Seattle was frozen for most of Christmas and New Year, which is not the norm. It’s been wet, grey and bitterly cold, and I’ve been wrapping up. I hauled out my super warm navy Canadian puffer from Soia & Kyo, Uniqlo HEATTECH undies, cream Sperry snow boots, an assortment of beanies, and my red gloves and Furla. Since I wore woolly turtlenecks, there was no need to wear a scarf because the coat zips up high and covers my neck. I felt comfortable, fab, and casually pulled together walking Yorkies Sam and Jo in the ice and snow, and running errands on foot. No driving.

I wore both pairs of dark blue cuffed jeans throughout the deep freeze, which created a column of navy with the puffer. The cuffed jeans are a practical length. Long enough to cover my snow boots and toasty socks, and short enough to stay dry. A crossbody bag is essential for city life, and mine matched my gloves. Beanies prevent earache, and I matched mine to the navy and cream in my outfit. Or I threw in a mismatched bright beanie like citron or orange. My light blue specs feel adequately “neutral” with my outfits.

Here are the exact items from my wardrobe:

I like to wear columns of neutrals or non-neutrals, where the bottoms match the coat or jacket, and sometimes my top and footwear too. I can do this with red, turquoise, orange, cream, and navy at the moment because I have the bottoms to match the coats. In time I’d like to create columns of colour with citron, shocking pink, blush, light blue, and burgundy.

Meanwhile, here are some Wintery columns in colours that are easier than wearing brights from head to toe. Since the point is to match bottoms and coat, colours like black, grey, teal, navy, and earth tones are easier column creations.

1. Navy

Create a column of navy by combining dark blue jeans or trousers with a navy coat. Complete the look with black or navy footwear. You could wear a black or navy sweater under the coat, and add a navy or black scarf, hat and gloves to amplify the column. Add a black or navy bag, and wear toasty socks. Or do what I do, which is create a column of navy with jeans and coat, and add another neutral and some colour for the rest of the outfit components.


2. Cinnamon

Create a column with a cinnamon pair of bottoms, sweater, and topper. Add footwear and accessories that work with the outfit. If matching the cinnamons is tricky, mismatch them a little, or create a column with low-contrast earth tones. The bootcut silhouette looks fresh, and very ‘90s.


3. Black

Create a column of black by combining black jeans or pants with a black coat and boots. Here, the cream sherpa lining breaks up the black with a nice bit of classic contrast. Cream boots that match the sherpa would work well too. Add Winter accessories in black, another neutral, or pop of colour.


4. Teal

Create a column by combining teal bottoms with a matching teal coat. The top can be a shade, tint, or tone of teal, or a pattern that has some teal in it. Black boots and bag are a great addition especially if the teal is dark, and the pattern has some black in it too. Add jewellery, eyewear, headgear and watch as desired.