Exploring My Fall Essentials

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So the other day, I’m minding my own business… doing some of my fall ‘research’ … reading some of my favourite fashion blogs. And I came across this post on Habitually Chic, in which Heather Clawson says she stumbled across this little video on Instagram. 

It’s a fashion shoot by Matches Fashion, called “The Essentials Shoot.” Have a look.

 

I was so taken with the video I passed it on to my friend and fellow fashionista, Joanne, and asked her for her thoughts.

Jo’s thoughts:

“I know how the model stays so skinny. She does a lot of stair repeats and outfit changes every morning before she leaves her house. And how come she can pull off a messy bun and look polished and I look like I just finished a 180 km bike ride, in the beating sun, and just pulled off my bike helmet when I try to do that?! Btw I loved the black blazer and the last coat she wore.
P.S. The fall Vogue is out! I’ve been adding extra arm curls to my weight routine so that I can pick it up in a store this week.”

Ah, Jo. She’s so funny. And the mention of the 180 km bike ride and the arm curls? These are not hypothetical examples… Jo does triathlons and iron men races. Or should that be iron women? You gotta love a woman who can complete an iron man race and then pick up Vogue on the way home, don’t you? Even if she didn’t love the video quite as much as me. 

Anyway, that little film started me dreaming… about my own wardrobe basics. Or “essentials” as Matches Fashion calls them. 

I know I eschewed white shirts in favour of blue ones in this post. But I never said I had ditched the white shirt entirely. I still have a “crisp, white shirt” from Theory in my closet. And although I have no stairs to run up and down, living in a bungalow as we do, I could toss it on with my Citizen of Humanity jeans and my Stan Smith sneakers.  I could do that. And I could throw a grey, summer cardigan over this. Or maybe instead of the white shirt, I’ll go for my white Vince t-shirt. I’m not sure if it qualifies as a “luxe t-shirt,” but I love it. And then I’d pull on a different “classic knit” from my closet. This red Banjo and Matilda cardigan is one of my favourites. It’s very lightweight, and good for early fall. When it gets cooler I’ll bring out my new Vince coat sweater.   

I watched the video once. And then I watched it again. And my, oh, my. I was a little bit hooked. Okay… a lot hooked. The spare interiors. The white everywhere. Those plank floors. That staircase. The clothes. The music. I loved it all. I must have watched it a dozen times. I wanted to crawl right into the scene and march around, up and down stairs to that fetching music, casually pulling on and shrugging off “classic knits” and “sharp black blazers” over my “luxe t-shirts” and “crisp white shirts.” And then spying some very important message on my i-phone, ditching them all for my “little black dress,” and my “forever chic heels” or my “standout stilettos.” And finally throwing on my “elegant coat” before I slipped out the door. Sigh.    

Vince t-shirt, Banjo and Matilda sweater, Citizens of Humanity jeans, Stan Smith Adidas

And I can surely do the “sharp black blazer.” My black Helmut Lang jacket is definitely a wardrobe essential. I’d trade my C of H jeans for these high-rise, Paige skinny jeans, keep the Vince t-shirt. And slip on these “forever chic heels.” Okay… so they’re not stilettos. But let’s get real, folks. I prefer to remain upright when I’m tooling about town, and I fear that my days of running in high heels are definitely behind me. Emphasis on “behind”… as in not wanting to land on it. Besides, I love these grey and black Stuart Weitzman shoes. In fact, I love Stuart Weitzman shoes period. They are one of only a few brands that are narrow enough for my very narrow feet. And a pointy toe, kitten heel is always chic, isn’t it?  

Helmut Lang jacket, Vince t-shirt, Paige high rise skinny jeans, Stuart Weitzman shoes

Or I might toss the scarf and the shoes and pull on my sneakers again. Roll up my sleeves and get… errand running, or shopping, or whatever. This is definitely a great fall, run-around, everyday “essential” look for me. I’d carry my gold Michael Kors tote or my new burgundy Mark Jacobs bag for a bit of colour. You can’t get much more “essential” than jeans, a white t-shirt, sneakers and a simple black jacket.  

Helmut Lang jacket, Vince t-shirt, Paige high rise skinny jeans, Stan Smith Adidas

Now back to that Matches Fashion video. I still love it. But I do see that that poor model changing her clothes umpteen times before she actually leaves the house is a bit silly. Not that we all haven’t done that at least once. And she does waltz up and down those stairs enough times to keep anybody thin…. thanks for pointing that out, Jo. And that all-white house, as dreamy as it is… is a bit too spare to be real.     

