Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Halp? I'm freezing!

Dude I don't know what is going on. I grew up in New Hampshire. I've spent almost 25 of my 33 years in New England but I am so cold! I don't mind the cold but that doesn't mean I am not cold. It is like I forget how to dress for the winter every year. My style is continually evolving and some things I used to have or did I can't do anymore.

How I used to wear two pairs of tights I don't know. I can't even tolerate one pair. They just HURT.

So I am looking for ideas. 

Things I don't like. Sweaters that pull over my head. Urg. Total vanity thing. I have convinced myself they aren't flattering. I pair that with any crew neck shirt in the unflattering category.
Bulky sweaters. Again with the unflattering. Double tights. Wool. I somehow developed a lovely wool allergy last year. Which rendered no joke half my winter wardrobe unwearable. I used to wear a lot of dresses with turtlenecks but with the tights being an issue I am not doing that as much anymore.

So any personal suggestions that align with what my style (or you think my style is) would be welcome. I mean I know the obvious oh wear more layers and stuff but I am not sure what those layers should be! I am looking more for ideas that you think would help me in personally as opposed to oh you are cold wear winter clothes. I know that. Hell even ideas of clothes combos you've seen me wear for warmth.

Today for example I have on jeans, knee high socks, insulated knee boots, a tank, long sleeve shirt, blazer and scarf. I am still FREEZING at work and it's only like 50 degrees out which is not that cold honestly.


Cassykins said...

I've been pairing some of my nicer dresses with a plain black cozy-lined hoodie. It makes some of my "fancier" dresses more every-day wearable in addition to being warm. Other than that I have been going the non-clothing route and medicating my coldness with cup after cup of soup/broth. I honestly have not wanted to eat much aside from soup for weeks now.

Robin said...

For years and years, before they were stylish, before I was stylish, I have relied on scarves for warmth. In the winter, it is my signature look, and I wear one nearly every day. With your wool allergy, I would recommend silk and/or cotton (maybe even fake pashmina made from acrylic??). Nearly all of mine come from thrift stores. I never go to a thrift store without looking through all the scarves. You would not believe the pure silk scarves I have found wedged in with the scratchy, pilly, bulky yarn ones. I know from your posts that you wear scarves very well, and you have some lovely ones.

I layer fitted cotton long sleeve shirts under nicer t-shirts or blouses all the time too. It sort of has a nice grown-up grunge effect that I enjoy.

Also, if you are really suffering, invest in some silk long underwear. Sierra Trading Post will often have cheap ones.

Kitty said...

Please think of this as a temporary detour rather than an official change in your wardrobe. I wrote on my blog about my "slippery slope to frumpiness" where I had adopted all of these rules about what I could and couldn't wear over decades - effectively working myself into a small corner of just black knits, jeans and soft shirts. It took a lot of focus to identify those false beliefs I had adopted too easily as facts and begin challenging them to find the truth for myself.

I find that when I am sensitive to temperatures and my clothes touching me, I am getting sick. Becoming gluten-free two years ago opened up a whole new world, as you can probably relate. I now pay more attention to the signals that mean I am not feeling 100% well.

Cara said...

First of all, get your circulation checked out if this has become a problem all of a sudden. I found out that I have Reynaud's, which is a circulation issue. While that doesn't mean it'll stop being so freaking cold all the time (I'm never warm!), it at least stops the "why the hell am I so cold" thinking.
I second the silk long underwear. I've been hunting for a pair forever. Of course, that limits you to pants or really long skirts, but I'm guessing you'll be wearing a lot of those anyway.
Maybe try switching brands or going up a size on the tights. When I double layer tights, I got up a size or two on the upper layer to prevent the "omg there is a boa constrictor sucking up my leg" feeling.
And if it's mostly at work, will they allow space heaters? If they're hesitant and you've got a medical diagnosis, they may have no choice but to either up the thermostat or let you have one.
I used to wear multiple scarves to work, and ski pants for the commute, then used the scarves as blankets when I got into the office.

Buffalo Girl said...

Fleece lined tights. I found mine at TJ MAXX, I've seen them on ebay. Cuddl Duds, Target has version, JC Penney has them too. I'm also trying out thin alpaca insoles for my boots, I have a wool allergy too but it seems like alpaca wool doesn't make me itch. Etsy for the insoles.

byhillary said...

@cara sorry i explain poorly. It's not a new problem for me. With my ever stricter vanity, tummy issues and wool allergy my lack of choices is an issue not my circulation. I've always been cold. Dave's sister has Raynaud's Disease. Circulation wise I'm fine. When you are short you can't just go up a size or two in tights because they increase the length a lot. I can't tell you how much money I've wasted testing that. It doesn't matter the size tights are uncomfortable on some spots. (I'm too prudish to elaborate) I have a space heater under my desk but it only helps when I'm there. I need a personal heat bubble I can wear.

@buffalo girl I ordered 4 pairs! I have them it's just not quite cold enough to wear yet. Double edged sword of too hot! Ha. I'm anxious to wear them though. Cause sweating to me is far worse then being cold.

byhillary said...

