January 13, 2020
Ah, now we’re going to look at a garment that I consider to be the unsung hero of about half of my outfits…
This is that shirt for the days when you want to wear the snazzy sweater or jacket!
If you’re working around a scarf as your unifying theme, her are some suggestions of what this color might be…
The following outfits are going to look VERY familiar – they all include the same pants as the outfits from last Monday, as well as at least some of the accessories. But for these outfits, I’ve shifted to location of the accent color from the tee shirt to the cardigan. It’s a sort of “theme and variations” way to get dressed…
Never discount the fun of having an accent-color bracelet!
Yes, the earrings and bracelet are from the same place, but I don’t believe that the mythical Fashion Police are going to ticket you for having 2 pieces of jewelry in the same color!
One must be deeply committed to their accent color to buy a cardigan like this, but IMAGINE the possibilities. This could be worn for almost any kind of occasion, during the entire year. It could maybe turn out to be a smart decision…
I really like the look of olive with yellow…
I have to apologize – this following tee shirt is ABSURDLY expensive, but it was such a perfect color that I couldn’t resist. When one chooses to base a wardrobe around colors that are difficult to find, one must be endlessly vigilant, as well as always prepared to make a purchase! If you truly feel like your best self in a color, it’s worth the effort.
I know that there are more than a couple of us who are using black and yellow (among other colors) in their core wardrobes. I think they look great together!
And yes, again, the earrings and bracelet match. I’ve never understood why this gets some people into such a state…
Our example wardrobe looks almost unchanged – the swap of a turtleneck to a tee shirt in the same color is more a question of mood (and weather optimism) than a real style shift!
Here’s the updated list – I’m still sort of stunned that we’re more than halfway through this exercise!
p.s. It has been suggested that I take ideas from you for posts about “I Love IT, But Will I Wear IT?” I’ve already got one idea offered up, which you will see on Wednesday. What do you think?
Beautiful colours, as always. I really appreciate the attention to different neckline styles in this post, particularly as v necks seem to be a little harder to find and sometimes less versatile to style but vital to many of us looking our best. Thank you!
Funny about the matching jewelry concerns. Each generation rejects the conventions of the one before, so granny’s parure seems hopelessly stuffy to mom and (perhaps) delightfully vintage to daughter. More or less, anyway. Keeps thrift shops in business. Makes me wonder when “your bag and shoes must match” will come around again. (Maybe it has—I do see people, clearly with bigger closets than me, sporting bags and shoes from the same designer. I wish them well.)
Re: “I love it but will I wear it”. I would say this is the classic dilemma for those of us with clothes that we love but have a hard time integrating them into our wardrobes. Bring it on Janice!
It is helpful to see things that, while not part of your “plan “ can be integrated into your wardrobe none the less. Sometimes, we just need to be shown the way.
Thanks Janice for helping us all better utilize the clothes we have.
Spending less, using things more, and feeling happier with our clothes is my goal!
“I love it but will I wear it” would be an amazing series (like everything you do)!
And I totally agree with Eleanor on necklines.
I think I might understand the issue with “matching” jewelry. For me it’s okay when the metals match. Or the general style. Or the colour. But when they match exactly and clearly come from the same collection it just seems too much. A little unimaginative or contrived maybe. Or maybe a little like one of those box sets that seem to be everywhere at Christmas.
I love the colour combinations, particularly the peachy pink and grey, mint and navy, but taupe and lilac is inspired! Do you find that taupe, like khaki and beige has many different variations and descriptive names?
ALL colors have about a bajillion different names. It’s difficult to even FIND garments, and then getting them to match is time-consuming. That’s why it’s important to have a target group of colors for your wardrobe; you can always be looking, and even carry swatches to match things when you’re out. I find that carrying embroidery floss in my target colors works well; the colors in the thread are a lot like the colors appear in fabric, so matching is easier.
And sometimes, you just have to blend similar colors in an outfit and dress in tones. It can look lovely…
I love the embroidery thread idea!
Thank you so much for introducing the neutral single color column to me. The delema of what to wear has almost vanished!
