July 13, 2020
Can this month be almost half over? Are US Income Taxes due on Wednesday? Yes and yes…
Let’s look at finding something nice to wear over our summer outfits when we venture into air conditioning, or to grab when we’re sitting outdoors until the wee hours…
This is a pretty easy item to add to your wardrobe – you’re looking for something lightweight, but still enough to feel covered when you need a little bit more than a tank top or sundress during warm weather:
If you’re mentally assembling a wardrobe to go with one of our six “Six Scarves, 12 Months” scarves, there are still good options available.
And for what it’s worth, these scarves cycle in and out of being on sale; keep your eyes open!
I love these long cardigans… imagine cold legs from air conditioning, and being able to pull one of these sweaters around your legs just a bit…
If you struggle with finding warm colors to wear together, don’t discount the usefulness of a natural linen-colored shirt – this is the kind of garment that you can, literally, wear all 12 months! And linen is tough – my linen shirts aren’t ever going to wear out…
Of course I’m loving pink and black! This tunic might peek out under the gorgeous pink shirt, but that’s the way the young people layer things these days… (I’m told!)
Once you have a white cardigan and white pants, you can add almost any summer top and be set!
If you’re madly in love with this shade of green, you can break the bank and buy the bag AND the shoes… but I love picking up a different color from this tee shirt…
I love the juxtaposition of the stripes on this blue and white top with the pattern of the bag…
Why yes, I personally think that you can carry a tweed handbag in warm weather! Especially when it’s the perfect shade of blue…
For our ever-evolving 13-piece wardrobe, I substituted a tie-dye tee shirt for the striped top that was here last week. The striped top sold out last Tuesday!
And a white linen cardigan – I can’t imagine my summer wardrobe without my white cardigan:
For those of you playing along at home, here’s the master clothing list. And if you click here you will be taken to where you can buy the individual worksheets for all 4 seasons!
Quick question: where do you stand on clothing designed for 1 specific day? I’m becoming positively irate at the THOUSANDS of tops that I see that are literally made to be worn once a year. I kind of sucked it up when we had hundreds of tee shirts for St. Patrick’s Day, but now there are tee shirts for “May the Forth” (as in “may the force be with you”), Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, the 4th of July, Halloween, Thanksgiving etc etc.
Do people really have a stack of tops that they only wear once a year?
I can’t imagine, but maybe I’m missing something.
p.s. Three years ago, our heroine was taking a bunch of people up to the mountain, with many plans for cooking…
Sheila Harden says
ha! I do have shirts I wear once a year. Mainly because I work in a middle school, and I generally pair them with an outlandish mini top hat. It’s fun for the kids. Dr. Seuss Day, Valentine’s Day, May the Forth, etc….. yes, it’s ridiculous, but I really enjoy it.
Sheila, your explanation is one that makes complete sense, and I think is NOT silly or wasteful. I stand corrected…
Haha, Sheila, my dad was a middle school teacher, and my immediate thought was, But of course teachers have whole collections of theme Ts/sweatshirts…holidays, university logos, school athletic and academic teams, etc. “Work clothing” takes on a different meaning for teachers :)
That’s so funny – my father was a junior high school science teacher, and he wore a shirt and tie to school every day! I think I’m a bit older than you are…
But until the day he died, he would wear Wartburg College sweatshirts – that’s where I got my undergrad degree; he was very loyal to them!
Beth T says
It seems that the Monday gremlins are at work today. Several of the J Crew links are broken and the one for the Uniqlo grey duster coat. Thought you might like to know.
I like long cardigans in the Autumn and now’s the time to buy them.
I’m loving your ideas today. I have a paisley tee (mine is mauve) and I have a paisley patterned cardigan with an ivory background. It’s supposed to be navy but looks purple-ish. I like the blue tee at the end – stylised florals appeal to me.
The Ted Baker floral tee with the green shirt and accessories is stunning and just the sort of outfit I would put together. I like taking a patterned top and picking a minor accent to highlight with accessories and a second layer.
Thanks for this week’s look back which is the inspiration I need to expand my country walks capsule to include navy and some sort of soft grey/brown for autumn. We often see deer in the woods where we walk.
The only thing that I wear that is season or occasion specific is a red cardigan with beaded holly leaves scattered across the body. It has a black velvet collar, cuffs and hem embellished with beaded and embroidered red cardinal birds. I wear it for my work’s Christmas lunch and on Christmas Eve. I bought it in a vintage shop and it was the most ‘tasteful’ Christmas jumper available. I also have a grey jumper with a subtle pattern of snowflakes on it.
