Light Neutrals For Spring

lighten up…

linen sweater, Mulberry Kensington bag

sunglasses (similar) | earrings | scarf (similar pattern) | sweater | tank | bag | jeans | shoes

While it’s true that I wear a lot of black (and love it, and feel most at home in it) sometimes a gorgeous spring day makes me want to go crazy and bust out the…beige. 😉 (Actually, these light neutrals call themselves bone, mushroom and nude. Not a “beige” in the bunch.) I must say that linen sweaters seem to have been created with our climate in mind. They allow me to go from cool mornings and evenings to warm mid-days in comfort. The jeans are the same Eileen Fisher boyfriend jeans I’ve worn in a few prior outfit posts, but this time I un-cuffed them and wore full-length and really like how they look this way. The scarf is one I picked up in Paris last year. It’s by Kenzo and the pattern reminds me of van Gogh’s “Starry Night.”

The “lighten up” in the post title refers not only to color, but also to handbags. I’ve been trying to transition to smaller, lighter bags even on work days to give my shoulders, neck and back a break. As I mentioned in a prior post, I’ve become quite particular about my bags, and have been looking for quite some time for a non-black option that is just the right size, offers some interior organization, doesn’t have prominent logos or a lot of gimmickry, and doesn’t weigh several pounds empty. I’ve looked into nylon bags, but the interior organization was often paltry. This “Kensington” bag from Mulberry is a very workable option. The style is reminiscent of a bucket bag, but there’s a sold center divider which both provides structure and compartments. It can be carried in hand, worn comfortably on the arm, and on the shoulder or cross-body with the longer strap. It’s not as light as a bag without some structure, but it’s lighter than most of a similar size I’ve tried on.

Mulberry Kensington satchel

The cuff bracelet was also a Paris purchase, and I have not yet found anything similar online here. However Shopbop is currently having a Friends & Family Event, offering 25% off with code SPRING25 and does have some nice gold cuff options:

The block heel on these sandals looks higher than it feels, and my feet tolerate this kind of heel very well. I find these quite comfortable.

Eileen Fisher sandals, boyfriend jeans

On a special note, I’d like to thank the lovely people at WhoWhatWear who included this blog in their feature, 7 Best Blogs By Older Women. I am thrilled and flattered beyond belief to be included among these incredibly stylish women!

Do you have light neutrals in your wardrobe? What are your favorite shades?

Linked up: Throwback Thursday , Fun Fashion Friday, Shoe Shine, Shoe and Tell


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  1. susie
    April 8, 2015 / 4:50 am

    i think these colors really flatter!! you look younger too! whats not to love?

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 6:01 am

      susie, thank you!

  2. plutrell
    April 8, 2015 / 4:59 am

    These light neutrals are a perfect transition to warmer weather. I prefer this so much better than pastels…it is a lovely look.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 6:00 am

      Pam, thank you! I’ve set aside some time to watch your videos this weekend.

  3. Amelie
    April 8, 2015 / 5:56 am

    Ah, spring!! You look like a breath of fresh air! And your legs look a mile long with the longer hem and nude sandals!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:59 am

      Amelie, thank you!

  4. April 8, 2015 / 6:18 am

    Great neutrals, Une Femme, and I love the pop-pieces as well. You look comfortable ans so chic.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:59 am

      Patti, thanks so much!

  5. April 8, 2015 / 7:05 am

    I love the softness of these neutrals, which nonetheless offer some subtle colour. I’ve been non-shopping for months now, but recently begun thinking what one or two pieces I might want to pick up for a Spring Update, and I’m thinking I need a pair of faded jeans. I like the wash on yours!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:59 am

      Frances, thank you. I find this wash is so easy to wear with just about anything in my closet.

  6. Sisty
    April 8, 2015 / 7:57 am

    I agree with Plutrek in preferring light neutrals to pastels. My light neutrals for spring are light gray, bone, and white. As an aside, I love it that you haven’t been able to duplicate the things you found in Paris — that’s the way it should be!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:58 am

      Sisty, I’m also a fan of grey, and hope to add more of that neutral to my wardrobe.

  7. April 8, 2015 / 8:14 am

    Looks great Sue. I love those block heel sandals. I’ve also been bag shopping with no luck yet. Congrats on the “Who What Wear” mention; well deserved!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:56 am

      Susan, thanks! It’s astounding how heavy bags have become in the last few years.

