"Nebulous" (Fall Clothes 2023)

"Snow Fantasy," by Lawren Harris (1917)

Flea market bracelet

This fall's wardrobe is going in a direction I didn't expect.. 

No, I haven't taken on an office job, or a hostessing position with a great clothing allowance. My life is very casual, and much as I like looking at blazers and dresses, I need to stay realistic. Working at home days are casual. Running around days are casual. Even church is casual. 

I've also had some changing thoughts about colour. Most years, my summer colour has been navy blue, and then in the fall I switch to grey, teal, and burgundy. This means, though, that if I thrift cool-weather clothes in navy, they tend not to get worn. But why not navy this fall, for a change? I'm a bit greyed out on grey.

Bead bracelets found here and there

While browsing through Vivienne Files posts, I came across the (imagined) story of a photographer who spends the fall at an observatory.  This is the first post about herthis is the second. Her (very casual) wardrobe is based on a photograph of "The Spinning Pulsar of the Crab Nebula," and includes navy plus bright pink, sky blue, and purple accents. Many of her clothing items match what is already in my closet (including the neglected navy things), and a couple of thrift store trips have  rounded things out. (Most of the sample outfits shown here are copied from the VF posts.)

Necklace from a flea market

Spinning Pulsars, Part One

The Vivienne Files heroine started her packing with a mostly-navy wardrobe: a hooded sweatshirt, a cardigan, a heavy flannel shirt, a white shirt, two striped t-shirts, a pair of jeans, and two other pairs of pants. While I didn't have those exact pieces, I came up with some things that were close.

Navy fleece blazer, asymmetric zipper and quilted front (instead of a hoodie)

Navy linen-blend pullover. I wanted something that wasn't too heavy and that could be dressed up a bit. 

Jean jacket. I do have a jean shirt which could have substituted for the flannel shirt (and still might work when the weather's warm), but this was closer to the sturdy-second-layer idea.

Striped t-shirt, short sleeves

White shirt

Navy and pale blue striped t-shirt, ¾ length sleeves

(Extra addition, not shown: long-sleeved navy t-shirt)

Blue jeans

Light grey cords

Navy knit pants (I do have a dressier pair, see Part Three)

Spinning Pulsars, Part Two

The next additions (in the story) were a bright pink pullover, a purplish-pink top, a blue t-shirt, a blue flannel shirt, and some shoes and accessories. I'll get to the accessories later, but for now, here's what I found.

Hot pink V-neck pullover

Hot pink crewneck t-shirt, ¾ length sleeves. I went with a similar colour because a) that's what was at the thrift store and b) the two pieces layer well together.

Blue t-shirt, V-neck, 3/4 length sleeves. Blue shirt with smocking at the shoulders. Scarf, slip-on shoes. And a folding umbrella, because it's blue.

The original story didn't include anything purple, but I'm adding a purple dress and a lavender top, plus a scarf, necklace, and earrings.

So that's sixteen items: the same number as the Vivienne Files' Four-by-Four Wardrobe. Am I missing my teal and grey yet? Just a bit, but I'm interested to see where this goes.

Spinning Pulsars, Part Three

In the second of the two posts, the photographer decides to stay a bit longer at the observatory, with the prospect of meeting a famous astronomer. She adds five pieces of slightly dressier clothing: a navy velvet pencil skirt, a striped shirt (she really likes stripes), another pink pullover (she really likes pink), a white turtleneck top, and a pullover in a navy houndstooth pattern.

I don't have a navy skirt, so my navy "office pants" will have to fill in. 

I do have a blue and white striped shirt, and an off-white mock-neck sweater.

That leaves the two pullovers. One of them is meant to blend with the navy bottoms, and the other is a bright accent. I'm substituting an orchid zippered sweatshirt, to keep the bright accent but in a more casual way. And instead of the houndstooth pullover, I chose an oversized dark blue sweater, which (for me) rates "for good," and which would work with the striped shirt. [September update: I found a dark blue button-up cardigan which isn't quite as super-sized as the pullover, so I'm going to sub that in instead.]

An addition! I found this striped sweater at a yard sale in late August.

Another addition! This is a thrifted/DIY faux-suede skirt, that used to be a dress.
Another addition, this one looking more towards winter: navy cableknit sweater.
An extra pullover, found in October.

Our fictional photographer included one skirt in her suitcase, but no dresses. I don't have a skirt  (see above), but I already have the purple dress above. I also wanted to replace a grey dress I bought several years ago, and when Kettlewell Colours' wrap dress went on sale, I decided to order one in blue-grey. 

Although I haven't had much chance to wear it yet, I'm looking forward to finding ways to mix it with my other clothes. (The photos below make the dress look more medium grey or charcoal, but there is definitely a blue tone in it.)

Outdoor Wear

Total: 25 pieces of clothing (counting coats but not accessories)


Our heroine took along six pairs of shoes and boots (including her bright blue sneakers), five scarves, several pieces of jewelry, and one pair of bright pink socks (we assume she had others that weren't as fun). She had only one small purse, maybe because, being on site, she wasn't going to need a work tote bag. (Or maybe she sticks things in her camera bags.) She took a knitted hat and a pair of gloves, although she didn't appear to have a warm coat (I guess she was going to layer up the shirts and sweaters). 

I'm not going to try to match everything she packed, but I'll work through the same categories.

Shoes: Let's start with shoes, because if one goes outside, one had better at least have shoes on. I bought a pair of navy loafers at an outlet store.    

I have boots and Mizzles for walking on the trail, but I wanted something slightly less...clodhopperish...for times when it's less likely I'd have to watch out for puddles and stuff. I don't always look for shoes at the thrift store, but I was lucky this time and found a pair of wedge-style booties in good shape.

For the rest, I'll just mix and match from what I have.  




A Few Final Outfits (Inspired by the Vivienne Files)

Last updated October 24, 2023


Anonymous said...

Love this! 💜💜💜

Mama Squirrel said...

Thank you!

The Vivenne Files said...

You always do SUCH a great job with wardrobes! I love your clothes, and your necklace from a flea market is genius...

Mama Squirrel said...

Thank you so much, Janice!

Elizabeth said...

That's one of my favourite VF wardrobes too.