I know that any appropriateness of the season’s fashion to the season’s weather is purely accidental, but this winter in Seattle the clothes actually make sense.
I attended a technology conference last month and stood in the registration line with two or three hundred professional women ranging in age from the mid 20s to the late 50s. I saw exactly three women wearing skirts and maybe two dozen wearing shoes that were not boots. A few of the shoe wearers had some kind of flirty dressy shoes; the others were wearing urban-style athletic shoes.
The uniform was clearly boots and jeans.
Not only were boots ubiquitous, but most of them were low-heeled riding boots (ranging from English style riding boots to Frye/Harley style “engineer” boots). Talk about comfortable and attractive!
I’m rather sorry to say goodbye to boot-cut jeans, but there’s no question about it: skinny jeans are back, and there are styles that flatter even non-skinny people. More good news is that the show-the-crack hip huggers with rips all over them are gone, replaced by a “just below the waist” contemporary fit jeans in dark denim — a look that works for most shapes and sizes.
Sweaters and scarves with complex personality
The relatively conservative boots and pants are set off by sweaters in interesting knits and colors — the chunky, bulky, complex knits are a departure from the figure hugging cashmere of recent seasons, and definitely look either handmade or handmade-like.
Long ethnic scarves are still the thing, but this year’s variation on the theme subtle. Instead of felted wool and nubbly brocades, the new materials are a bit limper, made of cotton/hemp gauze or rich wools with steampunkish paisley designs.
So, enjoy a season of warm, comfortable boots, flattering jeans, and fun colorful sweaters and scarves. It may be years before we see anything this sensible again.
Sad to say, it took me nearly an hour to find an image of a woman wearing this style you see every day on the streets of Seattle. All of Nordstrom’s jeans were shown with stiletto “hooker” heels. Bleh. I had to go to the Sundance catalog to get something close to the Seattle look. So excuse the snow and the lack of a messenger bag!