How to Freshen Your Wardrobe with Seasonal Buying

When I started exploring different wardrobe concepts like the Five Piece French Wardrobe or Capsule Wardrobes, the one thing that stuck with me was the importance of re-mixable basics. I've built an impressive collection of black pants, white blouses, and grey sweaters that mix and match to perfection, but wearing the same things over and over again can get tiresome (thus, why capsule wardrobing was not for me).

With the turn of each season, I think we all feel the need to freshen our outfits a bit with a few new pieces, particularly in the fall. However, buying a bunch of random things leaves you with a fall collection that's far from cohesive. I've found that creating a small capsule-like collection using similar colors is the best way to keep a curated wardrobe while adding new items for the season. Here's how I do my fall shopping:

1. Pick a Color Palette.

BB Dakota // Doma // McGuire Denim

BB Dakota // Doma // McGuire Denim

What makes this a "capsule-like" process is the color story. When a designer creates a new collection, each of the pieces are meant to work together in harmony. If you think of your fall wardrobe as a collection, you're more likely to end up with pieces that work together. By choosing a color palette, you'll have more mix-and-match options over all. I usually take a look at my Pinterest boards and see what colors have been catching my eye lately; this year, I've been drawn to deep purples and reds, along with camels and greys. So when I started my fall shopping, I focused on those as my primary colors. A red jacket can mix with a camel sweater and grey pants, then those same grey pants can be mixed with a red sweater.

2. Buy Items that Mix With Your Basics.

cupcakes and cashmere // Theory // alice + olivia

cupcakes and cashmere // Theory // alice + olivia

Sure, you've been dreaming of an orange sweater all year long. And it's totally okay to throw something like that in there. But if all you own is white and black, you're going to look like a jack-o-lantern all season. Knowing what mixes into your every day wardrobe will help you put together better outfits in the long run. A pair of sleek grey pants from Theory matched with a classic white blouse can potentially mix with a large number of your new items, like a plaid cardigan or a red leather jacket.

3. Use Accessories to Add Color.

Wildfox // Rebecca Minkoff // Clare V.

Wildfox // Rebecca Minkoff // Clare V.

If you're a bit more minimalist than I am, you can add some life into your seasonal wardrobes with accessories. A cute pair of suede flats, a plaid scarf in your color palette, even a new bag can add some fall color to your wardrobe without overdoing it. If you're building a fall color wardrobe, buying accessories that match your color scheme make the process easier as well. I'm in love with the Clare V. clutch; it would be great with some tall camel boots and an oversized white sweater.

Need help picking a color palette?

Here are a few tips for picking the perfect color wardrobe this season.

  1. Use a color scheme software to put together cohesive color palettes. I love Paletton, because you can create schemes using adjacent colors or complimentary colors with up to four options.
  2. Search color trends for the current season. Pantone puts together a great comprehensive guide to the season's hottest hues.
  3. Look to Pinterest for Inspiration. Whenever I start my fall buying, I usually notice a trend of what I'm investing in most often. This year, it's burgundy, so I spent some time on Pinterest searching for things like "burgundy pants" or "oxblood sweaters." It gives you the opportunity to see how others are wearing the trend before you buy it yourself.
  4. See what you already have. If you already picked up a few things in years past that match your color scheme, you're ahead! Pull out all of your sweaters, scarves and jackets before you do any major shopping to ensure that you don't double buy.

Some links in this post were sponsored by Shopbop.