February 21, 2020
This next mix of colors is interesting – the brick, navy and grey could come together in a pretty conservative wardrobe, but the addition of the peach changes the whole feel of things!
Here’s where I broke down and added a simple white top – I was struggling to find a really nice item in this color, and I just began to think that we might need a break from colors! Sometimes?
I kept the same navy clothes – partially just to show how versatile simple garments can be when you mix them with accessories and accent pieces! I changed the scarf though; I couldn’t believe how hard it was to find a burgundy and navy scarf. This coming autumn, in the Men’s Department… That’s where they’ll be!
And gray, or grey! I was originally going to look for a medium grey – sort of the color of a man’s suit. But when I started seeing all of this paler grey, I thought that it would be nice neutral moving into warmer weather. We are moving into warmer weather (in the Northern Hemisphere), right?
Once I managed to squeeze everything onto 1 page, I found that it all looks good together. You could certainly put together something that clashed a little bit, but nothing hideous. And plenty of various ways to get dressed!
This heroine works Monday – Thursday, and has a strict policy that she ONLY meets clients on Wednesdays. At this stage in her career, her time is better spent working on new project design, and not on walking the client through all of the bells and whistles of their complete work!
Her commute requires her to get up FAR earlier than the rest of her household. In order to avoid waking up anybody else, she moved her work clothing into the laundry room storage cupboard! There’s a powder room right next door, where she keeps everything she needs to get ready. This also has the advantage of being right beside the kitchen…
Yes, she has to watch for laundry dust. A small price to pay – keep the cupboard door closed!
Unless the weather is absurdly hot, she thinks that this wardrobe will easily get her dressed and off to work for a long time to come! And if it gets too hot, she will just insist that she has to work from home. She really CAN do that….
It’s so easy to get dressed when your choices are finite, and you already know what pants you’re wearing! It’s like the ease of getting dressed when you travel….
p.s 3 years ago, I was looking at garnets. Has it really been 3 years since we had a series about birthstones?
Thank you for this one! My neutrals are black, charcoal, and navy (I built the charcoal core to get more mileage out of the other two) with accents of burgundy, pink, and purple. Except my accent colors don’t really mix with each other and I couldn’t decide if this should bother me. Seeing this wardrobe helped.
Don’t worry about them – so long as you have a good core of neutral colors, the accents are for fun!
Book Goddess says
Though I do remember when a pink oxford shirt styled with a burgundy Villager skirt was the height of preppy chic. Your pink may be a different shade, of course.
I love these colors! On her most casual days she could even mix the peach and the bright, right? I personally love mixing accents…
By the way, do you think it would be completely unreasonable to have 4 accents, if you seldom wear your light neutral (and never on the lower half) and almost never wear dark neutral tops except as layers?
Heck no – 1 per season? I could easily see that… And yes, I think that the right woman could easily mix the brick and the peach. I’m sure there’s a beautiful blouse or dress out there that features these 2 colors together. Finding it is a different question!
Bright = brick, not sure what happened there!
Beth T says
Yet again you’ve given me a new idea to get all year round mileage in my wardrobe. You see I’ve always subscribed to the principle of light tops with dark bottoms. Also Dark top with dark bottoms or light top light bottoms so as not to create too much of a contrast. However, your idea of a dark top with light bottoms would give extra seasonal longevity to some if my thinner autumn/winter tops and I can introduce short sleeved versions of dark colours for summer. Although, I would probably use a darker patterned top and coordinate with a light colour from the pattern for the bottom half. I will certainly experiment with that idea. I also like the idea of pale grey cardigan and trousers with a dark coloured blouse or shirt. It could look quite dramatic.
Ana Kemp says
I love this! A wardrobe I would wear for my job at a family office. I like loafers, but also add in a ballerina flat and a low wedge pump.
Stephanie Baker says
I love that this wardrobe has so many sweaters/toppers. I am always cold and find that my blouse/tshirt is seldom visible, so I need the variety in the sweaters.
Navy and light grey are my neutrals, with pink and yellow as my accents in warm weather, and burgundy and gold in cold weather.
I love this one – all my pinks together!
I actually meant 4 accents that I use year-round! Is that weird and/or excessive?
I’ve never really connected with the concept of “seasonal” colors, although I might use each color slightly differently (both in terms of hues and combos) depending on the season.
Here in the U.K. both Marks and Spencer and Principals have has blouses in cream/burgundy/blush combination for some while. I absolutely love these colours together. I have M&S jeans in burgundy and cardigans in blush and burgundy as well as the blouses.
As a curious bystander, which colors would you use? Is navy your neutral? I too have had these thoughts, but didn’t think it all the way through.
