So, I though Hercules was a good guy? At least, that is what Disney taught me.
Five Fun Facts:
Hercules is my absolute favorite Disney movie,
Pegasus the baby reminds me of my pony Jerry,
but adult Pegasus IS my horse Brian.
They have the same personality. And are both white/grey. Another close second comparison is Donkey as the White Stallion in Shrek 2.
Also, I used to pretend I was Megara during her song and would practice it in our formal dining room, where we had a sound system.
Further Proof: I was Megara for a Disney date Function my 2nd year.
I also know the entire movie by heart.
K, back to previous programming.
First, I want to say to all of my friends affected by the storm that I desperately hope you are safe, and properly prepared (Alex and I likely are not).
Having survived a really, really rough winter in NYC (2010-11), I at least am prepared in some capacity for this storm. So I am going to do a Five Friday Favorites to cover going out in and surviving ridiculous weather conditions.
Five Must-Have Pieces of Cold/Snowy Weather Gear:
- A serious coat
This dudette abides by “Big Puff,” my Eddie Bauer long down coat. I absolutely adore this coat–it is so, so warm (I call it impenetrable), the hood wraps up my head, and I wore it sans another jacket for NYE and my top half was warm. Plus, the chevron stitching and slimmer profile keeps me from looking too Michelin/little kid from A Christmas Story like. The only I don’t like is that the hood comes off way too easily (the snaps aren’t the best).
- Really Good Boots (make the investment)
I finally retired my Cole Haan boots (in the picture above) this past season after having them for the greater part of a decade. They were $360 originally, but I got them for $240, still a substantial amount, but let me tell you, I got my wear out of them. Now I have the Ugg Tularosa, which I got last year (but didn’t end up needing to wear), and I got those puppies (typically $250ish) for $150, I think.
These are soooo comfortable and so, so warm. My one stick-in-the-mud comment is that I wish they had better traction on ice, but hey, could be way worse. Like my Cole Haan’s (which were waterproof leather), I treated these ahead of time with a leather water-proofing spray just to double up on the protection. Invest in good footwear–if your feet are cold, you will be miserable. Sorel and Ugg make fabulous footwear that are also super warm, so invest, but buy on sale when you can.
Also, invest in not so good outdoor wear–my “footens” or slipper-sock-shoes from Old navy were one of my absolutely favorite things and I wore those suckers OUT.
I am also a fiend for shearling lined moccasins.
Old Navy and Target do a GREAT job with theirs, for GREAT prices. These I don’t mind not spending quite as much on because, let’s be honest, shearling gets super funky after a while. I also usually have an outdoor and indoor pair.
- Sherpa Hat
Or, shark hat, as it may be. Ps, this hat was literally my Chupacabra–I found it once, regretted not buying it for over a year, and then finally found it again.
These hats are fantastic–typically fleece-lined and skull hugging. I call it my “Sherpa Hat” because mine was literally made by sherpas in Nepal (and I got it in Italy, natch). It can be cinched for extra head-hugging and ear-warming, and I could care less how ridiculous I look when I wear it. I rode horses for 20 years–I gave up form over function when it comes to being warm a long, long time ago.
- Protect your Phalanges–both upper and lower
Good gloves and solid socks are a must. Socks need to be moisture whicking but also insulating and self-heating (as in, they use your own body heat to create heat). Your feet will instantly start getting cold if you start to sweat (which you might, especially because you will be walking and going through various temperature changes and discrepancies. Thorlo Smartwool is clutch.
I used them for years when I was riding–especially for horse-showing– and I would highly recommend doubling up on socks — if you have smartwool, put the other socks on the OUTSIDE because otherwise you will be negating the Smart of the wool.
Good gloves are crucial, and even better if they are tech-gloves (meaning you can use them with touchscreens). I love my gloves, though I have no memory of where I got them, but I do wish that the fingers were a little bit shorter.
Also invest in a good scarf–can become a gaitor (to cover your face), and will also seal off your neckline. You would be AMAZED how quickly you warm up when you seal off your torso to cold air (I would literally “turtle” in one of my old jackets by retreating my face halfway in (over my nose) and pull the drawstrings and seal off the cold air. Made a world of difference because all that is inside the jacket is gloriously warm air.)
- Good Base Layer and Top Layer — Performance zip and Wool Sweater
I am a fan of having a good solid (and not too tight) Tneck that you can pull on and off as you need to over other layers.
Or cashmere, if you can swing it. But merino wool is a beautiful thing. I will always suggest a 1/4 zip for fashion as well as practicality–again, seals off the cold air– and there are few types of shirts/sweater/top layers that I love more than the look of a 1/4 zip. I honestly sometimes wish that Alex would be cold more often so I could buy him more of these 😀 I have worn out multiple patagonia base layers, and I have a great Eddie Bauer one too.
Five tips for buying and keeping these items:
- I am a big believer in not paying full price (for fabulous :)). Go peruse the racks at Nordstrom rack (lol), TJ Maxx, and REI for great ones on sale. The majority of these things can be found at discounts during sale times (particularly end of season), but also there are many websites that sell past-season merch for way less than current season that are just as good if not better (like me hording my Brooks Defyances just because they went on sale.).
- Do your homework–Don’t get stuck with a product or size that doesn’t work and that you can’t return–more of an issue with buying on sale and online.
- Take care of these pieces–What is the point of investing and then letting salt destroy the pieces after 1 season? Get weatherproofing sprays and treat leather/suede/etc, and wash the salt off of the soles of your shoes and other areas when you come in. A) you will have a cleaner home, b) you are protecting your investment.
- Get stuff that is aesthetically pleasing, as well as works. Form is not > function, but it should be at least near to it, unless you actually do live in the tundra or Siberia. In those cases, WTF and God Speed. But seriously, you will be far m ore likely to use them to the extent of your investment if you like the way they look.
- Get your stuff dry cleaned/professionally cleaned at the end of the season. It will get the ick out, protect the investment (sensing a pattern???), and remove any smells, etc, which is lovely for when you open up that box in the fall. Believe me, it’s worth it.
A few other pieces to invest in (if necessary)–Yak Traks, studs for your shoes, long-johns. DO WHAT YOU GOTTA DO PEOPLE.
What are your go-to cold weather pieces? And no, I am not talking about running, for once. Anyone have a balaclava?? My brother used to ski in those, lol. Creeper.
Do you live in cold weather? Or have you escaped it? My dad grew up 20 miles outside of Rochester, NY, in the Finger Lakes region, when to Dartmouth for college (NH), Columbia for law school (NYC), and then escaped to Atlanta. Although we went skiing for spring break (never to the ocean), now he thinks ATLANTA is too cold and spends half the year in Mexico! It does get cold in the South, regardless of what people say. We get ice though, not so much snow. I can drive on black ice like a champ, but I am not great in snow.
Stay safe, my friends!!!