I’ve bought and downloaded the WTW templates and I shall buy some more of your guides too.
I THINK the links are fixed. It’s hard to tell from my side of the world. What a lovely thing to wake up to on a Monday, eh?
Maybe we can convince the world that sweaters with reindeer and snowflakes are actually WINTER sweaters, and not just specifically Christmas? I don’t think that snow stops in January, after the 12th day of Christmas, nor do deer and other wildlife disappear… I just think of these things as elements of Fair Isle sweaters.
I’m in the minority on this one, I suspect…
Beth T says
Thanks for fixing the links. I agree about seasonal motifs being more wearable instead of just for a few days in the year.
I also like Fair Isle but find that women’s jumpers often have it as a yoke around the shoulders with raglan sleeves. This makes my narrow shoulders look droopy. I much prefer men’s fair Isle with set in sleeves.
Personally I think it is crazy to buy any garment with the purpose of wearing it just once, with the exception of a wedding dress of course! We all make mistakes (less often now thanks to Janice) but to purchase something you will only wear once especially if you can’t pass it on is waste of resources.
Beth T says
My Mum got married in December and wore a white velvet wedding dress. She had it shortened, changed the neckline and wore it as an evening dress.
Now I look at my wedding dress beautifully made to fit my small frame, with a train, and I wonder what to do with it. My daughter and nieces are all to tall to wear it.
I define these motifs as a seasonal thing—leaves, squirrels and acorns, etc. for fall. Winter snowflakes (huge collection of these in rhinestones). I define Christmas as St. Nicholas Day to Epiphany. 4 enamel and rhinestone shamrocks. Tulips and an antique bunny pin for spring. Nearly all my stuff is either pins or scarves, however. I enjoy changing it up for seasons. It must be pretty subtle, though, because other people rarely notice! I’m planning to embroider two tiny pins for my birthday this year: an ice cream cone and a cake. Madeline Albright is my inspiration.
I’m a big fan of vintage brooches – I could get behind having a seasonal collection of brooches! I remember when I was younger, all of the women had beautiful holiday-themed brooches on their (wool) winter coat lapels.
They were so much more elegant than the mass of humanity today…
Sally in St Paul says
Oh, this brought back such a memory of my mom going to work in the winter, wearing a black wool coat with a lovely red and gold poinsettia pin on her lapel. It seemed so elegant to me! When I bought my first “grown up” wool coat, you bet I put a gold reindeer pin on my lapel :) This inspires me…I need to find my truly spectacular rhinestone bunny pin to add to the lapel of the light blue wool coat that I wear in early spring after the serious winter coats are put away.
Doesn’t it? I remember my mother going off to her nursing gig in her enormous down coat, with a tasteful gold (colored) abstract brooch on the left shoulder! Those women have style…
One more bit of nostalgia—scatter pins! Lately I’ve been seeing their reincarnation as tiny embroidered ones about the size of a tie tack or button, pinned to collars, neck edges, or denim jackets.
Sally in St Paul says
My favorite is the black floral top with the gorgeous light green accents. The olive outfit with natural linen shirt is a close runner-up. And though I could never, ever wear it, the red-orange linen shirt accompanying the Mandala scarf is stunning! That vibrant, saturated color (so unexpected for me in a linen shirt) would look especially terrific with summer white, I think.
I am a fan of inexpensive, lightweight holiday scarves. I own two Christmas ones (one a little bit serious and one extremely silly) and one Independence Day one (featuring owls in Uncle Sam hats, so also silly) that I bought at thrift stores for under $5 each. (I also own two rabbit ones and a heart one, but I wear those year-round!) I have worn the Christmas ones in the depths of a Minnesota winter and in the warmth of an 80 F Texas winter. I typically wear the July 4 one for 2-3 days at Independence Day each year (usually on a ponytail). And I expect these scarves to last approximately forever so it doesn’t feel wasteful. If I were to add to my collection, I would like a Halloween cat one. (I have a black scarf with grey cats that works for Halloween but I would like a more whimsical one…cats in witch hats or something along those lines.)
Anything that comes from a thrift store is acceptable, to me. That’s one way that the inherent wastefulness of “single use” garments is defeated by the patience of the thrifter! It’s so fun to go to a thrift store with someone who’s really good at it…
I’m loving hearing about everybody’s favorite theme garments and accessories!
Katrina B says
I seem to wear more long-sleeved shirts and cardigans in the summer than any other time; I suppose that’s the norm now that every place is over-air-conditioned. I don’t like the idea (or feeling) of freezing air blasting all the time, but I admit that it’s nice to be able to wear another garment in order to creat an outfit.
