As I start to assess my cold weather wardrobe, here’s the one thing I know for sure:
I want to warm it up.
And I don’t just mean warm fabrics. I mean warm colors.
Anybody remember my super monochromatic winter 2014 capsule? It was literally all black, white, or grey.
And at the end of that season I was craving color like crazy. Shortly after, in my lessons learned post, I declared that no matter how much I love neutrals, my wardrobe needs at least a little color.
And lately, as the days get darker and chillier, I’ve been realizing that I don’t need just any ol’ color — I need warm colors. Or maybe, more accurately warm neutrals that feel cozy and happy and a little bit celebratory. Like dusty rose, copper, and burnished cognac.
Easiest way to try a new color? You guessed it: accessories. This copper/rose ball cap may be a small dose of warmth, but it lifts the overall mood of this outfit.
So, warm neutrals. I’m definitely in. So far I’m noticing that they’re easy — I can mix them in with my existing monochromatic greys, blacks, and whites and they instantly change the vibe. They also make me feel light and cheerful — the way I feel when I dress for summer (AKA my favorite season). YAY. That’s a big win for cold-weather dressing!
Here’s my question for you — especially you cold weather pros — how do you incorporate even more warm + happy vibes into your cold weather wardrobe? Do you have any tricks besides using warm colors?
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01 | Fisherman sweater (old by Banana Republic) | similar under $100 | similar under $90 | similar under $55
02 | Jeans by Rag and Bone (made in USA) | similar on sale (made in USA)
03 | Shoes by Converse (also available in light grey wool)
I DO remember your Winter 2014 capsule, Caroline and it didn’t depress me quite as much as it did you. :) However, I preferred your Fall 2014 capsule with the cool reds and wines. And I prefer cool colors on myself. But I’m interested to see more of your warm colors and how you incorporate them into your wardrobe.
I’m a redhead and fall is my season! Camel, bronze/rust, hunter green along with my year round black. Oh and some dark purple ? I love autumn!!
Taylor Norris says
Also a redhead! And I was going to say that some warm colors are awesome, but I’ve tried some of the trendy “dusty” colors and they are awful on me. The more I pay attention to my best colors, the better I feel about my wardrobe.
Totally agree with you, Taylor! The more I focus on my best colours, the better I feel. Sometimes the trendy colours are all great on me and sometimes they’re all horrible. So I just stick to what works for me. When I found a cardigan with ALL of my capsule colours in it, I felt like I had hit the JACKPOT and every time I wear that sweater it instantly makes me feel put together.
On that note, I spent a fair amount of time looking into my “seasons” and discovered that I’m a soft summer. At first, I felt that I would never like the colours of that season because there are a fair number of pastels (not my fave), but I quickly discovered that there were so many colours to choose from and a few of my best colours that I had already discovered were in there. And there were many more to choose from that weren’t pastels, too. Lots that make me feel really good when I put them on. :)
I would recommend anyone to look into their seasons for inspiration if they’re having a hard time finding complimentary colours to complement their capsules. (Or as accessories!)
Barbie Beauty says
I totally agree adding colour to a fall wardrobe definitely spices up your look, love the outfit
I’m so jealous of your warm Texas weather! My favorite ways to add color and happy vibes in the drab winter include : Colored coat to dress up boring outfits. Tall slouchy socks with boots, and scarves to add warmth but not much bulk to my silhouette. Dresses with leggings and boots to keep me warm but still have a feminine vibe. Bodysuits under sweaters for added interest.
Laura @ http://www.thriveorsurvive.us
Laura, it all sounds so cozy and lovely! :)
Sheila Joy says
I’m hopping on the warm neutrals train with you–definitely need to incorporate them into my style this winter! The hat is just too cute x
Thanks Sheila! It’s just those little touches that make it feel stylish, ya know? :)
Tanya E says
That hat looks great on you! I did like your very neutral winter capsule, though.
I’m not so great with bronze/copper colours (I have very cool-toned colouring) but I do a similar thing with berry tones: burgundy, aubergine, dusky rose or violet etc. And yes, I have definitely been drawn to these colours as the weather has got (much) colder.
