Thursday, October 20, 2016

Subtle and dark, but NOT boring:

two scarves in teal and jade, with khaki and black

 Window Shopping

As soon as the weather is VERY cold, and the holiday decorations are everywhere downtown, she goes into the city...

two scarves in teal and jade, with khaki and black, with their color palette

She leaves her bag with the hotel staff, and then she walks, and walks, and WALKS... All alone, for hours...

a travel outfit in shades of blue and green

Can anyone explain WHY this duffel bag is for men? 

Then she goes back to the hotel, takes a long hot shower... Room service and a good book are her only companions...

What to pack for an overnight trip, in teal and shades of blue

2 outfits from an Tote Bag Travel plan in jade and teal in a travel capsule wardrobe

The next morning, she's prepared for anything that the holidays can thrown at her; a little solitude and contemplation is good for the soul.


A weekend travel capsule wardrobe in a jade and teal color palette
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Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Classic colors, timeless design:

two scarves, in navy, red, hot pink and white

The clever color scheme of this scarf opens the door to accent colors of red, bright pink, or cobalt blue... maybe even grey?

Sisters From Different Mothers

They've done it once a month for YEARS...

two scarves, in navy, red, hot pink and white, and the color palette based upon them

a classic travel outfit in navy and white, with an Hermes scarf

They get a hotel room downtown, and spend the night together. Some evenings they dine out, sometimes they go to the theater, or an opera. But they always dress us, and they always laugh until their sides hurt. Even at the opera! (heck, especially at the opera...)

What to pack for an overnight trip, in navy, hot pink and white in a travel capsule wardrobe

Tonight, they're just going to an old favorite restaurant. Then they'll sit up half the night talking...

2 outfits taken from a classic overnight packing plan in a travel capsule wardrobe

Everybody should have this kind of unconditional friendship, eh?


A weekend travel capsule wardrobe in a navy blue, hot pink, and white color palette
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Tuesday, October 18, 2016

I love this scarf - in fact, in the next 2 weeks, you're going to see it FIVE times, in 5 different color combinations. I do these kinds of things to show the inherent versatility in simple garments, once you start playing around with the color combinations!

So let's start here:

two scarves in black, sand and teal

I'm going to resist the temptation to focus on the black, and use sand as our main color:

two scarves in black, sand and teal, and the color palette drawn from them

HOW Did He Do It???

It was the place that's booked until Christmas. Christmas of 2018...

Classic travel outfit in cream and black, with teal accessories

When the phone rang, she wasn't surprised to hear from him. But he had to repeat himself THREE TIMES before it really sank in that they're going out to dinner. THERE. TONIGHT....

What to pack for an overnight trip, in teal, black and sand in a travel capsule wardrobe

Notice the angular earrings and bracelet that echo the pattern of the skirt fabric?

Thank heavens the laundry was done, and she'd picked up dry cleaning!

2 outfits taken from a classic overnight packing plan

A nice roomy sweater for the return home might be the perfect thing; she expects to still feel somewhat stuffed tomorrow...


A weekend travel capsule wardrobe in a Black, Sand, and Teal color palette
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Monday, October 17, 2016

As you might already know, I'll be in Italy when this post goes "live"! But I've got 2 weeks of lovely goodies lined up for you, all of them starting with a pair of scarves. From there, our protagonist is going to spend one quick (but lovely!) night somewhere...

Starting NOW!

Two scarves in black and red, to serve as the color palette for an overnight trip

This is our color scheme, although careful scrutiny of the left scarf suggests that pink might have also been a possibility here:

Two scarves in black and red, and the color palette taken from them

Barely Enough Time...

Okay, she checks her watch...

Classic black dress with scarf and cardigan

As soon as she's off the train and in the cab, 
(1) change earrings, 
(2) add bracelet,
(3) change shoes, 
(4) stuff cardigan in bag and grab wrap, and 
(5) make sure she has what she needs in her gorgeous evening bag...