  8. April 8, 2015 / 8:20 am

    Seeing you in this light, neutral (with a pop of color) palette makes me want to say, “Step away from the black!” I cannot tell you how fresh and youthful this looks on you! The light neutrals and the blue are beautiful with your hair. Personally, I would encourage you to wear more looks like this. Brava!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:55 am

      Mary, thank you.

  9. nell
    April 8, 2015 / 10:17 am

    You are singing my song! Whenever you move away from the dark colors I feel you do yourself a huge favor. Pretty, pretty, pretty. Agree with everything your other responders have said about the freshness and the youthfulness you are exuding! And the “harmony”, for lack of a better word.

    Let’s see, my go-to neutrals are cream, light khaki, dove gray, and slate blue, which for me is a neutral. Interestingly, they are variations on my own coloring, more or less. Fair skin, khaki-blonde-pale brown hair, grey eyes leaning blue-ish. With my coloring, when I wear the fashionable dark neutrals I somehow feel dragged and ‘weighted’ down. Yet I love black on other people who have natural “black” in their coloring, like raven hair, or deep brown skin or eyes.

    I’d love to know why several people have already mentioned an aversion to pastels? Do you find them insipid? I love them. I find them to act like make-up on my skin tones, relieving my constant pallor and brightening me up! Get the most compliments on pale blue, mint, pale pink. Must be my ultra-“blue” undertones or something.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:54 am

      nell, thank you very much. With regard to pastels, I find they wash me out.

  10. Pam
    April 8, 2015 / 10:26 am

    I love your EF sweater and have a question for you. I bought the EF long silk jersey tunic tank in the same color (bone) earlier in the season and want to know if you think your sweater would work over the longer tank. The long tank doesn’t have an asymmetric hem. Your look is very polished and doesn’t show a tank extending below the hem of the sweater. Will appreciate your thoughts. I have to do my ordering online – no stores carry EF at the beach….

    • une femme
      April 8, 2015 / 3:35 pm

      Pam, thank you. I have the long straight tunic as well but haven’t yet tried with this sweater. I’ll try it on and let you know what I think.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:46 am


  11. April 8, 2015 / 12:59 pm

    Congratulations! I love the pants uncuffed and of course the soft colorway is stunning for Spring.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:46 am

      WSL, thank you!

  12. susie
    April 8, 2015 / 1:51 pm

    Seriously consider putting the black away

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:45 am

      susie, 🙂

  13. April 8, 2015 / 2:56 pm

    Love your summery look here and who makes that fabulous bracelet?

    • une femme
      April 8, 2015 / 3:34 pm

      Hostess, thank you. It’s from a shop called Metal Pointus on rue des Francs Bourgeois in the Marais.

  14. happinessatmidlife
    April 8, 2015 / 6:00 pm

    I always so you do neutrals so well, the added scarf is so pretty. And Congrats on your feature!


    Hope to see you Thursday for TBT Fashion link up.

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:44 am

      Alice, thanks! I’ll be over shortly. 🙂

  15. April 8, 2015 / 6:26 pm

    My, what a fabulous spring outfit! I would wear every item! I do have light beige in my wardrobe. I am fair so I need a pop of color so that I do not look washed out – such as a bright scarf (as you have).

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:44 am

      blondewithsilverlining, thank you very much!

  16. Jill Ann
    April 8, 2015 / 8:35 pm

    I am with Nell in that I don’t understand why people seem to dislike pastels. I suppose they don’t work with everyone’s coloring, but for many of us, they look great. I’m fair, with green eyes and formerly blond, then brown, now grey hair (although I color it light brown). I look terrible in beige, but always get compliments when I wear turquoise, ice blue, or bright pink. I get that one has to be careful of the quality with colors….inexpensive black or beige looks ok, but inexpensive fuchsia can be hideous! But assuming that you have a good quality garment, let’s see more color and less blah neutral!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:43 am

      Jill Ann, I find that most pastels wash me out, and also if I’m going to wear color, I prefer something bolder.

  17. Charlotte
    April 8, 2015 / 9:28 pm

    You look smart, and the colours looks expensive – the scarf is a great addition

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:42 am

      Charlotte, thank you!

