Mountain Village

Happy New Year everyone! As I mentioned in a previous post, my family went to Vail, Colorado for the week in between Christmas and New Year's Eve, and I just got back home yesterday. My mom and I don't ski, but I love walking around Vail Village, people-watching and window-shopping, and meeting the boys for apres-ski drinks and snacks.

One of the afternoons spent walking around the village was the perfect opportunity to break out my new J. Crew velvet bow back sweater that I received for Christmas. This sweater is incredibly soft and cozy. Wearing it feels like getting a warm hug. From the front this sweater doesn't look all that special. It just looks like a basic cozy gray sweater, a great closet staple that can go with anything, but not the star of the outfit. That changes when you see the sweater from behind. It has a slight open back and a gorgeous velvet bow tie across the back. Sometimes I worry that back details will be itchy or uncomfortable, but this bow is almost as soft as the sweater itself, and it lays nicely so that it doesn't cause any discomfort. I'm so pleased by the look and feel of this sweater, it's going to get a lot of wear this winter.

I love bow details, and my sweater wasn't the only thing I was wearing with a bow on it. I also received my black wool coat for Christmas, and it has a more subtle bow detail along the back. The coat is Kate Spade, so the bow detail wasn't surprising. I love how Kate Spade frequently adds bows to bags, jewelry, and clothing. It's the perfect girly and classic detail. This coat is incredibly warm and has substantial weight to it. It's a solid, well-made coat, not some flimsy thing that will only last one season. I love that it hits me at about knee length, it's long enough to keep me warm, but not so long that I can only wear it for special occasions or nights out, it's still an every-day coat. Along with the bow across the back, the lining of the coat adds some signature Kate Spade fun. It's ivory with gold polka dots, and even if no one else can see the lining, it makes me smile just knowing that the polka dots are there, and doesn't everyone want a coat that makes them smile? I feel very classy in this coat, and the black color will make it a wardrobe staple in the winter.

For added warmth, and a splash or color/print, I added a cream, gray, and red plaid scarf that I got from J. Crew two years ago. It's a wool scarf so it's very warm, my neck didn't get cold at all while wearing it. The gray on the scarf and on the sweater tied the piece into the rest of my outfit. When I wear patterned accessories, I like to make sure that one of the colors on the pattern is a color that's featured elsewhere in my outfit. I feel like that really helps make an accessory work with an outfit. When it's really cold, I like to wear scarves underneath my coat, with just a bit of the scarf popping out at the neckline so that you can still see the fun print or color.

Since the top of my outfit had lots of fun details and patterns, I kept the bottom half of my outfit pretty simple. My jeans are Madewell jeans that I've written about in a previous post. I only brought one pair of jeans to Vail, and these were the obvious choice for me. My shoes are basic suede black booties from Steve Madden that I got about five years ago. I wear them all the time because they go with everything, and the chunky heel makes them easy to walk in. They're starting to get a bit faded on the toe, so I may be in the market for a new pair of black booties if anyone has any recommendations. I love how this outfit ended up coming together, and it will likely get worn again on a chilly day in Durham.

Coat: Kate Spade, available at Macy's and Lorde & Taylor, similar available at Nordstrom and Bloomingdale's.

Sweater: J. Crew, also available at Nordstrom.

Scarf: J. Crew two years ago, similar from this season, similar from Tuckernuck.

Jeans: Madewell.

Shoes: Steve Madden five years ago, similar from this season.