I am against these single-event garments except for the reasons mentioned by commenters – certainly teachers should wear any inspirational thing they want if it’s fun for the kids. Come to think of it, maybe I just dislike graphic tees in general since I also object to souvenir tees and hats with tacky images of travel destinations. That may just be snobbishmness on my part, and I think shirts with travel images and that kind of thing probably do get a lot more use than, say, a Mother’s Day shirt.
Me too. If there is one item of clothing I detest it is the slogan/graphic T shirt, and no I don’t think we are snobs!
Teachers outfits I understand, maybe brooches – and Beth T’s vintage cardigan sounds lovely – but otherwise No, No and No again!
PS: Sympathy to you all for your taxes; we got a month’s extension because of the virus but of course I was still at the deadline…
Beth T says
I’ve always steered clear of defined seasonal things BUT scarves and whimsical brooches would be just thing.
Just looking through my jewellery I found posy pins and earrings for Easter, butterfly brooches and pendants for summer and a couple of Christmas brooches and earrings. Pearls for my wedding anniversary and birthday. I also have diamante and rhinestones in all different colours which I wear all year round – I’m a magpie.
Halloween is difficult because I dont wear orange or black – could I wear purple? Perhaps a diamante spider or pumpkin brooch?
I will look out for seasonal scarves in the charity shops. I do like the idea of a bunny brooch.
Beth T says
I’m also put off if a garment or accessory has the name in a really prominent place or a pointless logo in a contrasting colour. Why?
Mitzi A. says
That first outfit in olive with the linen shirt, I’m in love. I would wear it in a heartbeat.
I’m still trying to come up with my color palette and personal style, and recently discovered olive looked good on me, but I’m scared to commit to buying more pieces in it. I struggle to choose a dark neutral accent. I tried black, because, I thought, everyone should own black, black is for everyone, right? Wrong, and now I know it because of your blog, Janice. I am so thankful to notice now that I actually don’t reach for any black garments I have. The problem is I don’t know what shade I could use now… I have one accent color very well defined, a “dusty” pink, but I have not decided yet what to make of all the other colors I gravitate towards. I love gray, and recently I tried brown, but the shades are varied and I like some more than others.
I read everyday and learn, perhaps I’ll find an article here that guides me in the right direction to choose how to use these colors. It’s scary to commit, having been one of those impulse buyers and then never having anything to wear. And I also feel so cautious to start buying when I’m job hunting, I’d love to just find a job already so I can choose pieces that go with my future workplace’s level of dressy-ness.
But one can dream.
Here is a link to a good article by Imogen Lamport on how to find your best neutrals, and why black doesn’t work for everyone.
Start with Your Hair:
Choosing neutrals that are contained in your hair colour is the easiest way to select flattering ones that will work well with you.
Work with Your Eyes:
You can do exactly the same thing for finding your best eye-enhancing neutrals.
Hope this helps
Beth T says
You could try the fun quizzes on the Kettlewell Colours website and look at their seasonal colour charts and the tonal directions.
Over the years, I’ve bought all the books by the Colour Me Beautiful company. I eventually worked out that I was a Soft Summer. However, I would like that confirmed and it would be useful to have a book of colour swatches in my bag. I have found a local colour advisor who does an update session which isnt too pricey.
I don’t own graphic tees or clothing with specific themes. I have no ugly Christmas sweaters, nor do I wear red with green. I couldn’t put a Canada Day outfit together because red is not in my repertoire. I could wear green for St. Patrick’s Day, and I do. Green is my color.
I used to live in Ireland, and we’re going back for retirement if we can ever get out of here! They don’t much wear green in Ireland; I think they chafe at the stereotype. But the Irish rugby team almost always wear green jerseys and white shorts. The shorts match their legs!
Thanks for including bags in this post. This is so helpful!
A word in favor of graphic Ts: I’m not big on wearing slogans generally, but I have a navy retro T from J.Crew with “Greetings from Maine” on it that I got a few years ago and have been wearing with a jean skirt a lot this summer for grocery shopping and other errands. It’s comfortable, youthful and a conversation starter—a lot of people seem to like Maine!
Linda P says
Around these parts anything with snowflakes or snowmen or pine trees is pretty much in season from November until May. My socks are subject to seasonal whimsies, however.
Exactly! If I was going to wear snowflake-detailed garments when there’s snow, here in Chicago, it’s at least a 6-month garment…
I do have holiday shirts. Particularly for my favorite holiday, Halloween. I wear them ad nauseam 30 days before the actual day. I have a few Christmas ones that I wear starting Thanksgiving day. I really don’t have but a few and I don’t spend a lot of money on them either.