…but resort wear is now in the stores, and it might be time to starting planning this Spring/Summer’s “French 5-Piece Wardrobe.”
Don’t freak out completely, quite yet. I fully acknowledge that the weather is still winter in the Northern Hemisphere, with much of the worst of cold weather yet to come in Chicago. But excellent personal style is the purview of those who plan ahead, and who aren’t stuck on the first warm day trying to find a pair of sandals. By mid-April, a lot of the excellent stuff is sold out, or only available in limited and eccentric sizes…
But most of all, if you have a plan, and you start looking now, you can know EXACTLY what you’re going to buy when you finally get around to shopping. The weird new styles will neither astonish nor tempt you, and you will be able to focus on what you already know will be most efficient, most effective, and most elegant for your OWN wardrobe.
I’ve got my list started:
- A black summer dress. Maybe silk. Knee-length, with cap sleeves or short sleeves. Print? COS has a dress currently on sale from last fall that might be perfect – why did they have a summery silk dress in their fall collection? I may be able to profit from their silliness…
- A black blazer-ish jacket. I need to haul myself out to the Eileen Fisher Company Store in the Chicago suburbs to look for this. There’s no rush for this, which is good, because it’s still a nebulous concept in my mind! But I wear cardigans so often – a jacket might be a good change.
- A silk jacket in an accent color, to wear over black silk neutrals. Eileen Fisher again! This is something I want to wear when I’m doing public speaking… The accent color can be a “one-off”; it doesn’t need to match anything else I own – it just need to be pretty!
- Silver sandals. My black sandals will easily last another summer, or two, or three, but a 2nd pair of sandals will give the black ones a break. Plus, if I’m going to wear lighter dresses, a lighter colored sandal will look right.
My best guess right now is that I’ll get either the K. Jacques or the Vince Camuto – I really like sandals that don’t take up too much visual “space” on my feet. For some reason, they just feel cooler!
But I can’t rule out anything from Aerosoles – the idea of a sandals that I just slip on holds some appeal, and I’ve had Aerosoles in the past that I wore literally to pieces.
Having already looked at sandals, and narrowed down my preferences, gives me a feeling of mental “uncluttering” around this one subject. I now know that I’m not interested in any footwear with someone else’s initials on them, with stratospheric nosebleed heels, with pointy studs, (will those things NEVER go out of style, already?), or with wings on them. Seriously, have you ever seen someone on the street wearing those winged sandals? They look like an FTD delivery person…
Honorable mention must go to these Vionic sandals below. They may be a 2nd pair of sandals that I buy this year, just because of the comfort factor! After working out, it could be good to put on some sandals that legitimately make your feet feel better. Whether or not they work as well as advertised? We shall see…
Note that this list isn’t probably EVERYTHING that I will buy this spring and summer. I know for a fact that I need a new black silk tank top, and I imagine that when I pull my summer clothes back to the front of my closet, at least one or two other items will need to be replaced. (white tee shirts, anybody?)Maybe I’m really getting ahead of myself thinking about spring clothes, but I’d rather be prepared than caught unawares. And on bitter cold winter days, looking at sandals online is a nice, encouraging diversion…
I think its great to dream of summer during these dark days. I've been examining my wardrobe (all seasons) to see what might pull it out of its rather dull and utilitarian rut, and had decided that some silk would be a good investment (mostly it's wool/cashmere/tweed for A/W and linen/cotton for S/S plus my only silk shirt in navy was a great success over xmas). So I was delighted to note that your choices were silk + shiny sandals! Any particular reason why?
Janice Riggs says
Silk, because I find that I wear workout clothes MUCH of the time, and when I change out of those, I'd like to be a bit dressy and pretty for my evenings with Belovedest. Silver sandals, because I don't really like white sandals in the city – they have to be cleaned about every 5 minutes! But I want something that's visually lighter and brighter than my favorite black sandals. Other metallics would be great for other women, but with all of my black and grey clothes, silver (or a pearl finish) seemed best.
having technical difficulties! The post I wanted to make is:
You are just *now* looking at spring capsules? I read this blog by some awesome Janice somebody (teasing font) and started planning my spring p33 about the same time as I did my winter one :)
I love how I've learned from you to plan ahead! Love it. It allows for an inner peace.
FWIW, I have a friend who SWEARS by Vionics, and I have already picked out the same pair you did (along with a pair of slippers) based on her enthusiastic recommendation.
Here in the Deep South, I've hardly worn my winter clothes yet. I just bought a few EF winter items and may return them for that reason.
I would love a report on the comfort sandals.
I have those sandals – in black sequins. They are very comfortable on and very practical AND pretty on the foot. Used them last summer, as well as a pool slipper when away last month, and pretty to wear home after a pedicure.
A different suggestion to pamper your feet after workouts – slip on a pair of Manitoba moccasins. No socks, just the moccasins. I have a pair with crepes soles so I can step outside for a minute. They are HEAVEN on your feet. I know nothing better. All fur and comfort. inside and they mold to your feet. They are great year-round except for the 2-3 hottest summer months. Good for the soles, and the soul. :)
Planning ahead is also a great strategy if you want to incorporate pre-loved items in your wardrobe (as you were advocating the other day, and with which I heartily agree). If you know the general shape of your seasonal wardrobe and what might be missing from it you can pick up a scarf etc. when one pops up on a resale site and know that you will really get a lot of use out of it — rather than it becoming a pretty trinket that you don't really wear.
