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r (attempts to) build a capsule wardrobe

 
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r ranson wrote:Thinking about colours

As a weaver and dyer, I'm sure you understand the importance of "under-tones". I find it is the under-tones that decide if two different colours go together. At Christmas, people think of putting red and green together, but red can come in many different values - tending towards pink, tending towards maroon, very clear looking or with dusty or grey undertones. When you find a colour that works for your skin tones, a simple outfit can look far better than an expensive or trendy item that just doesn't quite go. If the undertones are right, colours you don't think would complement, seem happy to coexist.
 
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Justine is amazing...  




 
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One thing that helps when selecting colors that go well together, is to have them be of the same saturation. Saturation is the amount of the hue (color) in the color. How blue the blue is, or how diluted it is with white, black or grey. (Adding white=tint. Adding black=shade. Adding grey=tone)

Take for example Pearl's color scheme:



Notice how they are in two columns. She wears the pastels (the lighter colors) on the right. These are all light colors that have white (and a little grey) added to them. She also has jewel-toned colors, that are pure hue with black added (no white/grey).

She doesn't wear the pastels with the jewel-tones. That wouldn't match well, even though they are the exact same hue. You could get away with doing a light purple and dark purple together, but once you add in another color, it's going to look wonkey.

I went ahead and played with her colors some more.

You can see that the colors in each collum always look good together....but once you try and mix a pastel teal with a toned purple, it's not going to look nearly as good.

The other strength to her pallet is that the colors are all near each other on the color wheel. Pink -> Purple -> blue -> teal. She doesn't try adding in green or red-ish orange, because those would likely clash with either (A) her skin tone, or (B) another color in her scheme (reddish orange and teal would not look good).

My color scheme is similar to Pearl's except mine is darker. And, I only ever wear the olive green with red on Christmas, because I try to avoid complementary colors. They can kind of work when you tone/shade/tint them (as mentioned in Carla's 3rd video). But usually best to avoid them unless you really know what you're doing!



Anyway, here's the comparison I did with Pearl's colors.

I find it a LOT easier to design images and websites than to find clothes that match, because I can make a picture any color I want, but I can't always find the color of cloth that I want!
color-differences.jpg
Making tints (pastels), tones (adding grey), and shades (darkening with black) of Pearl's lovely color scheme.
Making tints (pastels), tones (adding grey), and shades (darkening with black) of Pearl's lovely color scheme.
 
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To find the right colour that matches you, compare it to your hair, eyes and skin colour. You can try it by holding a sample of the colour (a piece of fabric or clothing) next to your face. Have a good look in the mirror then and see if you like how it looks, or not.
 
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Inge Leonora-den Ouden wrote:To find the right colour that matches you, compare it to your hair, eyes and skin colour. You can try it by holding a sample of the colour (a piece of fabric or clothing) next to your face. Have a good look in the mirror then and see if you like how it looks, or not.

Sometimes - but sometimes not! I've had to request permission from fabric stores to carry their product outside to get "natural" light so the person with me could decide if the colour looked right on me - the fluorescent lights were enough to throw it off. Whether I'm having a "good day" or a "tired day" can affect my skin tones. Both Hubby's and #2 Son's eye colour change considerably based on the colour of shirt they're wearing, although now that Hubby's hair and beard have gone grey, he's more stable (hmmm... that can be read multiple ways!    ).

So in principle, Inge, I agree. But in reality, for some of us it's much trickier. When I was young and the whole idea of colour pallets was just getting started, a group of co-workers had a party. Some of the guests were slam/dunk no problem, clear cut colour pallets. Some took more humming and hawing. I took considerable humming and hawing and I think the final result was more a product of elimination than a sure thing. Certain colours within the "Spring" pallet look great on me. Some barely look ho-hum. Some would definitely not be worth spending money on. And sometimes the surrounding environment can push a "maybe" into a "no way".

What I've also found interesting is that I was told that "Orientals are all "Winter"' - that's not my experience. I spent time in Japan and I would have said that although many looked great in Winter colours, some actually looked better in Fall colours as the under-tones of their skin was decidedly different. I don't have enough friends of dark skin tones locally to test that theory, but if someone does, it would be interesting to do so. I do thing the "Falls" were a minority - but I also feel they were there.
 
