My Mom Uniform Lately & A Fall/Winter Capsule Wardrobe Update

(Photo credit above: Julie Rings Photography)

Since moving to the PNW, my mom uniform has consisted of Look A (1st photo) on rainy days and Look B (2nd photo) on dry days. The only difference? My jacket. These are my essentials: a playful wool hat that covers me ears, winter-weight wool leggings (thicker than regular leggings), my Vivobarefoot boots, wool socks, wool base layer, a fleece mid-layer jacket, and a shell jacket or parka. Nothing glamorous, of course, but these days I am after comfort and warmth. I wear those leggings every single day or black jeans when the leggings are in the wash. Wearing the same thing every day has made my life easier and I do less laundry, but it does get boring. I am hoping that once I start working out, finally wean Paloma, and get a job (working on that), I can invest in some more winter pieces to switch things up a bit.

Here is what I think would make a great PNW Fall/Winter Wardrobe. Check out my Pinterest board for examples here.

1. A weatherproof shell jacket -- I got one from Sierra Trading Post that is lightweight and packable. It is super versatile for year-round rain but will work (with base and mid layers) when I go skiing too.
2. A knee-length wool overcoat -- I like a couple I have seen from Everlane and Ibex, but I will hold off on this purchase.
3. A water-resistant insulated parka -- I like a proper winter parka (that covers my bottom) for being cozy on cold, dry days. The one I have is one my mom left behind after she visited in December (thanks, mama!) which was inexpensive but works just fine in our Seattle-area climate. I suppose if I lived in Wisconsin I would need something more technical or substantial (read: expensive) like one from Canada Goose or Patagonia or North Face. 
4. Leather jacket (for fall and spring)
5. 1 or 2 recycled polyester fleece or wool jackets or cardigans (zip or button) from Ibex, Prana, or Patagonia that have a more feminine silhouette so that the garment looks great on its own not just under a shell jacket.

1. A merino wool base-layer top -- I have one that can be worn alone or would work great under layers for snow sports.
2. 2-3 merino wool tunics or sweater dresses to wear over leggings or tights
3. A chunky knit merino wool cardigan -- Everlane made one a few years ago that was the perfect cut and shape but the wool pilled like crazy, super disappointing. Still looking for the perfect, ethically made one.
4. Merino wool striped pullover sweater from Everlane -- it's dreamy (in photos, don't know it in person yet)!
5. Black fitted turtleneck (Everlane -- not sure if I want the pima cotton or merino wool one.)
6. Wool flannel plaid shirt from Ibex or United by Blue
7. 2-3 merino wool pullover sweaters in various silhouettes and knits

1. Weather-resistant joggers -- Love the happy hike studio pants from Patagonia.
2. 1-2 pairs cigarette pants in wool
3. Skinny jeans
4. Trail pants (for going on hikes with the family)
5. Shell pants or waterproof ski pants
6. Wool leggings

1. Weatherproof boots -- Love my Gobi boots from Vivobarefoot.
2. Slip-on ankle boots from Camper
3. Fun black and metallic sneakers by Onitsuka Tiger (not an ethical brand, but they some comfy sneaks!)
4. Leather ballet flats (for fall) from Soft Star Shoes

1. A couple of merino wool hats -- I like the one I have from Ibex, but a hot pink one from Everlane would be great to brighten things up since most of the time I am wearing very dark colors.
2. Wool tights and socks -- Darn Tough makes awesome socks with a lifetime guarantee (and Made in USA).
3. Merino wool and leather mittens

I had previously written a capsule wardrobe post and deleted it, so I pasted the good parts of it below...

A few years ago, I decided I wanted to work towards creating a capsule wardrobe. I am fascinated by the idea of a capsule wardrobe for many reasons: 

1. I like the idea of looking in my closet and seeing beautiful pieces that are easily put together into a variety of outfits for a variety of occasions. (i.e. I need it to be super easy to get dressed in the morning.) 

2. Creating a capsule wardrobe helps me focus my shopping so that I purchase with a purpose rather than on a whim. (That paisley top by X designer is 75% off retail?? Wow! I just have to have it! Um... no, no you don't. That was me. All the time. Discount stores kill me.)

3. A capsule wardrobe goes along with my lofty goal of having a more minimalist lifestyle. I don't need a closet full of clothes I never wear.

4. More focused clothes shopping helps me streamline my style since I have a tendency to be all over the place with looks that I love. (Just because I like a look doesn't mean that look would be flattering on me.) 

5. Finally, most capsule wardrobe items are more expensive because they are higher quality and made of durable fabrics (cotton, denim, wool, and silk) and will last longer (well, that's the idea), so I won't be tempted to purchase fast fashion. This is good for my pocketbook in the long run and also for Mother Earth.

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