We don't go travelling much in the winter, but the opportunity might present itself. And of course there are the times you don't expect to have to go anywhere, but suddenly you do.
A recent Vivienne Files story showed how one might build a travel wardrobe as necessity requires and time permits, starting with a travel outfit of a heavy Fair Isle-patterned sweater, turtleneck, and black cords. (We will assume that the person would also be wearing an outdoor coat, hat, and gloves, and that if the snow or slush were anything much, that she'd switch the short boots for something more durable.)
Crocheted beanie, handmade. Gloves, gifted some time back.
I don't have a Fair Isle sweater, but I do have this Arnold Palmer pullover. (I found it in the men's section at the thrift store.)
Here's a closeup of the striped section. In this photograph, the background looks very grey; but in real life, the sweater has sort of a blue tone.
And here it is having its Vivienne Files moment, with a turtleneck and pants. All my cords were worn out by the end of last winter, but I do have some grey pinstriped jeans that would work. Also in the photo (as in the original story): short boots and a smallish purse.
"Vicky" waterproof boots by Wanderlust, found on sale
Now, says the VF story, even if you're not planning to stay overnight, you still might want to take along another turtleneck and a change of socks and shoes. Maybe even a change of jewelry. The story showed a grey turtleneck, which I have, under the ivory-patterned pullover. The problem is that this turtleneck, worn with the blue-ish pullover, is just okay, not great; but if we're going for practical, it will do.
At this point we're moving into an overnight stay, so (besides pajamas and underwear and those things) we add in an accent-colour pullover, plus a scarf, socks, and earrings. (All the jewelry is going to be shown separately, since it doesn't show up well in a larger photograph.)
Cashmere cowlneck sweater, found in a vintage booth a couple of years ago. The photo makes it look more rose than it really is--I would say it's more like lavender.
The next level of what-to-take includes an extra pair of pants, another scarf, and another pair of shoes if you think you might need them. Here we have a choice to make. Black, somewhat-worn jeans (on the left), or grey wool-blend slacks (on the right)?
That lighter shade of grey doesn't play nicely with the blue-grey pullover; and wool-blend slacks are a bit out of my travelling comfort zone. They're dressier than I usually need to be if I'm wearing pants. So the jeans win.
We're moving up to suitcase territory here, with a might-go-out-for-dinner dressy pale-blue (vintage) blouse, scarf, and earrings. Actually two scarves, because I can't make up my mind which works better.
The final two items of clothing in the VF story are a dress and a nice cardigan. Let's deal with the dress first. Again I'm making a choice: a grey sweater dress, or the grey Revolve dress from Encircled?
They can both be hiked up and down, so versatility is not so much of the issue here; but I choose the Revolve dress because it's a dressier fabric. Since I went with the jeans as a second pair of pants, if anything came up that did require something dressy, I'd probably want this one rather than the more casual sweater dress.
Now for the cardigan: you want one that goes with the turtlenecks, with the nice blouse, and that can be worn with the dress. Ideally it can even be worn on its own. I don't have anything that can take on all those jobs, but I do have a faux-suede dusty-blue blazer, so let's go with that instead of a knit sweater. It works with the blue blouse, and with the dress.
Some earrings, necklaces, and bracelets.
Husband's fedora, borrowed for the occasion (inspired by another VF story)
Evening bag. (And whatever larger totes or suitcases the clothes would be going into.)
Everything, all together. (Too many scarves, I know--in real life I'd choose just two or three.)
Is there anything else I'd want, clothes-wise? If I had a big enough suitcase?
I'm thinking about this v-neck linen pullover. You can't wear it by itself (unless you put a white camisole underneath); but it does work fine with shirts. With turtlenecks...well, it's okay, but it wouldn't be my first choice. I'd probably take a non-turtleneck t-shirt along to wear under it.
It can work with the dress, too.
If I were expecting more than one dress/skirt-wearing occasion on the trip, I would probably put in my black quilted mini-skirt (and tights).
And finally: I'd probably want a pair of pull-on pants, a pair of slippers, and a really comfortable cardigan that can also work as a bathrobe.
A few outfit ideas inspired by the Vivienne Files story
I think I could keep going in those clothes for quite awhile.
Last updated December 13, 2021
I really like the wardrobe you've put together here! Found your page after listening to your segment on The New Mason Jar. Hope you have a chance at a winter trip now that your wardrobe is ready!
Thanks, Beth! I'm glad you stopped by!
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