March 15, 2021
Ah, the Ides of March mean that Spring is almost here, and that means that we can revisit the Weekly Timeless Wardrobe, starting with Spring!
Of course, you can easily wear a tee shirt this time of year, with something over it, but we’re going to look at a few different ideas for why this tee shirt never needs to be put in storage…
Just to refresh everybody’s memory, here’s the master list of garments that I (and I alone!) consider to be the core of a wardrobe:
I personally always wear crewneck tee shirts, so just to shove me out of my comfort zone, we’re going to consider a v-neck tee today:
Obviously, this tee is perfect in warm weather. Worn with shorts, and layered under a summery shirt when the breezes (or air conditioning) become too much:
If your skirt is printed, and your accessories are bold, a simple tee shirt is the perfect calm addition…
On a cool day, a tee shirt and jeans with your favorite sneakers – and fun star earrings! – is the easiest way to dress:
Yes, it will get damp, and your swimsuit will show through, but when modesty suggests a bit of cover, your light neutral tee is perfect!
If your favorite wardrobe color is hard to find, and you struggle to pull together 3 pieces of clothing, quit trying so hard! Use your neutral tee:
I hope that going through this list again is okay with you – so many of us are still (and always!) trying to focus on the essentials…
p.s. It was just 2 years ago that we started building little capsule wardrobe around beautiful bracelets from Fierce Lynx Designs…
I’m so glad to see this today! Only yesterday I copied out your weekly timeless wardrobe on to my computer to get to grips with my wardrobe. And for once I can follow along at the same time as all the lovely ladies who frequent the Vivienne Files.
I’m glad to see this series back. I love a strategy, a system. I followed along on the first one that started in the summer. Seems like a decade ago! It’s particularly timely, as I’m trying to get my wardrobe organized for warm weather.
I absolutely love this revisit and I’m looking forward to the next posts.
It’s always good to focus on basics. For many reasons, we may need to replace pieces. Current posts help us find what we need.
Last week someone mentioned WTW, I couldn’t figure out what in the heck it stood for. This morning I’m thinking, “oh! That’s what it stood for!”. I tried to follow this last year subbing things from my own wardrobe, then for some reason got to a point where my brain couldn’t wrap around the substitutions. Now I get another chance. I’m also trying to organize for warmer weather, but since it’s only going to be 46 here today, layers are called for! However, the Hyacinths and cherry trees are blooming, so warmer temps can’t be too far behind! Thanks for revisiting this Janice!
Linda P says
WTW = What To Wear haha
I forgot to add, and this is purely personal preference, I hope the dark neutral is something besides black. Springish…
Yes! I was thinking about this just this weekend. Time to start shopping the closet again. (1 down, 51 to go)
Beth T says
Thanks for revisiting the WTW. Last year, I was beginning the process of sorting my wardrobe and the WTW helped in that process. Back then, I couldn’t see “the wood for the trees” but the purging and the dross have now gone and my wardrobe is in better shape. So revisiting the WTW will be more of a checklist for me. I’m more interested in the outfit selections that you put with each item.
My favourite of all these is the Silver Blue Cardigan with the scarf with a multitude of blended blues and sea-greens. I have a scarf with similar colours.
I agree that Silver Blue is a strange colour name. However, I plan to increase and develop the blue-green/green-blue accents in my wardrobe to blend with blue-greys and coral/shell pinks. Neutrals will be blue-grey, denim, and light grey, taupe/stone plus ivory or soft-white So the look-back was very useful too. I can see how the look-back could be extended into autumn with warmer cameo rose.
I am using those colors as well! I don’t know if you are sporting natural white gray hair as I am, but the colors mentioned are definitely in my realm with my fairer skin and eyes.
That yellow outfit – the backpack! the sunglasses! I can see wearing that everywhere during the summer.
I see JCrew, LLbean, LE tees often featured here. Could anyone comment on their difference? I love a substantial weight tee which is longer; I’m 5’9”. Not clingy. Thanks!
Love this different approach to WTW!