A couple collared button up shirts in a solid ivory or a white with a stripe would go nicely with the crew, vneck, and blazer sweaters. I find myself wearing collared shirts more than tees in the spring, fall and winter these days.
Beth T says
Four accents, Alice, don’t seem too much. If I look at my wardrobe, I five accents because I like colour and patterns – shades of green (teal to mint), blue (mid-blue to pale blue), purple (dark purple/plum through mauve to lilac) red (wine and burgundy) and pink (that’s five accents!). The weather in the UK is so unpredictable that you have to be prepared for all weathers and wildly fluctuating temperatures all year round.
Nina t says
This is one-half of my wardrobe AND most of my work week! I meet clients Tue or Thu, instead. I use a med. blue-based gray. Sometimes I’ll borrow a blue-teal or light-green top from my khaki/brown capsule if I get bored.
I love how this wardrobe comes together, and those are my neutrals, along with white. 4×4 is my favorite template for travel, although I typically have a good deal of pattern spread throughout my 16 pieces. – nancyo
Thank you, Beth! (I can’t seem to directly reply to comments, sorry about that)
Your accent choices aren’t far from mine: I currently have plum, yellow, red and green (I won’t even try to describe the shades, I’m hopeless at it), and I’m thinking of replacing green with pink, so they’ll probably end up coexisting for quite a while.
I live in Italy, where the weather is supposedly more stable (although we are experiencing some alarming bouts of unpredictable climate), but I’m quite sensitive to the slightest change in temperature, so I also need some flexibility. Plus, I like being able to wear three colors at once (1 neutral, 2 accents) if I feel like it.
I’m struggling to determine a reasonable number of pieces per color, though. I don’t want my wardrobe to be the mess it’s always been, but I don’t want to feel too constricted, either. Hopefully I’ll find my balance someday!
I have black, white through to cream, navy through to sky blue and burgundy through to blush. Not sure which are neutrals and which are accents but it seems to work out ok.
Beth T says
I’m currently going through my entire wardrobe to make sense of it. I have too many clothes. Yesterday, I had a mammoth trying on session. Now I am sorting everything by colour blocks (blues, grey/black, red/pink, purple shades, and greens), plains and prints, and by category: tops, knitwear, trousers etc and writing down each item in a table of my own devising as it fits with the Weekly Timeless Wardrobe. I’m also ticking items that I wear a lot. Then I shall put 4 or 5 piece outfits together with scarves.
It’s going to take a couple of days but hopefully it will show me which are the best neutrals and accents for the ‘seasons’ from what I already own.
Also items that are orphans, redundant or I should wear more and also gaps. To make sense of it, I shall put it on a spreadsheet. Wish me luck that I won’t drown in clothes….
You can do this! It’s wonderful that you’re tackling the entire project, rather than just pecking away at it a little bit at a time. (which NEVER works for me…)
Let us know how you finish up; I’m certainly eager to hear about your undoubted success!
Beth T says
Thanks for your encouragement; it’s been a long time coming… I’ll report on progress and probably ask for advice.
Janice, i love your blog and clothing suggestions. I am still deciding/struggling on my neutrals and accent colours. Navy for sure and moving to add charcoal grey to be my second neural for cool weather and white for warm weather. My concern is the colour depth for grey. Light grey washes me out but darker values are fine. Can I have 2 dark neutrals? Or does one have to be lighter?
Thinking cool weather teal and berry colours, for Warner weather thinking shades of Pink and blue/teal for accents.
I think navy and grey are perfect together, and they can be of any itensity/saturation you want! And your accent colors sound lovely…
Thanks Janice, we are going to Europe in October 1 – 15 and will start in Prague, then Cochem Germany, Reims/Champagne and ending up in Paris. The temperatures will vary and it could rain and it could be quite warm in the beginning and chilly by the end. We are taking only carry on (the suitcase really looks small – packing cubes for sure!!) and i need to pack super light (i am up to the challenge with your tips !) one new challenge is that we will go to the opera in Prague and to a classical musical candlelight program at a church in Paris, so i want to take something dressier which i think suggests a dress (tights?) and dressier shoes. I am looking at your post with the purple puffer jacket (i own one too) . So much fun to contemplate the pieces. Are people still wearing textured tights (with a small pattern) these days? Thinking a plain coloured dress with tights and flat ballet shoes (these pack quite small) really didn’t want to take boots. Thinking of some waterproof sneakers and a pair of slip on casual shoes for a foot change (funny how it all starts with shoes) 2 pairs of shoes in the small suitcase really do take up a lot of room. Sigh.