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6 Scarves 2021: Jan-June Recap, #1 Black & Grey, Gina

For an introduction to the 6 Scarves 2021 project, see this post.

For a description of my method, see this post.

We are halfway through July; I need to move things up a gear to get through our recaps and July additions before August.

First, here is the exuberant color palette and rabbit mascot for our first wardrobe.

Halfway through the year (already?!), the Gina wardrobe looks like this:

Jan-Jun Garments: #1 Black & Grey, Gina
Jan-Jun Accessories: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

This summer has been a warm one in St Paul, MN so far. I've been glad of the effective air-conditioning in my apartment (and happy not to be at the mercy of the unreliable climate control in my office). Here are some warm-weather outfits incorporating pieces we added in June into the rest of the wardrobe. It's time to think pink.

Let's start with two of our June additions, the white lace top and dark grey culottes. These two pieces form such a versatile base for accessorizing that we could play around with options for the rest of the post. But for Outfit #1, I wanted to experiment with this dusky rose cardigan as a layering piece for a cooler morning or a location with strong air-conditioning. The floral scarf picks up that rose color as well as the cool grey of the pants. It could be worn the traditional way or used as a headband, a bit of tote bag flair, or simply kept on hand as a shoulder wrap in case it's too warm for the cardigan but a little coverage (from the sun, for instance) feels in order. The earrings and flats bookend the look with grey + black.

Jan-Jun Outfit #1: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

Outfit #2 is an experiment in tonal dressing, bringing together several quite different variants of pink: candy pink striped shirt and bright pink necklace from June added to the wine pants and flats from January. Is this a color combination that works to your eye? Is it too extreme or erratic? To me, it's a bit out there, but I would give it a try. When adding bracelets to a very colorful outfit, I am no stranger to piling on yet more color, but sometimes I like to pull out this trio of metallic colors and see what works.

Jan-Jun Outfit #2: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

In Outfit #3, I stick to pinks from the bright end of the spectrum, featuring the cardigan, necklace, and ballet flats from our June additions. I like these cheerful pieces as a way to make a mostly black outfit feel summery.

Jan-Jun Outfit #3: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

Finally, in Outfit #4, I am going once more to the well of "neutral base outfit with exciting brightly colored accessories," this time featuring a pink scarf and seed bead bracelets with the ballet flats...well hello, you are a bright pink beauty bundle! (Not familiar with beauty bundles? Liz Klebba at Closet Play Image gives you low-down in this post. But the basic idea is that they are a set of accessories related by color, theme, etc., that can be used together over and over to jazz up various base looks to create attractive, interesting, and cohesive outfits.)

Jan-Jun Outfit #4: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

Once I realized I had a bright pink beauty bundle going with these four accessories, I had to test out how they would work with the base pieces from Outfits #1-3. The first and third outfits are a definite go, and the possibly controversial candy pink + bright pink + wine combination is very interesting to consider. Huh, you know, I would wear any of these tops with any of these bottoms (yes, including the stripes + floral combination), and I'd happily finish off each of these outfits with accessories from the beauty bundle.

Outfits #1-3 with a Bright Pink Beauty Bundle

Today I'm going to show how I've worn three of these items in warm-weather outfits with a black base. If you're committed to a year-round color palette, it can be hard to know what to do with black in the summer because it can feel heavy. One approach is to make sure your black items for summer are made from lightweight fabrics like linen. Another strategy is to add bright/light colors to your black basics, which is what these outfit photos will demonstrate.

OK, as I was finishing this post, I got curious about additional strategies for wearing black in the summer; a quick google search pulled up this years-old but still very relevant article from Bridgette Raes that has a lot of great tips. I'm now curious to see how the outfits I am sharing below incorporate these tips! I'll add a note in blue below each outfit that brings in Bridgette's tips.

First up is a June outfit with the dark grey culottes (which as you see, wear like crop pants) that I created specifically with these grey/rusty-orange print ballet flats in mind. I don't have a short-sleeved grey top so I wore a black one for a column of darkness. To pick up on the orange color in the print I added a sandstone button up shirt as a lightweight jacket. The gold and resin link necklace has all of the colors from the shoes (grey, orange, rust, yellow) so I couldn't resist going the matchy route with it. Even though the base outfit is quite dark, the colorful top layer draws attention away from that. For heroines living somewhere that is warm on Halloween, this would be a fun (non-costume) option that comes across as a bit less stark (and for many people, easier to wear) than a true black-and-orange combination. And if you add a witch's hat or black cat ears, I'm not going to judge.

