Saturday, May 28, 2016

Start with Art: Girl on a Sofa by Philip Wilson Steer

Doesn't this look comfortable?

Girl on a Sofa by Philip Wilson Steer

And this painting could single-handed provide someone with plenty of colors to have a wardrobe with great variety, and a lot of options:

I've been thinking a lot about packing (big surprise, eh?) and about the wisdom of packing your favorite outfits and letting the chips fall where they may. So let's explore that idea a bit!

In keeping with the relaxed feeling of the painting, I've tried to keep everything soft, rounded, flowered or flower-like, and just a touch slouchy.

First up, a simple column in a muted navy blue, with a soft white blazer, gold jewelry, and some brown leather accessories. This could be the outfit for the meeting, or the presentation, or the ceremony, or just a nice evening event.
earrings – Lagos; shirt – L.L.Bean; bag – Fossil; pants – L.L.Bean
blazer – Forte Forte; brooch – Kenneth Jay Lane; flats – Lacoste

Secondly, you love turquoise! So a casual outfit of camel pants and a top, with fun shoes, pretty earrings, and those essential sunglasses:
Pants – Closed; earrings – Anna Beck; henleyUniqlo
sneakers – Helly Hansen; sunglasses – Kate Spade

And you're feeling like a skirt might be handy, plus you really love apricot, too! So you toss this outfit into your bag too:
Tee – Viyella; denim skirt – Dorothy Perkins; cardigan – L.L.Bean
bracelet – Bourbon and Boweties; ballet flats – Sam Edelman

All six colors in your wardrobe plan are represented, and you've got quite a few options already.

But here's where a bit of thought might come in handy. Maybe you want to add just a couple of pieces to your bag, in order to give yourself more options. Or MAYBE, if your wardrobe is composed of a collection of outfits, you're looking for ways to build in a few more pieces in a strategic way.

I grouped everything by color (except the jewelry), and then thought about what might be possible to include:

Because it's Memorial Day Weekend in the United States, I thought I'd add another piece of white; this is the unofficial beginning of summer, and let's take advantage!

And because the girl in our original painting is wearing a dotted dress, I thought that a dotted tee in blue and white would be an appropriate addition. These 2 tops won't take up much additional space in a closet, nor in a suitcase, but they work really well with your existing wardrobe to open up some new possibilities.
White top – Uniqlo; dotted tee – L.L.Bean

Here are some of the ways that the 2 "new" pieces can be worn with the pieces you've already included:

If you wanted to include even MORE pieces, you can just go back to the original analysis of what gaps can be filled; this is a good way to pack, or to shop!


p.s. I hate to do this, but I'm going to have to take a month off from blogging. (for the most part...) I desperately need to catch up on things at home, and to clear my mind a little bit. I've posted for 6 days a week pretty regularly for the last FIVE years, so you've got a wealth of archive to explore...

There will be at least a couple of posts during the month, as I pack for 2 upcoming trips. I will continue to Instagram (#theviviennefiles) pretty steadily, too.

Thanks for your understanding.... xoxo

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Start with a Scarf: Ted Baker's Dreams Scope

She's so smitten with the scarf that she decided to plan her entire trip around the colors she found in it!

Scarf – Ted Baker

Every Year

They go back to the little town in which their wedding took place. For the most part, it's a very casual long weekend, spent walking around the lake, browsing in used bookstores, or maybe taking in an estate sale...
Cardigan – L.L.Bean; earrings – Eddie Borgo (sold out); watch – Movado;
 loafers – Tod’s; scarf – Ted Baker; top – Uniqlo; pantsJ. Crew Factory;
 cross body bag – Zac Zac Posen; suitcase – Rimowa

But every year, on Saturday evening of their weekend together, they go back to the place where they were married. And they repeat their vows...
necklace – Neeru Goel; blouse – Uniqlo; skirt – Croft & Barrow
bracelet – Effy; flower earrings – Tiffany & Co.; dress –  
pants – J. Crew Factory; earrings – Shanker; sweater – J. Crew Factory;
 clutch – TJMaxx; espadrilles – Tod’s

This year, she's going to remind him that beautiful brides come at every age...


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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Start with Art: Composition by Natalia S. Gontcharova

Okay, I'm more than a little bit smitten with Ms. Gontcharova's work...

