What I have pictured above was my winter wardrobe. A few jackets (some more for style than actual warmth, i.e. jean jacket), hoodie, raincoat (which is a relatively recent edition) and of course, my red peacoat for the coldest of days. These items of winter-wear have served me well the past few years, in Florida that is.
Now that I’m living in Chicago, it’s a whole new ball game. At least that’s what they say, “they” being literally everyone who hears about my move. But, I have a theory: surviving winter is all about preparation. If you have the right tools, you can fix the car. If I have all the appropriate winter gear, I’ll still be here come March. I’m the first to admit I really have no clue what I’m talking about, but at least it sounds like I do.
That being said, here are the newest and most valuable additions to my winter wardrobe:
Sorel Snow Boots
The North Face Trench
I never thought of all the things that needed to be considered when trying to winterize your wardrobe. And yes, “winterize” is an actual word although I agree, it sounds like one of those fake words that eventually catches on like “bootylicious.”
Winter Boot Buying Guide
They need to keep your feet and lower leg warm and dry in both snow and slush. So I went with Sorel. It’s a popular boot and brand owned by Columbia. I chose these particular boots because they’re waterproof (rubber bottom and leather top), lightweight, supposed to keep your feet warm in negative degree conditions, and had decent reviews.
Another popular option for trudging through snow and slush are rain boots with sock inserts. Lots of people seem to own Hunter boots and then have Welly Sock inserts that they trade out depending on their style for that day.
Eventually I’d like to buy some Hunters but I want yellow ones and that color isn’t currently in season. I’m keeping my fingers crossed for spring!
Winter Coat Buying Guide (Chicago Edition)
There are three main characteristics to keep in mind when looking for a coat for Chicago: waterproof, windproof, and warm. Warm is the most obvious but according to locals, blogs, and store attendants, newbies (like me) forget about the first two. It was also highly recommend to buy a coat that was long, like at least to the knee.
I definitely went with an “I’d rather spend more money for a quality coat that’ll last me a long time and actually keep me warm, than buy sometime cheap one that I hope will do the job” approach, so that’s why I bought the coat pictured above from The North Face. However, this also meant it was expensive. It broke my heart a little (and my bank a lot) to spend that kind of money but I’m hoping, praying it’ll be worth it. I figure if I wear it every day during winter for the next 1383980 years it’ll only come out to less than a penny a day. It’s not so bad when you think about it that way.
Not only did my purchase have all the qualities I was looking for and need in a coat, but it also did this:
Yes, yes that is the same coat from the first picture. What you’re looking at this time is the versatility of this bad boy – it’s three coats in one. The 550 feather down coat zips in (and out) of a water/wind proof shell. So I can wear both during the worst of conditions, just the down feather part if it’s just cold, or just the outer shell if it’s not too cold but raining.
Pretty nifty huh?
That’s all the spending I can do for now. I’d eventually like to add a few more scarves, hats, and gloves (preferably iPhone compatible ones) but I’m done with the bank-breakers. Hopefully I’ll be writing another post in March praising my purchases and telling you my preparation was a success. . . But I guess you’ll have to keep reading my blog to find out. (And that was my attempt at writing a cliff-hanger. Are you biting your nails?)