Inge Leonora-den Ouden
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R. I think it's all personal, individual. If someone says 'all Asian types are Winter types' I don't agree. Two people who seem to have the same skin, hair and eye colour can differ considerably when you compare them very closely.

You are right the tones of skin, hair and eyes can change during the years, or even depending on circumstances. One person can be a Summer type one day and a Fall type another day (maybe even the same day at different hours).
But in my opinion there are certain colours, tones or hues that are always right on someone. Those are the best colours to choose for a (capsule) wardrobe.
 
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When I was a teenager, I took several classes in fashion and makeup.  I failed most of them mostly because there's so much to do in a day, I can't afford to spend half an hour making myself look 'pretty'.  Also I'm not good at finding which colours go together.

What I got out of it is that I should wear winter colours and jewel tones.  Of course, understanding what that means when I go cloth or clothing shopping hasn't worked.  But these are the words that go with my skin/hair/body type.  

I'm kind of at the point where I wish I could just take the skirts I love and ask someone else to tell me what colours match me.  But, alas, it's not that easy either.  
 
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R: Winter toned jewel colors will include the darker half of the colors I posted.
Classic Winter colors:


The jewel tones are all except the greyish looking ones, all the dark ones.
Another good picture, all Winter Jewel tones... (the pale blue might not be, hard to tell since it's a velvet brushed the wrong way.)



And with what I know of you, and I may be wrong, having never met you, this picture jumps out at me too



The look of the not solid dyed colors gives it a more natural, less industrial look. In my mind, you don't have a high fashion hard edged industrial look. :D
That gets into working colors with personality. I will never look good in a properly fitting, button up the front, ironed properly with creases blouse. Just is not me. Even when I'm dressing up, it ain't me. The colors I wear are the brighter bouncier, shades of summer, and winter (both the blue based skin tones) but the pale pastels that make some summer women look so sweet make me look like I'm mugging 4 year old girls for their wardrobe. Just doesn't work on me. I don't do sweet, I do bouncy, grubby, and softly comfortable.
 
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These colours are the ones I've been drawn to the last few years when shopping for clothes.



The problem is, I get a bit depressed if I can't have a splash of forest green, dark amethyst, or garnet in my wardrobe.  
I'm also feeling drawn towards different indigo blues (from light to almost black)
 
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Of  those, my vote would be remove the center row except the far left one, and that orangey brown in front (it's yellow based, there are golden browns that are not) the rest of those are excellent for you. Mix them with your forest green, dark amethyst, or garnet and definitely add a color I call electric cobalt blue, it's the shade in your floral print you showed, and in the jewel toned fabrics I posted. That is fantastic colors to use :)
You do not have to pick only 3 colors to do this, pick as many as you like, and start with one or two, add more off that palette as you have the chance. The shade of brownish that is in that print is there, the blue, the off white. I n general, any shade of blue except really pastel looks good on a winter.
 
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r ranson wrote:When I was a teenager, I took several classes in fashion and makeup.  I failed most of them mostly because there's so much to do in a day, I can't afford to spend half an hour making myself look 'pretty'.  Also I'm not good at finding which colours go together.

What I got out of it is that I should wear winter colours and jewel tones.  Of course, understanding what that means when I go cloth or clothing shopping hasn't worked.  But these are the words that go with my skin/hair/body type.  

I'm kind of at the point where I wish I could just take the skirts I love and ask someone else to tell me what colours match me.  But, alas, it's not that easy either.  



I think part of the hard thing is that our eyes play tricks on us (that blue/black, gold/white dress thing is a great example. Our brain interprets the color differently based upon what's around it, which can lead people to see drastically different colors than are actually there).

When we look at the pretty pattern you posted, the colors looks deep and vibrant, but that's because our eyes are playing tricks. The colors are actually a bit desaturated. And, the light and medium blue in the pattern are actually teal, not the true blue that the dark blue in the pattern (or the two blues in the roving).

This is why it's hard when trying to get a wardrobe that matches, because we look at something and think "Oh good, it's emerald! It'll match my emerald green skirt." But, alas, one emerald ends up more desaturated or a bit more yellow, and the colors are just different enough that they clash and don't compliment.




I went and played with the colors you'd posted. I selected easy colors that match the roving. It's a nice solid "winter"/cool color pallet. A nice burgandy red would go well, too (just not when you're wearing the blue).