Yes Tanya, in some ways I think they are just irresistible for the season! :)
Bright necklaces are one of my favorite ways, along with colored plaid. Plaid always feels like a neutral in winter to me somehow, so wearing a blue or burgundy plaid shirt adds color without feeling like it’s a statement. Necklaces or earrings that are colorful help add an easy little punch to an otherwise neutral outfit.
Sounds really cute, Jackie! :)
I recently bought 2 pairs of organic PACT tights from Whole Foods in navy & burgundy. They are a game changer. I’ve been able to pair them with my dresses. Typically don’t feel myself in greys & black. Tend to stick to “icy” cool colors-albeit difficult to find in sweaters & such. You in the other hand, look great in those colors/anything??
Rebecca Duran Meyer says
So awesome I have been looking into PACT and that’s where I want to buy my next pair of leggings! :)
Just checked out the Topmsn hat & its available in navy blue?
Yes Marti! Isn’t it cute? :)
Aside from colour, I would say patterns that make you happy. Think of a cozy blanket scarf in a fun pattern. I am orginally from Canada so cold weather dressing is my jam. At the moment I am in the southern hemisphere and we are gearing up for summer. I struggle with warm weather dressing. I am always hot outside and cold inside of buildings. I need to work on my warm weather layering. Any suggestions? I love that sweater by the way.
Hey Charissa, warm-weather layering. It’s something I’ve been working on all season. Did you see this post: http://bit.ly/2ejtEAa One way to go. :)
Laura Blanton says
I feel like I had the same epiphany following last winter as well! I started swiping my husband’s ‘spiced cognac’ colored Carhartt beanie all of the time. And I also learned that I don’t really like white as must as I love ivories and creams, etc. Love this hat!
Greetings from snowy Scandinavia!
Thinking of what people around here typically wear/would never wear and trying to adapt it into a Texan climate sounds like a fun challenge. Here’s what I came up with:
1) scarves. In winter, unless I wear a turtleneck, I wear a scarf of some sort around my neck. It doesn’t have to be a blanket scarf- anything but super summery gauzy material goes.
2)wool. It doesn’t have to be super chunky wool and there doesn’t have to be lots of it, but some wool is pretty essential. Anything hand-knitted (or similar) is particularly good. Maybe combine 2 and 3 and get a lightweight hand knitted scarf. Or maybe something made of thin wool fabric in soft colors like tweedy pants.
3) chunky footwear (and socks). Since you are living in warm climate, I’d suggest shoes like city sneakers, loafers or ankle boots. In fact, anything that doesn’t show skin is fine (shoes that would invite a frostbite in 5 minutes just read “summery” to me). Sturdy soles are great, even if the rest of the shoe is canvas. Clarks Desert boots or similar style might work.
4) other outdoorsy vibes. The farther north you go, the more you see outdoorsy style and functional, sporty items. So maybe a parka coat or a nylon bag?
5) themed accessories (no, I don’t mean ugly Christmas sweaters). In Fall, I like to wear jewelry made of organic materials like wood, and a cute fall leaf brooch never hurt anyone. With winter and snow the theme changes to sparkle: sparkly nail polish, snowflake earrings or a few sequins. Not all at once, but subtle hints do work.
6) plaid anything. A lightweight plaid flannel shirt maybe?
7) no bare skin. From what I’ve seen, people living in warm climates often look a bit funny in their “cozy winter looks” because they forget to wear socks/wear something like a mini dress with blanket scarf/ 3/4 sleeve coat (with anything. 3/4 sleeve coat just doesn’t work in any place with real winter) or open toed boots. Showing any skin except on head and hands reveals that you are in fact somewhere where frostbites never happen. I know this is tricky if it’s really warm where you are, but even thin and airy fabrics look more cold season appropriate than bare skin. Also, it looks more realistic to wear a less wintery coat (such as a denim jacket) than to wear a long wool coat open. I’ve never seen anyone wear a wool coat open in real life while I’ve seen many denim jackets worn with chunky sweaters. Winter looks can be cute, but they have to be functional as well.
