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New thread about Capsule colors

I have traveled twice in the summer months with the following capsule colors:

Pants: |Black, white and taupe St. Johns Bay Capris

Tshirts: Black, white, taupe and Lime Green + Black/white zebra

shoes: Black sandals, black Nikes, Bronze metallic Clark sandals (goes with all taupe items)

scarves: Lime green

This is my favorite combination; but I am going to look for "Teal and Cobalt" to add to Black/white/taupe

Posted by
10297 posts

Just ordered a teal tee from L.L. Bean.

Posted by
2529 posts

Will have to check with my personal stylist and confirm my capsule colors meet the current standards.

Posted by
4171 posts

I combine colors that are flattering on me. When I've strayed from that, it's been a mistake.

So I usually combine shades of blue. Last year it was purple and gray. The blues and purples close to my face seem to make me look better and feel better each time I put them on. That's important when I'm wearing the same things over and over again.

It seems odd, but somehow dark blue or gray pants do not show lint and other light-colored dirt as much as black ones do. My husband looks great in black, but he absolutely refuses to wear any black on trips for this reason.

Posted by
1579 posts

I prefer print tops. They hide the lumps and bumps better than solids. Last summer I traveled for a month with a few print tops that had coral colour in them, and with them I paired ankle pants in coral, light steel blue, and navy. I brought one pair of silver Reiker sandals and one pair of Reiker sneakers that are meant to be worn with no socks. Took only one pair of socks and never wore them until the flight home.

Posted by
1194 posts

As Lo noted, the "best" capsule colors are highly dependent on your personal skin tone. One persons capsule colors may be very different than another's.

My personal view is to use dark neutrals for more formal destinations and use lighter neutrals for casual destinations. I almost always avoid white because I manage to get it dirty within 15 minutes of putting it on.

I am a green eyed redhead. Because of my high coloring my best capsule colors are navy, olive, tan, and chocolate brown. I'll add in pops of other complimentary colors such as coral and chambray blue.

Posted by
15986 posts

Packing is pretty easy for me: everything goes with blue jeans! :O)

Posted by
2768 posts

This time I have a very odd scheme of black, gray, deep pink/magenta, and army green. Somehow it works. 2 skirts - black and black stripes. 2 dresses - black and black/gray print. 2 blouses, short sleeve - black and black while stripes. 3 tank tops - dark gray, pink, and green. 2 pants - green and gray. Denim jacket. A scarf with a flowery print that has green and pink and also looks fine with black.

Posted by
9363 posts

I must be behind the times. I have never even heard of a capsule color theme (or at least not called it that) and I don't obsess that much over coordinating/matching everything. On my recent trip, I took one pair of jeans, one pair of denim capris, and I wore black yoga pants. I took three short sleeve tops, one 3/4 sleeve and one long sleeve, and wore a 3/4 sleeve lightweight blouse. A black cardigan sweater served as both jacket and airplane "blanket". I wore dark athletic/walking shoes and took one pair of neutral sandals. That was it for 15 days. All tops went fine with jeans.

Posted by
3428 posts

As someone else mentioned, I go with colors I think look good on me - that goes for trips or at home. I have mostly black pants (even my jeans are black), a few grey and a few khaki. I don't do skirts or dresses. For tops I have deep (think royal) purple, red (and rose shades of red), and cobalt, and black. I hate years when 'my' colors are not the 'in' colors- like now. Everywhere I shop they have lots of 'new' coral, peach, orange, yellow and sage green stuff. When 'my' colors are the 'in' colors, I tend to stock up. Of course I can usually find black tanks and Ts, and they help stretch my wardrobe (I wear them under light weight 'flowy' things like chiffon jackets or poncho/batwing tops). I don't worry about what is 'fashionable'- I wear what I like and feel comfortable in. My daughter teases me about it, but I've never been one to worry too much about what others think about what I'm wearing.

