Whether it is a full blown hibernation conspiracy or a massive world tour plan this winter, there are some wardrobe essentials for every woman whether you are an adrenaline seeker or a book worm or a social butterfly. Maybe you have planned that Leh-Ladakh bike trip for a long time now and have all the logistics in place but, only ten days before the trip you realise you are clueless about what to pack for your first winter trip! Here is another scenario. You have got your ten day break from work/school/college and have made no plans to anywhere but to your bed. However, your family or close friends plan an impromptu trip to the nearest hill station and you realise that all you have got is your favourite old sweatshirt and the one pair of gloves you wear everywhere.
Everyone loves a little line-up of heartwarming winter accessories, special date night dresses and everything that keeps one warm and snug in the cold.
There are at least six broad winter – wardrobe requirements. Each of these six has at least one or two absolute must – haves:
This is the first layer that, when worn close to the skin retains the body heat. You can choose between cotton thermals and woollen thermals depending on the temperature. Woollen thermals are best suited for temperatures from below 8°C. Thermals range from half sleeves to full sleeves and even vests (primarily sleeveless thermals). Make sure you get your hands on the ladies vest thermals and also the special blouse thermals- designed specially to wear under with Indian traditional dresses. Considering the fact that winter is also the season of weddings, the vests and blouse thermals are a must- have!
Cardigans and hoodies:
The mid-layer is worn over your top/t-shirt. You can choose from a fleece pullover, fur lined hoodie or sweaters. This layer is lightweight and keeps you warm. A definite must – have in this layer a smart hoodie and a long cardigan coat. The long cardigan coat is a versatile coat that you can wrap over your evening dress, or traditional Indian wear at a destination wedding. You can choose from a variety of colours. Try pairing a patterned cardigan over a plain dress or a plain cardigan over a printed dress. The use of cable knit patterns and and the fit of these coats gives a timeless look to your winter dates. Invest in a smart sweatshirt that you could wear for your morning run, winter treks or road trips.
The shell layer is the most important layer. It keeps away the cold and moist air and also helps to seal in the warmth. It includes jackets, coats and parkas. When investing in the shell layer, opt for an all weather jacket and a trench coat for sure! An all weather jacket is great for dry and wet winters. These are ideal for long winter trips with high adrenaline supply ( like road trips, mountain climbing and trekking, skiing and more). When buying a jacket, make sure it is light in weight. The trench coat is classic winter wear that gives you an elegant, rich look. The benefit of a trench coat is that you could wear it to give yourself a formal look on business trips and also to an evening at an art gallery, while enjoying an informal vacation. Trench coats are usually for dry winters, where you experience heavy winds or light snow.
For your neck:
Scarves, stoles and mufflers are a must- have in every winter! They add to the winter look and make the outfits more delightful and classy. You can choose from a variety of prints, colours and materials. For a classy winter look, opt for neutral prints and shades- these go with almost everything you wear, be it dresses, shirts, t-shirts. geometric & contemporary prints in shades of blue, white, pink or yellow can be neutral. You could also keep one or two cute prints like hearts or butterflies- these give a more chirpy look to the outfit. Always have at least one or two solid coloured stoles/ scarves! For the winter, it is best to opt for scarves or stoles made of wool or cashmere ( you could even indulge yourself a little in the absolutely soft pashmina fabric). You can wear these over your cardigan coats and wear the trench coat over it for a classic layered look.
Gloves and Socks:
When on the road trip to a winter destination, your hands and feet are extremely important and you must keep them warm. You must have experienced this, when your hands get cold, you tend to feel more cold than it actually is. Show some love to your feet and hands and dress them up in adorable socks and mittens/gloves , respectively. Among all the varieties of gloves, always keep a good pair of water – resistant gloves. These are extremely useful for road trips or treks and can also be used during dry winters. Another must- have in the gloves section is a pair of normal woollen gloves. These are available in a number of colours and patterns. Try opting for darker colours since they are easy to maintain and don’t get soiled easily. For the socks, there are always a variety of colours and prints available- make sure to stock up on at least four woollen pairs of socks for the winter.
The crowning glory- the Head:
The head is the most important to keep warm in the winters. Most often you would catch a cold because of being exposed to cold winds. As much fun as it may be to let the air run through your hair, it wouldn’t be fun to fall sick in the trip! There is a way out though- beanies and half caps! Thanks to these smart head accessories, you get to let the air pass through your hair and stay safe from the cold winds! You could choose between a beanie and a half cap or even opt for both! The main idea is to over your head. Here again, opt for neutral colours and prints so that you can pair them with any outfit you wear!
Some additional could-haves: a good pair of boots-since boots are classy, comfortable and versatile! Umbrella- for those days when it is sunny and cold, all at the same time!
Check these six essentials for your winter wardrobe and you are good for anything the cold throws at you (even if it is snowballs!) Happy winters!