookin at a pretty hebe shrub in the garden as I write - a sweet pale lilac flower with variegated light to mid-green leaves, would look lovely with neutral black, navy, charcoal, brown ...
    Robyn in Tasmania

  13. I love these colors for Spring. In Utah it is still cold in March, April, and often May but it is nice to have pastel Spring colors to lift your spirits and inspire hope for warm weather! I love how nicely they work with the black or gray of warm Winter basics.

  14. Great story and a lovely, coloured wardrobe.

  15. Thank you so much for indulging me, Janice! I love what you did with the pretty little bird colors!

  16. I love this colour combination! Black trousers and skirts are really practical for travelling, and the bright tops look so springlike.

  17. Very pretty colors. I love your travel wardrobes. I'm not sure I can do such pastel tops but great assortment. Love the back story!