7 In Styling Tips

Two more layering tips for transition outfits

Transition outfits using a summer shirt

I’m b-a-c-k with more outfit building ideas for this transition season. Last time we talked about how to lighten and brighten your transition outfits using scarves and sweaters. Today I’m bringing you a way to ease the longing you have to wear some of your lightweight spring/summer pieces even though we’re not there yet weatherwise.

You know about longing, that feeling of wanting something really bad, but it’s just not in the cards yet. You may have cute summer tops staring at you every time you open your closet, making you ache for a change in season so you can wear them. We’ll call it Seasonal Fashion Longing, SFL for short.

I don’t want you to suffer from SFL for long, so I’ve created a workaround solution so you can wear a few of them right now.

Workaround transition outfit #1: wear that sleeveless top

This first idea was born back in September when I was offering a client a way to incorporate a summer piece into a transition outfit (from summer to fall) with a sweater she owned.

I started with this lovely sleeveless floral print top set against a white background. I asked my client to slip it on, and then I layered over it her Eileen Fisher biscuit-colored sweater.

The hemline of the top peeks out from under the sweater offering a feminine touch to the boxy-shape. I look at this combo and swoon.

transition outfit details

I delight in the way the color of the sweater blends in with the lighter colors in the floral print. She could wear it with a medium- to- light-colored jean and taupe or moss-colored booties right now.

Workaround transition outfit #2: wear that lightweight shirt

So last week I had a longing of my own. I’d purchased a soft stuffed dog for Vivienne. His name is Doggy Doggy Boo Boo. I put him in my purse the night before my babysitting day, so I wouldn’t forget to bring it.

In the morning, I opened my closet and wondered what to wear to see Viv and bring her Doggy Doggy Boo Boo. This thin cotton shirt with bulldogs all over it started barking at me.

transition outfit examples

Okay, okay, I said.

I generally wear this shirt on hot days because it’s so thin. But I had to wear it to see Viv. Doggy gift, doggy shirt–you’d have done the same thing, I’m sure.

In order to stay warm enough, I first put on my J.Crew black Tippi sweater with the 3/4 length sleeve. Then I layered the shirt over the sweater. I was going to button the shirt up, but I decided instead to leave it open and wear a necklace. Viv loves necklaces. With the shirt open, she’d get to it more easily.

I layered a blazer over everything for the chilly start to the day. Did Vivienne appreciate the thoughtfulness on Grammafoxy’s part to wear the shirt with the doggies on it? Not so much. But she grabbed for Doggy Doggy Boo Boo as soon as she saw it.

Will this plan to ease your SFL help you build transition outfits?

So there you have it. If you want to get some variety into your outfits right now, see if you can layer a sweater over a top of yours. Let’s see that print underneath. Or layer a thin sweater under a lightweight shirt. You’ll be warm enough while feeling like you’re getting closer to the promise of spring.

A quick pleasure point note: I have to say, a part of me loves doing things like this because it gives me the sense that I’m getting away with something. I don’t know why that pleases me, but it does. You too?

Go forth and get away with something. Look into your closet and see if you can pair some summer and winter things together for a fresh-to-your-eyes look that pleases you!

Speaking of dogs, a reminder from 40 Over 40 of what clothes want to do for you

“Clothes are like puppy dogs. They want to please you like crazy, make you deliriously happy, make you feel like the most special person in the world. They want to love you from the moment you open your eyes in the morning to the minute you walk through the door at night.” From 40 Over 40: 40 Things Every Woman Over 40 Needs to Know About Getting Dressed

Are you sneaking around doing clever things with transition outfits? We want all the juicy details!


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  • Reply
    March 2, 2020 at 6:43 pm

    My spring fling is a handmade silver wire bracelet with semi-precious stones. It brings me joy, Brenda, finally! Found for $10 second hand. Colorful, simple, smile-worthy.

  • Reply
    Trinnie q
    March 2, 2020 at 9:25 pm

    In the, mornings here,in Central Victoria ,Australia, we have begun to feel the Autumn chill. I have delighted in starting the day with jeans,or long pants, and a long sleeved shirt, with a tee shirt underneath…I am greeting these items,like long lost friends…Amazing how comforting and snuggly they feel, after the long harsh summer we have had here….Oh, and how adorable is that little puppy ! I bet that brought such joy to Viv!! How precious ! Take care darlings. sending love from Oz

  • Reply
    March 3, 2020 at 4:48 am

    Love both tour ideas Brenda! Gives me ideas for this transition season, when we’re tired of the heavier wind we clothes. I see a try-on session coming with tops I put away last fall! What a cute stuffed dog!

  • Reply
    Katherine Cramer
    March 3, 2020 at 9:58 am

    I have tried to wear my vests (not necesssarily the puffy Winter ones) now–before it gets too warm to wear them. Vests sometimes get ignored in my closet. Beginning with a print top lets the sleeve and sometimes the tail of a tunic show below (a la Brenda) depending on the vest length. If the day does get warm (typical for California’s ever-changing same-day temps), I take off the vest to fully show my Spring print top in all it’s glory. I’ve also noticed my Spring fashion transition includes sleep wear transitions from flannel PJs to sleeveless long nightgowns. Inevitably I’m too cold in the morning so I have been adding a duster instead of the really warm fluffy bathrobes. Sometimes I add a scarf. Oh no, I’m sharing that I don’t get fully dressed in the morning on some days. Hanging out in my duster and nightgown that could pass for a summer maxi. Not fooling anyone yet I like it for Spring.

  • Reply
    Miranda Nolan
    March 3, 2020 at 10:08 am

    Love your shoes with that outfit! Any information on them, if you don’t mind sharing?

  • Reply
    Elaine @ Following Augustine
    March 14, 2020 at 3:39 pm

    I’ve been following suggestion #1 all winter. When I put my summer wardrobe away in the fall, I kept a few favourite sleeveless tops in my closet. I wear them over a cami for extra warmth and under a cardigan. This has helped me get through a cold Canadian winter and keeps me looking forward to summer!

    • Reply
      March 22, 2020 at 7:02 pm

      Brilliant! What a great plan you had back in the fall!

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