Well, four weeks later and I successfully completed my winter 20x20! Today I'll give a quick recap of the final week plus a recap of the overall experience and a peek at what's to come! First of all, however, I have to thank Lee and Caroline again for organizing such a fun challenge and for bringing together such a wonderful, stylish group of women through the #winter10x10 hashtag. I encourage anyone who hasn't already to scroll through the 2,248 (and counting) posts. Now, on to the recaps:
The last five looks are below. Some of the outfits were pretty standard (17 & 20) and a couple were new for me (18 & 19). Outfit 19 is something I wouldn't have put together normally but, inspired by one of Lee's outfits, I gave it a try and was pleasantly surprised at how much I liked it. With outfit 18, I was a bit worried that the flowy silk shirt over flowy silk dress would be too shapeless, but it turned out to be a perfect low-key elegant look and transitioned well to an evening at the theater. My biggest takeaways from this week are that I LOVE the color combination of blush and black, that blush has fully established itself in my palette of neutrals, and that raw silk is one of my favorite materials to wear.
First, let’s revisit the three goals from in my initial 20x20 post… How did I do?
1- My first goal was to up my winter style game. At the end of last year, I started noticing that on cold gloomy days, I tended to get lazy and wear some variation of jeans/sweater/big coat. Definitely not my most stylish look. I used this challenge to break myself out of that pattern, start putting all my favorite clothes to good use, and look my best every day without putting too much thought into it. In this regard, I consider the challenge a great success. I truly loved almost every outfit, and since I had only 20 things to choose from, they came together with very little effort. Plus, including my booties and three dresses helped with dressing up a bit more than usual. Grade: A+
2- My second goal was to get better at creative layering. Success on this one was more mixed. The shirt-over-dress combos were definitely new for me, and I’ve layered button downs under sweaters before, but never a cropped one like in my next to last outfit. So I definitely tried some new layers, but still don’t think I came up with anything groundbreaking. I also didn't play around with as many accessories as I would have liked. I love wearing brimmed hats, but they don't really fit into my workday, they tend to be more of a weekend thing. I also have only a couple of scarves that I really love, it may be time to invest in a big, cozy, solid-neutral wool scarf. In blush, perhaps? Grade: B+
3- My third goal was to figure out a good foundation for a winter capsule wardrobe. I’m going to grade this one on a pass/fail basis because I think it could only have been a success or a complete failure, i.e. my choices would either all go together or not. Luckily, I’ve done something like this before and have thought enough about it to have refined my personal style pretty well. Over the last year I think I’ve done a good job of staying away from trends and only purchasing things I know will fit well in my closet. I would happily include any or all of the items I picked in a winter capsule wardrobe. Grade: Pass
As a reminder, here are all 20 outfits:
Favorites and Least Favorites
Below are my three favorite outfits. These were extremely tough to pick, because there were so many that I loved. The first one I picked because it was such an unexpected combo for me, but I was so pleased with the way it turned out. Tying the shirt gave some definition to my waist in an otherwise straight silhouette. The second one I love because it is extremely simple without being boring. A white shirt + jeans + booties can be great with just the right white shirt, jeans, and booties. The third one feels like cheating because it isn’t exactly ‘wintery’ but what can I say, I guess I’m a southern girl at heart. This dress is perfection all on its own, especially paired with my favorite flats. Is it a coincidence that all three of my favorites include raw silk from Elizabeth Suzann? I think not…
And here are my three least favorite outfits. Again, this was hard because I really did like pretty much all of them! The first one was a close call because I actually love the blush silk top layered over the turtleneck, but I think the outfit would have looked twice as good with skinny black jeans instead. The second one just felt a bit frumpy to me, especially with the rain boots. It would have been much cuter with flats, but the weather didn’t cooperate with me that day. The third outfit is one of my least favorites simply for being kind of boring, though funnily enough, this is one of my favorite pictures from the challenge in terms of my pose and how I felt in front of the camera.
Going forward, I can't wait for the spring 10x10 challenge. I’m not planning on including coats this time, so the 10 items and looks will be for indoors only, similar to how Lee did it. The weather can be pretty unpredictable here in the spring so I would hate to limit myself too much by including coats. I also have some big news- my sister will be joining the challenge as well! This way you can see our outfits side by side and see how we dress differently for the Bay Area vs. Northern Germany. You’ll also see how different our styles are!
If you’ve made it this far, I’d love to get some feedback. Throughout the challenge I posted flatlay shots of my outfits on the @baytobaltic instagram account and full outfit shots on my personal account, @animalnecklaces. Any thoughts on how that played out? Would you like to see both on one account, or just one or the other? Let me know in the comments!