Happy spring pals! What better day than the first day of spring to talk about a seasonal wardrobe? Or should I say: no seasonal wardrobe.
The first time I ever heard of the concept of a seasonal wardrobe, was just a few years ago when someone on twitter said something about being excited to put away her winter wardrobe and bring out her summer wardrobe. I remember thinking that it was an odd thing to do, because I wear most of my clothes year round. Now I live, like most of us, in a fairly mild climate. Our summers usually do not get brutally hot, our winters usually do not get extremely cold and when they do, it’s only for a couple of weeks. Outside of those weeks, you can basically live in a pair of jeans and a t shirt, give or take a cardigan. There’s really no need to have two separate wardrobes. And even if you live somewhere where temperatures go way up in summer and way down in winter, I’d still argue that you don’t need a seasonal wardrobe. The seasons mainly effect you when you’re outside, because inside warmth is regulated, so besides a good warm coat for winter, there’s not much more seasonal clothing that you need that you can’t also wear in other seasons. If you choose versatile pieces and learn the art of layering, a lot of garments can be worn year round. Here’s why, when it comes to your wardrobe, you should ignore the seasons:
QUANTITY // If you can put away half of your clothes for half of the year and still have enough to wear, you’ll likely have a lot of clothes. Now you already have them, so I don’t suggest you throw them all out, but the trouble with having a lot of clothes is that you will want to replace them at one time or another, because they no longer fit, are damaged or faded or you just want something new. When these moments arrive, buying the sustainable option might not seem like an option because there’s so much to buy: a dress for spring, a dress for summer, a dress for fall, a dress for winter… What about just buying a dress for all seasons? Sleeveless or short sleeved dresses can be worn on their own in summer, with tights and a cardigan in spring and fall, and with a big sweater and thick, knitted tights in winter.
QUALITY // As far as fashion goes, summer is always a difficult season because you usually want to wear as little as possible or as lightweight as possible. The problem with that is that it’s all too easy to mistake bad quality items for lightweight items and just as easy for manufacturers to use bad quality in the name of lightweight. Summer clothes don’t get much wear on a yearly basis, but should nevertheless – even more so – be able to endure summer’s activities without falling apart, but this is hardly ever the case. What’s more, the bad quality and lightweight of the item makes it all too easy to discard it at the end of summer. Even though quality is a more prominent problem with summer garments, it’s an important thing to consider in every season and with every purchase.
VERSATILITY // Versatility is one the most important features a sustainable garment should have. You want to get a lot of wear out of a couple of key pieces, so you want to be able to wear it to different occasions, dress it up or down, and transcend seasons. A real summer dress does not comply with any of that. A real summer dress screams SUMMER whether you wear it with heels or boots or tights and a cardigan. There’s really only one time and place for such a dress. To get the feeling of a real summer dress but with more versatility, try a white linen shift dress. Perfect with sandals in summer, but also classic enough to dress up with heels and a jacket for a special occasion or add tights and a grey knitted sweater for a cozy winter look. The same goes for sweaters: don’t buy the ultra thick knitted sweaters that are super warm, but opt for a medium weight sweater that you can wear a tank top or long sleeve under when necessary, but can also put on over your linen shift dress when that summer’s day is getting a little chilly.
If you buy just a few quality pieces that are versatile and easy to layer, you can wear them in every season.
Now I’d love to hear from you! Do you have or ever had a seasonal wardrobe? Do you live somewhere where the climate is more extreme and if so: do you think these tips can still help you?
PS I made an Etsy treasury with sustainable fashion picks for spring – take a look for some great versatile pieces!