April 28, 2023
It’s fascinating to me that one can buy a cashmere sweater any month of the year, but it offers us an interesting wardrobe-planning option.
Think of this: you choose a color that you’d like to add to your wardrobe – maybe a bright or pastel accent, maybe a new neutral.
Over the next 6 months, you gradually add things to your wardrobe, and by the time autumn comes (or spring, depending on what hemisphere you call home!) you will have an accessory family in your new color!
Maybe you already own a piece or two in your color; I’m thinking of doing some deliberate shopping to get more mileage out of my purple cashmere crewneck sweater!
One really excellent item per month is a much easier way to shop…
This can be useful if you’re considering adding a new neutral to your wardrobe – I suspect there are a lot of us who might experiment with camel, or grey!
Of course, you might feel that you really want to bring a new bright color into your wardrobe…
I feel like I’ve never really done a good job of incorporating my purple sweater into my wardrobe, because I’ve never taken the time to find the small things that would make a big difference – purple socks? An amethyst bracelet?
Buying an orphan item doesn’t make sense, right?
p.s. Four years ago, I did an entire post of… Accessory Families! I’m very smitten with this idea…
Vicki from New Zealand says
Three years ago, before I ever discovered TVF, I bought an amethyst-coloured merino/possum jumper (NZ sweater). It’s light, warm, fluffy, & I loved the colour. I had NOTHING else in this shade, but it didn’t end up an orphan (not that I knew the term) in my closet, because it went with blue jeans, grey jeans, black jeans, grey pants, etc. I probably wore this jumper 40+ times that first winter. Then two years ago, I lit on TVF, neutrals, accent colours & accessories. Amethyst became an accent colour for winter, along with a green that I think is probably seafoam, and they both worked well with neutrals of navy and grey. And I started thinking about accessories, having previously simply worn gold and silver (I don’t mind mixing metals). Now, the amethyst jumper is most definitely not an orphan, and I’m still wearing it 40+ times per winter (I’m pretty keen on a high number of wearings per item). It’s family includes amethyst earrings, an amethyst bracelet (so that I along with others can enjoy it) and amethyst socks (multicoloured, but mostly amethyst). And I do feel better put together, having 2-3 items in the accent colour. Thank you Janice. Look forward to seeing what you do with your purple jumper, sorry, sweater :)
Sandy b says
Possum? But they are so cute!
Not in New Zealand!!!! They are a major problem 😞.
Everyone wears a jumper and gloves made with Merino & possum in winter 🥶👍
Sandy b says
Well, I am glad to learn new things! Thanks to those who explained.
Absolutely love my merino and possum socks and gloves that I bought in N.Z. when I got got caught her in lockdown. Hope to buy more when I return next year.
Gina Eggebr says
I’m curious and would love to hear from those with a wool allergy (full blown hives, it is not fun) if they can wear cashmere?
If it is pure cashmere I can wear it because it doesn’t have lanolin – the thing in sheep wool I am allergic to. The same is true of alpaca – pure alpaca is great. If it is mixed with sheep wool – including Merino wool – I break out in blisters.
Beth T says
I came across a phrase today “dopamine dresssing” to describe the good feelings we get by wearing colours. 0⁰ Yesterday, I wore top to toe purple – dark purple cords, mid-tone purple top and icy lilac cardigan. Purple and grey/silver is a favourite combination to expand.
I keep on saying that I’ll sort out my masses of jewellery. I am finding that I will wear particular pieces with specific clothes. It does make getting dressed easier. So do I need so much that I don’t wear? But I might find further on that I buy something and the appropriate jewellery has been disposed off. 🤔
Recently I sorted jewelry and kept out some that went with my season colors and stored the rest in a box in my vanity. I might try that for a year or so and see if there are any I don’t need. But I haven’t actually gotten rid of any and they move around like my clothes by season.
Gosh, that lavender is just beautiful. I love the Tiffany scarf, and Ilona Tambor has the most whimsical designs. Great way to end the week, thank you Janice!
All of these are lovely. It makes me think whether I have any wardrobe orphans that need some support, maybe my butter yellow zip-up? I feel like there’s lots of yellows in the store now so maybe it is the moment to strike. Thanks for the inspo, as always!
I have been thinking about adding an accent to my primarily blue and gray wardrobe. I have a capsule of red for winter months. I have considered a shade of pink, but generally do not love pink. Maybe that is a result of having four sons. Recently I have received compliments when I wear a lone lavender tee shirt. It occurred to me how well lavender plays with all shades of blue as well as gray. This post is just the inspiration I needed to get the ball rolling! Thank you.
Orphans! So sad. And DANGEROUS. One of the big lessons from Vivienne is the effective basis of a limited color palette. My first try, I picked the wrong colors. By the time I figured that out, I had collected multiple items, which then became tribes of orphans, so to speak. My “main” wardrobe is nicely navy and light taupe-to-ivory, with lashings of yellow and various pinks, plus denim and a few lighter blues. And the orphan collections are black/gray, olive, corals and lavender. I store things by color and have been working on wearing the orphs out, but they just won’t go away. Then this winter, I happened on a wonderful pair of olive summer pants with embroidery in various pinky and orangey shades, and a thin linen shirt in white with a narrow orange stripe.That led me to pull out a few orangey orphans, and some more whites, and buy a pair of white pants and a white summer cardi–aieeeeeee! Now I have a whole orphan “capsule” of about a dozen items. I surrender. I plan to wear these things to death this summer, maybe even put off getting my other summer things out of off-season storage. Is this torture, or great fun?
Vicki from New Zealand says
Kay, that might depend how you feel when you wear your summer capsule. Fingers crossed for you :) Let us know!
A little of both!
Tribes of Orphans… trekking through the jungle…
I’ve been buying more saturated/hot pink items this year because they’re available and because they’re in one of your monthly palettes and I’m a sucker for those.
I switched my main neutral from black to navy starting sometime in the late 2010s (2018 maybe?) and I’m pretty much all switched now. It took me the longest to find the right pants…it seems like the default work wear color in stores is black! Now that I have a more casual lifestyle (WFH) it’s much easier to find jeans and chinos in navy. I just have my perennial problem of finding them long enough now.
Kay, you are not alone. I am trying Very Hard to resist 5 delightful coral items from Talbots. I don’t wear anything that could make my skin issue more noticable, but these items are darling & would look wonderful with dark denim or white.
Great idea creating small colour families especially for big ticket items like cashmere! I have three lighter cashmere sweaters that do yeoman duty as transitional garments and can also step up during cool coastal summers. I like to ensure that my accessories are transitional too so trying to find items that can move through spring, summer and fall easily can be a challenge. I concentrate on jewelry/scarves/socks but keep the shoes/bags in my neutrals or metallics. . Sandals/pastel tones don’t work well here in the spring and fall and it’s hard to justify having ten or fifteen different pairs of shoes when we’re trying to downsize:( I do love a brightly coloured sandal in the summer but shifting back to neutrals & metallcs makes travelling easier too. A metallic sandal & sneakers will co-ordinate with everything and I don’t have to listen to my husband complain about my ‘shoe wardrobe’ taking up valuable cargo space!!