taking on the new year in style

the holidays are over, and we’re back to our regular scheduled programming on the blog.  winter is here.  it’s Monday, and we’re flirting with cool weather and rain here in Athens.  enough to make you want to stay in bed, right?  i hear you, but let’s face this week together.  head on.  this month on the blog, we’re going to be talking a lot about new beginnings, refreshes, and getting back to the basics.  in case you missed it, yesterday, we featured a closet refresh and organization guide.  today, i want to focus on maintaining classic style in a new year.

there are certain closet basics and must-haves that will never go out of style.  ever.  i’ve got an outfit today  that pulls some of those items together.  perhaps more importantly, they’re further cohered because they’re all neutral-based: whites, grays, and blacks.   neutrals serve as the foundation for any classic wardrobe that will stand the test of time and trends.  

classic style in a new year

this winter, i’ve been consistently drawn to turtlenecks.  last week, we presented a how to wear a turtleneck/sweater dress.  (but if we’ve got a lot more inspiration on how to wear a turtleneck.)  today, i’m showcasing a beautiful cashmere turtleneck sweater from Nordstrom.  it comes in a variety of neutral colors, including but not limited to black, ivory cloud (=white), and camel.  

i’ve chosen the gray as it serves as my base to pair with this eye-catching herringbone shawl collar wrap coat from Ann Taylor.  (i’ve put together an extensive list of similars in the widgets below.) notice i’ve chosen a monochrome pairing, which serves a nice contrast with my white denim.  this keeps things interesting visually, while still maintaining a completely neutral palette. 

coat | similar coat | similar coat 2 | similar coat 3 | similar coat 4 | similar coat 5 | similar coat 6 | similar coat 7 | turtleneck sweater | jeans | bootie | hobo bag

boogie booties

my booties and bag break up my gray base even further, providing the focal point of this outfit.  if you’ve got a showcase bag or boots that you’re dying to pull out this winter, consider a neutral base as your starting point.  that will give you a suitable background to really showoff your fashion centerpieces. 

and to break up a January Monday, i thought i’d leave you with one of my favorites from my youth:  a little KC & The Sunshine Band.    

coat | similar coat | similar coat 2 | similar coat 3 | similar coat 4 | similar coat 5 | similar coat 6 | similar coat 7 | turtleneck sweater | jeans | bootie | hobo bag

neutrals never go out of style

if you’re looking to refresh your wardrobe this year and want to set it on a solid foundation, start with the basics—start with the neutrals.  once your foundation is set, you can start exploring and venturing into new fashion territories.  as many of you know, i’m huge on adding a simple color pop to a neutral base.   

coat | similar coat | similar coat 2 | similar coat 3 | similar coat 4 | similar coat 5 | similar coat 6 | similar coat 7 | turtleneck sweater | jeans | bootie | hobo bag


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  1. Sylvia Espinoza wrote:

    Love your neutrals, love my neutrals! Been doing them for months now. Easy to look pulled together. Thanks, Beth, for providing fashion ideas for all tastes. And thanks for KC and The Sunshine Band today! Their music is still such fun, though decades have come and gone. Brings out the inner dancer every time! Out here, we love you, Beth!~

    Posted 1.6.20
    • awww, thank you, sylvia for your sweet words. but neutrals always work!

      Posted 1.7.20
  2. Becky wrote:

    Great outfit! Thanks for including one of my favorites from KC & the Sunshine Band. It’s also featured in one of my favorite movies, The Wedding Date.
    Happy Monday!

    Posted 1.6.20
    • oooohhhh, i forgot about that movie. my mother liked that one!

      Posted 1.7.20
  3. Jan wrote:

    The grey looks beautiful with your hair. I just can’t wrap my head around white jeans in winter.

    Posted 1.6.20
    • i know, white jeans in winter can be hard for some. but i promise it’s totally okay to bend the no white in winter rule.

      Posted 1.7.20
  4. Cheryl wrote:

    Hi Beth!
    I was thinking about buying a new winter coat ( not that we need many here in Georgia), and fell in love with the shawl collar one you highlight today.
    Well, lo and behold, it’s still available in M, L, and XL in the tall sizes….just what I need!
    Thank you for this post. Very helpful today!

    Posted 1.6.20
    • Cheryl wrote:

      Forgot to mention. It’s on sale!!!! I ended paying about $65 for this coat, including shipping. Great way to start a new year. Fashion with a bargain! Thank you, Beth!!!

      Posted 1.6.20
    • ann taylor restocked their inventory during the day! hooray. so happy you were able to score a bargain. you won’t be sorry. wrap coats are always in style.

      Posted 1.7.20
  5. Kim wrote:

    Love the music! I’ll be humming all day. Brings back memories of listening to this song on the radio with my sister at night before we went to sleep. Happy New Year Beth. Love, love, love your blog!

    Posted 1.6.20
    • music and clothes always conjure memories. glad this song brought back a good one.

      Posted 1.7.20
  6. Susan wrote:

    Thank you Beth, just bought a camel cashmere from Talbot to add to my grey, black, red and cream. You are a great inspiration! Keep it coming, look forward to your blog everyday!

    Posted 1.6.20
    • thanks so much for stopping by susan!

      Posted 1.7.20
  7. Suzanne Smith wrote:

    I agree–I have lots of neutrals to grab in a hurry, but I’ll often use some sort of pop of color, from a scarf or accessories if I need some vibrancy. Great pieces for a chic start. That first day back after a long holiday was always torture. I admit I’m loving retirement, but I am surprising myself–I’ve started thinking about maybe trying to find a part-time job–like in a no-stress environment (I’m thinking–like a library–quiet, serene, simple…) to sock away some fun money here and there while I can still do it. We’ll see! In the meantime, I’m going on long walks around a beautiful lake and enjoying the heck out of the simple life. Love it!

    Posted 1.8.20
  8. Thank you so much for all the provided information! It really now easy to take on the new year in style because of your shared info.

    Posted 1.17.20

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