I have a new method of deciding what I will wear, folks. When I plan to wear something besides sweatpants, that is. I’m calling it intentional dressing. Which is just a pretentious way of saying that I plan to make some rules for myself and stick to them. Hopefully. More or less. Ha. You can’t get any more definite than that, now can you?
So the deal is that I “intend” to wear those “problem pieces” I identified in my fall wardrobe review. Pieces that I just wasn’t wearing enough for whatever reason. I’m going to set aside a week for each piece. And the rule is that every time I leave the house to go anywhere, except for walking or cycling, I will style that piece using my closet “regulars” and wear it. This week was camel Adrienne Vittadini jacket week.
Until last January, this old jacket had been hanging in a garment bag, in my storage closet since the nineties. I bought it on a shopping trip to Montreal with a friend. I remember clearly the afternoon I discovered the Adrienne Vittadini boutique in the old Ogilvy’s store on Montreal’s Sainte-Catherine Street and felt as if I’d arrived at my spiritual-sartorial home. My oh my, I’d never been in a store that so completely met my wardrobe dreams. And that so completely emptied my bank account. But I told you about that adventure in a post last winter. You can read all about my “indulgent years” here if you’re interested. I wore this jacket with the matching skirt, and with other skirts, and with my jeans for years. Then big, menswear-inspired jackets went out of style, so I put it away.
Last winter I hauled the jacket out for a post I wrote on jewellry. And since over-sized, menswear-inspired jackets were on trend again, I thought I’d show my old blazer some love. But this year it became a problem piece because of my white hair. Camel doesn’t look great next to my face anymore.
But, what if I tried it with a scarf that has a cool pink in the pattern? And pull in the green in the scarf with my Everlane long-sleeve tee, which so exactly matches the green in the scarf it’s scary. Then add some Frame boot-cut jeans, and my brown Paul Green ankle boots (similar)? I love this outfit. Partly because it utilizes my old and much-loved jacket, partly because I love it on me. And partly because it so totally is a re-envisioning of the kind of outfits I’ve loved since high school. Jeans, boots, jacket… forever… it would seem.
So I was all set to wear this outfit to drive to Kanata to pick-up my order from The Unrefined Olive, and then head for a takeout coffee. But when I got into the car, the belt dug into my ribs; I am very short-waisted. And it was too warm to wear the scarf wrapped around my neck. And I was just too darned uncomfortable. So I whipped back inside, removed the belt, untucked the tee, and unwound the scarf. And, I’m afraid to say, hauled on my khaki suede jacket instead of the camel blazer. I know. Good intentions were not enough. See proof of my flouting my own rules below.
I had one more outing this week. And thus one more chance to wear my camel jacket. This time I wore it with my black, pull-on, Liverpool “Gia Glider” skinny jeans. These jeans are so very comfortable. I also wore my Stuart Weitzman ankle boots and an old slouchy black cotton turtleneck. It’s funny how I love some of my turtlenecks more the older they get. This one is stretched out and not good for skiing anymore, but looks great with skinny jeans because it has lost its clinginess. I tucked it in a bit at the front. No belt this time. I pinned one of my favourite vintage brooches to my lapel, a black cameo I bought at the Merrickville Antique Fair eons ago. And carried my new AllSaints cross-body bag with this old Michael Kors grey animal print scarf.
After I dressed, I went outside to take photos of my outfit on our deck. I was happy with the way these jeans looked with the jacket, and how the grey scarf and bag softened the black and camel contrast. And just happy period. Because I was off for an outing to get my hair done, and have a lengthy chat with Carmen. And it was a beautiful day.
Then I realized that I was standing in the middle of squirrel highway. One very energetic red squirrel, with a ginormous nut in his mouth approached, enroute from front yard to back yard. Whoa. He changed direction in quick order. And as he, or she, pelted around the side of the house, I heard Hubby quip, “Oh yeah. Of course he’s heading straight for the shed. Looking for stray gloves no doubt.” Sigh. It’s hard to take serious fashion photos with all these interruptions, you know.
So, this outfit is definitely a keeper. I love it. Carmen did too. I’m not sure what the squirrel thought.
And I guess “Intentional Dressing: Week One” has been 50% successful. I wore my camel blazer once instead of twice. But at least I have two outfits I love, all styled, and ready to throw on at a moment’s notice. No need to ponder how I will wear my old jacket with my new hair. And that’s good. My next “problem” piece will be my charcoal Vince coat sweater. That will be an easy one. That sweater goes with everything.
But that post will have to wait for a couple of weeks. Hubby and I are going hiking tomorrow for a few days. We were due to leave for Africa in week or so. And we’re consoling ourselves with a few days of hiking. So the only intentional dressing I will be doing is layering for warmth: long-underwear, waterproof pants, turtleneck, fleece, my Gortex jacket, gloves, warm hat, hiking boots… you know. Keeping my head, and hands, and butt toasty while we explore some trails we’ve never been on before.
I’m quite looking forward to our adventure.
How about you my friends? Do you have any problem pieces that you might target for a little intentional outfit love? Tell us all about them. We love to talk clothes around here.
P.S. The clothing links in this post are affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking my link, I will earn a commission.