Winter Style - How to stay warm and stylish

This is my very first blog post, I have been meaning and dreaming of doing this for so long now. Running Blackeyed Susan takes up most of my time, and I experience so many interesting things because of Blackeyed Susan I often think to myself: "shoot, that was pretty cool I could have blogged about that!"

When meeting new people, the common question arises "what do you do for a living" and when I begin explaining about my business Blackeyed Susan, I am often surprised at how people are genuinely interested in what it takes to run this business, the highs, the lows, the design process, the production process, the inspirations, styling and wardrobe tips etc etc. I have finally told myself that I need to set some time aside and begin revealing my journey and the processes involved.

So as I sit at my PC typing this with freezing fingers and wrapped up in a blanket, it seems fitting that winter be the topic of my very first Blackeyed Susan Blog Post :)
It's that time of the year again... Winter.
I can hear myself repeating this every single year ... "EEK I'm not ready for winter yet" 
As a Capetonian I know that here in South Africa we are actually so blessed with our climate. Our summers are wonderfully long, lasting for most of the year and our winters are incredibility short (the coldest time of the year really only lasts 2 months) But when those 2 fffffreezing winter months arrive I think most of us shut down, go into hiding and become pasta eating, DVD watching hermits.

So how does this effect our attitude towards the way we dress? Do we often sacrifice style for warmth?

Well the answer is yes of course! I have to ashamedly admit that often my fashion sense and style is compromised for the sake of warmth.

As the days get colder we begin reluctantly packing away our cute summer dresses and replacing them with the warmer items that were tucked away in the back of closets. And lets face it, the majority of those items are only really kept for their loyal warmth. Style somehow seems to be associated with tiny summer ensembles. 

This raises the question " HOW CAN I STAY WARM AND STILL KEEP MY STYLE? "

INVESTMENT COAT/JACKET : It's amazing what a structured coat can do! A well tailored piece can transform a pair of jeans and a simple top into stylish well put together outfit. If you only buy one piece of clothing this winter make sure you invest in a well tailored, structured coat or jacket! Splurge on this item, it will be your staple for the winter months and a good quality coat will see you through many winters to come!

LAYERING IS KEY : We often hear about layering up items in winter but this comes with the risk of creating unnecessary bulk and can often leave you feeling puffy and unflattered. Instead of piling on numerous woolen jumpers and sweatshirts, rather layer up with "thinner" less bulky pieces that create insulation. Begin with a camisole or body hugging tank top, then add a long sleeve fitted woman's T, next a long sleeve button up shirt, then depending on the severity of the weather you can add a v-neck jumper or cardigan over the long sleeve shirt allowing the crisp collar to still be visible. Lastly finish off your look with that lovely structured investment jacket or coat 

KEEP IT UNDER WRAPS  A clever tip to keep warm when going out is to wear a pashmina or wrap, because they are larger than a scarf you can wrap them around your neck and shoulders or even create a hood to wrap over your head to keep your ears warm and hair dry. Then once you have reached your destination you can unwrap and use as a blanket to put over your legs. Opt for classic neutral colours in this piece, such as black, grey, tan or nude which will allow you to pair this piece with any outfit.

ACCESSORIZE : Hats, Gloves, Beanies, Scarves all of these winter accessories add warmth and if chosen right can add quirky style to your winter outfit. Again opt for neutral colours which will allow you to mix and match with co-ordinating accessories and outfits.

TIGHTS : Don't give up on dresses during winter! You can still wear that sophisticated number to a special occasion - just add opaque tights or stockings, opt for classic flattering dark colours such as black or navy. 

GIVE WINTER THE BOOT : Wearing a calf length or knee high boot covers more of your leg and creates warmth. Boots are versatile and can be worn for many winter occasions, opt for a heeled boot for more formal occasions and wear a flat boot for a more casual look. 

FUR (FAUX THAT IS) : Fur (faux) jackets, stoles, wraps and collars add a degree of opulence and sophistication to any outfit. Do you have a special event or function to attend this winter? Warmth and occasion wear very rarely go hand in hand. Most jackets are just too informal to wear with an evening gown or glitzy number. A fur (faux) jacket wrap or stole is the perfect way to stay warm when wearing occasion wear.

BUY ONLINE :  I personally don't want to leave the house in such cold weather, going to the mall in the pouring rain coupled with fitting clothing in fitting rooms is something I try to avoid, it's cold out there! but that doesn't mean your wardrobe should suffer! Online shopping is the greatest way to miss the wintery blues and shop from the comfort of your cosy home and your goods are delivered right to your door step! Keep in mind that shopping online means that your purchase takes time to deliver so make sure you plan in advance or contact the online shop to find out how long delivery takes.

Do you have any styling tips that see you through winter? Post them below and the best comment will win a R500 Blackeyed Susan online store gift voucher! Competition Closes 30 June 2015 *please include your email address in the comment* 



    • Margaret

      Cape Coat: Wearing a cape coat add a touch of elegance to an outfit – effortlessly, so keep it simple and wear a cape with a pair of jeans and a hat.

    • Annie

      winter tips: Get a versatile coloured scarf that you can wear with all your outfits, eg cream or black. Gloves also makes a great accessory and keeps you warm.

    • Elmarie

      A colourful floral dress, thermal stockings or tights, a tight fighted long sleeve shirt under your dress, knee high socks and boots, bright lipstick, bulky scarf and a jacket and you are a-for-away! You will look and feel lake a lady and be cold-proof :)

    • Nicola Meyer

      As I live in Durban and we don’t get a very cold winter, I find that my wool pashmina is wonderful to put on over my outfit to keep me warm. Also a pair of ankle boots are enough to keep my feet warm.

    • Mandie

      As i lye here in my bed this morning in freezing cold Sydney with my tissue box in hand the thought of getting up & dressed makes me want to pull the duvet over my head! I will however do this in a robotic fashion starting with the long sleeve thermal vest, a polo neck sweater ( nothing itchy) i love winter white jeans & a zip up warm jacket & scarf. A lovely pair of boots topped off with a handbag & sunglasses!

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