Style + Building a Wardrobe, + How To Wear It

A Fall Capsule, The Next Three

I wrote today’s capsule collection post because I needed to refocus my wardrobe.  But when I started going through my closet last night to assess how close I was to making that post a reality, I realized that I had missed three pieces that I reach for often.  Luckily, they fit perfectly into the capsule’s overall vibe.

Turtleneck.  I have rebought this J.Crew black and white tissue turtleneck three times.  Sadly, it doesn’t look like they remade its for this year, so I’m glad Banana Republic has my back.  Their turtleneck is available in petites and sizes up to XXL.

Sample Outfit // Turtleneck + pencil skirt + navy blazer + black flats + hoop earrings.

Field Jacket. How many times have I shared this LL Bean field jacket?  Not enough.  With the stand collar, the adjustable waist band and the pockets, this jacket has been my go-to casual jacket for a while.  I’ve owned mine for three years (?) and it has held up like a champ through hundreds of wears.  Such a good piece.  And it comes in both petite and plus-sizes.

Sample Outfit // Field jacket + ivory cable sweater + flare jeans + sneakers.

Skinny Black Pants. I don’t wear pants often but when I do, I reach for my office leggings.  Ann Taylor’s ankle pants in their double weave fabric are so comfortable.  They also resist wrinkles making them a great travel pant.   I buy them in the curvy fit and they feel like a dream.  Sadly AT doesn’t offer this fabric in tall, but they do have longer lengths in their bi-stretch fabric.

Sample Outfit // Skinny Pants + black wrap top + white blazer + tortoise heels + pearl earrings.

Again, this morning’s capsule was about building a more streamlined wardrobe.  This makes outfit selection easier, simplifies your look, and gets you maximum value out of the pieces you own.  So if you could add three pieces to your existing wardrobe, what would they be?

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  1. Bea says:

    What length do you hem the ankle pants to? I just bought two pairs, love them, but think I may be wearing them too long, which looks dowdy.

    September 18, 2019/Reply
    • Belle says:

      Are they bunching? These come just below the ankle joint on me, and I leave them like that because they don’t bunch. I would say the rule of thumb is probably like pencil skirts either just over or just under the ankle joint. But I would take them in and figure out where they’re most flattering on you if you’re worried they aren’t flattering.

      September 18, 2019/Reply
  2. Sara says:

    Wrap blouse in a neutral, cropped sweater to wear with high-waisted trousers or skirts all winter, and a sleek black long-sleeved bodysuit.

    September 18, 2019/Reply
  3. SC says:

    Jewel-tone blouse with long sleeves. Gray sheath dress with 3/4 sleeves. Pencil skirt in a deep wine color.

    September 18, 2019/Reply
    • Sof says:

      I, too wish for a 3/4 sleeve grey dress. It’s been my wardrobe unicorn for years!

      September 19, 2019/Reply
  4. Carrie says:

    Love the addition of sample outfit!
    How does the field jacket fit in the shoulders? I’m slightly broader so they tend to be a little snug in the shoulders for other jackets

    September 18, 2019/Reply
    • Belle says:

      Mine’s not tight on me, and I sometimes have that issue with blazers.

      September 18, 2019/Reply
    • B says:

      I’m 5’9 and a little broad in the shoulders with long arms, and this jacket is sadly too small in the shoulders for me (I wear a small in LLBean sweaters, but would have to size up to XL or XXL to fit my shoulders). I wish they offered tall sizing on this jacket and their flannels!

      September 19, 2019/Reply
  5. Ashley Szado says:

    Thank you for pointing out pants that specifically come in talls! Limited used to be my go to for dress pants but since they stopped having brick and mortar stores I’ve really been struggling to find pants that fit.

    September 18, 2019/Reply
  6. Rebecca says:

    Am I the only person who isn’t on board with ankle pants? I have a pair, but find that I prefer full-length pants, especially in winter.

    I love the field jacket – I bought it in the spring, on your recommendation, and it goes with everything! I’m looking forward to putting it on again.

    September 19, 2019/Reply
    • Belle says:

      Finding a good tailor has been more of a challenge since I moved (Miss you Cheryl Lofton), so ankle pants save me a trip to have something hemmed.

      September 19, 2019/Reply
    • Anna C says:

      I generally prefer full length (boot cut) dress pants, too, and wear them almost completely year round. I did wear a pair of ankle pants from Loft most of the summer, just because they felt a little more casual, and also cooler, since I didn’t need socks with my ballet flats.

      September 22, 2019/Reply
  7. Sara Harvey says:


    September 19, 2019/Reply
  8. Caitlin says:

    Before I realized that I was well and truly a Petite in pants, I would just buy ankle pants and they would… be regular length pants on me. Now I know better! But honestly, I think ankle pants look better with most shoes, especially flats.

    September 20, 2019/Reply