top of page
  • Writer's picturesallyinstpaul

2 Print-Based Capsule Outfits for Fall + DIY Paper Beads & DIY Jewelry

Today I am sharing two OOTD from my fall/winter capsule wardrobe that I created around multi-color print pieces.

Fall/Winter Wardrobe Capsule Color Palette
Fall/Winter Wardrobe Capsule Color Palette

For capsule OOTD #9, I chose two pieces from the warm temps part of our wardrobe, circled in magenta below, as well as the denim jacket from the mid temps portion of the capsule.

Wardrobe capsule
Capsule OOTD #9 items added in magenta

I was astonished to discover that I had never worn the circus striped skirt with any kind of blue top before! Apparently I typically style it with a black top or occasionally a red or green one, but never blue. So it was a slam dunk to pick this pretty "splash blue" knit top, topped with a blue denim jacket. It's interesting to see that the blue stripes in the skirt blend in a bit with the green ones next to them, but I think the blue top still works well in this outfit.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
Capsule OOTD #9: 10/3/23

This scarf is a great addition to my accessory capsule as all its colors are part of the wardrobe color palette: black, white, bright blue, and a delightful red-orange that is a terrific match to the warm red stripe in the skirt. The stripes + abstract floral print mix is a successful one to my eye because the color choices are so tight (black, bright blue, and red are in both pieces) and there is distance between them with an expanse of blue creating visual separation.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My shoes follow the matching-top-and-shoes color formula that I rely on fairly often, particularly outside of tights season. (The OOTD under Bright Blue in this post shows another outfit with the same top, shoes, and scarf.) I was excited that this outfit marked the 30 wears point for these bright blue Payless ballet flats that I bought in Nov. 2015. They were on sale for $8 so the current cost per wear (CPW) is now $0.27!

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My all-DIY daily bracelet stack is based on yet another paper bead bracelet set I made to coordinate with this skirt, focusing on the red, blue, black, and green colors in the skirt with gold as the metal. I've made 3 paper bead bracelets sets inspired by this skirt, but with the gorgeous array of colors in it, I could keep going for a while exploring the various color combinations through paper beads. (See my bicone paper bead tutorial here.)

DIY paper bead bracelet stack

The top bracelet with the black spacers was made using this amazing page from an alumni magazine. This page is like a work of art in itself so it's almost a shame to cut it up into beads! But the colors in it are just such a fabulous match to the skirt that I had to do it. The only change I made to the strips was covering the white paper core with black marker. I love how colorful these beads are.

DIY Paper Beads

The bottom bracelet with the gold spacers started from a full-page drawing in a different alumni magazine. This one has a more limited color palette, but I liked the red, black, and bits of blue in it as a fit for the skirt's colors. After cutting the strips, I decided to cover the white and deepen the blue by applying bright blue marker at various points to create beads that are mostly red and black but with dabs of vibrant blue and traces of golden yellow. Sometimes the marker colors blend in seamlessly with the bead and sometimes they stick out a bit more; this is definitely the latter situation with the blue marker color popping against the more muted paper. In this case, I found that after I had strung the beads with gold spacers, the colors in the beads meshed a bit better, perhaps because the juxtaposition with the very shiny gold made them look more similarly muted in contrast (an example of simultaneous contrast).

DIY Paper Beads
Design a paper bead bracelet set

I also added a couple of new DIY glass bead bracelets to my stack made from the 6mm striped bead mix I bought on Amazon: one in cobalt blue with silver spacers (hence my decision to wear my DIY mixed metal spacer bead bracelets in the stack) and one with red, blue, pink, and purple striped beads with mixed metal spacers. (See my stretch elastic bracelet tutorial here.)

DIY bracelets

I also made a pair of bead soup earrings in the "beads on a stick" style to go with the paper bead bracelet set. It was very easy to pick out four pairs of beads in the main colors of my bracelet set and add gold-tone disk spacer beads in between them. The beads were different colors and shapes, but all glass beads, and using the same spacer bead throughout the earring helped unify their appearance.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
Design bead soup earrings

Capsule OOTD #10 incorporates items from the mid temps part of our capsule with items circled in mustard.

Capsule wardrobe
Capsule OOTD #10 items added in mustard

I created this outfit around my capsule-inspiring multi-color floral top, pulling out the olive in the pants and the beige/ivory in the sweater knit moto jacket. Sometimes I'm not happy with how an outfit looks when the outer layer is much lighter than the shirt, but I am satisfied in this case. I'm not sure what the factors are that differentiate successful light-over-dark layering from less successful attempts for me, but I'm continuing to experiment. Even if I never analyze it well enough to learn what principles underlie it, I may be able to identify some particular combinations that I like and would wear again. I also know that ivory + black is very high contrast compared to my own coloring, but personality-wise, I like the boldness and drama of it so I will also continue to wear higher contrast outfits when I'm in the mood for it.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40
Capsule OOTD #10: 10/20/23

The necklace layering for this outfit was very simple, just two pieces (though one of them was itself a double-strand necklace). I hit two milestones for the top hammered silver double strand necklace in this outfit: 30 wears and under $1 cost per wear (specifically, $0.96)! I purchased this necklace from Jones New York in Nov. 2013. I'm a bit surprised it took me this long to reach 30 wears, but luckily with jewelry/scarves, the wear window is really long unless it's a fad/trendy piece so there's no huge rush.

Plus size outfit idea for women over 40

My all-DIY daily bracelet stack is a capsule wardrobe repeat! I wore this same paper bead bracelet set in capsule OOTD #7 here. The only difference is that I switched out a black/clear bracelet for a solid black one and a gold/silver bracelet for the green paper bead one in completing the stack.

DIY bracelet stack

I didn't manage to get a close up photo of myself wearing them, but I also had a new pair of DIY earrings in this outfit. As part of my bead soup earring project, I am creating earrings not only to match paper bead bracelet sets, but also in the main colors of my wardrobe. Some time ago I had purchased a mix of beaded links from Fire Mountain Gems that has glass beads wrapped in silver wire with wire wrapped loops on each end, with 2-4 links per color, but I didn't know what to do with them. I recently decided that these beaded links would be great for making some quick charm earrings, and I've made several earrings so far by attaching a jump ring and charm at the bottom of the link and a jump ring and ear wire at the top of the link.

For these olive green beaded links, I chose silver charms with doves carrying olive branches in their beaks. With so many people living in war zones right now, it felt like the right time for dove of peace earrings.

DIY dove charm earrings

Here is our accessory capsule after 10 outfits. We are up to 9 bracelet sets, 10 earring pairs, 12 necklaces, 4 scarves, and 7 pairs of shoes. Obviously this is not the smallest possible accessory capsule a person could create! But since I am building the capsule organically and not intentionally re-wearing accessories from outfit to outfit, I'm not surprised that it's fairly extensive.

Accessory capsule to date
Accessory capsule to date

What do you think of wearing a lighter topper layer piece (jacket, cardigan, vest, etc.) over a darker top? Do you like it, dislike it, or (like me) does it depend? Do you have a preference for high value contrast (dark + light) vs. medium (light + medium or medium + dark) or low value (similar level of dark/light) contrast in your own outfits?

Blogs I link up with are listed here.

bottom of page