Winter Is Coming: Your Southern-Fried Guide to Dressing Warm in Winter

Winter Is Coming: Your Southern-Fried Guide to Dressing Warm in Winter

It’s the worst — being cold, that is. So right about now, when the last fall leaves start dropping, I start planning to stay warm. Winter is coming soon to North Carolina: Here’s your southern-fried guide to dressing warm in winter.

Transplants might be thinking this is the South, home of sweet tea and BBQ. How cold could it get here? Cold enough that you want to be prepared — even if we likely won’t face sub-zero temperatures.

To stay warm in winter, you’ll have to meet three goals: stay dry, create layers and stop the wind. Meet these goals, and you’ll be comfortable no matter what the thermometer says.

Start With Your Feet

Feet are critical to staying warm in winter. Think about those rainy days, icy sidewalks and temps in the 20s. Together, they combine to freeze right through your shoes and socks. To combat them, first get some good, warm socks that will wick away moisture — wool is a great choice.

Add boots to insulate you from the chill of the ground, keep your toes dry and provide traction when things get slippery. For boots, you can find plenty of stylish options out there. Warm in winter doesn’t have to mean clunky and swaddled anymore.  

Keep Your Bottom Warm (Especially in Winter)

Bring a blanket.
Image courtesy purplekatie from Pixabay.

Often overlooked, your “sitter” makes a big difference to your comfort in winter, especially when you aren’t moving around much. Longer jackets to cover your rump are made specifically for brisk winter weather, so when it gets cold, go long.  

Expert tip: If you’re heading to an outdoor event or restaurant, bring along a blanket. Even a thin barrier between you and that super-cold bench or chair will help keep your teeth from chattering before the appetizer arrives.

Layer Up

Staying warm in winter means dressing in layers (at least three if you’re spending time outside).

First, the base layer.

This layer touches your skin, and so look for something soft, thin and form-fitting because the main purpose of this layer is to wick moisture away from your body. Expert tip: when it comes to base layers, there is one absolute rule — cotton is NOT your friend. Cotton will get damp, and then you will get cold.

Then, a middle layer.

This layer should be loose, not tight. Its job is to create a space that traps body heat – either fleece or wool work well. Expert tip: Be sure to remove layers as you start to heat up. You don’t want to sweat.

Finally, the outer layer

This one is all about wind and water protection, and if your middle layers are thick and warm, a water-resistant or waterproof shell with a hood and pockets may be all you need. The latter features are designed to protect your hands and ears from cold blasts.

Accessorize to Minimize Your Exposure

And when it’s biting cold or windy, be sure to grab a scarf, hat, earmuffs, or mittens to minimize your exposed skin. Cute winter hats are everywhere, and you can wear them indoors or out — so no need to worry about the dreaded hat head.

In November, Think About How You’ll Stay Warm in Winter

Image courtesy of Vlad Chețan from Pexels.

It’s November — winter is coming. And this year, I expect that more of us will be spending more time outside thanks to COVID-19. So you might just want to get a headstart on the weather and start planning now for dressing warm in winter. It begins with your clothes.

And if you’re up for a little North Carolina travel while you shop, head west to historic Valle Crucis to check out another North Carolina original, the Mast General Store!