Kathleen is a “graduate” of my Bluprint video class about wardrobe development. She immediately started out to develop her perfect Capsule Wardrobe and I thought you’d like to peek in on her progress, especially since she was kind enough to share some terrific collages of her selections. Kathleen is an avid sewing enthusiast, but her process should be just as instructive and inspiring to readers who buy their clothing ready-made. Here is her styling story …
Step 1 – Kathleen has a casual lifestyle, so she began her new collection with a pair of ponte pants in dark-wash denim blue – sort of an refined jeans concept. It looks great paired with a shell and draped cardigan in caramel jersey. That pairing prompted her to add a caramel-colored topstitch detail to the pants, underscoring the jeans effect.
Her first shoe purchase was this casual pair that blend with her hair color … and the caramel tops as well. And the wonderful navy/caramel scarf – which had been languishing unworn in her scarf drawer for years – was the perfect linking accessory.
Step 2 – I happened to be teaching in Kathleen’s area, so we got together for a color consultation. The collage below is an “explosion” of her Color Fan, showing her neutrals, accent colors and best metallics – rose gold and a gold/silver mix. Don’t they all look yummy together? Who says everything goes with black and nothing goes with brown?
Notice how her color range include virtually every hue family – just not the typical “8-crayon box” versions. Her reds are softened and warmed. Her oranges are more peach-y than pumpkin. Her yellows are soft camels. Her muted greens have a hint of added yellow. Her blues are more teal and aqua than royal and her navy is dusted down a bit. Her purples are equally dusted and subtle.
Her dark neutrals are chocolate brown and caramel rather than so-called basic black. Her pale neutrals are rich cream and barely-blush.
Step 3 – Based on her new color information, Kathleen chose this assortment of fabrics and colors for additional pieces. Nearly every piece is a rayon/spandex blend so her garments will be comfortable 12 months of the year. Can you feel the natural harmony among the colors and between the colors and Kathleen? Notice that there are more solid colors than print and patterned pieces – that’s an important key to mix/match versatility.
Step 4 – Putting those solid colors together in unexpected combinations usually requires a linking accessory to make a combo really pop. So Kathleen added these 4 scarves to connect her outfits. (This much less artistic collage is mine, not hers. I only wish I has her flair in that department.)
Here’s an example of one of those scarves at work, linking this dusty aqua green with the caramel. It changes the whole look from drab and disconnected to exciting and integrated, doesn’t it?
Step 5 – Kathleen found this print that relates to her original denim and caramel pieces – and the additional separates she whipped up in those same colors – so a 2-piece dress was a natural addition to her wardrobe. And the necklace and earring set will make a perfect accent for all those combination, expecially when soaring summer tempertures make her scarf a less desirable option.
Who knows where her plan will go from here? But one thing is certain: she’s already becoming the best dressed woman in her social circle. We get to do that, you know. At any age, any lifestyle, any dress size or wardrobe budget … we’re entitled to SHINE!
We’d all love to see pictures of how YOU are shining these days. Or of your game plan to get there in the near future. Please share your story in the comments below.