Ask Belle: Cold Weather Essentials
Dec 1, 2014
I recently found your website, and adore it. I’m moving to DC during the winter months to take a job with a government agency. I live in a warmer climate now, so I’m building a professional winter wardrobe from scratch. Any tips on essential purchases to survive a DC winter but still look put together?
Cold weather makes dressing well a challenge. Whether you’re a D.C. commuter or a Montana resident, most of us need a warm winter coat. But that alone will not cut it.
Earmuffs. Most of my childhood winters were spent arguing with my parents about wearing a winter hat. Who needs to have their hair messed up for no good reason? Unless the temps dip into the low teens, I’m good with just the muffs.
These faux-fur earmuffs are a cute option. I also like these wrap around Lush Ear Warmers. Prefer a hat? Try a cashmere beret from Nordstrom (comes in six colors), or this chic bow cloche, also from Nordstrom.
Gloves. Hunched over with your hands in your pockets is no one’s best look. Protect your fingers from the biting cold with a chic pair of gloves. These Charter Club leather gloves are cashmere lined and come in your choice of seven colors for under-$50. I own these Thinsulate-lined gloves from Sierra Trading Post, and I love them. Or if you prefer knit gloves, I like these Portalano Pearl Stitch glove.
Scarves. You must keep your neck warm to stay warm. I like a printed scarf in the same color palette as my coat. I found these for a black, navy, or grey coat. Want something versatile that will work with any neutral? This Johnston & Murphy scarf above is phenomenal.
Tights. If you plan to wear skirts and dresses during the winter, you need tights. For the cold, I like Gap’s Maximum Heat Tights. Fleece-lined tights are also an option. I think the Berkshire Cozy Hose hold up the best after repeated washes. Plus-size ladies should check out Lane Bryant.
Boots. Add a pair of knee-high boots to a mid-thigh length coat, and you can stay toasty warm on your commute. During my time in D.C., I commuted in Hunter wellies and the matching fleece socks. Need something under-$100? These Tommy Hilfiger boots in black and tan are phenomenal. Want something a little sleeker? Try these fleece-lined Dav Equestrian Boots.
Hand Warmers. If you have a long commute or you need to be outside for an event, I recommend these microwaveable hand warmers. Just heat them up in the office microwave before you head home. If you want to make your own, here is a tutorial.