I completely agree with your last point! I see a lot of cute winter looks that I would never wear in real life because it would be way too cold, thank you for finally setting this straight! :)
Wonderful tips, Dany! Thank you for sharing :)
burgundy neck scarf
As a person who lives in four-seasons climate I love big scarves, not only they are soft and warm, but they add that additional layer, when it is really cold. And coloured tights! They work even with the official outfits. Last trick would be crochet wrist warmers – really pretty and very warm, especially if it’s too warm for gloves.
Marie Therese says
For me, a colorful scarf is always a great way to add color to an otherwise monotone color scheme :) I wish I only needed a baseball cap to add a little warm to my outfit :)
Elizabeth Broderick says
One easy way to do it and potentially be more bold than you normally would be is to find a really bold silk scarf to tie to your purse. It can brighten up your look as you walk around and can add a really fun, interesting dose of color and/or pattern while staying in your comfort zone with your clothing.
Alexa Johnson says
Loving this look!
Green. Green is my happy colour. Indoor plants. Trees. Spinach. Any time I am craving a neutral colour, I incorporate a little khaki green (with a warm undertone) and it just makes me feel better. Camel and mustard yellow and cobalt blue can do the same too. : )
That’s a great way to look at it, Ky. Thanks for sharing! It really is a happy color :)
I like to add a pop of colour with a really bright colour like red. I have a bright red bubble hat that I lover for adding colour in my outfits.
Nail polish! My current fave is “1972” by Smith and Cult.
Maria, what a pretty color that is! :)
I like texture and the right choice of materials to add warmth. I’m a neutrals girl, too. But nice cable knits, chunky wool or cashmere in any color are going to look cozy :)
Jean, oh yes! Definitely. Texture can make all the difference! :)
kim domingue says
Happy socks. I search out knee highs that are silly and colorful and a little wacky. My favorite two pairs have happy faces and bad rabbits on them. Not only do they make me grin every time I catch a glimpse of them, anybody else who catches a glimpse of them grins too! I also like to wear red undergarments in cold weather. And while no one sees them but me (well, and the hub’s)they make me feel more colorful anyway, lol!
How cute, Kim! :)
I’ve been getting into warm colors this season too. I’ve tried to fight back in the past for some reason, maybe they weren’t ‘in’ or something. But my complexion is very “Autumn” (auburn hair and fair skin with green/hazel eyes). So this year, I’m embracing the colors that suit me best. But that doesn’t mean I’m going crazy wearing all of them at once. Similar to you, I’m testing out bits at a time. To me that means, I’ll wear my jeans, brown ankle boots, a thin white mockneck longsleeve shirt (like this one. which is so easy to layer with and it’s really lightweight http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/bp-rib-knit-mock-neck-tee/4339613?origin=keywordsearch-personalizedsort&fashioncolor=GREY%20CLOUDY%20HEATHER), and then I’ll add a chunky cardigan in a rust/ginger color. It brings the color in, but it’s tempered by the neutrals of my white shirt and jeans!
KT, that sounds so perfect and cozy! :)
sLOUCHY knit hats and patterned scarves… I love to balance out my solid pieces with those. easy TO REMOVE AND PUT BACK ON AS NEEDED. Also, I love my marled black cardigan to add texture even though it’s lightweight (perfect for those ‘real fall’ days!). Colored Tights, CHUNKY SOCKS, warm nail polish and lip colors if you’re feeling girly :) you might like rose gold jewelry, too. I have some copper-toned hoop earrings I’m putting back in rotation since they say fall to me.
Sorry about the strange caps lock action, lol
Taryn, yes. I think you hit it on the head with the accent pieces needing to be easily removed. That makes a such a difference in the ease and comfort of your day. Smart! :)
i love the neutral you use often, it’s good on you , me on the other hand it doesn’t always compliment me. i’m not so great with bronze/copper or neutral colours also so i use grey burgundy, red but it’s not that chic. i see your winter capsule 2014 and i hope you do the same this winter, it was so cool and you put hyperlink to see where you buy or where to find the similar clothes . i just discover your blog and try to do my own capsule but it’s very hard, i have too many clothes and i try to buy quality clothes and choose quality and not quantity but it’s hard so thank you for the help (sorry i m not speaking english so i hope my word make sense)
I bought an awesome burgundy purse last year that I’ve used like crazy. It manages to make a neutral outfit look so much more exciting to me.