Genevieve, I have both the all cotton and Supima relaxed fit tees from Lands End and a Pima boatneck tee from LL Bean. The Lands End all cotton is a substantial weight ribbed cotton that I much prefer over their Supima tee. While the Supima tee fabric isn’t see through or tissue weight and is very soft, the tee lacks the same structure as the all cotton one, so I find it to be slightly more clingy and less flattering than the all cotton one. I very much like my Pima tee from LL Bean. It is substantial, soft, and flattering without being clingy at all.
I also have the LE all cotton ribbed tee and really like them. I usually don’t wear crewnecks, but I feel like the LE crewnecks aren’t as vice-like as some.
I prefer LE as they come farther down on the hip – which is useful for tucking in. I always go up a size on JCrew to get the loose fit I personally prefer, and I don’t find them as “substantial” as the others. LE tends to have more colors than LLBean.
Thank you so much for your feedback! Time to replenish my summer basic.
Some of these are also available in tall sizes if you need something a little bit longer.
Glad to see you revisit this series! I am in the process of overhauling areas of my wardrobe and rebuilding my stock of basic pieces. I always struggle with neutrals and basics, but find it much easier to put together outfits when I do focus on having these workhorses. I very much agree with the logic that there are some pieces that make sense to keep in the closet all year long, such as a short sleeve tee.
Beth T says
In autumn last year, I kept out some of my plain short sleeve t-shirts in neutral and accent colours. I’ve found that they are a useful under-layer for a shirt instead of thermals. I’m trying to increase the seasonal longevity of my clothes.
Lisa P says
Still wearing fleece tops and wool socks here but these outfits are a reminder that spring will eventually come! A nice quality white tee shirt is definitely a warm weather staple for me! Thanks for showing these pretty outfits!
Sally in St Paul says
I love that first outfit! The color name on the cardigan is a bit silly, but the color itself is lovely and just right for spring. I can easily imagine wearing that cardigan with the striped button up shirt that follows, too. That kind of scarf is so handy, I find…the soft blend of shades across a range of blue and mint greens mean it will probably work with a lot of different colors.
I do put away short-sleeved Ts in winter now that I live in Minnesota, even though I run warm, but when I lived in Texas, North Carolina, etc., I kept them out all year. (And I may be an outlier here, but if I’m going to wear corduroy and boots, it’s cold enough that I want a long-sleeved T under my cardigan! But I adopt wool, corduroy, etc. pants as a last resort against bitter, bitter cold. Horses for courses.)
Linda P says
Hi Janice! Looking at short-sleeved tees gives me goosebumps, as it was a balmy 19°F today (without the wind chill). But it just occurred to me to keep my LE long sleeved windowpane print out for the summer, just to cover up with a light layer.
Janice. Thank you for your wonderful Core Wardrobe. Let’s all remember that this wardrobe can be done in any dark neurals you feel best in ie. black, navy, eggplant/aubergine, chocolate brown, rust, moss green, charcoal, camel etc. Plus, any light neutrals you feel best in ie, white, ivory, ecru ,oatmeal etc. Plus, always your accent colors should be the colors you look and feel your best in!! This could be warm colors such as red, coral, peach or cool colors of blue-grey, soft pink and cobalt blue!! Enjoy the process!! Then enjoy the process!!
The olive and gold outfits are really delightful! Too bad I don’t wear either of those colors, but maybe I can think about how to recreate those outfits from the colors I have. I’m glad you’re revisiting this series—I never could get my mind wrapped around it last time. Maybe this time it will be easier for me to learn by following along.
I love light cardigans for that in between weather or for chilly mornings on sunny days. Really difficult to find cardigans with buttons nowadays. I wish more manufacturers would make them, particularly with v necks. I find the unbuttoned ones annoy me when it is windy.
Really like this series, many help ideas. Any suggestions for a light neutral other than white or tan/beige? I really don’t like how white looks on me and with my graying hair beige looks a little off sometimes. Light grays wash me out also, it’s a tiny struggle of mine.
Pale pink or blue?