My most worn, most beloved ethical clothing and accessories favorites from Everlane, JOYN, Melissa, Pyne & Smith Clothiers, and PACT Apparel plus tips on honing in on your personal style without over-shopping.
It's gotten to that point in the winter where I refuse to believe it's still winter.
Even when it's in the high 30s (I'd probably have to swallow my pride and put on a coat if it was any colder than that), I defiantly leave the house with just a sweater. I am a warrior! (jk, but I hope that's obvious.)
But I can't get by on just any sweater. It needs to be a thick, close knit that doesn't let in cold breezes. It needs to be versatile and layer well. And it's nice if it adds a bit of interest rather than being purely utilitarian.
Luckily, I recently added two cardigans to my wardrobe that tick all the boxes. One is vintage, the other is new...
Carraig Donn Vintage Wool Cardigan
Made in Ireland, the intricate knit pattern is what first attracted me to this style. This cardigan is made with thick, closely knit wool that keeps its shape, with very little drape. I can wear this in 40 degree weather without feeling cold, which is a feat of engineering. Sometimes traditional really is best.
These are pretty easy to find secondhand on Ebay, but you can also buy a new version from ethical artisan marketplace, NOVICA. For reference, I have a 34" bust and 29" waist, and I ordered a vintage medium.
Everlane Texture Cotton Cardigan
This style has been heavily compared to the one-size-fits-all Babaa cardigan, which sells for considerably more money, and I admit that at first, I agreed with the comparison. However, as far as I can tell from photos of the Babaa cardigan (I don't own one), the drape and overall fit is quite different. For one, Everlane's version comes in multiple sizes, so if you skew smaller or larger than Babaa's "ideal" fit, you can still get a version that works for you. And the bottom band looks a bit more tailored, too.
The Texture Cotton Cardigan is cotton with a bit of (non-biodegradable) nylon, but I actually think the nylon is somewhat essential to this style because it keeps the cotton from stretching from its own weight. I could imagine needing to constantly wash and re-block it if it weren't for the structure the nylon provides.
I ordered a size small, which is my typical size for anything Everlane advertises as oversized.
P.S. I thrifted these boots!
I can't believe it took me this long to discover the practicality of a thick, blocky sweater. I am thankful that we live in a time where anything goes with fashion, and I have to say I have been really inspired by the lovely vintage sweaters my retirement-age volunteers wear in the winter. Without them, I don't know that I would have had the guts to wear so many items that don't fit within the range of "trends" for people my age.
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I try to feature things I own over and over again in daily outfit photos in Instagram Stories and on the blog, but sometimes there's just not enough time in the day to spotlight my outfit repeats.
So today is particularly fun, because I'm going to talk about the Everlane Swing Trench I purchased
almost exactly a year ago. It's no longer available on the Everlane website, but you can still peruse Poshmark and Ebay for it if it's something you think would be useful.
The Everlane Swing Trench One Year Later
Last year, Everlane released the Swing Trench too late in the season for Charlottesville. If I'm remembering correctly, the season turned cold several weeks early and by the time I received the jacket, it was too lightweight to keep me warm most days. But over the course of the year, I've found it to be the perfect layering piece for spring and early fall. The tight cotton weave makes the jacket water resistant, and the swingy style makes it easy to layer with light sweaters while still having a close fit at the shoulders. At first I was worried it would compete with my longer military jacket, but that one is much more slouchy and better for colder weather, so I get a lot of use out of both items.
I haven't generally gone for "classic" pieces because they can feel stiff and make me feel older. But now that I'm 30 - and I know this sounds silly - it feels more appropriate, and I can't imagine this jacket really going out of style.
; Jacket -
(sold out); Denim -
, size 29; Boots -
I've decided I won't buy any more Everlane Cashmere until they can say something about sourcing, but I am intrigued by their
, which came out yesterday, simply because alpaca rearing tends to be much more humane and resource friendly than wool or cashmere.
I bought the Square Sweater, which is 100% cotton, on the recommendation of
on Instagram. On me, the sweater is not what I would call flattering, but it is really cozy for a slow, rainy day like the one we're currently having (I took these pictures this morning, so I'm still wearing this outfit).
With my henna red hair, I have loved the way green-leaning taupes and khakis play up the warmth, and this Ochre color is in the same wheelhouse as the Swing Trench without matching exactly, a monochrome look that still feels playful.
I purchased a Small since this is oversized, and I'd say it's true to size. For reference, my measurements are 34" bust, 29" waist, 39" hips.
At the start of every cold season, I feel frantic and confused about what to wear. It's as if I've tried to bury down deep the cold and darkness of the previous winter, to the point that every new cold season is like starting over again. I'm working on making sure I have pants that are warm and will fit.
For now, my sweater and jacket game is strong.
A brief note on my Everlane Reviews: In most cases, I purchase Everlane products using store credit garnered from a referral link, or a combination of cash and credit. I no longer use that link in new posts, preferring an affiliate link instead, but people still regularly click through old posts and use the referral. In all cases, my reviews are independent and editorial direction and content are my own.