Nuancing our way through the holidays

For almost a year she has admired the Sophisticated Lynx bracelets, from Fierce Lynx DesignsThe Vivienne Files first described them as having "the nuances of color...deeply hidden in the stones, revealing themselves only to the attentive observer." That intrigued her so much that did her own version of the V.F. story. But she finally has her own set of bracelets, and now she's going to observe attentively and plan a mostly-thrifted early-winter wardrobe around them.

The Clothes

In a time when everyone is, supposedly, more focused on going out and doing things than they have been for awhile, she begins at the other end, with an oversized poncho sweater that's definitely a homebody. The big  collar is a bit overwhelming, so she prefers to wear it tucked in.
She found this red and grey cardigan at a flea market. 
It's less couch-potato than the poncho, but still very cozy.
She was going to include a grey cardigan, but with the popularity right now of shirt jackets (isn't "shacket" an ugly word?), she decides on a more structured fleece jacket. (In the notes on this page it's still the "grey cardigan" because that's shorter than writing the "grey fleece shirt jacket cardigan thing.")
All of those sweaters need under-layers and bottoms, so that's what she works on next:

Off-white t-shirt, garnet t-shirt  (least dressy)
Lavender and grey turtleneck tops
Off-white button-up shirt
Black square-neck top (most dressy)

Grey pull-on pants (least dressy)
Grey pinstriped jeans, black jeans
Black wool mini-skirt
Grey wool-blend pants 
Longer black skirt (most dressy)

That adds up to fifteen items of clothing, but it's short on both tops and colour. It also doesn't include any dresses, so let's fix those things.

She adds in her favourite (and only) hoodie pullover.

Long-sleeved green t-shirt

Green button-up shirt

Cranberry pullover (lightweight knit, can be layered under other sweaters)

Teal pullover sweater

Teal jersey dress

She thinks really hard about a second dress. She does have a cranberry dress, but there's a lot of that colour going on here already; and it's a in a dressier style. Something comfortable and everyday would be better, even if it does add more grey. She decides to go with the grey sweater dress/tunic with the why-is-that-there zipper across the front.

 It works with leggings and heavy tights; it can go under the poncho-sweater and the berry-and-grey cardigan; and it can even hide its peculiarities under a skirt. 

That makes twenty-two clothing items.

Then her daughter shows up with a cranberry jersey cardigan she found on sale. "I thought of you." 
That's twenty-three. 

Will she give in and wear blue jeans during the next eight weeks? Oh, probably. So make it twenty-four, she thinks. Like an Advent calendar.

And then she drops into the thrift store and finds a multicoloured skirt for three dollars.

And that makes twenty-five. Like Christmas.

And outdoors?

Those things aren't really part of the story, but yes, she has a warm jacket, snow boots, mittens, a muffler, and a knitted hat. (This is Canada.)

 New addition: thrifted wool-blend jacket. It doesn't go well with the reds, but it does perk up the greys.



Vintage brooch from a flea market
Thrifted earrings
Miscellany of pinks and purples


This one was her first choice (dark red and blue-grey).

This shawl is also very nice, although too large and fancy for everyday wear.

And she adds a few others.


Awhile back, she bought a vintage grey beret.

While she liked the idea of wearing a beret, that particular one made her feel like she was wearing a mushroom on her head. So she switched it out for a bought-new one with a softer feel.


She also has a burgundy hat that she thrifted a couple of years ago.


Shoes, after the snow arrives, aren't a big priority for her: when she's at home, it's socks, and when she's not, it's water-and-snow-proof footwear.  
But it's nice to have a couple of pairs lined up just in case.


Most of her purses would work with the clothes on the list. 

Thinking About Outfits

She comes up with about twenty basic outfits, without any accessories. Repeat three times, and we're good until New Year's. 

White or garnet t-shirt, pull-on pants or jeans 
Hoodie, t-shirt, pull-on pants or jeans 
Green t-shirt, jeans
Green shirt, any jeans, add grey cardigan
Green shirt, grey turtleneck, grey jeans
Lavender turtleneck, any pants, grey cardigan
Grey turtleneck, any pants or short black skirt, add cardigan or pullover
White shirt, any jeans or wool pants, add grey or red/grey cardigan
Black top, black skirt or black/grey jeans, add any cardigan
Cranberry pullover, any jeans or wool pants, add grey cardigan 
Teal pullover, white or green shirt or t-shirt, any pants
Grey dress, poncho sweater, tights or leggings
Teal pullover, short black skirt or multicoloured skirt, tights
Cranberry pullover, short black skirt or multicoloured skirt, tights
Teal dress, grey cardigan, tights or leggings
Teal dress, teal pullover, tights
Grey dress, tights or leggings
Grey dress, grey/red cardigan
Grey dress (as top), short black skirt or multicoloured skirt, tights
Grey dress, cranberry cardigan, tights
Teal dress (as top), long black skirt, tights
Teal dress, tights or leggings

A Sampling of Outfits

Here's what some of the outfits look like with accessories. (She does NOT really wear hats quite this often.)

1. Garnet t-shirt, black jeans, knitted hat, socks
2. Hoodie, t-shirt, pull-on pants, warm socks
3. Grey dress, poncho sweater, leggings, warm socks
4. Cranberry pullover, grey turtleneck, any jeans, necklace
5. Teal pullover, green shirt, grey jeans, bracelets, earrings, purse
 6. Green t-shirt, grey jeans, scarf, brooch, beret, purse
7. Green shirt, blue jeans, grey cardigan, necklace, earrings
8. Lavender turtleneck, wool pants with belt, grey cardigan, brooch, purse
9. Grey turtleneck, short black skirt, belt, scarf, hat, purse
10. White shirt, wool pants, red/grey cardigan, necklaces, hat
11. Black top, black jeans, cranberry cardigan, jewelry, hat
12. Cranberry pullover, multicoloured skirt, grey cardigan, necklace, purse
13. Teal pullover, short black skirt, tights, scarf, beret, purse
14. Cranberry pullover, short black skirt, tights, brooch
15. Teal dress, grey cardigan, tights or leggings, necklace, purse, ankle boots
Or the slightly sillier version
16. Grey dress (as top), multicoloured skirt, tights, necklaces, purse
17. Grey dress, cranberry cardigan, tights, necklace, purse
18. Teal dress (as top), long black skirt, tights, scarf or jewelry (From a previous story)
19. Black top, black skirt, tights, scarf, purse
Version One
Version Two
20. Wool/silk scarf worn as shawl, teal jersey dress, necklaces, tights, boots. (From a previous story)

Last updated November 2, 2021


The Vivenne Files said...

As always, you have done a beautiful job with your wardrobe! The colors are perfect for this time of year, and the array of outfits will see you through pretty much anything except a black-tie ball, or a rugby match (as a player!).

Big hugs from snow-envious Chicago,

Mama Squirrel said...

Thank you so much! No ambitions to play rugby here (and not likely to be doing black-tie parties either). No snow here yet, but rumor has it we might get some flakes in Hallowe'en.