Building a Multi-Seasonal Wardrobe

Building a multi-seasonal wardrobe

After an entire lifetime of shopping seasonally (So, shorts for summer, sweaters for winter, and so on and so forth), and even switching my closet around twice a year to give me better access to each season’s clothes, I’ve finally come to the conclusion that what I REALLY need is a multi-seasonal wardrobe instead.

The thing is, we don’t really get “seasons” here in the UK, do we? I mean, we do get SOME variation in weather: it’s rarely warm during the winter, for instance, although it has been known to snow in the spring. For the most part, though, I’ve had to accept that summer clothes are mostly just a waste of money for me. It’s a shame, because sundresses and sandals are my absolute favourite things to wear – it’s just that, unless I have a sunshine vacation planned, I hardly ever GET to wear them. I know, tragic, right?

Well, I’ve made my mind up: I’m not promising to swear off the sundresses completely (Even a shoeperhero has her weaknesses, after all…), but no more will I devote the largest amount of closet space to the clothes I wear least often. Instead, I’m looking to build a multi-seasonal wardrobe: one in which the majority of the pieces can be worn all year round, regardless of the season. And here’s what I’m putting in it…


I’ve learned to my cost that it’s rarely warm enough for short sleeves here – or, at least, not for me. I’m one of those people who’s permanently freezing, even on a genuinely warm day, which makes sweaters and cardigans a good year-round basic for me. I have a handful of chunky knits for when the weather’s really cold, but for the most part, I live in lightweight knits, which are fine on their own when I’m indoors, and which can be layered up with scarves, coats and long-sleeved t-shirts when its cold, or removed to reveal a camisole or tank when it’s warm.


I never leave home without a jacket or coat – not even if the sun is splitting the heavens and there’s not a cloud in the sky. I know all too well that even the driest day can quickly turn into a downpour, which is why the trusty trenchcoat really is a closet staple for me. I sometimes feel a bit embarrassed to admit it, because I know trenches are one of those items that are constantly cited as “must haves”, and which a lot of people consider boring, for that very reason, but I absolutely must have one in my closet at all times, and I don’t really care how much of a cliche that makes me.


Although I JUST said short-sleeves are wasted on me, I make an exception for jersey dresses: short-sleeved dresses will allow you to stay cool in summer, and throw a cardigan over them in winter, so they’ll work all year round. Or they will, with the addition of…


Waterfall-style cardigans, or other open styles were a life-saver for me (Er, not literally, of course…) during our recent wet summer. These will keep your arms warm, while still allowing you to show off whatever you’re wearing underneath: so, they’re perfect to wear over those jersey dresses mentioned above, and they also look good with jeans. Speaking of which…


Because I’m not a big fan of tights, I’m more or less forced to be a big fan of trousers and jeans. Luckily for me, I like wearing them anyway, and find them well-suited to my work-from-home lifestyle. My preference is for ankle-length cuts, which are suitable for summer, with a pair of sandals or pumps, but which can also work in autumn and winter with a pair of high ankle boots. Which brings me to my final point…


Up until the last couple of years or so, I rarely wore ankle boots, preferring knee-length or over-the-knee styles instead. A string of disappointing summers, and a new focus of multi-seasonal wardrobes, however, has made me a convert to the ankle boot – or shoe boot. They work with both dresses and trousers, and unless we get lucky with our summers, they can be worn in every season, too – or they can here in the UK!

What about you, though? Is your wardrobe a seasonal or a multi-seasonal one? What are your must-have pieces?

[P.S. The dress in the photo is Boden’s Honour dress – isn’t it gorgeous?]

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