The Lady in Real Life – Yin Classic Casual

Jan 29, 2015 | Personal Color Analysis

So lately, there have been some comments on Pinterest about Yin Classic being limiting. They’re right, in that building a wardrobe around any Image Archetype is limiting. That’s the beauty of it, really. Go shopping and ignore most of the items you find, spending your time and money only on those items that would suit you best.

That said, each archetype has it’s challenges. Below, some comments from my readers:

I rarely have any reason to be out of casual wear (SAHM to small children) and all I can figure is tapered jeans with basic tees, cardigans and flats, maybe with a skinny belt.

YinC is very narrow and offers very little options for casual wear that is more active.

Summer YinC just looks like floaty lawn dresses and skirts and blouses, which is both kind of hard to find and higher maintenance than makes sense for me.

This entire set (my YinC Inspiration board) has only 4-5 pants, what if you don’t like skirts?

I can see where they are coming from. Admittedly, my inspiration boards for Yin Classic are a lot of proper skirt and dress outfits. In my inspiration boards I aim not to create a “How to Be X Archetype” guide, but rather a place to connect with what I feel is the highest potential of each Archetype, the thing that she can do that no one else can. Knowing what Yin Classic feels like can be more valuable to the woman trying to convey that aesthetic than guidelines outlining the most minute details.

Also, I don’t make those images, I only pin them. One day maybe we’ll have photo shoots styled by yours truly to convey each Archetype. For now, we have polyvore.

True Spring Yin Classic

As ever, colors for polyvores are harmonized to digital palette pictures and may not be accurate irl or on other screens.

Let’s use these outfits to respond to some of the above concerns. Outfit no 1 on the left. Since I was asked about what to wear in summer, I put together a simple tank of high quality with some polished looking capris, stud earrings, and a cute bag, flat shoes, easy peasy. I see this as something you might wear to a barbecue. Or, on any regular day if you live somewhere like, say,  Boca Raton.

Since I know you’re going to ask, no, I don’t find the motif too Gamine, at least not for a True Spring in this Archetype. Not saying a Gamine couldn’t wear it. Classics tend to shy away from prints too much, which can contribute to their feeling that their clothing is boring and their options limited. Here, I’ve coordinated the motif with starfish earrings, and further created the feeling of organization by repeating the top color in the shoe, and the blouse accent color in the pants. I find True Spring really comes to life with a bit more color in the picture overall, so I added a lime purse, but if your Classic sensibility is distressed by that you could of course choose ivory or coral to repeat again.

Outfit no 2 in the middle. Fact is, knit fabrics are something we’ve all grown accustomed to wearing on a very regular basis, and some of us almost never wear anything else. That doesn’t mean it has to be yoga pants. This outfit (apart from the belt and shoes) is entirely knit, so it’s super comfy, super low maintenance to look after, and should allow you to be plenty “active”, so it’s great on a long day schlepping around or traveling (I dress similarly on planes). On the other hand, you could wear this to many types of workplace. Yes, you will need to be careful when bending over to pick up your toddler (though ideally, it shouldn’t be short enough to make that a huge concern). However, I personally find dresses to be super convenient in that I don’t need to coordinate a top and bottom. Throw it on, add an accessory or two, and you are done. If it’s very warm, you can easily wear this without the cardigan. Classics don’t require too much to look chic and elegant. As for floaty lawn, you can see it’s not the only choice, though it can actually be really practical for the high level of breathability. Eshakti is a good resource, most of the dresses are cotton and they rotate colors quite a bit.

Outfit no 3 on the right. Similar to no 1, for slightly cooler weather. The pants are also denim this time. I find colored jeans an excellent option for Classics, because they don’t typically have fades, rips, flashy stitching, etc., and so tend to look quite polished. Simple, pretty jewelry, and go ahead and push your hair back in a headband if you’re not having the best hair day or don’t have time to fuss (it’s something this type often does really well). Maybe in the closet you have a blazer you throw on over this to stretch it’s utility even further. Personally, I would wear this kind of thing out shopping. Later, you could head straight a PTA meeting. Just swapping out a blouse for a tee shirt and nice jeans for yoga pants completely changes our perception of how put together this person is and it’s not much extra work, and in my book is as comfortable as you need to be while you are out among the public.

But you know what? I’m not a mom, and I know you’re thinking that. So here’s something I heard from a very chic mom (actually, she writes the book series “Madame Chic…”). While listening to her interview on a podcast I subscribe to, my ears perked up when she responded to a question about moms who are afraid to wear nice things because they will get ruined. (It’s a long interview, the question comes up around the 35 minute mark if you want to listen just to that)  I see so many women whose children are grown who find themselves wishing so much that they had learned to dress beautifully 15 or 20 years ago. So take it from them, and don’t wait to have fabulous style you can be confident wearing.


  1. Rachel, what a great collectioni! I like how you explained the easy of swapping out items to make it unique. As a Soft Summer who teeters between Gamine and Soft Classic, this whole collection seems both easy and wearable. Love it!

  2. Thank you for this article. It’s wonderful to see examples of a True Spring as a Soft Classic.

    • My pleasure! It was TSp’s turn to have a polyvore and I wanted to show some YinC outfits for this article, so voila 🙂

  3. Hello Rachel Nachmias,
    I’m a reader of your and Christine’s 12 Blueprints blog. I am learning as much as I can about color and body archetype because I sense there’s a look really really right for me, in the way that the lipstick color on your homepage photo is really really right for you (it just blends, y’know?). You’re a bright winter, no? Anyhow, I’m impressed with the website design and the photo quality and, well, thanks for the blog and the free updates.

    • Thank so much for your sweet compliments, Mary! I am so happy to hear you are enjoying my posts and finding them useful. And yes, I’m a Bright Winter 🙂

  4. As a mother of a toddler, Im dreaming about those days, when Ill be able to wear an off-white coat again. I also remember first time, when I decided to buy a nice piece of clothing. My daughter were 9 month old. I bought cashmere pants, which can be dry-cleaned only. I was horrified ever time my daughter ate yogurt with her hands and then tried to climb to my knees:))

    By the way, did you see that "Chic mom"s videos? I know, shes all about natural no-makeup look, but her makeup bothers me so much. All those pinks drive me nuts. I always want to add some colour to her face:)) Natural makeup can look chic and sophisticated but definitely is not for everybody.

    • She could definitely gain a lot from a PCA, but I really appreciate a lot of what she puts out there and that she demonstrates how she lives by her own principles.

  5. Thanks, Rachel! This was super helpful!

  6. I would wear this style of clothes (and floaty lawn dresses, lol). I am not a mom, though, but I also rarely leave the house. Dressing nicely makes me feel good. I didn’t start wearing lots of skirts and dresses before getting into style and color, though, because I also felt it didn’t suit my lifestyle. For me now dressing is about fun!

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