But, when you think about it, the overall idea in the video is economy, isn’t it? The economy of space in that house. The “economical” wardrobe: how few pieces that girl wore to create so many looks. And the confidence and insouciance that she exuded while she wore such simple pieces. And of course the seriously cool soundtrack.     

You see, here is what I love about that video. It made me see my own fairly “economical” closet as holding all the fall “essential” pieces one needs to be, if not necessarily totally insouciant, then at least confidently well dressed. I love websites like Matches fashion. Sure, I know the idea is to sell the clothing in the shoot. But isn’t it great when they can inspire you to do different things with stuff you already own? Now that’s what I call economical. And I haven’t even brought my new Vince Coat sweater into the mix yet. I’m so looking forward to that.    

Now I’m going to go see if I can find that song on i-tunes. It’s called “Miles from Minnesota” by the Lower 48. I’m imagining it as my new getting dressed theme song.     

Go ahead. Have another listen. This time without the clothes.

And while you’re listening… tell me…what are your fall essentials?

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51 thoughts on “Exploring My Fall Essentials”

  1. Thanks for sharing this Sue! Oh to live the simple life!,… and to look that good in everything! I really enjoyed the music too … maybe playing it will encourage me to be chilled and relaxed when getting ready to go out too 🙂 thinking about Fall essentials I m looking forward to wearing boots ..ankle and knee high, jeans, loose cashmere jumpers…..maybe over a shirt with a jacket or a trench coat and of course a scarf!
    Rosie

  2. I say the pointy toed kitten heel is always chic too! As are you!
    Such a catchy little song. If only I could live so simply. My fall essentials are pretty simple, more basics in great quality. I'm hankering for a long vest this fall. I did have a fabulous Ivan Grundahl one, that I must have lost in a move. I hate when that happens. Grrr.

    1. Love my pointy-toed kitten heels. Especially now with jeans…kind of a tough/lady-like look. Google…I have a love/hate relationship too. Especially when it doesn't like to play nice with my i-pad. Why can't they all just get along?

  3. Great video. She obviously has no roomates, or dogs who will steal those shoes to chew if left out…;-) Love all of your mixes, and it just goes to show how a few good simple pieces can be remixed almost infinitely. I'm still coveting your Helmut Lang jacket.

  4. I have more white in my decor than anything else so I melt at that interior, as well. And those fuscia/plumish heels? Oh my! Delicious. This was fun on many levels – a new song to download – all your pics with fall layers to inspire. Some of my fall essentials? ankle boots. leggings again. tunics. my denim jacket. scarves. And because I live in Oregon – a bright raincoat.

    1. I love the animal print scarf also, have been searching for one in gray and black. Can you share the details?

      Always look forward to reading your blog!!

    2. Thanks, Adele. I bought the scarf at Holt Renfrew several years ago…and cut the tags out…so no idea of make or brand. But I have an idea that it was one of Holts own brand.

  5. Cute video but honestly, I prefer your interpretation. Much more realistic in so many ways!
    Living out of a small case while drooling at fabulous fall displays is certainly helping me home my fall essentials. Jeans, taupe cashmere cardigan, black blazer all currently doing yeoman duty!

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  7. Enjoyed the matches video both for the fashion and Scandi style interior. Your own pictures continued the theme with colour and warmth. You have a great selection of basics and you style them very well. Like your take on chic economics and nice touch adding music clip! Iris

  8. Hi Sue, I so enjoy your blog – I consider it to be "Applied Fashion". You scan the magazines for us and show how the concepts can
    be interpreted for real life and real closets. I also appreciate how considered your purchases are – as a result you really seem to have a cohesive wardrobe of quality pieces – you always look great!
    Kim

  9. Like your style again . Thanks for introducing me to that song – now can you tell me how to get it out of my head ?
    Wendy (not) in York

  10. Fall essentials? Boots, sweaters and jeans! I just adore those Citizens of Humanity jeans on you. I beleive I'm due for a new pair myself… I might just head out to Aritzia this week 🙂

  11. First of all, i really enjoyed watching the video – thanks for sharing! Second, I love this post! It was so fun to see how you took the classic basics and by making small changes totally transformed the look. I need to do more of this. Thanks for the inspiration, Susan!

  12. I love a white shirt and jeans. Any white shirt.
    You've inspired me to shop my closet and copy your looks!
    All very classic!

    -ella

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