June Outfit with Dark Grey Culottes

Which Bridgette tips do we see here?

Tip #4 - Soften black. Using dark grey pants instead of all black softens the look somewhat.

Tip #5 - Pull in a print then pull out the colors. Yep, that's how I arrived at the sandstone shirt--working from the colors of the shoes.

This late summer outfit features two items from the Gina wardrobe: the bright pink drapey cardigan and the pink/orange silk scarf with a polka dot and bird (some kind of European sparrow) motif. With these vivid pieces on top, the black t-shirt and skirt column are livened up quite a lot.

Sept. Outfit with Bright Pink Cardigan & Bird/Dot Scarf

Which Bridgette tips do we see here?

Tip #8 - Add a colorful topper piece to your black column. Bridgette points out that you still get all the benefits of a column of color but the topper gives the look a summery feel.

Finally, in this late summer outfit featuring the white lace top, it's the skirt and top layer that are (mostly) black. I followed the so easy and yet so effective strategy in which you use the colors in the print as your guide when adding accent pieces. Isn't the outfit formula of "white top + black bottom + print topper + matching accent colored necklace and shoes" a nice quick one for a business casual work place? Sure, you're not earning points for originality, but sometimes you want to be able to throw on an outfit that looks attractive, appropriate, and intentional without a lot of time, effort, and tweaking of the details.

Sept. Outfit with White Lace Top and Pink Necklace & Flats

Which Bridgette tips do we see here?

Tip #5 - Pull in a print and then pull out the colors. Yes, I do this one quite a bit.

Tip #8 - Add colored shoes. Bridgette shows this with an otherwise black outfit in which the colored shoes are the pop (that's almost her styling calling card) but there's no law that says you can't add them along with other colorful pieces. (Indeed, I've got a bit of beauty bundle styling going on here with the necklace and shoes.)

What are Bridgette's other tips? Go read her article! It's much better than getting a summary from me. While you're at it, read her wonderful "four easy formulas" article that shows a BUNCH of examples from real styling sessions with her clients.

Let's wrap this up with a review of the Gina rabbit menagerie. And you know, to really put the beauty bundle concept to the test, we should do as Robot suggested and see how the bright pink beauty bundle works with our bunny capsule! What do you think? Sylvia the Silver Fox at upper left has gotten all four of her feet into the stack of bracelets. Polly the broken Polish is generally confused by what's happening. Francoise the French Angora has a pair of Barbie clown shoes on. Hilary the Himalayan seems satisfied with her dramatic necklace. Gina the Checkered Giant is starting to nibble on her scarf. And Charlotte the d'Argent Champagne has summed the situation up quite well.

Jan-Jun Rabbits & Bright Pink Beauty Bundle: #1 Black & Grey, Gina

Disclaimer: No rabbits were harmed in the making of this 100% computer-generated image of bunnies in pink accessories. Well, except maybe their dignity. Offered at no cost to the reader. Well, except maybe to their sanity.

Do you wear black in the summer? What strategies do you use in creating your outfits?

In my next capsule wardrobe post, we will review the wardrobe (and rabbits) to date for #2 Navy & Beige, Darcy.

I link up with:

Shelbee at Shelbee on the Edge (Mondays; 3rd Thursday)

Mica at Away from the Blue (Mondays)

Debbie at My Random Musings (Mondays)

Leelo at Beauty by Miss L (Mondays)

Roxanne at Glass of Glam (Mondays)

Laura at I Do deClaire (Tuesdays)

Emma at Style Splash (Tuesdays)

Jess at Elegantly Dressed & Stylish (Tuesdays)

Gail at Is This Mutton? (Wednesdays)

Shelly at The Queen in Between (Wednesdays)

Jodie at Jodie's Touch of Style (3rd Thursday)

Carrie at Curly Crafty Mom (Thursdays)

Ada at Elegance and Mommyhood (Thursdays)

Jacqui at Mummabstylish (Thursdays)

Suzy at The Grey Brunette (Fridays)

Nancy at Nancy's Fashion Style (Fridays)

Michelle at My Bijou Life (Fridays)

Erika at A Little Bit of Everything (Fridays)

Rena at Fine Whatever (Saturdays)

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