Kitty. Yup. I am sick. I wasn't gonna elaborate but that's a big problem. I feel awful so everything bothers me. On antibiotics again and hoping I'll be less picky sensitive. I'm so tired of clothing hurting. I'm the same way. When I don't feel good things drive me bonkers. I have anemia so any little sickness is amplified to me.

MAMom said...

I feel for you Hillary. I am on the South Shore and it is FREEZING here today!! I have lost 70 opunds over the past 2 years so am freezing cold ALL THE TIME!! UGH! I too hate crew neck T's and pullover sweaters and can't wear coat sweater as the waist on them all seem to tie at my ribcage, making me look huge. I rely on Target tssue t's and tanks. Iwear them both almost everyday under whatever I am wearing. I also have fleece lined tights that I bought at Job lot. I wear leggings with 2 pairs of those fluffy type socks under boots and pants. The leggins look like like tights. And I wear gloves to bed! I am definately not as stylish in the winter and I think that may be true of a lot of us living in cold climates. And the older I get, the less I care;)

I hope you feel better soon.


Dorothy said...

I'm feeling the same way too. A couple thoughts: I've been wearing leggings instead of tights since I find them more comfy in the tummy area. I've also realized that most places (including my work) haven't turned on the heat. At all. Also with the temperature drop we've had recently (I'm in the NE too) I think it's just a matter of getting used to the cold again. Well, I hope you find something comfy and you feel better soon.

Michelle said...

sadly i don't think i'm much help as it's currently 90 degrees in my neck of the woods. once the cold temps hit i forget how to dress appropriately and start piling on all kinds of nonsense in an effort to stay warm.

i was going to also mention reynaud's (i also have it; yay me.) or other illness but you already addressed that one. let me know if you come to some magical formula for looking chic and staying toasty - i'm all ears.

ps - thanks for your very sweet comment today - it made my day :)

bethtrue said...

I like arm-warmers - you can probably find a nice pair on Etsy that aren't wool. And along those same lines, an infinity scarf to keep your neck/shoulder region warm.

Erin said...

I'm with Dorothy - leggings instead of tights. You can get the shorter length ones and top them with OTK socks. Target is now selling ORK socks for just $5. Old Navy had their leggings on sale for $5, too, and they're nice and thick.

Could you wear hats to work? Not a ski cap, but maybe a beret or snood?

Andrea said...

I always had this great idea of inventing (perhaps they already exist) thermal slips... so you can wear really cute summery dresses in the winter but underneath you've got protection that can blast through -20 :)

What about the ol' jeans under dresses?

Big chunky scarves?

byhillary said...

Erin funny you say that. I got three snoods for my birthday and I didn't even think to wear them at work. I bet it would help!

everyone. Thanks. I do almost all those things already :( I think I just need to invest in some more warm under things. The only thing I dont do is the jeans under dresses because I feel it is too bulky looking. Leggings under dresses is a favorite. I need MORE leggings though. I find them more comfortable than tights but still not comfy. I think once I am feeling better I might be able to try more things. I never thought to wear a hat in work though. I am going to try that.

I don't have any silk undershirts anymore and I used to and I think that they helped. Something very lightweight and not bulky I can wear under things undetected.

I am also going to try the two pairs socks idea as I am not doing that.

Today I have on jeans, over knee socks, insulated boots, tank, long sleeve, heavy blazer and a cashmere giant scarf. It's an improvement. I also wore a padded bra. Actually helped!

I think the damn air is what is making me more fussy. I hate being damp. HATE HATE

these all helped in they are making me think tonight i just need to pull everything out and LOOK at it all and find more warm combos.

Red said...

I live in the same area as you, and this is the time of year where the cold seems to sink in and I feel like I won't be warm again unless/until I am baked in a pie. Tonight's snow didn't help.

The best solution I have found, as others have mentioned, is the silk longjohns. I especially like the tank style shirts as they layer really well and I tend to feel warmer if my core is warm. To that end, I love the thin windblock fleece vest from EMS (Expensive Mountain Shit) I wear under even my warmest winter coats - it layers well and is super insulating.

Scarves are also a must for me. I have some nice silk/cashmere blend pashminas and all silk scarves I picked up at the Talbot's Clearance Center in Woburn. I've also found really nice silk longjohns at TJ Maxx Alewife or Newton.

Stay warm!

tigerteacher said...

Hi Hillary!
Just wanted to add my two cents! I'm really picky about tights and leggings and where they hit my waist - I hate to be pinched at the middle. What I really want to share is my favorite sources for leggings - Rainbow Shops, Dots and Ross! They all seem to carry the same brands and they come in around the $5 per pair mark. What I like about them is that they're smooth and slippery in texture but not shiny, as opposed to cottony in texture, so your dresses don't stick to them like they can with cottony fabrics. And, being that they're so inexpensive, I tend to stock up on different colors and wear them all winter long. I wear them with socks and boots under dresses and they're warmer than tights. My only other tip for avoiding a waist pinch is sizing up on tights, though I know this isn't for everyone. I tend to size way up and tuck the waist band under my bra so that there's nothing binding my waist. I've also read on other blogs about snipping the waist band on tights but I haven't had the nerve to try it...maybe the next time I get a run I'll give it a shot before I toss the tights just to see if it works. I hope you feel better and get some cool weather wardrobe inspiration! :-)