I also eye-dropped the colors in the skirt and the roving, and saturated the pattern's colors to the roving's saturation, so it's easier to see how the colors are different. If I were wearing this, I would make the skirt be pf the pattern, and pair it with a the dark blue (or better, a teal) shirt. The dark jewel-tone will look good next to your skin, and the solid, dark color will also de-emphasize the chest. Dark colors make you look smaller, so I prefer dark colors on my shirt for that reason. They also look good against my face.
Raven-s-colors-copy.jpg
[Thumbnail for Raven-s-colors-copy.jpg]
 
Carla Burke
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r ranson wrote:

The problem is, I get a bit depressed if I can't have a splash of forest green, dark amethyst, or garnet in my wardrobe.  
I'm also feeling drawn towards different indigo blues (from light to almost black)



R, those - forest green, dark amethyst, and garnet - are all winter/jewel tones. There's no reason in the world why you shouldn't have them. Done well, they actually can combine with at least some of those neutrals.
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:

So, brown, green, and denim tend to be my base colors. Due to my complection, I can't do pastels. Or lighter colors. I just looked washed out.

I find it hard to find colors that I like and that look good on me, because it's harder to match to brown than it is to match to black. I generally try not to buy any colors that don't match the other clothes I wear. This is hard, though, because these shades aren't ones in stores unless it's fall (pretty sure these are all "fall colors"), and I do nearly all of my shopping at Thrift Stores, anyway. Basically what this means is that whenever I'm at a Thrift Store, I wander through the clothing section. If there's nothing in my size that matches what I wear, I don't buy it. So, 75% of the time, I don't buy anything. But, sometimes I run across a bunch of clothes that work (probably because someone my size with my style donated a bunch of stuff!). So then I buy everything I can.



That does complicate things, but what a lovely set of colors!  If it helps, blacks can clash too.  (A mild amusement at the outdoor goth festivals - raise and lower sunglasses and watch how peoples' outfits change w/ and w/o the filter, especially when the sun is bright enough to bring out allll the underdyes.)

Nicole Alderman wrote:
My hard thing is that I often forget to change out of my nice ("city," not-on-my-property) clothes and then I go out and end up working and rip a whole in my shirt, or stain my pants. It drives me nuts.



For me it's that I get to the garden, start wandering around looking at what's changed before working, start tidying, and get a nettle or thorny branch across my ankle.  Or the wildlife starts invading my shoes...
 
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R: I don't recall if it's been mentioned here yet, or if it's been in the stuff you read about small wardrobes: choose solid colors to be either your tops or bottoms. For example, if all of your bottoms are solid, they'll match all of your tops, whether they are solid or patterned. if you have both tops and bottoms patterned, then you will have things that can't be worn together. If you have enough options to make that work, that's great, if you are at very pared down, it might be a problem.

:D
 
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Nicole Alderman wrote:

My hard thing is that I often forget to change out of my nice ("city," not-on-my-property) clothes and then I go out and end up working and rip a whole in my shirt, or stain my pants. It drives me nuts.  



Not sure how I missed this, before. It happens often, for me, too! Or, I'll forget to check the rest of the laundry I'm tossing it in with, and end up with a grease stain from work clothes bleeding onto my good stuff. Or, I'll walk into the house, after being gone for a few hours, and my puppy has gotten into the trash (that I THOUGHT was out of her reach), then jumps on me, with dirty paws, or were come in three driveway, and discovered a goat has 'Houdini-ed', and without thinking about my clothes, I jump out to retrieve said goat and... Yup. Homesteading happens.
 
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I've been just following this talk of colors in horror (I have problems seeing color and matching, tones, seasons, etc gives me the heebie-jeebies!! aaaaand this is why all my clothes are black, gray, or blue.)

....but as for wrecking nice clothes. I was brought up to have nice clothes and "hanging around clothes" and any mixing of these sheep and goats inevitably led to disciplinary action (military upbringing, what can I say). I grew up to completely eschew this idea and instead now am a major supporter of the apron. Inside, outside, kitchen, garden, aprons everywhere. I have heavy duty ones and lightweight ones and unless I'm butchering it doesn't seem to matter. I keep them at my back door in my kitchen and throw one on before I go feed the animals, start cooking, wash dishes, whatever. I have at least half a dozen and they are totally responsible for me not having to have two different sets of clothing. I keep one pair of mud jeans for the garden and painting, one long sleeve button up especially for really dirty garden jobs, and other than that I just wear my normal clothes for everything with an apron.

an additional component to this is arm gaiters/gauntlets. I use them in the winter if I think i'm going to ruin my sleeves cooking or gardening. I buy girls' tights and cut them, they fit my arms great and are quick drying.
 
