As the temperatures continue to fluctuate and snow storms recur more frequently in Toronto, we figure it's time we publish a post on how to put together a cold weather outfit that will help you stay warm thru the winter months without sacrificing looks or function.
We believe in creating a capsule wardrobe that is good for the whole year rather than the now popular "seasonal capsules" that change season after season. To truly build a sustainable closet, it's important to invest in versatile clothing that can be worn from Summer to Winter. Of course, colder months might require a few extra items. With that in mind, here is our easy cold weather clothing guide:
Invest in the right layers
Base layers need to be breathable and temperature regulating. These layers always come in contact with your skin. This means that they need to be comfortable and remain dry - just like in the hot summer months!
The best year-round base layer is Merino wool because it is non-itchy, moisture wicking and naturally temperature regulating. This means that Merino wool fabric will keep you cool in Summer and warm in Winter. This also rings true when going in and out of heated spaces.
Alternatively, there are synthetics like our recycled PET fabric that is also breathable. When it's extremely cold, we like to wear a Fluid top under a lightweight Merino base layer for added heat.
Keep in mind: Cotton is a big no-no as it not breathable and will keep your skin damp in humid settings or when you sweat.
Next, add a thicker layer. Perhaps a wool or bamboo sweater. If you haven't noticed the trend yet, the key is to wear lightweight layers that are moisture wicking. Depending on how cold it is, just keep adding these layers as you feel appropriate - starting from thinner layers to thicker ones.
It's always better to wear multiple temperature regulating lightweight layers than a number of bulky layers.
We like to wear the Versa Throw over a long sleeve layer for an added blanket of warmth and comfort. It also looks sophisticated! A favourite winter outfit in the office.
On the other hand, we also like to stay in and lounge in the throw at home. Sometimes it's simply best to enjoy the storm from the comforts of your own home, by the window.
Pick the right jacket
Depending on how cold it gets where you are or traveling to, invest in a coat and/or parka that will keep you warm and guard you from the winds. There are quality jackets with wool lining available in the market.
Secure pockets and waterproof finish are a plus.
When buying a winter jacket, fit is important. Consider your layers and buy a jacket that fits you just right. Too tight will result in less mobility; too loose and you'll feel the cold breeze getting thru the gaps. Don't forget to test the hood for this as well!
Also, faux fur around the hood can help protect your face from wind.
Opt for a timeless style. Do your research and try on the winter jacket before purchasing. One jacket can last you many years. Choose well and save.
Bundle up with accessories
That's right - gear up! Grab yourself some wool mitts and/or water resistant gloves. Add a large wool scarf and a toque that is warm yet thin enough to go under your hood. Wear a breathable neck gaiter that is also a face mask
. This way, you're protected from the cold and the bitter winds!
Stick to neutrals and/or your capsule wardrobe pallet so you don't have to worry about matching different outfits.
Wear winter socks
Some might think that this is obvious but a lot of people fall for cute socks that are made of cotton. Again, a big no-no. Cotton is absorbent and dries slowly. Cotton socks will keep your feet damp and thus cold.
Merino wool is simply hard to beat (learn more about Merino wool fabric here
). It is organic, moisture-wicking and thermostatic. It repels water away from your skin, keeping your feet dry in most conditions. There are "smart" synthetics available that are also durable and temperature regulating, but they are typically not eco-friendly.
In the midst of snow, slush and ice, it is imperative that you wear shoes/ boots that have a waterproof lining to keep the inside dry at all times. Remember, wet feet equals cold feet.
There are some brands that offer wool or fleece lining as well for added warmth and comfort.
For your safety, wear shoes with good grip. There are many styles out there now that feature padded soles and practical heels that are equipped with grip.
Stay safe and warm - wherever you might be.