April 8, 2020
I’m very infatuated with this scarf; it it were in my colors, it would be in my closet!
These colors feel like autumn, but in lovely linen this is a great palette for warmer weather:
You may remember back on the last day of March (which seems like it was about a year and a half ago!) our heroine was hopping on trains to visit new cities and towns, and was using these colors as the basis for her wardrobe. These were the clothes that she was packing:
Our heroine has decided to go on a longer vacation – there’s no reason to hoard vacation time… She’s been so happy with her tiny travel wardrobe that she chooses to use it as the base for her larger wardrobe. How can she make this work?
First, she arranges her 9 garments into outfits, of a sort…
She compares her existing wardrobe to some Whatever’s Clean wardrobes, as well as looking at the list of Weekly Timeless Wardrobe garments to see if she’s missing anything obvious…
And then makes some carefully-chosen additions to her suitcase:
First, she finds a dress that she loves, that will be excellent for hot weather. She knows that either of her cardigans will be perfect with her dress, so she has an option for when the evenings are cooler. And she wants a bit more olive green in this wardrobe! She just loves it…
She then spent a LOT of time trying to find a perfect linen or cotton button-front shirt – maybe an olive, black and bone plaid? Or a black and olive stripe? But she comes up empty-handed for that…
Deep breath. She looks back at her original garments and realizes that a pair of olive pants might be madly useful. And then she realizes that even in warm weather, she will need sweaters on a lot of days, and definitely in the evening. Not another cardigan – something neutral, and summery!
She had almost forgotten that she wanted a printed top when she stumbled across the striped tee shirt! And then, just to have a light neutral top for those days when she feels that her overall look needs to be brighter, she finds a lovely neutral tee shirt…
Now, with a bigger suitcase, she has a wonderfully harmonious and coherent warm-weather travel capsule wardrobe, in her favorite colors:
She learned early on when she was taking long weekends on the train – it does NOT matter if you wear the same garments more than once, or even if you wear AN ENTIRE OUTFIT more than once. Most people don’t notice, and the ones that do notice will have something absolutely meaningless to gossip about…
But when you don’t know about weather, nor about laundry, nor about what your activities might be, having a range of possible outfit combinations is just practical!
She can’t decide if she wants to visit yet another town, or if she’s in the mood to spend a week at the shore…
I wouldn’t know what to choose either!
p.s. Six years ago, I traveled for an emergency, and underpacked to a shocking degree….
p.p.s. Should I do accessories for this expanded travel wardrobe? You know how much I like accessories…
Linda J says
These are my colors. I feel like you made this post just for me. I would love to see shoes and accessories. I just wanted to say I really appreciate having these posts to look at first thing in the morning with my cup of coffee. Thank you.
Beth T says
What a great wardrobe! Using the 13 template to find the gaps but adding a few more items to make 16 – I like even numbers of things.
The waffle knit jumper is a great summer item. Waffle and lace knits add a bit of warmth but the breeze can get through or heat can escape. I couldn’t decide whether this one was knitted or crocheted? I have a crochet pattern for something similar. Perhaps now is the time to make it if I can buy wool online. I already have blue and white waffle/lace knit jumpers and lilac crochet cardigans, so perhaps one in pink or green?
I’m with you on the notmy colours but so lovely! And my inner wanderer is so grateful for all these delightful fantasies. Would love to see the accessories for this one. Also, would you consider a weekly timeless accessory, or template? Those little details seem to really make a lot of outfits and I don’t know where to start with them.
Beth T says
Perhaps some hints on how you go about choosing accessories – shape, colour, metal, other small details – which just make an outfit. I sometimes spend ages trying to work out why one item will look ok but another item doesn’t. Is there a magic formula?
Not really a magic formula – I will try to explain my choices better as I make them. Maybe a post on accessories would be useful…
The Weekly Timeless Wardrobe accessories are under construction – I’m struggling to sort what 52 items I want to include…
Looking forward to following along to build a Timeless Accessory Wardrobe. Should be fun and informative!
Wonderful! I have been trying to think about jewellery in terms of neutrals (silver and gold) and coordinating with my accent colours but then there are things like shape, size, and necklines, and scarves and shoes. Booties or flats etc.