Off topic but I need help. My email server was "updated" and now I don't receive your emails. Is there a way to have your posts emailed to me? I can follow in bloglovin but it is more cumbersome.
I've always thought that resort wear comes out in the wintertime for those who take fabulous trips/cruises to warm weather to escape the cold! It is just now cold enough in Texas for our winter clothing.
Wait! Forgot to ask: do you have public speaking scheduled? So exciting.
I wore Silver Vionic sandals all summer. They were wonderful, comfortable and went with everything.
hostess of the humble bungalow says
I purchased the metallic Babette's by Ecco for my trip to Paris and am hunting for a few basics to take in my carry on….I am going to have to be very lean in the amount I pack. How would you pack for 3 weeks in a carry on if you were going to Paris?
Just want to thank you for your blog and your influence on me. Love reading about wardrobes for the not twenty-somethings size 2s. Enjoy your humor along with your advice. Now have a closet of easily, and frequently, mix and match items. Trip to Paris in spring packing worked perfect. Recently had a comment of "Wow, you really look Put Together". Never heard that in my life. Thank you.
It's not too early to think about Spring..it has been on my mind since December 26th.
Brrrr! Too cold for thinking about bare feet! It'll be months and months before sandals come out and they're only barely useful in England anyway, as it generally doesn't get hot enough.
Here in Australia we are just warming up! So not quite thinking of winter wardrobe. I am mostly doing a 'Shop your wardrobe' each season as I am a plus size and it has taken me many years to find clothes I like in colors and shape that I like. So I won't be buying much – just filling in gaps. Carol S
Elizabeth Ellen Carter says
I'm from Australia too Carol ::waves::
I've reached the stage where I'm filling in the gaps too. One of the things I like to do is at the start of the new year do the rounds of four of my favourite charity shops. It is a wonderful place to find scarves and individual pieces in my colour and/or style which are timeless, but not currently in stores.
Thank you Janet for a wonderful blog. I've spent a full day here and it has already become a major source of inspiration..
I'm just starting on wardrobe planning so not quite ready to think of summer, yet. I am going to commit to a one year RTW 'fast' which means I will make any clothing needed rather than buy. I am allowed to buy footwear, bags etc. I have so many clothes, but they are not working properly . Maybe they will after I start the plan!
A little bit off topic, but I am in my mid 20's and a size 2-4 (or european XS to S) and I find this blog more helpful than those blogs about trends, 5inch stiletttos and very flashy clothing. I've a more of a classic slight dressy style inspired from the corporate looks even though I do intership in a fashion store right now. Personally, I dont care about what is age appropriate or not, its how you relate your personal style and preferences to the blog and article and how to translate it to fit your own taste and preference. because even a 16 years old could take advice from a 30-50 years old. I share some of my clothes with my mother, but my point is – we wear them differently! Its feels like people are relating blogs to the stereotypes to our style because not every skinny 20-something dress like that and I doubt every 30-50 years old has a stereotyped "conservative and classic" style. :-3 There are people who call me frumpy or a granny for wearing 1.5" kitten heels and dress more conservatively than people around my age, where I live, mainly live in jeans and sneakers 24/7 (living in a suburb area, people dont even wear 4"+ stilettos here, even teens. Most wear ankle boots or sneakers)! A litttle bit of tucking or untucking, belting, changing the hemline or the fit or fabric of the garments or switching out a garment or two than the one suggested at the blog does a major DIFFERENCE. And as long as you can relate your style to the blogger/article, who care whether its from a 18 years old or 50 years old. Thats so steroetyped.
I hope this didnt offend anyone, I just wanted to mentioned it, because i read its debate on many blogs and it start to get a bit annoying.
Anyway, a question to Janice.
I often see that your personal wardrobe posts, you are often mentioned Slouch Pants. My question is, How do you personally dress them up?
Ive a couple of those because they are so comfortable when traveling, but Im trying to wear them more on daily basics as well. Mine has eleastic waistbands with no belt loops in a knit fabric (viscouse, jersey).
I often wear my regulare pants with a tucked in top, so when wearing for example a blazer with them, the waistband is revealed and looks similare to my non-legging yogapants I wear around the house (I.e, i find the elastic waistband make them look more casual). So I find them a bit tricky to style especially when I prefer wearing shorter cardigans or blazers with my regulare pants….
Jule aus 9B says
Following your "From Scratch" suggestions, I am looking for a pair of sandals now, too. I don't own any and I see that they can come in handy with some of the outfits, esp. during the summer days when it's getting really hot here. I am not a big fan of sandals as I don't like how much they reveal of the foot, which is not the prettiest part of the human body in my eyes… and I can't stand anything going in between my toes so that limits my choices as well. But I am determined to give one pair a chance and try them once again. ;) Thanks for all your inspiring blog posts. :D
I know I am a little late to the game, but I wanted to weigh in on the Vionic flipflop sandals. They are amazingly comfortable (if you can stand anything between your toes). I have had plantar fasciitis and these are the most comfortable sandals I have ever, ever owned with fantastic arch support. I spend every minute I can in them in the warm weather. For those who cannot wear anything between the toes, there are other Vionic options with the same arch support and sole.