Baby it’s cold outside: How to wear winter pieces

Oh, look, it’s 32 degrees in Central New York and I want to wear my comforter burrito-style.

Of course having jobs, and you know, being in public, that isn’t really smart or… normal. What IS normal is wearing warm and cozy clothing the entire season. Allow me to share with you what is fashionable and doable this season.


How to wear your cardigans

I love that cardigans went from the Sandra Dee button-down look to open fronts and boyfriend styles. Don’t get me wrong, I love them all! But wearing and layering them is a tricky game because they are all different.

  1. The Basic Button-Down.These are amazing because I wear them with trousers for work, with skinny jeans for casual outings and with nice joggers for a trendy look. They are usually solid colors and keep me warm with a cami, tank top or graphic t-shirt underneath.
  2. The Open-Front Cardigan. These are everywhere. The trick to wearing them and not looking frumpy or sloppy is balancing them out with skinny jeans or leggings. Boot-cut bottoms work, too, but be careful — the shape of the cardigan is open and can be seen as casual. Open cardigans are also a dream with dresses that fall just below them.
  3. Tie-Waist Cardigans. These are beautiful because the tie around the waist can flatter you and add a bit of dimension. They also work well with jeans, trousers, leggings, skirts, and dresses. Pretty much everything!
  4. The Boyfriend Cardigan. This one is tricky because it’s made with buttons down the front and usually comes as a V-neck. There is no belt and can often make one look boxy so if you have this one, it usually looks best unbuttoned. Try a collared button down shirt underneath and with skinny or fitted pants.


How to wear thigh high boots

No, not the “Pretty Woman” thigh highs held with a safety pin. We’re keeping it classy and trendy. Because I tend to be a little more conservative, I am always a fan of thigh high boots worn with skinny jeans and leggings. Suede and soft leather are gorgeous, just please, no vinyl or patent leather. I usually wear flat, suede black ones because heels and I do not agree. However, if you do pick a heel, the chunky ones are back. We don’t see stilettos out and frankly, I’d fear for your balance if they were worn out on icy “non-salted” pavement in the winter. The great thing about a low chunky heel or a flat boot is that they are super casual but have that stylish flair.


How to wear your flannels

I always think of two things when I see or wear flannels: the band Nirvana, and a farm. Though both are pretty neat, I choose colors that don’t make me think of either. It’s simple, really – I wear flannels with fitted bottoms but flannels really pop with dark blue, distressed gray or even black denim. White denim in the winter is white hot, too. I wear white all year round and this softens the busy pattern that flannels often have.


How to wear your joggers

These aren’t your mother’s sweatpants. Joggers are the updated version. They are loungewear but extremely trendy. If you have nice joggers, they deserve to be pulled together with nice sneakers, a fitted Henley or even a basic cardigan. Joggers usually are tapered at the ankle, may be form-fitting or a little loose, and low- or high-waisted. Joggers are not meant to be worn with any kind of boot unless they are fitted. Usually, if you wear them with, say, rainboots like Hunters or Sperry’s, the pants look bunchy around the knee and often look sloppy. Most teens and college kids struggling to stay awake can pull this look off. I can’t!


How to wear velvet

Here’s how to NOT wear it: head to toe. Pick a part, top or bottom. Velvet blazers are divine, so wear that with a beautiful top underneath, and some dark, clean, hole-free denim or dressy trousers. Velvet joggers, pants or skirts are everywhere, too, so start there and choose a complimenting top such as fitted cotton or cashmere. Depending on where you wear it matters too. Just don’t go for a velvet suit. You’re not handing out Golden Tickets.

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