What are your winter wardrobe essentials?

winter wardrobe essentials

[Image: Betty Barclay]

Last week we talked about the wardrobe essentials that aren’t really essential at all, and reading your responses to that post got us curious: thanks to your comments, we now know which items you CAN live without – but what about the ones you CAN’T live without.

In other words: what ARE your wardrobe essentials?

Now, in asking this question, we have to first of all acknowledge that there is no “one size fits all” answer to it. As we mentioned in our previous post on this subject, the simple fact is that we’re not all the same (Are you listening to this, fashion designers?), so one woman’s “essential” item can easily be another woman’s crime of fashion.

That said, we’re still interested to see what your must-have items are, and, in particular, to work out whether they’re anything like the items most often cited on lists of this type. And who knows: maybe we’ll even be able to come up with a list of our own…

To keep things simple, we’re going to stick to one season at a time, and today we’re asking what your winter wardrobe essentials are. Coats? Jeans? Cords? White shirts and little black dresses? Harem pants? Which items can you just not live without as the weather turns colder?

18 Comments

  • October 10, 2012

    Daisy

    Sweater dresses with knee high boots! It’s my go to-outfit every Winter!

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  • October 10, 2012

    Claudia

    Coats, hats and gloves, sturdy and practical enough for public transport and walking out (good-bye, winter-white, good-bye, cashmere!). But most important are shoes which can cope with our German slush and sleet winters and can be restored with shoe polish. Obviously, nothing open-toed, nothing suede or textile. In a weather like ours, it is difficult *not* to look like Scott in Antarctica, especially if you are outdoors a lot.

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    • October 10, 2012

      Moni

      I also live in Germany and I wholeheartedly second that. The most important thing in our winter is a pair of sturdy and warm shoes or boots that can take the mud and dirt.
      My personal winter essential is a “Palestinian scarf” thay I died completely black (actually it’s more like black and dark purple…) and which is the cosiest and warmest thing that I ever had around my neck. I’ve become very attached to it.

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  • October 10, 2012

    Fi

    Polo neck sweaters, scarves, boots, a knee length coat, cardigans, knit dresses, skinny jeans (to tuck into the boots). Those are just a few off the top of my head.

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  • October 10, 2012

    naiadknight

    Jeans, cashmere or cotton sweaters, button up shirts, long sleeve t-shirts, blazers, my leather/ faux fur heavy coat, and knee high leather boots. Especially the jeans, coat, and boots, because the arctic winds we get around here will find any crevice.

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  • October 10, 2012

    M

    Warm, flat-heeled, waterproof boots.

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  • October 10, 2012

    Tanya

    Black leggings. So I can continue to wear dresses when it’s cold. I never wear trousers or jeans so they are essential for me. Plain, wet look, ones with faux leather panelling. Worn most often with brown calf length cowboy boots and a jersey of wool dress. Means no worries about jeans/trousers getting wet and grimy in puddles and dirt, and provided I’m wearing proper thick leggings (not footless tights pretending to be leggings) I can get away with wearing shorter dresses than I would in summer because everything’s properly covered. I honestly don’t know how I coped before leggings came back. They have enabled me to fully wean myself off jeans (which I find uncomfortable on the waist, hard to find a pair that fit well, boring, bulky, horrible to wear in the rain….)

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  • October 10, 2012

    Liz in Paris

    I second Moni and Claudia on the flat, waterproof boots in Germany as I go there quite a lot for work. Once got caught out in a major snowstorm in Munich wearing 7cm suede shoe boots (but Gabor ones, so they rose to the challenge! Quality brand). Other than that: jeans/slim-cut trews, cashmere or wool jumpers (hate acrylic), snazzy colourful berets and scarves etc.

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  • October 10, 2012

    Ana

    Warm trenchcoats, leather jackets, wool sweaters, that’s it.

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  • October 10, 2012

    Raechel

    I’m surprised no one has mentioned black tights! They are my saviour! I agree with the boots. I’ve splashed out on a pair of brown high boots. Flat ones, as heels are sadly not my friend. Any kind of dress and a lovely military coat and you’re all set!

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    • October 11, 2012

      Okie

      OMG… I love, love, love my black tights! I couldn’t get through winter without them! They go with skirts (short or long), dresses (short or long), work great with a suit AND are perfect under jeans or slacks! Heels or flats…I couldn’t do without them!

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    • October 11, 2012

      Tanya

      Opaque tights in any colour really for me. But black leggings (rather than tights) are my absolute essential – as mentioned above – because a lot of my dresses are quite short so sometimes I feel like the extra thickness of leggings is required!

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    • October 12, 2012

      anon

      Also applies to white tights for me. Most of my winter clothes are black, so I feel white tights lighten the outfit up. Also, they go with almost everything just like black tights do!

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  • October 11, 2012

    Anna

    I need a pair of great blue tapers for boots and such. Some dark blue flared jeans and a pair of black jeans. Tops can be from summer but matched with an awesome thick knit sweater or a jacket. So knit sweaters and a great jacket. Lots of scarves, a cute hat and an awesome warm cozy winter parka. Oh and a great pair of boots that can handle rain or shine.

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  • October 11, 2012

    Kota

    Here in Texas, we don’t usually get the wild winters that you northerners get. (We shut the schools down if we get a 1/2 inch of snow for heaven’s sake!) So I can get by with wearing what I usually wear during the rest of the year, button-up shirts and long pants. I just need to add a jacket/coat and I’m ready for all but the coldest (below 40 F) weather and even then I can just put on a sweater/jumper under the coat.

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  • October 11, 2012

    the rev

    Black leggings, great looking sweaters, chic tall (&short) leather boots, black tights, silk “long Johns ” (warm, not bulky). Down vest. That’s pretty much it for Iowa winters! Oh, & scarves!

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  • October 12, 2012

    Jane

    I live in a big city in a cold country, so we have wicked cold wind, but every little heavy snow fall that manages to stay on the ground. My winter essentials are my knee-high Doc Martens (with hidden zip, because are you kidding? I’m not lacing those boots every morning), skinny jeans and cozy fitted sweaters.

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  • October 13, 2012

    Ellen

    I live in Florida so we don’t exactly get winter here. Last year on Christmas I had on shorts and a top. When it gets “cold” here we like to put on every winter related clothing item because we’re so excited to get to wear them. My favorite things are a nice coat and a scarf.

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