Let's face it – when it gets cold, the last thing on your mind is dressing sharp.
You're focused on keeping warm and comfortable…. and oftentimes this does not equate to being stylish.
But guess what?
You can dress for the cold weather and look amazing at the same time.
And in today's article – I'm showing you how.
Winter Style Tip 1. Leverage Texture
Texture is one of the first things we see. You probably had a favorite blanket or teddy bear that you would cuddle up next to when you were a baby. As babies, we gravitated towards those things because of their texture.
Texture tells babies whether something is safe (soft toys, teddy bears) or dangerous (a stone or hardwood floor).
Psychologist Dr. Harry Harlow proved this in 1958. He tested the responses of baby monkeys towards textures. He set up two fake mothers – one made of coiled wire and wood with a bottle of milk and one made of soft fur and covered with cloth that had no milk. The monkeys formed a bond with the more delicate mother, showing that contact comfort drives our texture perceptions.
So what does this have to do with adding texture to your outfits? It's simple – when someone sees something with a texture, they want to get closer to it.
Wondering what texture to use? Check out these findings from a 2001 study by the John Moores University in England.
Fabric samples were given to women and they were asked to rate them in terms of emotional/cognitive factors. The women’s brains were scanned while they felt the fabrics to double-check their thoughts.
Here’s what they found:
- Fleece and Tweed evoked feelings of relaxation and warmth
- Satin, Silk, and Lace evoked feelings of “faded familiarity”
- Corduroy and Leather evoked feelings of masculinity
- Lycra and Denim evoked feelings of energy
Winter Style Tip 2. Incorporate Retro Wear
Bring in retro styles with a few updated flairs to stand out and look fantastic. If you need inspiration – look at the Nehru jacket.
A single-breasted jacket with a high standing collar, the Nehru was inspired by Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru – who stopped wearing British suits after India won its independence and switched to a knee-length Indian jacket called the achkan or sherwani.
This inspired the Nehru jacket, which is hip-length and can be worn as part of a suit. It became popular in America and Europe in the 60s and 70s – which means it’s just the right time for this to be in fashion again.
No matter what you choose from the past – wear it with confidence.
3. Wear a Check Patterned Blazer Jacket
Many of you can pull off a check shirt but it takes some real confidence to pull off a check jacket. From tartan, tweed, Prince-of-Wales, glen plaid, window-pane and gun-check – check blazers are everywhere and they embody the ultimate casual winter style.
Fun Fact: The gun-check was traditionally worn in country settings. Its contemporary name came from the American Gun Club in the late 19th Century who adopted it from Scotland.
If this is your first time wearing a check blazer – keep it simple. Keep the checks small and closely match the color of the rest of the blazer.
Winter Style Tip 4. Practice Wearing Your Outfits Around The House
If you work from home – as I do – it can be very easy to sit around all day in your boxers and a t-shirt. You’re not going anywhere, so why not?
Because of the way it makes you feel.
Sure – you may feel comfortable in just a t-shirt but are you going to feel productive and motivated? I doubt it.
My tip is to dress up and wear your outfits around your house. When you feel fantastic, you'll find yourself inspired and motivated and you'll get more done.
Plus, you'll find yourself getting used to dressing sharp. It’s essential to make sure you wear the clothes – not the other way around.
Winter Style Tip 5. Break Out Of Your Style Comfort Zone
It’s time to put down the pea coat and try something outside of your style comfort zone… here’s why!
A 1908 study by psychologists Robert M. Yerkes and John D. Dodson found that a state of relative comfort created a study level of performance; however, a state of relative anxiety was the best way to maximize your performance. They called this state “Optimal Anxiety” and defined it as just outside of our comfort zone.
So with this in mind – to maximize your style performance – you have to go outside of your comfort zone. I understand that you might be scared to do this as some of your choices may not work well for you.
The best advice I have for you is to experiment with everything. An excellent place to start might be leveraging a heavy vest.
Vests come in many varieties like softshell or quilted. A softshell vest has a soft outer shell worn close to the torso with no down filling. It is usually composed of human-made materials like polyester. Pick a thin, lightweight version and wear it as a third layer under a gray flannel blazer or suit jacket.
A quilted down vest uses down goose feathers and has a sectional pattern where the filling is sewn in. This is a warmer but more casual option. Today, many down vests are made thin and sleek and worn under a suit in a professional environment. Speaking of layering things under a suit…
Casual Winter Style Tip 6. Accessorize With Bold Colors And Patterns
It’s time for you to go crazy with patterns – on your accessories.
Adding bold accessories to a neutral outfit makes a big statement without screaming for attention or being too over the top. There’s something eternally stylish about wearing neutrals, whether your outfit centers on blacks, whites, grays, or tans. Adding a bold, colorful scarf to your outfit can transform it from commonplace to something original without being too fashion-forward.
Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication – so when styling your outfit, allow your accessories to do the talking for you.
When you wear mostly neutrals, the eyes are automatically drawn to the most colorful aspects of your outfit, allowing your bold accessories to draw attention and complete your look.
Not into a bold color? You can go for a paisley pattern or a geometric check pattern like we previously discussed with your blazers instead.
Winter Style Tip 7. Layer Casual With Business Casual
Business casual can mean a lot of different things, depending on what industry you work in. On top of that, dress code rules are always evolving. The only consistent thing is that dress code rules are the fact that they’re ever-changing.
Need inspiration? Just look at many famous actors or tech company owners who are famous for rocking the t-shirt under a suit. You could wear a thicker sweater under a suit for the colder months and skip the shirt and tie altogether.
With that in mind – use this recommendation with caution. Always judge your situation and what others around you are wearing before you decide to throw some casual options into your business attire.
Click below to watch the video – 7 Tricks To Look Amazing In Casual Clothing
Next up – check out my How To Dress Warm In Cold Weather Infographic.