How to make your Summer dresses work for Autumn

The weather has certainly turned this week, and there is much more of a chill in the air.
But before you start reaching for the jumpers and jeans, think about how you can make those Summer favourite last a bit longer!

Here are a few ways to ‘winterize’ (not sure that’s a word 🤔 but you know what I mean) your dresses.
It’s all about being creative and adding a layer.

  1. Add a blazer and boots, this is a very ‘now’ look. You want quite a oversized blazer for this look and not an ‘officer’ style one.
  2. Layer over a jumper. This works really well with a shirt dress as you can leave the colour out. Make sure that the jumper finishes at your waist or it can look shapeless.
  3. Add a sweater vest! These are going to be in all shops this autumn, and they are perfect for making that lighter weight dress work for Autumn
  4. Add a jumper underneath. I love a polo neck personally, but if you are quite busty go for a lower neckline.
  5. Layer up with a long cardigan and a pair of thick tights. This is a super easy was to make your fav dress work for Autumn. Pick out colour from the print or choose a complimentary colour and try and match the accessories for a effortless look.

If you want to maximise what you already have in your wardrobe, I can help.
With a wardrobe makeover, I can show you had to make the most of what you have, what pieces you are missing that could make more of your wardrobe, show you how to organise your clothes, shoes and accessories and help sort out what shapes, styles and fabrics work for you and not against you.
To find out more click here or drop me a message.

How to create a stylish mum wardrobe

Being a mum is hard work and creating a wardrobe that is not only chic, but also practical can seem like a daunting task. But it is possible with a few simple tricks.

The key to nailing that effortless mum style is having key pieces in your wardrobe that work for you and not against you. This means avoiding fabrics that require loads of ironing or dry cleaning. Investing in certain pieces such as outerwear and footwear and keeping things simple. Combine this with a few styling hacks and you have a fail safe formula for simple and chic mum style.

So here are my perfect pieces and styling tricks to help you create you mum wardrobe.

Get yourself a pair of stylish trainers

As a mum one thing is certain, you are going to be on the go all day. This means that you need a pair of comfortable and flat shoes that are easy to throw on but still look good. In my opinion a pair of leather style trainers with a good solid sole are the perfect shoe for busy mums. They are easy to wear, easy to care for and comfortable. I would recommend either going for a white, black or neutral coloured shoe to ensure that they go with everything in your wardrobe. If you can stretch to real leather it is definitely worth its as they will last longer and age better than faux leather shoes.

There are a huge range of trainers available and you can still show off your own style personality with them. If you are more attracted to an edgier style, look for leopard print details, prefer something more classic, keep it simple with a plain lace up style. The key is that they work with everything in your wardrobe. Make sure that your give them the occasional quick wipe over to ensure that they aren’t covered in mud and that’s it. Wear them with skirts, dress, jeans or trousers.

Think about outerwear

Don’t think of outerwear as an after thought. If you have a fab outfit underneath and a shabby coat thrown over the top you are going to ruin your look. However a fab jacket or coat can actually elevate and pull a very basic outfit together.

For Autumn and Spring I love a simple utility jacket in a heavy cotton. You can get so many different cuts to suit so many shapes and they can look edgy, classic and feminine depending on the styling details. Many of them are machine washable too which is an added bonus and you can pick them up everywhere and at every budget. I like to roll the sleeves back a little to elongate my arms and add interest to the outfit.

For Winter, I would advise getting a wool style coat. This can be long or short, but as a busy mum myself I think a short to 3/4 length is most practical. If you can go for a coat with a high wool content, then I always recommend this. You can get good quality coats from places like Zara and Mango and in fact my go to coat is 90% wool, is over 10 years old and only cost me £70 from H&M.

What ever style you choose, make sure that it works for your shape and is practical for you.

Go for a dress

On those morning where you don’t have time to think about what to wear take a shortcut and choose dress. With a dress (or a jumpsuit) you don’t have to worry about what top goes with what bottom. Simply chuck it on, add your go to trainers and your done! There are so many different styles in the shops right now, you are sure too find something that suits your style and shape.

Go hands free

Free up your hands with a cross body or backpack style bag. Not only are these style really on trend right now, but they are practical and stylish. After all what mum doesn’t need an extra pair of hands? I personally love the leather cross body bags with the interchangeable straps, as they add personality and really jazz up a simple outfit, but a back pack can look super cool too.

Stock up on easy to wear basics

As a mum you often have very little time so having good basics that you can throw on is vital. That’s way having a good stock of t-shirts, both long and short sleeve and a few sweaters and a cardigan in a neutral colour is an important part of building the perfect mum wardrobe. Remember though, that just because these are your basics, it doesn’t mean plain. Slogan and graphic tees and sweatshirts are a great way of adding personality to your look. Or try experimenting with ‘neutral’ prints, such as stripes, spots and leopard. I call these prints ‘neutral’ as they can be layered up together and still look fab.

The same applies to basic bottoms. Choose a few different styles that you know are easy to wear, comfortable and can be mix and matched. As a mum I know that I find myself being drawn more to trousers, so my basics bottoms would be a pair of mid blue slim straight jeans, a pair of leather look jeggings, a pair of nice plain leggings and maybe a leopard skirt. All of these work with my t shirts and jumpers, so I don’t have to think too much about how to put an outfit together.

Just a few examples of some good basic tops

Choose hassle free fabrics

Now I love cashmere and silk as much as the next girl, but these are not everyday mum clothes. For a practical mum style you want fabrics that are easy to care for. That means that they need to be non iron, machine washable and can be dried on the line or airer. If the label says ‘hand wash and dry flat’ walk away! It’s just not going to happen, and they will either end up languishing in the laundry basket or end up misshapen or shrunk to baby size because you accidentally throw it in the machine.


You have your basics, you have your go to trainers and outerwear, and you have you hands free bag. All you need now is few funky accessories to jazz up you look. Simply choose a couple of patterned scarves, a couple of pairs of earrings or a necklace or maybe a belt and make sure that you add just one of these to finish you look. It is amazing how just by adding one accessory you can look and feel more put together.

Need help creating your mum wardrobe? I can help. Samantha Woodbury Styling offers both online and in person styling packages that include advice on creating a capsule wardrobe. All styling services can be booked online or you can book a free styling call to see how I can help.