Composition by Natalia S. Gontcharova

For someone who wanted to base their entire wardrobe around this work, there's also a bit of green in here:

When I Am An Old Woman... (blah, blah, blah)

Yes, we know, you'll wear purple. But she's been wearing purple FOREVER... 

earrings – Matta; watch – Fendi; pants – L.L.Bean; tee – Uniqlo
cardigan – Viyella; scarf – Halston; flats – SoftWalk
cross body bag – Longchamp; suitcase – Victorinox

She wears every shade of it. She buys her entire wardrobe with an eye to how well it will work with "her" color...

Henley – Majestic Filatures; skirt – Uniqlo; sandals – Loeffler Randall
bracelet – Achara; square scarf – Mila Such; shorts – L.L.Bean
dress – Uniqlo; evening bag – Sondra Roberts; earrings – Luis Banda;
 necklace – R.J. Graziano; pumps – Calvin Klein; v-neck tee – L.L.Bean
tunic – L.L.Bean

And she mixes multiple shades of purple without hesitation, and without apology.

Someone once told her that she had eyes like Elizabeth Taylor's; but she knows that it was only the reflection from her blouse...


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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Start with Art: 2nd of the Portraits Theatraux by Natalia S. Gontcharova

I don't know how many of these Ms. Gontcharova did, but I'm going to try to find them all:

Portraits Theatraux by Natalia S. Gontcharova

Not a color scheme we see every day! I opted to use pure white, rather than try to match that "faded paper" color. My assumption is that the original might have been on white paper - can anybody confirm or deny?

She Yins, She Yangs

"Do you think she's completely... normal? I mean, sometimes she looks so aggressive, and other days she's just so calm and quiet..."

Earrings- Louise et Cie; watch- MVMT; linen pants – Boden; 
 tank top – Uniqlo; scarf – Hermès La Marche du Zambeze
shoes – Sam Edelman; cardigan – Sarah Pacini; bag – Patricia Nash; 
 tote – Sole Society

"I don't know if she's normal or not, but she must have a GIGANTIC wardrobe..."

knit shirt – Majestic Filatures; skirt – Neiman Marcus; green sandals
 – Jack Rogers; bracelet – Adriana Orsini; pastel scarf – Hinge; shorts
 – Jaeger; dress – Jaeger; wallet – Loeffler Randall; sandals –  
Steve Madden; hoop earrings- Saks Fifth Avenue; orange & 
black scarf – Givenchy; striped tee – J. Crew; Tunic – Jaeger

"And EVERY Friday, she's got that tote bag with her... Who's she kidding - she goes away EVERY weekend?"

Why yes, she has friends with a summer house. And in the place of a big wardrobe, she has a clear vision, that makes it possible for her to express herself without squandering her resources. Once she had her plan in mind, thanks to a work of art, everything was simple.

If anybody bothered to pay attention, they would see how much of a genius she really is!

She likes her way of showing both a soft and a strong side, while always looking like herself. Doing things the same way as other people is so boring...


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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Start with Art: Noon - Rest from Work by Vincent van Gogh

So beautiful:

Noon - Rest from Work by Vincent van Gogh

And a color scheme that includes extremely warm and very cool colors, with enough neutral off-white to give a base to everything:

Why yes, you DID see this travel outfit (with a few tweaks) just a few days ago, here. I didn't include it just to be lazy - I wanted to show that there's a lot of versatility in just a few pieces of clothing, and that you could easily merge a couple of different color-schemes to design your perfect capsule wardrobe.

Earrings – BP.; pants – Boden; henley L.L.Bean
bracelet – The Black Bow; cardigan – L.L.Bean
scarf – Hermes Under the Waves; loafers – Cole Haan; 
 bag – Halogen; suitcase – Briggs & Riley

Everything here from a sun hat to warm scarves! But when you expect to go out in sunny warm temperatures during the day, and then sit around a fire after dark when the temperatures dip, you have to be prepared...

bracelet – Vince Camuto; gloves – C by Bloomingdale’s; tee – Lands’ End
fleece – Lands’ End; gold tee – Lands’ End; earrings – Lauren Ralph Lauren 
; hat – Caslon; skirt – L.L.Bean; boots Bogs; plaid scarf – La Fiorentina;
 polo – Lands’ End; sandals – OluKai; wool scarf – Rag & Bone;
 capris L.L.Bean

So while the suitcase and the travel outfit look somewhat different, when they're all spread out on the bed together, you can see that they will play nicely together. (that plaid scarf, and the Hermes print, make quite a bit of difference, don't they?):

One might need to change some pieces during the day, but there's a lot of range that can be conjured from these very few pieces of clothing:

It all feels very much like a golden sun in a clear sky, to me!


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