My wardrobe is primarily composed of neutrals and lately I have been adding color with lipstick. I have a wonderful sheer red lipstick that I got at Anthropologie. Since it’s sheer, it isn’t too dramatic for daytime. With bright lipstick and a high bun, I feel pulled together and chic!
Sounds perfect, Sara. Easy tricks to look chic as you said! :)
Thays Dos Santos says
I love your sweater and hat. I have been loving wearing hat but I don’t have any that is plan like yours. For sure the next thing on my shopping list!
Maybe thats not quite warming it up, but lets try- light blue jeans. Thats all. I have also below knees-long skóry. That always work with all my Black/navy blue/grey piece of clothes. For colourful days i get one leaf/autumn green blouse every nie and then. And bottle green scarf. Thats all. No more colours. Light blue jeans is already warm enough for me for winter ;). But well, my hair is rather warm blond so that can make a difference probably too.
Christina akin says
In your beauty routine! amazing how a little color on the nails and/or lips can add to a neutral outfit.
Love that Christina! :)
Dana Leigh Lyons says
I’m all “grey-and-black” much of the time…but love adding splashes of dark red in the form of a scarf or bag. Lately, I’ve been craving some accents in ox blood colour. Thanks for the inspiration!
Add a color long sleeve t shirt or button down under a cozy sweater letting the color peek out at the neck, cuffs and at the bottom. Doing this let’s you add color to your outfit without screaming color that makes you feel silly or uncomfortable.
Very smart, what a great idea! :)
I find that I love neutrals, especially blue, when it is hot out, but crave color when it is cold out. Who wants to wear grey when everything outside is grey?
Since it is easier to look washed out during the cold months, I try to wear jewel tones near my face and avoid black. I also make sure to wear a colorful scarf near my face with my black jacket. Sometimes I wear a non-neutral hat too.
Another way to add some color is to wear some fun, patterned socks when you wear boots.
Alternatively, you can wear a neutral sweater but layer a plaid shirt or other colored collar shirt underneath. I really like the flannel shirts (both plaid and solid) from uniqlo.
How comfy!:) I do wear a lot of grey, white, & black. And a pop of navy blue & blush pink for some other days.:) Maybe I will add some pop of neutral colors too using scarves, rosegold watch, and other accessories.:)
Great post! Love your outfit!:)
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I have a couple of shirts that are primarily black but, they have roses on them so that gives me a bit of color and makes me smile since they are my favorite flower. Plus it makes me feel like spring/summer is right around the corner even if it is -1 outside.
My hair is pink/orange, so I typically let that do the talking for me in terms of color- my clothing palette is mostly black, white and grey, with a little burgundy, olive, and deep blue thrown in. That said, I live south of Seattle, so I invested in a nice deep dark green hooded coat that I’ll live in for the next few months, and also rely heavily on scarves. Lots of scarves. Oh, and lipstick.
I love the sound of it, Olivia! Great colors :)
Funnily enough, I started following you when you had the winter capsule that was all neutral, and it was super inspiring to me. I had already pared down to a very neutral wardbrobe since my hair has been very bold for about 4 years now, but it was great to see someone else create a dynamic wardrobe out of less pieces in the same palette. I used that as a jumping off point to start integrating more colors that actually feel like me and work with my existing wardrobe, rather than looking to trends (which is so easy to do!). It helps curb some impulse shopping :)
Kelly Black says
I like to add color through layering. I have a lot of neutral color sweaters for winter that I layer with a tank or shirt with color to peek out under the hem. Jewelry and scarves are always fun too.
I’m with you. No matter how much i love neutrals, by the end of the day it would be pops of colours that make me truly happy.
Anna Oates says
I’ve been really into ball caps lately. I felt like I’ve always owned a few but I hardly ever wore them, so I’m trying to change that, because they can be really cute!
Megan Radford says
I have the totally opposite problem- I have to tone down the colour! :D I think my six years in West Africa growing up just instilled in me a love of vibrant, beautiful tones. I’ve managed to narrow those down to three I really, really love: sky blue, shades of pink/dusty rose, and cherry red. My winter wear has a lot of pale blues, greys, and creams, with some pops of pink and teal.