Posted by
2618 posts

I always wear jeans, and my shoes/boots are always 1 pair black and the other is a color, lately either navy or orange Fluevog oxfords--I get so sick of black, need that pop of color on my feet. Next trip might be a pair of red Ecco Soft II sneaker/oxfords. My choices for tops are a couple in solid black and navy, then the other 4 or 5 prints or stripes that go with my shoes. Outerwear is usually a navy and/or black cardigan, and if it'll be chilly then a heavier hooded jacket in navy. I definitely have some favorite tried-and-true travel tops, and as others mention, I bring the ones that I really love to wear because wearing them perhaps 3-4 times in 2 weeks would be awful otherwise.

Posted by
81 posts

Hubby and I are going on our first ever RS Tour in July - Best of Ireland - for 14 days. I can't tell you the angst I've had over what to pack, and how much, and what colors, lol. I read with GREAT interest threads like this where we are discussing the amount of blouses/t-shirts, long sleeve, pants, leggings. I usually overpack, but am completely determined to bring no more than 5-6 combination of short and long-sleeved shirts, 4 pants, 2 shoes, tanks, jammies and the usual assortment of underthings. We plan on doing laundry in the sink, bath tub, etc. You SWEAR that this sort of minimal packing is enough to get by for 14 days?

Posted by
1579 posts

Linda, yes it is doable for 14 days! My most successful packing job was for almost three weeks. I took two pairs capris, two pairs pants, 5 t-shirts, one sweater and one jacket. Afterwards I thought I could have easily left one pair of pants behind.

My worst problem with light packing is DH! He always wants to bring more than he should and then I feel pressure to do so as well because I don't want him looking better than me!

Posted by
11387 posts

Nancy

When I saw the caption, I decided to read through the comments to see what a "capsule color" is. Until I got to your comment I thought I must be the only person that had been living under a rock, in a cave.

As best I can tell its a different way to say 'color scheme'...... or was I laying under that rock because it fell on my head?

For me its tan, grey, black pants/shorts. Just about every shirt I have will work with any of them.

Posted by
3178 posts

With my Asian coloring I absolutely cannot wear blue, purple, or yellow, and have to be careful,with greens. Autumn colors, particularly dark reds and browns, are best, but not great for summer. So often I end up with black tees and light-colored pants.

Speaking of pants, I am a big fan of the Jag Jeans pull-on pants and capris---they are slim and flattering, and totally flat in the front--no zipper bump. For summer they make a twill version as an alternative to heavy denim. The fabric is soft and smooth. Like these:

https://www.amazon.com/Jag-Jeans-Womens-Marion-Nautical/dp/B019NOVXXQ/ref=sr_1_2?s=apparel&ie=UTF8&qid=1496431396&sr=1-2&nodeID=7141123011&psd=1&keywords=Jag%2Bjeans%2Bmarion%2BBay%2Btwill

They come in a wide range of sizes, from super-small petite for people like me (I often have to buy children's sizes to find the right fit) up through plus sizes.

Posted by
328 posts

For the past few trips I have stuck with black pants, capris or skirts. That way I can have a variety of colors and prints for my tops. Everything goes with black and it's easier for me to find tops that have non wrinkling, travel friendly fabric if I don't have to concentrate on specific colors.

Posted by
14159 posts

Linda (in Ohio), that combo of stuff will not only take you thru 14 days, it will take you thru 8 weeks!

Do any of the long sleeve tops layer over the short sleeve tops? Even just matching up 4 bottoms with 6 tops you've got 24 combinations if all tops go with all bottoms. (REALLY think about it if a top only goes with one thing!)

If you have 4 bottoms, 4 SS tops and can layer 2 long sleeves, ummmm here's where my head starts to hurt, that adds what?? 32 more combinations? 4 X 4 = 16 X 2 for the long sleeve layers. (Math people feel free to correct me! Really I am bad at this.)

You might pick up some cool scarves in Ireland as well so that will up your count. I think I had added 2 scarves by the time I got to the end of that tour, lol.

Since you have some time, lay out all your bottoms, try on every top with every bottom and see how they work. If you have a top that isn't functioning as well as you thought it would, maybe swap it out for something else.