Dear Janice, it would be interesting to learn about your though process you refer as struggle. Maybe you could share it, sometimes the way you figuring out the template may be even more instructive than finalized template itself? Maybe we could brainstorm some of the issues you came upon together, that could be basis of the whole new series.
Thank you for this refugee you provide to all of us!
Linda D says
Thank you for this post. I love these colors and actually have some of them in my closet!
Beautiful outfits. But I am not beautiful in these colors
Yes! Please do accessories to augment this lovely capsule.
Oh how I adore your templates ! My simple brain always delights in seeing the various “ line ups” of a given number and type of garment within the template ! Somehow, I am better able to analyze your selections, which I also love doing !
In this lovely grouping, the black would have to become navy for me, or a milk chocolate brown , and the rust would become a dark peach color . Yesterday I finally packed away all of my dark brown, rust and copper family colors to await Autumn once again, as I have grown weary of seeing their colors in my closet . I am clearly in the mood for a fresher , lighter feel !
I also enjoyed seeing how you took a long weekend travel amount and stretched it for a longer stay ! We are all now one day closer to being able to travel once again ! We’ll all get there, if we just keep on keepin’ on ! It’s just a matter of letting these days go by and enjoying each one as we have it ! Fun in my closet is helping the necessary restrictions time to pass more pleasantly . Thank you for brightening each day !
I forgot to add that when I pack, I always grab a column of 3 garments within a given color, a pant, a top, and a topper, so that I can always have both an inner and an outer column, and then I select the same trio in other colors or neutrals, throwing in some additional patterned tops or toppers along the way . Also adding an off white top as a part of the tops grouping . If I have 3 “ trio” groups, then I add other tops to go with each of the individual trios, so that each trio group has a bottom, a topper, and 2 tops, making it a Core 4 , and no longer just a trio.
As I always believe in the principal of “ tabletop dressing”, as the outer garments are the most memorable . I like to vary my toppers and have 2 cardigans and 2 1/4 zip pullovers ( for cold weather) or 2 shirt jackets for warmer weather .
Thank you so much for giving us a daily dose of VF! It makes my morning and inspires me to make fun, aspirational wardrobes for myself. With Spring starting, this palate feels a bit drab to me. I struggle to add pattern and color to my wardrobes and always look to you for inspiration– one fun pattern might make this a lot more fun.
Beth T says
Thanks Shrebee for these packing tips. I sometimes start with a patterned top, skirt and dress and build a travel wardrobe around it.
I’m not sure that we’ll be travelling any time soon, at least in the UK. Our lockdown is likely to remain for several more weeks. But when we can, at least I will have planned what to wear ?
I agree that starting with a print or pattern and then building from the colors in it, as Janice does from scarves, is probably the best way to assemble both a packing module and other modules within a larger wardrobe . Unfortunately, I have great difficulty finding prints and patterns in the colors and scale that suit my coloring and size. I have fair, muted warm coloring and prefer medium scale , low contrast patterns , so I have to search high and wide , as well as a long time, until I come across a garment that says” I am right for your closet, buy me “ ! To make it even more challenging, I require a petite size !
I would wear this whole wardrobe and everything in it, with copper accessories. Just wonderful!
Ooh, copper would be gorgeous with this…
I’m thinking of 3 beloved redheads – my late mum, my aunt and my best friend ALL of whom this capsule would suit.
With their coppery hair, creamy pale skin with copper toned freckles this would set them off perfectly.
It’s not my colour palette BUT it most certainly is the framework for a perfectly thought out summer wardrobe.
I just saw the following post with accessories and it’s perfection as well.
I always appreciate hearing your thoughts about how & why you put specific items into a 16 piece capsule. Regardless of whether I’d use those shades or not— I learn a lot from seeing why the items earn their way in a minimal core capsule.
Also thanks to Shreebee above for that very well thought out columns of neutrals.
Linda P says
Hi again Janice: Just to let you know that I created a ‘whatever’s clean 13’ of these colors to simplify deciding what to wear ;) It turns out I had some lovely scarves hiding in the closet, and I have been able to mix/match for the past 2 weeks. (Okay, maybe I added in some +2 Plan Bs due to weather). I will wear this color combo again.