Washington DC isn’t a city known for its winter wonderland, unlike northern or midwestern cousins New York or Chicago. And yet like so many other cities, due to unpredictable winter weather and the latest polar vortex (which feels like a phrase out of a B-grade Sci-fy film à la The Day After Tomorrow) it’s been a whole lot colder this year. Thanks to working from home many of us are staying cozy inside with our leggings and sweaters, and then wrapping up in all the layers to brave the trip to Trader Joe’s. But what happens when you need to look like an adult human woman rather than a walking pile of blankets?
We’ve been out of practice with the art of getting dressed, particularly the art of getting dressed in cold weather walking the fine line between frostbite and looking like a marshmallow. Even with a fashion blog, it’s one thing to style an outfit for photographs and another to stay warm and chic for hours and hours outside. So, I decided to challenge myself and shoot a look that did both. The stylish ladies of northern climates swear by layers, and in particular a cozy base. Tights can layer under midi skirts or jeans, for the fashionista, From Rachel has a fun selection of tights including the polka dot over the knee pair I’m wearing here. For true arctic temps, I recommend thermal tights like the Uniqlo Heattech tights. Then I layered with a white turtleneck, and leopard wrap midi skirt. Topped it all off with a long wool camel coat, a black wide brim hat, taupe booties from Sarah Flint and a black Furla crossbody bag to keep my hands free and warm in my pockets.
The best way to increase the cozy factor is to make sure items are made with naturally insulative fabrics materials like wool or alpaca. Ideally you want 50% or more in the blend. If you want a guide to reading clothing labels and and savvy shopping, I suggest checking out Andrea Cheong’s Mindful Mondays highlight. If your city only has the occasional cold snap, using Rent the Runway is a great way to supplement your winter wardrobe. For 40% off your first two months of their subscription program, use code RTRFAM5588702. It’s also an excellent for winter trips, après ski or if you need an extra cozy look to socially-distanced.
While we mostly discuss fashion here, I would be remiss to gloss over the impact of these winter storms, especially in Texas where millions remain without power or water. Further many are reliant on the efforts of mutual aid funds and charities to get them to safety, as the government at both a local and state level were either under resourced and underprepared or woefully inept and corrupt. I ask that if you’re able, consider donating to any of the following organizations working on the ground in Texas to provide aid. I have donated myself and hope you consider joining me.
- Austin Mutual Aid Fund Go Fund Me Venmo is @austinmutualaid
- Mutual Aid Houston Go Fund Me Venmo/CashApp is @mutualaidhou
- Trinity Mutual Aid Fund (San Antonio) Venmo/CashApp is @trinitymutualaid
- Feed the People Dallas Donation Page
- Austin Disaster Relief Network Donation Page
If you’re looking for more ways to help out, check out these posts on Instagram and this article from CBS News and this article from the New York Times which is also offering options to help out neighboring Oklahoma and Louisiana too.
Stay warm, stay chic!