Though these new combinations will have me searching for new scarves and a cardigan or two.
Yes, “I love it but will I wear it” is a great idea. I love the new outfits in all one color, with different tones. I worry about crossing the line into garish. Can you help? Thank you for always bringing something fresh and interesting.
Summoning my fellow readers for help!
I have a relatively small waist and wider hips, so straight and longer cardigans tend to make me look bigger than I am. Where do you usually find cardigans that are shorter (my preferred length is just above the hips) and stay closer to the waist?
My budget for clothes is very limited, but I’d gladly save for a while for the perfect cardigan.
I buy from Lands End. Their cardigans hit me just at hip bone. You may need to consider Petits.
Thank you, I’ll make sure to check there from time to time!
Boden has cropped cardigans in cotton and cashmere.
Thank you for the advice, I’ll look it up!
The cashmere cardigan in spring lilac marl from Land’s End activated my wappage meter! I tried to resist for several weeks. I couldn’t stop thinking about the color.
After trying it out with my existing pieces using the Stylebook app, it looks fabulous with five of my shirts. It’s okay with navy pants, but I prefer it with light gray. It is divine with a purple skirt and a silk scarf in purple and teal. It looks great with my favorite Pashmina, too. I am looking forward to wearing it.
It goes very well with navy, light gray, thunder gray or dawn (a blue gray color), purple, plum, and white. I think it will look nice with the right shade of pink.
I’m inspired by the accessories. They really elevate the outfits. I’ve learned several new ways to wear a Pashmina and I bought a silk scarf.
My travel wardrobe possibilities have expanded, but my bag will be smaller because of the silk scarves. Thank you, Janice, for sharing The Vivienne Files! elisa
As far as that absurdly expensive t-shirt goes … lands end has a similar striped t-shirt in “Swiss milk.” I expect to see it in your wardrobe collections this spring because it is such a hard color to find. I snapped it up as soon as I ran across it and can report it is a beautiful color in person and goes well with both black and lands end deep sea navy (aka a dark royal blue).
What a flamingly insane name for a color… But thanks for sharing the info with the rest of us!
Your Aspinal of London scraves collection has inspired me tremendously. Unfortunately, none of them fits my already existing wardrobe color palette, but I spoiled myself to a new scarve nevertheless! While you always present them in a lovely combination with clothes, I would really like a separate post on how to actually tie/wear the scarve. Which knot looks good on which type of scarve and which shirt. I have a variety of scarves that fit my wardrobe pretty well, but am uncertain as to how to style them! Thank you very much for giving this your consideration! Love, Andrea
Look at the website http://www.maitaispicturebook.com for a TON of scarf tying tutorials. I would be crazy to try to re-do what she has already done to perfection. I know my limits!
Oh wau! This website is fantastic! Thank you so much for sharing! Love it! BTW, the Aspinal of London scarve arrived yesterday and I am thrilled! Thank you for sharing this precious gem brand with us!
Sara K says
My favorite brand’s t-shirts are exceptional quality and made in Europe…but the price tag is around $90. So I think it’s fair to say that I don’t cheap on t-shirts (except in the sense that I only own three and they’ll probably last forever). Which leads me to being genuinely intrigued: what could make a basic t-shirt exceptional enough to justify the price tag of that Bottega Veneta tee? I’d love to see it in person -at least the lesson learned would have some value…
This being said, while that is an insane price for a t-shirt, many women (including me some years ago) would happily pay that much for a special occassion dress they plan to wear only a couple of times. On the other hand, the perfect tee could be worn hundreds of times with joy, which makes the cost per wear quite reasonable. We have been conditioned to believe that t-shirts must be dirt cheap (even though super low price tag is achieved by thoroughly unethical manufacturing processes), but in fact I think there are plenty of more unwise splurge buys than a thoroughly awesome dark neutral tee.
How true! The “cost per wear” idea has been around for ages, but a lot of us never really embrace it. We would all be ahead to buy less expensive “special occasion” garments (like the used garments that Eileen Fisher is now selling), and spend more on jeans, tee shirts and everyday shoes. When will we learn?