Now that it’s December I’m thinking of layers of all sorts. Sometimes I dream of the chocolatey, fudgey, mocha, whipped creamy layers in concoctions like this one. A small ‘sliver’ wouldn’t upset the fitness regimen too much. Would it? Of course when you pile that ‘sliver’ on top of tourtière, roast turkey and stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, mincemeat tarts, and other seasonal fare… I might have to crank up the exercise bike a notch or two. Or ski a couple of extra hours a week… or a day. Ha.
All those pastry and gooey layers tend to add up to an extra layer of… well… me. Sigh. Which makes me really glad that it’s beginning to look a lot like this around here. For two reasons. The first is that we can ski now. And cross-country skiing is just about the most perfect form of exercise. And the second is that it’s cold. And when it’s cold I start thinking in terms of layers of another sort. The kind that keep me warm. And which also conveniently hide any accumulated evidence of Christmas baking debauchery.
Our view of the river, now that winter is here.
For a few weeks now, I’ve been collecting shots of layered outfits on my Pinterest board. Outfits that appeal to me and which I think are chic and sensible. I love the look, below, from Elle.com which I found here on the blog Closet Full of Clothes. The soft brown coat, camel blazer, and dark brown fur actually makes me think of chocolate mousse cake. Yum. And it’s one of the few outfits in the myriad of “how to layer” posts I found that involve honest to goodness cold weather conditions.
You’d be surprised how many articles, and posts, and Instagram photos there are that purport to show the reader or viewer how to dress in layers for winter. Some of them are silly, and involve models in open-toed shoes, gauzy skirts, bare ankles, no gloves, sleeves as gloves… you name it. But some of them are lovely, chic, and sensible. And give me ideas for pairing pieces I already own. Like this cozy outfit from Le fashion.com. White tunic, comfy loose-fitting mock turtleneck, leather trousers, and boots. I love the beige sweater with black and crisp white. I could totally do this look.
So I hauled out my black leather trousers, and paired them with my white silky Vince turtleneck, this camel cashmere and wool turtleneck that I bought at Aritzia last year, and my new Stuart Weitzman boots. The Vince t-neck hangs an inch or so below the sweater in front (except not in this shot, I notice) and a couple of inches longer in the back.
My version of the Le Fashion.com look.
I chose to use a silky turtleneck as my base layer instead of a shirt, like in the Elle.com photo. Mostly because the t-neck fits closer to the body and thus will be warmer. And also because it’s easy to slip a heavy sweater over the silky fabric. That’s basic layering theory folks. Base layer close to the skin + insulating or mid-layer that is a bit looser and traps air. I really love this Aritzia sweater. The shape is boxy enough to hide any evidence of Christmas over-indulgence, and loose enough to serve as a great mid-layer.
See? Silky base layer, looser mid-layer.
And it’s also slim enough to slip under a light winter coat, like my brown Max Mara coat which I bought way back in the fall of 2010. In Canadian Winter Layering Techniques 101, one’s outer layer is usually for wind and rain protection. But since I’m not going skiing or winter camping in this get-up, I’m not too bothered about wind protection. Or worried about getting wet. So I donned my chocolate brown, vintage beret with my Max Mara coat and brown gloves. Maybe, just maybe, I’ll get out of the house with the outfit intact this time. And not chicken out and leave the hat behind.
All layered up, and ready to go.
I do love this vintage beret. The Bakelite brooch that came in the hat is the exact shade of the coat. But sadly, as you know…. I’m mostly all hat talk… and little hat action.
Hoping to make it out the door with my hat still part of the outfit.
If you think that my camel sweater looks familiar… you’d be right. I actually featured it on the blog last year, in this post. And I just checked. The sweater is still available on the Aritzia website, if you’re at all interested. Now, speaking of outer layers that protect against getting wet. I should have had an outer layer on my bottom when I attempted to take this shot on our deck. The little pile of snow on the bench which had melted in the sun was a bit cold on the butt when I sat down. Amazing how leather pants are not, in fact, waterproof.
Ah ah ah… that’s cold.
So ’tis the season for layers of all sorts. Edible layers. Wearable layers. And unwelcome, but hopefully cover-up-able, layers. Which will be dispatched forthwith by hours and hours of skiing. Hopefully.
Now, I’m going to wrap up this post… wrap up in my layered outfit… and go finish my Christmas shopping. Meanwhile I leave you with this delightful little video. About wrapping up.
How about you, folks? Do you have to wrap up this time of year where you live? Are you fond of layering?
High Heels in the Wilderness is for women like me. Women who love clothes. And books. Who dream of travelling to amazing places. Who want to explore their own lives, and their own potential, now that they aren't twenty (or even forty) anymore.