Posted by
81 posts

Pam in Idaho...great advice. I have my clothes in a spare bedroom and add and take away about every 4 days, ha. I do have a new LS shirt from REI that is taupe and will go with anything, and a white and black cardigan. Maybe one more LS? Then 4 neutral SS shirts that will match all. One heavier scarf and a few light ones. 4 pants. Rain and Spyder jacket. That's it. Yes?

Posted by
3240 posts

My capsule wardrobe consists of 2 black NYDJeans (and now an emergency pair of pants as well), 2 black and 2 navy tees, navy jacket and charcoal vest. I basically change my outfits with scarves. Even though I have a red head's coloring...autumn colors, I do take black, as it is so functional and can look dressier than other colors. My scarves will be tans/purples/corals/greens and whatever I purchase on the trip. The scarves with the flattering colors are next to my face so the black doesn't matter. As long as I look neat and clean, I don't care if my clothing is redundant. I don't have to look at me, so I won't get bored. Others might, but I don't care. I did throw in a red, white and green tee on my RS tour for other's benefit, but I wouldn't bother doing that again.

Posted by
10297 posts

I'm like you Wray, heavy on the black for all traveling, city or country, but with different types and weights of scarves depending on the season.

Posted by
439 posts

I will pick 2 printed scarves with over lapping colors (i.e.: one will have purple, blue,Grey; the other will be blue and green). My bottoms are black, tan, and/or jeans. I will bring back tennis shoes, one pair of loafers, and flip flops. I will take a jacket, black, olive, or blue, sometimes white or tan depending on destination, a rain jacket, sweater, 5 shirts that match the different colors in the skarves. I do usually pick bright colors near my face.

Posted by
2618 posts

Linda--it's definitely do-able, and I only bring 2 pair of jeans--wear one for 3-4 days, wash and they dry overnight, wear the other for 3-4 days, etc. Keeping it minimal means I have room for souvenirs and maybe I'll buy a top that takes my fancy.

Posted by
193 posts

Working on my capsule now also! We will be on a river cruise in September and my thoughts are layers as we move from Belgium, through Germany, to Switzerland. Then we end with 3 days in Paris.

I've been picking up items at Costco & Ross with the trip in mind. I plan on taking 1-2 pair capris (black and light grey); 2 pair jeans (black and denim); 4-5 SS tops; 3/4 length top to layer with; jean jacket; rain jacket; scarves. Colors for my tops are black, white, b&w stripe, grey & hot pink. I want to get a black vest/jacket - am so mad at myself for getting rid of the one I took two years ago!!

I've been trying out a pair of cute sandals I got at Costco & think they will be perfect for the trip - but I'd better plan on tennis shoes too.

So much fun to read about others capsule wardrobes! :)

Posted by
14159 posts

Linda, that looks like a good plan! Yes to stashing things in a spare room, too!

Advocatecare, depending on when in Sept I would definitely want closed toe shoes as well as sandals.

Posted by
796 posts

I am travelling to the south of France in early September then to Paris. I usually travel later in fall so have to rethink what I pack. I think I will use a black - white -turquoise wardrobe. I usually bring a lot of black but need some light colours for the heat and sun.

I like the website "the Vivienne files" for ideas.

Happy packing!

Posted by
448 posts

After my packing test run, I realized that almost everything I am packing is neutral: denim, black, grey, and army green. On the plus side, it all goes together pretty well. I have one bright top to wear, otherwise I'd better include a few scarves and colorful pairs of earrings!

