things that actually work, when getting dressed in the winter.

Coat. SweaterShirt. (similar here.) Jeans. Boots.(here and here.) Bag.

I, like most women spend a fair amount of time on Pinterest.  What did we ever do before Pinterest, I ask you?  Well, buy a lot more magazines for one (now I pick them up and think you myself, “my Pinterest boards have loads more inspiration than this.”).  But, I digress.  I spend a lot of time each season pinning inspirational outfits for that specific season.  Color combinations, and styles I love.  Things to help me use what I already have, and ideas to help get me out of the inevitable mid-season rut, that we all get in.  You know what I’ve realized about a lot of inspirational and aspirational outfits, that I find myself loving/lusting over?  They’re not wearable, you know, in actual real life.

Take the embellished sleeve sweater trend.  I love this trend, truly.  But if you live in a cold climate where you need to wear a coat in the winter, then you’ve come to the same realization as I have.  That you can’t actually wear a coat with those big ruffle sleeves.

Also, booties.  We love them, especially the suede ones with that little bit of naked ankle popping out between the top of the shoe and the bottom of the jean.  But, if you live in a place where it snows, or even just a place where it drops below freezing, then you, too have come to realize that this is also completely impractical.  I need thick, camp socks and I don’t want any exposed skin.  At all.

A couple weeks ago, my frustration was at an all-time high.  I try to get dressed with intention, every day; it makes me happier and helps me be more effective.  But the truth was, I wasn’t equipped for the weather, sartorially speaking.  After living in Seattle for several years, with a wardrobe that reflected a wet, but much more temperate winter, I didn’t really have the right clothes for our sub-zero snow-filled days.  Which meant, I ended up in sweats.  A lot.  And that was glorious for the first couple cozy days, but then it started feeling drab and depressing.

Because I want to give you inspiration, but also ideas that you can actually wear…  That work for you in your real life, the one where you have to get out and go to work or run errands or volunteer at your kid’s school, catch the train, and walk on real wet/slick/dirty/snowy sidewalks, I set out on a mission to find the right kinds of pieces that will work for you and also help you feel amazing.

Here are a few tips I’ve picked up:

Skip the embellished sleeve sweaters.

Before you buy a sweater, try sliding it into your actual coat.  If the sleeves don’t fit, save it for spring.  Try instead to find a sweater with a great color, or print, and interesting neckline, or just a great turtleneck.

Switch up your boots.

I have 2 pairs of heavy snow boots, which are fantastic when we are skiing or I need to go tromping through the snow on our property, but they are not the boots I want to be walking through the grocery store in.  Luckily brands like Sorel have gotten the memo in the last several years and they’ve created some fabulous and fashionable practical solutions.  These boots are fun and fab, cozy and comfortable, and don’t slip on the ice!

Buy a coat that makes its own statement.

If you live in a cold climate, then really the only way to make a statement this time of year, is with your outerwear.  So find a couple great, but warm coats, and they’ll make their own classy statement. Throw on a scaf to complete the look.

Layer in the right way.

A good rule of thumb, when layering is work from the inside out, going lightest to heaviest.  Thick tights, plaid button-ups, thermals, sweaters, and vests are all great layering options that with keep you warm and looking chic.  Try a monochromatic layered look, mixing prints and textures in the same color family, to keep heavy layers from looking boring.

Share below what works for you with getting dressed in the winter.

Coat. SweaterShirt. (similar here.) Jeans. Boots.(here and here.) Bag.



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10 thoughts on “things that actually work, when getting dressed in the winter.

  1. Yep, you’re bang on. I’ve always lived this area so yeah, you really have to dress differently than the fashion bloggers in Dallas, as cute as they are! I love those boots. Are they heavy at all?

  2. Totally agree. Being in the Canadian Rockies means we are completely limited for a good chunk of the year. We have snow for 6 months of it! I have a couple of great nicer coats (my Wilfred Cocoon coat gets SO many compliments and I have a 1940s vintage long deep burnt orange coat with amazing black buttons for dressing up) and the obvious outwerwear for everyday life here – a parka with a fur hood! I need to find some cute boots, I have my Sorels but totally agree that I don’t want to wear them at the grocery store. I need to think about something I can wear instead because with the wind chill it is -40C today (not typical, this is COLD) and no skin can be exposed!!!

  3. So glad to hear a fashion blogger say this! I’ve given up on a lot of bloggers who post cute pics of themselves in the snow wearing ankle booties and a cute sweater with no coat and I know it is 20 degrees where they are.

  4. I’m with you about frustration both with winter dressing and inspiration boards. The Northeast has been especially cold thus far this season and exposed skin is just not going to happen right now. It’s refreshing to see some cold weather outfits, truly made for cold weather, inspiration so thank you. And Sorel makes some of the best boots lately, their hidden wedge is fun and comfy, and the bottoms on the boots really don’t slip in this winter weather.

  5. I live in MON Indiana where it was -5 last week, and I lived in layers, thermal leggings with tights over them then jeans and knee high knit boot socks that I’d scrunch down for a cute look with leather ankle boots, or leggings under joggers with camp socks or varsity socks over them and combat boots and oversized sweaters for comfy cozy days that still had a bit of style. Layers are your best friend in the cold.

  6. I’m so happy you moved to the northeast! I’ve been following your blog for a few years and I was really excited when you moved for the reasons you just stated. I love that your blog has clothes that I can actually afford and now options I can wear. I’m cold all the time!! Also, several of the blogs I follow have started to kick up their price points a lot lately and that doesn’t work for me. Sorry, I can’t bring myself to spend $3000 on an LV bag as cute as it is! Keep doing what you do! I hope you’re loving this winter weather! Just when you’re over it and feel like you’ll never leave you house again see sunshine again, it’s spring!

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