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Tereza Okava wrote:I've been just following this talk of colors in horror (I have problems seeing color and matching, tones, seasons, etc gives me the heebie-jeebies!! aaaaand this is why all my clothes are black, gray, or blue.)

....but as for wrecking nice clothes. I was brought up to have nice clothes and "hanging around clothes" and any mixing of these sheep and goats inevitably led to disciplinary action (military upbringing, what can I say). I grew up to completely eschew this idea and instead now am a major supporter of the apron. Inside, outside, kitchen, garden, aprons everywhere. I have heavy duty ones and lightweight ones and unless I'm butchering it doesn't seem to matter. I keep them at my back door in my kitchen and throw one on before I go feed the animals, start cooking, wash dishes, whatever. I have at least half a dozen and they are totally responsible for me not having to have two different sets of clothing. ....


I am a fan of aprons too.
But still have different 'garderobes' for different occasions, I like changing clothes anyway. Or 'dressing up'.
 
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Not a seamstress! So I would choose solids for most tops and patterns for bottoms - matching patterns would be SOOO much simpler in skirts; unless it is a very small or "all over" type pattern.

The Cape would ideally have a hood and be reversible, solid on one side, patterned on the other.

Simple tops, like say a tank, could be patterned; shorts could be either.

A fitted shirt or one that required "non straight lines" I would never attempt in a pattern unless it was a pattern where matching was not an issue.

One trick to "diminish" the size of an area or body part is color blocking. If you feel you are top heavy, consider a panel of contrasting (or white or black) either from armpit to hem on both sides, or down the front or back. Same goes for skirts or pants; a panel on the outside of the leg can visually slim that area.

Decide what is your BEST feature is and emphasis it; the opposite with the area(s) you feel are the least flattering, distract from them.

As to the Thrift stores, they key is over size if correct size is unavailable, including the men's department, and bedding department. Altering a too large garment is often easier than trying tofind something that "fits" especially if you have your "dimensions" already in pattern form or a dress form that is customized to you.

Lastly, anything that is made from cotton can be dyed darker for peanuts; cotton sheets can not only be dyed but used as fabric for shirts and skirts (likely too light weight for trousers or shorts) and the flannel ones make dandy nightshirts or jammies.

 
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Here's a simple cape pattern in a style I've always loved: https://www.fleecefun.com/red-riding-hood-cape-pattern/
 
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I've also recently started to build a capsule wardrobe. I have a bit of a hard time deciding which clothes to add to it because my clothing style is very simple and basic. However, I do love jewelry a lot and I have managed to add a couple of pieces.
I have added a simple pearl strand, which is a classic and a solitaire ring which I adore. But I think the purpose of a wardrobe capsule is to also add jewelry pieces that may or may not be peopular sometime in the future. For example, this summer I got this beautiful pair of chunky earrings that look very glam. These are not classics, but I'm thinking of adding them anyway. What do you think?
 
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I tripped over this video today, and I agree with a bunch of stuff she says. I'm not sure this is the best thread for it, but it would certainly be something I would consider if I was building a capsule wardrobe - it's about how modern clothing makes us adapt to it, rather than the other way around.



In particular, old-fashioned clothing more easily adapted to be a little bigger or a little smaller while still looking good. 18th Century clothing was intended to last.
 
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That video was amusing so I got a bit distracted about what I wanted to write...

Anyway, regarding styles:
I agree that patterns or textures are often eye-catching at the time of buying (or creating) your wardrobe. But I have noticed that in the end I wear the plain coloured garments most often. I have some blouses (shirts) with tiny printed flowers that I do wear but apart from that I like the cleaner look of one colour / one colour scheme.

And over time I have also developed a sense of colours that I like on me:
Navy, white, a greyish blue like an overcast sky and some pastels (light muted green, pale rose, a soft grey).
I always feel good in a well-fitting (stretch) jeans, a white shirt or t-shirt and a simple (handknit) cardigan in a dark blue.

