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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Tips for wearing wardrobe orphans - Wardrobe Orphan 1 - Purple skirt

I recently swapped out the winter and some of the summer clothes as its starting to be brighter here. I have a rail and a large zipped bag in the loft, and I keep out of season clothing up there as I didn't have a huge wardrobe space.

I used this as an opportunity to find some pieces for donation as I went through as I tried things on and relesed things which were not right for some reason. I've also bought a few things - plain smart trousers and interesting jackets, and noted down some wardrobe holes as I went.

Along the way I found a few pieces which could be considered wardrobe orphans, they fit nicely and were flattering etc but didn't immediately make an outfit. There are two approaches with these either donate them because they seem to be an orphan or work a little to assemble an outfit which uses them.

If you want to try this second option then here's what I try.

First of all I do an online image search for something roughly similar to the item I want to wear.
So in this example I have a purple jersey skirt, it fits nicely, is flattering, the shade of purple is slightly muted so its in my colour palette, it has a small amount of detailing but not too much, and it reads as a casual piece, not a work wear item.
In my online image search I bring up 'Purple Skirt Outfit' and have a look at the images
Now none of these are quite the casual vibe I wanted for my purple skirt, and then I spot this girl rocking her skirt with a denim jacket, doesn't she look fantastic!
This looks great but is still a little dressier than I wanted, but it gave me an idea, so I now change the search to 'Purple Skirt Denim Jacket Outfit' and see what else comes up. I save a few pictures and then have something like this.
I then go to my wardrobe pull out my denim jacket (which is a contemporary short fitted one similar  the lower photos), I add a white tee like the top right photo, a purple chunky necklace similar to the top right photo, and have some choice in bags/shoes etc. Now my wardrobe orphan can be worn.
Here are my pieces styled up on the dummy. There is a white tee with a scoop neck underneath  the jacket, just slightly hard to see here.

I repeat this for any of the wardrobe orphans, and if after a bit I really can't make a wearable outfit I am happy with I will donate it, but I like to try first!
I have another one of these on the go at the moment, with an aubergine suiting jacket for work, so let me know if you are interested and I'll share that one too.


Anne said...

Yes, I'm interested. Strangely enough, the items I've had most problems with are burgundy/a brighter wine and a lilac jacket with floral skirt. This last one - I just can't find the right shade for a top though maybe now that I'm sewing I should redouble my efforts and then give up if no joy. Or dye? The background is Ivory which shouldn't be difficult but I haven't managed. I think I just don't like the options with the bright wine coloured jeans. Burgundy is slightly easier. I don't want to become colourless everything Navy or grey but I'm not quite getting there.

Anonymous said...

Very useful, Ruthie, I never thought of doing that. I'll use this with orphans but I think it's also a great way to get fresh ideas for other items in my wardrobe. I tend to pair the same items over and over again.

MaryEllen said...

I agree this is a great way to get new ideas -one I had t thought of . I also tend to pair things the same way every time but you ideas have given me some great new ways to look at my orphans ! Thanks

Dawn said...

Enjoyable post! It was interesting following your thought process and use of search engines to salvage your skirt. I hope you'll follow up on whether you get some use from it now that it's not an orphan.

Marie-Noëlle said...

What a fun tip and so handy. Thank you