The weather has been so crazy lately that it’s been hard to know what to wear – and I speak as someone who lives in leggings for half the year and maxi dresses for the other. How do you master trans-seasonal dressing? How can you look pulled together and chic when you don’t know whether the sun is going to shine or it’s going to tip down?
And, as a menopausal woman with a dodgy thyroid, regulating my body temperature is a bit of a challenge all of the time. I am forever instructing the kids to take, variously, hoodies, winter coats, kagouls, cardigans, jumpers plus suncream to cope with what I refer to as my fear of ‘sudden climatic change’ which is a regular occurrence in Wales.
The Husband never bothers with a coat and wanders about in t-shirt and jeans most of the time while I lag behind like a sherpa carrying an armful of discarded coats.
So what is the best way of coping with transitional dressing? How do you manage to look chic in-between seasons?
Trans-seasonal dressing is a great way to shrink our fashion footprint and help the planet. Choose clever pieces that layer well and work with stripped back outfits to cope with unpredictable weather.
The key is to learn how to layer. Choose a top layer that you can take off and make sure the layer closest to your skin is something light and cool like a t-shirt or vest top.
You also need to make sure that your outfit is balanced. Long sleeves and higher necklines look better with shorter hemlines. A midi skirt or ankle-length trousers will suit a peep-toe or mule.
These are the wardrobe staples to master trans-seasonal dressing – and I’ll bet you have a few of them already.
A simple jersey dress
A wardrobe staple which is easy to find and within most budgets, choose one with three-quarter sleeves to flatter those arms. Accessorise with a belt, scarf or cute cardi plus sandals if it’s warm or add a jacket and closed shoes if it’s raining. If you’ve blown your budget, you could even add some cheap ankle boots to cope with wet weather.
If it is time to buy a new skirt, there are a lot of options to sort through and decisions to be made. Do you want a short mini skirt or a floor-length maxi? Perhaps you prefer a midi or another length in between.
There is also general style to consider. A pencil skirt may show off your figure more on a date, but a looser hemline may be more comfortable for casual daily wear.
You also need to remember a skirt is not a one-time use item, or at least it shouldn’t be. It is always better to select a skirt style you can easily incorporate into many different outfits.
The easier it is to accessorize differently with shoes, belts or other items, the more likely you are to wear it again and again instead of forgetting it in the back of your closet.
A classic pencil skirt and a crisp white shirt
More wardrobe staples that you could wear all year round. Wear the skirt with the crisp white shirt or swop that for a silk top and strappy sandals on a warm day. Add a tweed jacket and flat pumps if it’s colder outside.
You could also wear a shirt with a straight pair of trousers and accessorise with a brightly coloured bag or earrings.
You knew that was coming, didn’t you? Nothing beats them for comfort in my book! But seriously leggings are a great option under a dress if it’s likely to get hot later in the day. Simply remove the leggings and swop from a pump to a sandal.
My favourites for trans-seasonal weather are the denim jacket and the classic trenchcoat, but depending on your style, you could also consider a leather jacket, either classic cut or biker style.
Or how about a blazer which will give an extra layer without too much extra warmth. You could roll or push the sleeves up too.
Another option is to tie a knit or denim jacket around your waist.
I don’t need to tell you how versatile scarves are, but a great tip is to make sure the weight of your scarf complements the rest of your outfit. So, don’t wear a huge wool scarf with a silky t-shirt. That said, don’t be afraid to add contrast and texture by layering different fabrics such as cotton, silk, or soft wool.
There is plenty of choice for a versatile, trans-seasonal outfit. Save your pennies even further by considering pre-loved and vintage finds in charity shops and do your bit for the environment by seeking out organic and Fair Trade cotton or eco-friendly fabrics like hemp or bamboo – the latter being particularly useful for us menopausal ladies which is highly breathable and four times more absorbent than cotton.
Do you have any style tips for between the seasons? Have you mastered trans-seasonal dressing?