Resolution Solution #4 – Taking It Up A Notch For A Winter Getaway

Snow Bunny Getaway

It’s time to hit the slopes…or at least the lodge!  This curvy California girl is packing for an upcoming ski getaway – what to wear? 

I fantasize about being that super chic Aspen or Zermatt woman from the James Bond movies.  Trim and sleek in white with a face-framing fur lined hood and glamorous Jackie-O sunglasses; uber-stylish but just simple and sporty enough to suggest real skiing.  Flash to après-ski drinks by a big lodge fireplace in a lush sweater and pants, with beautiful boots – casual perfection achieved through spending copious amounts of money and time.

The reality has been a last minute root around the back of the closet for “cold weather clothes” resulting in a look that was part mom-jean, part 14 year old boy, part REI outlet, and wholly unflattering.  A full weekend of uninspired ensembles – puffy outerwear, practical base garments, aged fleeces and bulky boots…cumbersome layers straggling après-ski in a drafty, crowded lodge with utilitarian furnishings and damp floors. 

Deciding I had had enough of this depressing crash from dream to reality I set off to create a capsule ski vacation wardrobe that is practical, totally functional, and makes me feel if not glamorous, at least more stylish than your average ice fisherman.  The look – that casual glamour of my dreams, of course!  The goal was not to go so over-glam that I looked ridiculous, but to get away from the “I give up” ensembles and look snazzy enough that I feel good about myself.  Just taking it up a notch!

Establishing a palette and planning around key pieces made it easier to co-ordinate and reuse pieces keeping purchasing down and packing simpler.   The palette was pretty easy to set – choices in ski wear for plus size women can be pretty limited, ski pant colors are like Model-Ts – you can get any color you want as long as it’s black!  But black turns out to be a pretty good bet as I wouldn’t give that dreamy white more than ten minutes before my backside found something icky, or hot chocolate got splashed on my chest.  To crisp up the basic black I added a pop of color with my layering pieces – bright pink, light lime and aqua.   Here are the key pieces – in all cases I still chose good quality and functional cold weather wear, just upped the fashion quotient a notch or two:

  • A Good Jacket – Needless to say, cold weather fashions tend to leave everyone looking a bit, well, fluffy.  This is even harder to avoid if you start with a curvy body.  Selecting a jacket that is well designed and uses good materials is your best bet as it will last for several years and look better in the long run.  I found a black parka with a nipped in and belted waist to give myself some shape and the high tech material kept bulkiness down.  Added bonus was the faux fur trim around the hood/collar to give a bit of glamour!
  • Ski Pants – I found a pair that flair just a tiny bit at the leg to balance my top out a bit and avoid the ice cream cone silhouette.  Again the high tech materials gave me a sleeker fit than the puffy stuff. These are still plenty warm and when it gets REALLY cold I add silk base layer bottoms.
  • Boots – Plenty of great choices here.  I found a pair in suede-like nubuck with a bit of faux fur trim.  Super warm, dry and functional, I can trudge around in snow and still wear them inside with other clothes.  This saves having to pack two pairs.
  • Layering Pieces – here is where I added color.  I selected items in light weight, non-bulky fabrics and again kept the cut on the trim/fitted side with princess seaming and curvy cuts to keep the “volume” to a minimum.
  • Base Layers – plain basic silks are still my favorite, although I also like using dri-fit tops too.  Again as fitted as is comfortable, in basic black and white.
  • Apres-ski wear – my go-to black denim trousers – legs wide enough to go over the boots, and a yummy black cashmere turtleneck.  Not awe-inspiringly fashion forward, but it looks quietly chic, works well with my parka, is warm and I can add a little bling if we are going out. 

Now for the fun part – accessories!!!  I adore accessories and winter time is no exception. Nothing kills a look more than an accident so its helmets and goggles on the slopes.  Off the slopes I love adding some fun with hats and gloves but do try to avoid looking like a twenty-year old snowboarder.  I coordinate my stuff so I feel a bit more pulled together and prefer to pick a hat in a flattering color since it’s next to my face.  For just running around town and going out at night I wear a pair of fur earmuffs so I don’t have severe hat head when I am indoors.  Add my trusty Chanel shield style sunglasses – sporty and glam, perfect!

I update bits of this capsule from year to year, and have to really expand it for big trips.  But the basics are essentially ready to roll whenever we are.   So now, as the not-so-glamorous basics of Mammoth’s Canyon Lodge will be in my immediate future, I will still get my stylish moments.

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