Short Skirts in Siberia

I wrote a summer post about this skirt, so now I can use it as an example of how to winterize your wardrobe! I live in a place where they decorate the streets and parks with actual ice sculptures, so I have to bundle up. Any time I leave my home, I need my down coat, gloves, and loads of layers.

down coat earmuffs bundled up style

So how does one wear a short skirt in -5°C/23°F weather [the warmest it’s been all week]?

solving outfit problems

Start with magic tights – these are lined with velour, and I swear I can stand outside in them waiting for a bus for twenty minutes and barely feel a draft. They sell them all over the place here, and I found these in one of the many shopping malls. In Colorado I would wear fleece tights [found on Amazon] with skirts and it worked fine, but that doesn’t quite cut it here.

warm tights for winter

This is the velour side. Heaven on my skin.

On top, I’ve found that layering a shirt with a sweater is the best bet. I got this heat tech long sleeve from Uniqlo shortly after arriving here for around $15, and it’s already paying for itself. Good thing I also bought a turtleneck version. It’s fitted, so it’s perfect for layering or wearing on its own.

button front skirt and fitted black top

I can’t tell you how handy a length of black ribbon can be. I use it for loads of things from headbands to neckties, and here it works as a belt. Found in my mother’s ribbon bag.

ribbon belt cocked hip short skirt

My dear mother bought me this sweater before I left Colorado. She might feel chagrined to see that I tore off the entire bottom half of it, but what would a piece of clothing in my wardrobe be without some sort of adaptation?

warm white winter sweater outfit

As for the skirt – I love the pockets. Wrist deep. Easily the best feature.

deep skirt pockets tattoo watch girl

An adjustment I made more recently was adding this invisible magnetic snap between the first two buttons. It had a tendency to gape, and I didn’t like the look of that, so I sewed a little magic in and now it’s good as gold.

easy at home fix for gaping skirt

I found this skirt at a thrift store, but I did a bit of digging online and came up with a couple options that are available now. This one costs less, this one is mid-range, and this one costs more. The key with things like this is to find your version of it. I had in mind that I wanted a button front skirt, and this one is exactly my own. Every single person could wear a different one – do you.

I pin curled my hair today because I washed it in the morning and taught classes all day. I came home, threw on a headscarf, and when I take it out tomorrow it’ll be bouncy and glorious.

pin curl hair short hair style

Teaching the children has me on my feet all day, so a quick yoga video upon arriving home is just the thing. My favorite Youtube yoga instructor has one for people who work in the service industry. It’s barely 20 minutes, doesn’t even require a yoga mat, and leaves you feeling unwound in the best way.

Love, calm, and care –

OOTD: Pretty Punk

I like my look to strike a comfortable balance between masculine and feminine, strong and dainty, casual and fancy, tough and pretty. This is partly why I have short hair – but, as I’m growing out my pixie, I’m having to strike a new balance every day. And while I adore dressing up, it isn’t practical for my lifestyle. I live in Colorado, where people wear workout clothes to meet friends and putting on jeans is considered getting fancy. I walk or ride my bike everywhere, I get sweaty, I’m outside a lot, I like to sit like a man. These are real factors.

I don't own this bike. I wish I did. We just found it in a parking lot.

I don’t own this bike. I wish I did. We just found it in a parking lot.

Summer is tricky because I don’t like to show a ton of skin, but it’s just so hot outside. So, as always, balance is the key. In outfit of the day posts like this, I’ll break it down head to toe.

Headscarf – this is a scarf about three feet long that I found at Goodwill a couple years ago. The color scheme is varied, pulling together the solid colored pieces I’m wearing. I like a headscarf when I’m having a weird hair day. It makes life easier.

Sunglasses – five dollars at Charlotte Russe. After much experimentation, I find that round glass work best with my long oval face. I like the light shade of the lenses and the gold rim.

Top – this was a dress that I found at a resale shop. I tore the bottom off after wearing it once. I like the high neck – it’s a good balance for the bare shoulders and shorts – and the color suits my skin tone – it’s pale without washing me out. I like the delicate touches of lace and the drape of the chiffon.


Necklace – I got this at Charming Charlie years ago and now it’s nearly the only necklace I own. It used to be bright gold and now it’s this nice tarnished bronzy color, which I really prefer. It goes with everything, and can be helpful when I want some vertical lines in an outfit.

Belt – from Target. This belt has enough holes to fit comfortably around my hips or my waist, and the color goes with everything I own – burgundy is as versatile as black for me.

Shorts – these are from a local place called Topo Designs. They were a bit pricey [~60], but worth every penny. The fit is perfection, and I know they’ll last a while. That olive color plays well with the other clothes in my closet. They’re versatile, too – I hike in these, but I can also wear them like this.

IMG_0826Boots – I found these on clearance at DSW a few years ago. They might be the most complemented item I own. I love the tapestry-ness of the material, the color palette, and the Victorian style. Also, the heel clicks when I walk, which is always a fun feature. These, like the scarf, are great for uniting an outfit of solids.

Backpack – I found this on clearance at a Vans store for 40. I love that color, and its leather that’s perforated like mesh. I’m into interesting textures, and this bag is great for traveling. It’s big enough for all my things, and small enough to carry around town without breaking my back.

Head to toe, that’s me on a Wednesday. What do you think? How do you feel about boots in the summer?