Worst case - the way she's dressed coming off the train is still dressier, and nicer, than a lot of the other attendees at this little shindig...

What to pack for overnight, in black and red in a travel capsule wardrobe

As soon as she's out of the cab, she's going to hand HIM the tote bag, and let him worry about it the rest of the evening! After all, he's the one who gave her TWO HOURS NOTICE to prepare for the fund-raising dinner...

2 outfits taken from an overnight packing plan in a travel capsule wardrobe

This hotel better be pretty nice...


p.s. Generally speaking, I'm pretty suspicious of.... well, most things, frankly! I'm particularly leery of anything that purports of being a charity fund-raiser; I want to see numbers and facts. But this scarf is beautiful, all on its own, and the donation is nearly 50% of the retail price, which is pretty impressive...

A weekend travel capsule wardrobe in black, white, and red
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Friday, October 14, 2016

Frankly, at this point in proceedings, you could easily stop, and be just fine!

Starting From Scratch capsule wardrobe in navy, beige, pink and blue

But it's always reasonable to stop and evaluate where you are with your wardrobe - are there things that you still need? Items that might make OTHER items more versatile, or get them used more frequently? Are you sure you're ready for whatever events might come up in the future?

The answers to these questions will be different for each of us, but they are worth asking...

The biggest lack of balance that I can see is that I'm "navy-heavy" here. This often happens - it's normal that either you simply like one of your neutrals more than the other, or that it's much more readily available, or that you want to have a solid core of items that all go together. It's not a disaster - it's just something to be aware of, in the future...

Those fun transition pieces that include both of your neutrals are always worth watching for, although they still have to be something that you'll love - not just something that will bridge the two colors. That's NOT enough...

And of course, you can always add in more tops in any of the 5 colors. This wardrobe could certainly use a simple khaki shirt (this one from Lands' End would be perfect). More white tee shirts? More pink and blue? Yes and Yes. If you see a pink and blue plaid flannel shirt, grab it!

How to evaluate a Starting From Scratch capsule wardrobe

To get us up to 24 garments (not counting the coats), I found 2 more "tops" that will be perfect here:

how to choose tops to add to a Starting From Scratch capsule wardrobe

The "finished" wardrobe. In reality, we all know that no wardrobe is every finished, because our lives change, our bodies change, and our clothes (eventually) wear out!

A finished Starting From Scratch capsule wardrobe

So how does this wardrobe compare to other wardrobe planning ideas that I've posited in the past? Well, I was able to pull together a "Whatever's Clean 13" wardrobe out of the navy pieces pretty easily. This is the kind of wardrobe that you want when you are traveling and you don't know what's going to greet you at your destination; you don't have to be obsessive about your clothes when you know that they'll all go together!

a Whatever's Clean 13 capsule wardrobe in inavy with pink and blue accents

And this is also very compatible with with the ideas of the 4 by 4 Wardrobe. I made sure early on to have the Cores of 4 in each neutral, so from there it was pretty simple.
a "4 by 4 Wardrobe" in navy, khaki, blue and pink

So which wardrobe planning tool to use? Whatever feels most comfortable for you; if you want to start small, start with Whatever's Clean 13, and then build on that when you're ready. If you like the structure and template of the 4 by 4 Wardrobe, you can begin there by building one "Four" at a time. 

There are no right answers. Just have a plan, and be patient with yourself. It's only clothing, after all...


p.s. I'm leaving for Italy TODAY! But have no fear, for the next 2 weeks, I have blog posts prepared and schedule to arrive at the normal time. All are based on 2 scarves, and all are "Tote-Bag Travel" i.e. one night doing something WONDERFUL...

I hope you enjoy them! Please note that I won't be able to fix broken links, and that because these were prepared in advance, some items might be sold out. I apologize in advance for anything that's gone awry in the next 2 weeks.

p.p.s. - Follow me on Instagram - viviennefiles is my "handle" there... photos of Italy.... mmm....
A finished capsule wardrobe built from scratch in navy, beige, pink, and blue.
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