Thursday, February 16, 2012

5 Pieces to Perk Up Your Winter Wardrobe (and Bring It Into Spring)

In yesterday's post, Kissing the Winter Wardrobe Doldrums Goodbye, I showed you some of the ways I've been incorporating some typically springy pieces into my winter wardrobe to change up my look a bit and take it from drab and dreary to bright(er) and cheery(er).

In keeping with that theme, I spent some time on creating 5 sets built around 5 pieces that we can add to our wardrobes now, that will give us some freshness for late winter, and then take us right into spring.   

I think you'll find these five pieces are easy to find in a wide variety of styles and sizes, and at pretty much every price point:

  1. a neutral trench 
  2. a bright sweater (or several) 
  3. a lace or ruffled skirt 
  4. colored denim jeans (or white - No need to wait until after Easter anymore!) 
  5. and a crisp print shirt (again, the more the merrier)   

If you've got these 5 pieces already, dust them off and start wearing them, for heaven's sake!  If not, then, sigh, I guess you have a little bit of shopping to do.  

You're very welcome.

You'll see that I've set these up so that the each of the five highlighted pieces, circled in in the middle of  its group, is styled for winter on the left, and for spring on the right.  This should make it easy for you to see how each piece will work starting today, and then how it will move easily into warmer weather for you.  Take a look!

Winter to Spring 1

Winter:  Darker colors and patterns, chunkier textures, warmer fabrics, even a scarf will not only keep you warm under a trench, but make its lighter tone and weight really pop.  Of course it'd also be fab over a sweater dress with a contrasting infinity scarf and a tall boot with tights or leggings.

Spring:  Let that same trench coat float airily over a simple dress and a fun colored pump.  Easy, elegant, and warm for cool spring mornings and evenings.  If you dare, you could even try a shorter trench over distressed denim shorts and a simple t-shirt (with a statement belt or shoe), just make sure not to button it up, or someone might confuse you for a flasher!

Winter to Spring 2

Winter:  A bright cardi shows its true colors with a dark underpinning like this black polka dot blouse.  Dark wash jeans and a suede boot complete the look.   Or try it over your winter version little black dress with a wide belt and those same boots.

Spring:  Lighter layers beneath, like a fun eyelet top, and something short and flirty below.  Or wear your cardigan buttoned up and belted over a maxi dress with a big wedge-heeled sandal.  Super dramatic!
Winter to Spring 3

Winter:  I totally love the idea of a light and breezy lace skirt paired with a chunky wool sweater.  I don't show it here, but a chambray shirt and bold tights would be adorable with this too.  Or try the skirt with your black wool blazer and a riding boot.  YUM.

Spring:  Go retro and toss it on with a print tee or tank and a denim jacket (that's Deborah Harry on the tank above, so perfect for the 80s look).  Or you could dress it up with great-fitting cotton sweater, a clean, tailored belt and an elegant neutral pump.

Winter to Spring 4

Winter:  Pair colored jeans with navy or grey on top to balance the boldness. I'm loving Oxfords now with the skinny pants styles. You could also do these with a longer, draped sweater in a neutral and a long-sleeve tee underneath.

Spring: I've seen these pants styled so many ways for spring! The possibilities are endless, but in keeping with a cleaner look (which might make those of you who feel you are too OLD for colored denim more comfortable), a silk shell and a cute neon cardigan would really give them some elegance. Or sneakers, a graphic tee and a big men's watch for a funkier feel.  I'm going to wear them both ways, old or not!

Winter to Spring 5

Winter: A cute button-up shirt is a classic mate to a wool jacket, and gives you a chance to play with patterns and colors in a subtle way. Here I've got it with denim jeans and a wedge-heeled boot, but you could easily team it up with a pullover v-neck sweater and a casual skirt, tights and flats for a quick and easy go-to Momiform, as well.

Spring: I'm looking forward to rolling up the sleeves of my button-ups and just putting them on with my white jeans and a cute pair of wedges. You could also put one on over a simple dress and tie it at the waist, or pair it with a contrasting colored tank and a capri or cigarette pant. These shirts can do whatever a jacket or cardi can do, but if you buy them fitted, they do it with heightened structure and a very crisp feel.

And that's my take on brightening things up for the home stretch of winter and being a few steps ahead in preparations for spring trends!  

Hope these five pieces and my ideas of how to style them give you a little inspiration to perk things up as we gut out the next month or two and then bid a happy hello to some beautiful spring weather.   Enjoy!

(If you want to know where you can find any of the items shown above, click on the image and you'll be directed to, and there you can see stores, prices and links.) 

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  1. So fun! I hope to buy white and colored denim for spring.

  2. love it - what a great way brighten up your winter look while preparing for spring!

    I've been playing on Polyvore myself lately! I like playing with the clothes I have in my closet, I'm trying to figure more outfits out witout trashing my room :-) Do you know how im import your own pictures onto Polyvore? Laura

  3. Well LOOK AT YOU with the fancy Polyvore fun! LOVE IT. Love, love, love. Sister, I think you have found your NICHE. This is awesome. You know I have to pin it.

  4. Amen..I wear my white jeans ALL winter long and LOVE THEM. Looking for some fun colored denim for Spring...bright green seems to be calling my name. GREAT BOARDS!!! they are all fabulous. Following via twitter and stopping by from Fashion Friday.

  5. amazing post!! i'm so in love with colored denim!

  6. I just ordered some new brites to freshen up my wardrobe (and hoping they arrive in time for Blissdom!) - I got a couple color sweaters and belts, and a cute dress. Oh and I bought yellow shoes the other day. Love them!