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Dress Chic in Seriously Cold Weather

how to dress chic in seriously cold weather

When it’s below freezing, you think, “It’s impossible to dress chic in seriously cold weather” because first, you’re cold so your natural instinct is to throw on sweatpants and a giant sweatshirt that swallows you whole.  Secondly, you REALLY don’t want to go outside, so you procrastinate from getting dressed and hide under the covers.  Third, you keep asking yourself, “Do I have to get up?”  While the word impossible keeps floating in your head, I beg you to remember the fabulous Audrey Hepburn.  She once said, “Nothing is impossible,the word itself says ‘I’m possible.'”

Trust me, I understand. With below freezing temperatures, it’s hard to wear anything except sweatshirts and sweatpants to stay warm.  (Translation: I don’t want to wear anything BUT sweatshirts, sweatpants, pajama bottoms, and my favorite fleece onesie.) However, there is a way to be stylish and chic AND warm.  In cold weather, layering and playing with volume is key to dressing chic and staying warm. Check out my tips below on how you can layer and accessorize with various pieces to dress chic in seriously cold weather.

These tips will prevent the horrible childhood nightmares of restricted arm movements and marshmallow (AKA Michelin Man) bulkiness because rolls are only good with cinnamon, cake or at the dinner table.

How to Dress Chic in Seriously Cold Weather

When you dress chic for seriously cold weather, you’re going to have to prepared for layers. LOTS of them because you’re going to need all the insulation you can get to stop those cold winds from reaching your body.  At the end of this, you might feel like you have half your wardrobe on your back and you actually might.  But when you’re walking from the parking deck to your office building, you’ll thank me.

The key to not looking bulky or restricting arm movement when you layer is to start with the basics: camisoles, tees, fitted sweaters, and oversized knits.  Playing with fit and volume will help streamline your layers and let you be chic while staying warm and toasty.  When the temperatures are BELOW freezing, an oversized cardigan or sweater is your best friend.

When you dress chic in seriously cold weather, you have to being the layering process with fitted pieces. In the winter, I love starting with a fitted camisole layered under a fitted t-shirt.  First two layers done.  This will NOT keep you warm but its a good start.

Now,if you’re prone to being cold then throw on a fitted sweater over your camisole and tee.  If not, then skip this step and just throw on the oversized sweater or cardigan you have.

Once you have your layers on, you’ll see the change in volume.  At this step, you’re basically a marshmallow.  Probably a cute one, but still a marshmallow.  The common mistake that many people make in the winter is wearing loose fitting or oversized bottoms with their layers.  All that fabric will swallow you up.  So, if you have volume on top, try to keep the bottom sleek.

Lately, I’ve been loving semi-fitted wool or knitted maxi skirts.  You can wear tights and leggings underneath to keep your legs warm.  Throw on a pair of socks and cute booties and you’re ready to brace the cold winds.

You can also throw on a pair of tights or leggings before slipping in to your favorite pair of jeggings.  Trust me, the extra layers will prevent your legs from turning in to popsicles.

Cassie from tothe9s also gave a great tip in one of their essentials videos, you can wear a pair of fleece-lined leggings under trousers.  You’ll look chic and no one will ever know that you’re basically wearing fitted sweatpants underneath your trousers.  (Don’t worry I won’t tell…)

Or you can try a body-con skirt on top of tights and leggings.  Popsicle legs are terrible, so throw on a pair of over-the-knee socks and boots to keep your legs warm.

Another winter favorite of mine is layering with summer dresses.  Any length works.  Once you have the camisole and tee on (plus a fitted sweater, if you’re ALWAYS cold), slip on your favorite summer dress before putting on your oversized knit.  Then, cover your legs with tights and leggings before shoving on boots.

**Bonus tip for ALL types of layering: Make sure the color palette is the same if your layers are longer in length.  If the colors don’t match, make sure your inside layers are shorter than the outside (that way no one will know!).

Finish off all of these looks with a great parka, trench, or pea coat to really insulate your body from the freezing temperatures!  With ALL these layers you’re bound to stay warm and toasty while looking super chic!

Accessorizing in Seriously Cold Weather

Scarves, hats, and gloves.  It’s hard to imagine coordinating these three without thinking back to the Minnie Mouse sets you used to own as a kid.  But there is a way to to coordinate without looking like a toddler.

In order to dress chic for seriously cold weather, you’re going to have to first find that “other” glove that’s gone missing since last year. And in many cases, they’re probably just behind the dresser or they’re having a party with all the lost socks.  In that case, RIP glove.

If you can find bother gloves and actually having a matching pair, then yay the hardest part is over!  Playing with pattern and texture is key to creating a chic look.  Personally, I love the faux fur scarves, faux fur trimmed gloves, and pom-pom beanies.  They are a great texture piece that will help break up all the various knits you’re wearing.

When you have a scarf, hat, and glove in the same color family then you’ll look polished and sophisticated while bracing through the cold winds.  You can have everything in the same color if you have different textures: knits to fur, beaded to solid, patterns to fur…etc.  Accessories add interest to your outfit so have fun with it!

And that’s it.  Those are my tips and tricks on how to dress chic in seriously cold weather.  This post was inspired by the below freezing temperatures in #RVA.

Which was your favorite tip?