Winter white is as beautiful as freshly fallen snow.  Yet, unfortunately, just like freshly fallen snow, it can also get dingy, dirty and messy.  Let’s all agree, wearing this color comes with its fair share of challenges.  However, if you are feeling up for the challenge, I am going to give you my tips on how to wear this wintery shade.

First, some tips


The color of winter white isn’t stark white.  Instead, the shade is more of an ivory or a slightly greyed out white, like ecru.  Before you wear your white jeans in January, know that the crisp, clean, bright shade of summer white won’t necessarily work.


This winter color is usually found in fall and winter fabrications, like wool, flannel, heavy tweeds, cashmere, and fabrics with more heft.  Summer fabrics like linen and lightweight cotton don’t work in the winter unless you live in a warm climate.


Winter white silhouettes are suitable for fall, like tailored pieces, pants, skirts and dresses, whereas a white sundress isn’t.  Also, crisp white shirts and white t-shirts are year-found styles.  They don’t have to be in winter white to work.  Typically, winter white applies to tailored items and sweaters (not that bright white cotton sweater gets stored away for winter.) Lastly, this color comes with the same body challenges that summer white does.  If you don’t like white pants in the summer it isn’t likely that you will like them in the winter either.

Keeping it Clean

It goes without saying that if you are accident-prone, avoiding this shade is not a good idea.  It’s not worth the hefty dry cleaning bill just to keep it clean.  Winter also tends to be messier than summer, which means that you will probably be navigating messy sidewalks and inclement weather.  If you walk a lot watch out for stains on the hems of the pants and consider winter white skirts, dresses and jackets instead.  Unlike summer clothing, which most of us don’t invest in as heavily, permanently staining a pair of winter white pants can be devastating.  Another good thing to have on hand- a Tide Stick.


I have put together five looks to give you some inspiration and outfit ideas.

Outfit #1

In this first look, I styled these corduroy leggings from Hue with a camel cable sweater from J. Crew. I finished the outfit with olive booties from Cole Haan, a nutmeg bag from Rebecca Minkoff and gold drop earrings from Halogen.

Outfit #2

Winter white dresses are so elegant. I love this classic style from Donna Karan. To avoid the dress looking too stark with black pumps, I added this burgundy pair of pumps from Cole Haan, taupe bag from Tory Burch and pearl triple strand necklace from Bracha.

Outfit #3

If you like black and white in the summer, try black and winter white in the winter. A few clients of mine have blazers in this shade they rely on heavily in colder months like they do their sharp white blazers for work in the summer. I styled this wool twill blazer from Theory with a black and white tweed dress from J. Crew. I finished the look with black booties from Marc Fisher, black tights and burgundy tote from Longchamp.

Outfit #4

If you’re feeling bold enough to wear a winter white coat, I love the look of one. I styled this coat from Mango for day time with a pair of camel ankle-length pants from Cos with an olive sweater from J. Crew. I finished the look with a camel tote from Rebecca Minkoff, brown fringe loafers from J. Crew, printed scarf from Mango, and color-blocked gloves from Cos.

Outfit #5

In this last look, I styled this casual sweater dress from Cos with a pair of cognac boots, grey tights, a grey casual scarf and a cinnabar circle crossbody bag from Hobo.

So put on some winter white and grab a Tide Stick and enjoy the season.