Colours that don't go well:
Red, yellow, brown and tan, cream, orange, purple, jewel tones

I have noticed that it is true that colours that are included in your iris normally suit your skin type. I have very few pigments and my eyes are greyish blue, so surprisingly that dull looking light blue does look good on me.
My son can wear mud-coloured sweaters and looks great, because he has brown eyes with green specks. I would look liked a drowned body in that colour!

In the past I also shopped garments that would fit, disregarding if they flattered me. I am short and skinny and shopping for my body type is frustrating (and you can't simply shop children's clothing: a 13 year old might have your height, but not your shape! And disney logos or glitter are not a hit with me...).
It took me surprisingly long to find that out and I am more conscious about it now. I buy very few things and make many garments myself (sewing or knitting).

And as a consequence I have ditched all garments that either don't hit my colour palette or are uncomfortable either physically or emotionally or that follow some fashion trends (skinny jeans? hate them).
I don't have a huge wardrobe now but I most things I own are things I like.
I am missing a bit on the formal or festive end, but I have no hurry adding up on these because normally I use casual clothing.

To get clear about "my" style I also like to pin garments I like in Pinterest - although you have to be careful not to admire someone in a garment but ask yourself if the garment alone would also spike your interest!
There are people with a certain style I love, flowing clean-cut linen garments in gentle colours but some of these would not work with my bodyshape. I would like to use more linen, especially since I found out that my ancestors were engaged in the linen and milling business (and later cotton as well).
For the moment I wear almost pure natural fibres, sometimes with a bit of stretch (anecdote: our niece from Argentina is visiting and almost all her garments are polyester, from undies to sweater to dresses - how can she even wear that against her skin?).
ETA: This is a style I like very much, a bit Japanese-inspired, but I am not sure I would be completely happy:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/80654107@N00

Regarding capes:
I think capes might make my lower back and tummy cold, but they could be nice when sitting on the sofa or reading in bed.
Actually there are some great knit patterns that will hug your shoulders in a comfy way.
Here is one I like, Indigo Frost by Isabell Kraemer:
https://www.pinterest.nz/pin/532198880967460726/
... but they also come with sleeves (and there are free patterns as well).



 
Morfydd St. Clair
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Jessica Karlen wrote:I've also recently started to build a capsule wardrobe. I have a bit of a hard time deciding which clothes to add to it because my clothing style is very simple and basic. However, I do love jewelry a lot and I have managed to add a couple of pieces.
I have added a simple pearl strand, which is a classic and a solitaire ring which I adore. But I think the purpose of a wardrobe capsule is to also add jewelry pieces that may or may not be peopular sometime in the future. For example, this summer I got this beautiful pair of chunky earrings that look very glam. These are not classics, but I'm thinking of adding them anyway. What do you think?



Hm.  I do think they're pretty classic, but I was a teenager in the 80s so a lot of my fashion sense is stuck there.  They've definitely got presence, and could go with anything from jeans to business suits, maybe even the right evening gown.

So useful, and you find them beautiful - sounds like a winner!  
 
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Anita Martin wrote:
ETA: This is a style I like very much, a bit Japanese-inspired, but I am not sure I would be completely happy:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/80654107@N00






Oh, those are quite nice - simple unadorned shapes, neutral colors, luxury fabric, a few handmade touches.  I really like the reversible tank top (vest in British English?).  And wise to embrace the wrinkles in linen. :)
 
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Anita Martin wrote:
Regarding capes:
I think capes might make my lower back and tummy cold, but they could be nice when sitting on the sofa or reading in bed.
Actually there are some great knit patterns that will hug your shoulders in a comfy way.
Here is one I like, Indigo Frost by Isabell Kraemer:
https://www.pinterest.nz/pin/532198880967460726/
... but they also come with sleeves (and there are free patterns as well).





Oooh, I have something like that!  It's strips of rabbit fur woven through a fabric mesh.  Sounds weird, but I ran across it in Quebec and thought it was the most beautiful thing ever.  (Kind of still do.)  I didn't wear it much in Seattle, but my first winter in Germany I lived in it.  (Among other things, my heaters are ancient and I couldn't figure out how to get them working for a while, and it was COLD - the Alster froze solid for the first time in something like 30 years.)  I still wear it a lot - it's so warm and luxurious, and it even has pockets!
 
My previous laptop never exploded like that. Read this tiny ad while I sweep up the shards.
Rocket Mass Heater Plans - now free for a while
https://permies.com/goodies/7/rmhplans
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