Mom Style: Winter Edition

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

I wasn't sure if I wanted to bother writing this post, because there are so many real style bloggers who do this better than I do...  But then I remembered that I get more ideas from seeing real outfits from regular bloggers than from the style bloggers, so I figured maybe I'll give it another try and maybe inspire one or two of you?

When I think "Winter Style" I'm immediately drawn to big chunky sweaters, wool skirts, boots, and scarves.  But here's the thing about big chunky sweaters: They're too hot for me and they tend to get pilly after I wear them often.  And here's the thing about wool skirts:  You have to dry clean them.  Nuh uh.  Ain't happening.  I've had a dry cleaning pile on my floor for at least a month that isn't going anywhere.

And I just don't want to buy items to add to my wardrobe that are really only going to be useful for a couple of months.  I hate having clothes in my closet that I can't use most of the time, so I'm all about using as much of my wardrobe year-round as possible.

Cold weather has been upon us in Virginia for a while, but I have to admit it doesn't get *that* cold here.  That being said, I spent 4 years in Chicago when I was in college so I know cold.  And I have come to the conclusion that it is absolutely possible to stay warm wearing nothing but skirts and dresses.  It's just a matter of layering.  I'll be honest - it takes more effort than just putting on a pair of jeans.  But I feel so much better than if I were in one of my ill-fitting pairs of denim!

Here are some of my favorite outfits for winter weather (in Virginia) - all of them have stood up to temperatures below freezing, and most all of them to temperatures down to about 10 degrees - it doesn't really get much colder than that here!  And the majority of these articles are also spring/summer/fall staples as well.

Bare knees don't work for cold, but the denim jacket is such a great staple - so glad I finally found a perfect one!  It ended up being $2 because I used coupons and credits from Twice

Same chambray shirt that was a summer staple - still works great for fall and winter!

This sweater was an awesome find - I wear it all the time!  The skirt is one of the only new items of clothing I've bought since at least May, and it was well worth it - a great staple that's going to last a long time.  Boot cuffs were hand-crocheted by my sister!

I don't have a lot of long-sleeved shirts, but I find myself reaching for this burgundy one pretty often.  It's one of the few things I own that isn't blue!

I just had to include this one because of the photo bombers!
A lightweight summer dress with layers under and over - totally works for winter!
So I've found that I'm reaching for the same items every day, and have a kind of "capsule" winter wardrobe that works really well for mixing and matching:

2 knee-length dresses (often styled as skirts)
2 cardigans (striped and burgundy, which isn't pictured)
4 scarves
3 belts
2 pairs of shoes (boots and wedges)
1 denim jacket
4 skirts (denim, full chambray, olive khaki, and high-waisted chambray - maxi skirts are out until snow is off the ground!)
3 long-sleeved shirts (burgundy, chambray, and blue button-down)
2 sweaters
2 short-sleeved shirts
2 pairs tights
2 pairs leggings
2 pairs boot socks

Not counting undergarments, that's 31 items - I've got more than make their way into the rotation since I'm not limiting myself, but I'm perfectly happy with the variety I get with what I have.  And I feel like I'm not constantly looking for *more* clothes - I can mix and match my wardrobe now so much more than before I started being more intentional about how I dress, so I get a LOT more outfits out of fewer articles of clothing.

Check out my WIWS  posts for more weekly fashion inspiration!


  1. Love this! (can I say that even though I'm not a mom?) My wardrobe consists heavily of blues as well and, even though I am deliberately trying to add some warmer colors to the mix, I love the blues and burgandies paired with scarves as well. :)

    God bless!

  2. Great outfits!! And, your style does inspire keep on posting! :)

    1. Thanks, Amelia! The only problem is finding time to take pictures, plus certain children want to be in every photo :P

  3. When I saw you had posted this I had to click right away! I really like all your outfits. I'm trying to figure out how to modify them for here where it gets down well below zero...more layers I suppose?? I had to laugh when you said you had very few long sleeved shirts...I am always cold except in the hottest part of the summer so I can't imagine not having many long sleeved things! : )

    1. Yeah, I'm guessing long sleeves (and maybe even long underwear!) layered under everything, plus thick socks (maybe even thigh-high?) paired with tights would work? I honestly don't leave the house much when it gets under 10 degrees or so - it's just so hard to bundle up all four kids and get them into car seats, especially since 3 of them can't even buckle/unbuckle themselves!

      The concept of puffy vests also appeals to me a lot, but then I'm worried that I'll just look fat...

  4. Love these outfits Rosie! My sister just gave me a chambray shirt that I can't wait to pair with a skirt and boots like you did! Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. I get so much inspiration from your style posts; keep them coming!!

  6. Oh! This is SO helpful! Thankyouthankyouthankyou!!!

  7. I love this!! I definitely layer clothes to make them last year round, too. Do you do tights? Any recommendations?

  8. Rosie, this is a great post! It's true, you can stay warm in skirts and dresses no matter the weather. I live in New England, but I wear skirts and tights in the winter and sometimes I think I stay warmer when I'm dressed like that than when I wear jeans.

    You really do have a great sense of fashion, and you look wonderful in all of these outfits. And the way you mix and match your pieces is inspiring. I think we all tend to have more things in our closets than we really need.

    1. I was thinking the same thing the other day! When I was in Chicago for school it DEFINITELY got colder than it does in Virginia, but I don't know that I was *that* much warmer with long underwear layered under jeans - tights and thick socks really do work well, plus I think that skirts in more substantial fabrics are able to withstand the wind a little better than pants, because no wind is getting between your legs.

      Thanks for your thoughts!

  9. So here's a question - do you wear shoes in your house? I feel warm when I'm out somewhere with boots over my leggings/tights, but I end up have super cold ankles/legs if I'm home all day...maybe I need new thick socks? What do you do?

    1. I wear slippers a lot of the time so that I don't get runs in my tights, or I wear socks over them if they're too thin (or I'm wearing leggings). But yeah, no bare feet at home during the winter! I actually took my slippers off today for the first time in a while and the babies were astonished by my toenails (with the remnants of August's pedicure), which reminded me that I never have bare feet anymore :P

  10. lol, my dry cleaning pile has been lying around for - literally - years! These outfits all look great. I really need to work on my winter wardrobe!

  11. Super-cute! I don't like being cold, but I infinitely prefer my cold weather wardrobe (scarves, sweaters, corduroy, sweater tights, leggings, boots, etc.), and I agree that layering provides lots of ways to vary the look. I have 2 knee-length corduroy skirts that are my go-to items, because I can wash them! And Ps- you; re so tiny, I think it would be impossible for you to look fat, even in a puffy vest. For the record, though, some are just Michelin-man, TOO puffy, but I bet you could find a more tailored, even quilted one, that would be cute and warm.

    1. I know, you can add a lot more variety when it's colder! I really wish I could find nice corduroy skirts - I got one from ThredUp but it ended up being too big and looking really frumpy, so I sent it back :/

  12. Sigh. I need a shopping buddy because I fail time and again when I try to construct flexible wardrobes from a few staples. I LOVE the second outfit. Boots and shirt, especially.

  13. You always look so cute! I love your wardrobe posts and I took your advice and ordered a skirt from eshakti and I can't wait for it to get here!


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