  18. April 9, 2015 / 1:17 am

    Fresh, light. I like the lighter jeans with the non-beige neutral. You always have the best bags and shoes. And of course I need to go to Paris for a scarf like yours, among other things. I was gobsmacked by the WhoWhatWear article – in a good way!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 5:41 am

      Melanie, thanks! I was so delighted to see they featured your blog too. Paris is such a visual delight, and yes, great scarves.

  19. robjodiefilogomo
    April 9, 2015 / 7:32 am

    LOL—beige? I thought you were going to say bright pink or something! Who doesn’t love their neutrals but can we talk about the great colors in that scarf? jodie
    ps…those shoes are fab!

    • une femme
      April 9, 2015 / 7:49 am

      Jodie, thanks so much!

  20. April 9, 2015 / 8:51 am

    Love your summery outfit ! You look fabulous 🙂 x

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:16 pm

      Hi Beata, thank you!

  21. April 9, 2015 / 9:35 am

    I like the summery look too. And adore the scarf. Congrats again on your mention – so well-deserved:).

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:16 pm

      Thanks Lisa! Your support means the world to me. 🙂

  22. April 9, 2015 / 1:21 pm

    Lovely summery look. I like the way the depth of the color of the scarf brightens your face and ties everything together. I can see that pastels would not be your friend (they are lovely on many but aren’t my friend either).

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:20 pm

      Mardel, thank you! It’s funny, I think the women who look best in pastels are those who have a lot of intensity in their natural coloring.

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:20 pm

      Alena, thanks so much!

  23. April 9, 2015 / 2:35 pm

    I love how you paired the blue denim and blue scarf with the neutral pieces. Its a great look! I too, want to congratulate you on your Who What Wear feature. That is quite a mention!!! I love their site.


    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:24 pm

      cherie, thanks so much!

  24. KPL
    April 9, 2015 / 5:09 pm

    Love your neutral look, and your Mulberry bag is beautiful. I tend towards light gray, white and chambray to lighten things up for summer. Love your muted mushrooms and putty.

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:26 pm

      KPL, thank you! I love the taupe-y greys best but they’re not always easy to find.

  25. Nicole
    April 9, 2015 / 8:22 pm

    Congrats on the recognition, well-deserved for all that you research and share! This outfit is a natural look for you, dare I say even more than many black outfits? Interesting.. This one has the “Oh this?” feel while being so perfectly done! I know what you mean about bag weight – I have (and love) my Michael Kors summer tote (color off-white? can’t remember officially) but it weighed my shoulder down in no time last summer. I parked it at my home base and took out a little cross-body for the remainder of the trip, carrying only lip sunscreen, credit cards, license. So glad I packed the small one at the last minute. I need to figure out how to pack the tote more lightly with the essential essentials. Love the blues on you. 🙂

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:29 pm

      Nicole, thanks so much! It’s such a balancing act with the bags…either have everything you need in one place and a heavy bag, or go lighter and risk that you won’t have something you need. 😉

  26. April 9, 2015 / 11:04 pm

    Bonjour,Buongiorno Une Femme
    yes,You’re right:the lovely scarf reminds the starry nights…this’s a charming outfit perfect for spring days it maske shining Your charisma…cheers!
    by the way, Congrats on your feature…You look stunning in that outfit!

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:29 pm

      Aure, thank you very much!

  27. April 10, 2015 / 4:44 pm

    Those colors flatter your blonde hair & really lighten your look. I particularly love the scarf…and the bag…and the shoes…and…

    • une femme
      April 10, 2015 / 6:30 pm

      California Girl, thank you! I’m so glad I grabbed this scarf and didn’t dither.

  28. April 11, 2015 / 6:35 am

    Congratulations on being included in that “best of” list! You totally deserve it … you always look classy, chic, and fabulous. No different today wearing your spring look. BTW, I want those shoes! Thanks so much for sharing with Fun Fashion Friday and have a fab weekend!
    Dawn Lucy

    • une femme
      April 11, 2015 / 7:49 am

      Dawn Lucy, thanks so much! And thanks for hosting the link-up.

  29. Veronique
    April 12, 2015 / 8:31 am

    J’adore votre look et votre bracelet français!

    • une femme
      April 12, 2015 / 11:01 am

      Veronique, merci!

  30. Tanya
    April 14, 2015 / 6:53 am

    I have to agree with Mary and Susie, these colours look amazing on you, far more harmonious than black.

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