Posted by
372 posts

Linda in Ohio, you can do it! Try searching on Pinterest for "capsule packing" and you will find endless inspiration. For me, I have found that 12 pieces works for me, no matter the season of destination. I don't include rain wear, beachwear or other specialty clothing (like if you were going to a wedding or scuba diving) Here is what works for me:

3 (or 4) bottoms (combo of pants, jeans, capris, skirts, shorts)
2 "toppers" (cardigan, blazer etc)
1 dress
6 (or 5) tops (1 is always a button up, which can be worn open as a topper. Combination of sleeveless, short and long sleeves, depending on expected weather. Some are printed, some are plain)

All the tops have to go with all the bottoms and all the toppers. I vary the number of bottoms and tops depending on what we plan to do on the trip. We almost always have a "siesta" late afternoon, during which time I wash out whatever is dirty, shower, and change clothes for the evening. I find I usually have a couple of outfits I consider "evening" clothes but the bulk of stuff is "day time" clothes. The evening clothes are NOT fancy, just a slight step up from the day time clothes. I don't like going out for dinner wearing the same clothes I wore hiking yesterday.

I always use either black or navy as the base colour (since that is what I wear in real non-travel life) with one accent colour - red, coral, turquoise, hot pink. One of my toppers is always a bright colour, the other either dark. I use the Polyvore app to virtually "pack" my bag, and ensure everything matches. Have fun, and remember, no one notices what you are wearing but you! Everyone else it worried about what THEY are wearing!

Posted by
2 posts

I had the same curiosity when I saw this thread title. About 30 years ago a friend invited me to London for 5 days but the only catch was 'carry on only' due to the tickets we had. She taught me what she called the "Garanimals" method of selecting wardrobe (from the children's clothing line where you'd match the tags to find coordinating outfits. That trip, I packed peach, olive green and beige. In essence, everything you pack must go with everything else you pack....what is now apparently called 'color capsules'. I have used this method since and have managed as much as 2 weeks from a carryon only! (I use a Burton wheelie bag - lightweight & has skateboard wheels)

Posted by
380 posts

Nearly everything I own is black. Sometimes, if I'm feeling bold, I'll put on something gray. This may seem restrictive, but I can pack for a week in Europe in a totebag. And I always "blend."

Posted by
14159 posts

Since this bumped up again I will add yet another comment, lol!! I was out walking/birding the other AM and was able to watch a Lazuli Bunting at fairly close range for quite a while. My first thought was - wow, what a gorgeous capsule wardrobe!

The one I was watching was more like the breeding male in picture #3 - not much buff color on the breast.

https://www.allaboutbirds.org/guide/Lazuli_Bunting/id

Blue, black, gray and white

Janice at The Vivienne Files often does capsule wardrobes based on paintings but I don't think she has done a bird series, lol!!

Posted by
8520 posts

Laughing at the name capsule colors. I pictured someone packing for a space trip when I read the title.

Posted by
722 posts

I usually travel in the shoulder season, and my choices tend to be black, dark denim, and two other colors chosen from teal, blue, purple or cool red.

I bring an assortment of scarves in a variety of weights and styles in whatever colors complement my main colors.

Posted by
4574 posts

I read this and remember back to having my 'colours' done back in early 80's. I still have that swatch pack that I refer back to every once in a while - however, I have aged to a more winter palette from a summer palette - more due to the prevalence of black in the market and lack of 'summer' colours available on a regular basis.

Posted by
11 posts

I, too, had my colors done by Color Me Beautiful consultants - two times because I wanted to be sure. Anyway, I'm a 'Spring', and believe it or not, have adhered to the color philosophy since, about 30 years. I may be the only female in Corporate America who doesn't wear black b/c it's not 'in my palette'.

Posted by
208 posts

LOL Jeanne -- I can relate! I had my colours "done", too -- back in the 80's -- & still have the "Spring" palette! I resist VERY hard to wear black close to my face, but with its prevalence in the market place (and travelling practicality), I can't avoid it all together. I try to keep "spring" colours on top, or, I'll go "fall" -- colours which I love, and are also "warm tones". LOL.

Cheers!
Vivian

Posted by
4574 posts

Oh Jeanne, I commend you being able to avoid corporate black, but on a Spring, I can certainly see why. I can hear my Spring mother now 'black is only for funerals'...

Posted by
293 posts

I still do worry about Bruce from Whitefish, Montana, and whether his stylist can get it together.