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Wednesday 20 October 2021

Capsule Dressing Made Easy - and Link-Up

 Gail Hanlon from Is This Mutton-the over-50s style blog-in Chloe jacket, v neck top, infinity scarf and belt by Kettlewell and Cavendish skirt by Boden

Dear friends. I was very shocked when my winter clothes came down from the loft a couple of weeks ago. Four large bags, and there were already quite a few winter clothes already taking up space in my wardrobe, Mr Mutton's wardrobe, and the downstairs coats cupboard.  

Over the last few months I've been building a colourful wardrobe of clothes from Kettlewell in my colours  (Winter), which should last me for several years.  It now takes up one half of my wardrobe.  And Mr Mutton then issued an edict that my coats Had To Go.  From his wardrobe, at least.

So I became very ruthless, putting aside  anything that was the wrong colour and anything I hadn't worn for a year.  I've even started to get rid of some of my quirky shoes because I can't wear heels any more  (boots give more support so are still fine). 

My Kettlewell wardrobe is a perfect capsule collection, because every colour goes with each other. Winters are supposed to have a lot of contrast and I found this difficult at first.  Red with pink?  Bright blue with bright pink?  But now I enjoy experimenting.

I was never keen on the idea of a capsule wardrobe before because I was a maximalist, particularly on holiday.  I could never do carry-on, except for a one night stay. 

But now I find it quite liberating.  And it focuses the mind on:  where are the gaps in my wardrobe? And what do I have too much of?   I certainly didn't need several "fancy" coats, the wool or cashmere type which seldom work in our rainy climate. I also got rid of a couple of patterned cotton shirts. They were lovely but the buttons used to gape across the bust and I always felt the stiff cotton made me look boxy. I prefer softer fabrics. 

Knowing which colors work for you means you can build an effective capsule wardrobe where all the colors go together.  Gail Hanlon in short tie wrap and scoop top by Kettlewell Colours.

The other thing is, the way I dress has changed.  I've heard this from a lot of women.  I'm only going to the office once or twice a week and the rest of the time I'm in athleisure.  I used to go to glamorous events in my previous job but that ship has sailed. I may not even need a glamorous party frock for Christmas because it's unclear if there will be an office party. Plus I kept a couple of LBDs,  winter being the only season, in theory, that can carry off black! 

My Kettlewell wardrobe is perfectly suited to the office, where I don't like to look too casual. The sweaters, soft sweatshirts, beanies and silky roll necks are great for winter walks. Meanwhile, adding some jewellery, colourful boots or an infinity scarf means I can easily put together an outfit for an evening out or trip to an art gallery. 

The outfits shown here are all based on Kettlewell except for the skirts. The navy skirt at the top is new, the Cavendish skirt from Boden. The circle print skirt is around 10 years old, also from Boden. The grey trousers are very old from M&S. 

A Holiday Capsule

I tried capsule dressing on holiday back in July - below - and it actually worked! We went to a lovely hotel in the Lake District. For the evening dinners, which are a little formal,  I took  a few Kettlewell pieces which I was able to mix and match, plus just one pair of trousers and one pair of shoes (in addition to my hiking boots and trainers). The Kettlewell clothes rolled up, didn't get creased, and gave me enough variety.  Previously, I would have taken a different outfit for each night with several pairs of shoes. 

The icing on the cake 

Those you in the UK will be familiar with the logistical difficulties in taking a lot of bags to a charity shop. Where I live they're all in shopping streets where you can't park. So I was thrilled to find a charity collection service, I Collect Clothes,  which called by to pick up my bags.  You choose from their list of charities, or let them decide.  In the end there were six bags  (I had already accumulated three bags over lockdown) plus two boxes of books.  As I watched it go, I, and the house, felt lighter.  There's a lot to be said for getting rid of what we don't need. 

Cherry red, silver and grey worn by Is This Mutton blogger Gail Hanlon, all by Kettlewell Colours

Do you go through the same process with your winter and summer turnaroumds? Has lockdown changed how you dress? Do let me know in the comments. 

No items were gifted for this post and no affiliate links were used. 

Sharing this post with:  Beauty by Miss L, On Mondays We Link Up at Glass of Glam, Top of the World Style at High Latitude Style, Chic & Stylish at Mummabstylish, #SpreadTheKindness at Shelbee on the Edge, #AnythingGoes at My Random Musings, Thursday Moda at Elegance and Mommyhood, Turning Heads Tuesday at Elegantly Dressed and Stylish,  Style with a Smile  at StylesplashTFF at Doused in PinkLizzie in Lace Confident Twosday at IDoDeclaireRena at Fine WhateverFabulous Fridays at Lucy Bertoldi, #Neverendingstyle at The Grey Brunette #TheWednesdayLinkUp at Claire Justine, Fancy Friday at Nancy's Fashion StyleStyle Six at This Blonde's Shopping Bag Happiness is Homemade at Life as a Leo Wife 

Now it's time for #WowOnWednesday - the link-up where readers find new blogs to read, and bloggers find new readers. 

Last Week's Favourites

How to Wear a Sweatsuit by Rosemary at Distinctly Southern Style

French and California Inspired Fall Wardrobe by Jennifer at Curated by Jennifer. The skirt featured below is the Cavendish by Boden, which I'm wearing in the top picture! 

5 Natural Ways to Combat Stress by Shelbee of Shelbee On the Edge

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