Cabi Capsule Wardrobe for Fall 2019

I think in capsule wardrobes. Every time I’m considering a new wardrobe addition, I think how it can be styled at least three ways with what I already own. I love a cohesive, hardworking wardrobe that offers more style with fewer items. This past summer I had the pleasure of attending Scoop, cabi’s conference. At the conference, they had a fashion show with their Fall 2019 collection and I couldn’t stop mixing and matching pieces in my mind as they walked the runway. Ooh that jacket with those pants, how would that top look with that skirt? I got home from that trip and immediately wrote out a cabi capsule wardrobe for Fall 2019.

This post is sponsored by cabi.

A cabi Capsule Wardrobe for Fall

I actually created a couple of capsule wardrobes; I created a mini vacation capsule wardrobe for the cabi blog last month. I asked cabi if I could create a larger capsule for this season. For reference this is my Spring 2019 cabi capsule wardrobe; this is my Fall 2018 cabi capsule wardrobe. For Fall 2019, I focused on fall to early winter looks and pieces that you can wear now and as the temps drop. The capsule has only 10 pieces of clothing, but I created over 16 different looks for work, weekend, and beyond.

collage of the items in the fall 2019 cabi capsule wardrobe

Shop the Fall Capsule Wardrobe:

Ponte knit “High Legging” (size Medium) | Glen plaid wide-leg “Bond Trouser” (Size 12 Regular) | “Tuxedo High Straight” jeans (size 12) | Glen plaid belted “Bond Blazer” (size Large) | Teal “Deco Cardigan” (size Large) | Black twisted-hem “Reveal Tee” (size Large) | Black and gray stripe “Pivot Fitted Tee” (size Large) | Sleeveless teal silky “Mist Top” (size large) | Green plaid sheer layered “Paradox Top” (size Large) | Black knit “Pivot Racer Tank” (size large) | Multi-print “Delight Scarf” | Cheetah haircalf “Beast Belt” | Pearl detail “Tudor Cuff” bracelet | Sparkly “Mystic Earrings” | Three-strand “ID Trio Necklace” | Gold and silver “ID Earrings” | Long “The Dressmaker's Necklace” | Gold hoops | Similar gold watch | Black leather lower heel ankle boots | Black knit higher heel bootie

For reference, I am 5'3″ and usually wear a size Large, 14 or 14 Petite in other popular mall brands. The Bond Trouser was shortened by a tailor, and it's not too pricey since they're not lined.  If you're familiar with the Chance Wide Leg from last and this season, the Bond Trouser has a similar effect but has a side zipper and button and is a heavier weight fabric with a subtle texture, making it more work-friendly and comfy as the temps drop. If I could do it again, I think I would have sized down in the Deco Cardigan to a Medium; it's roomy even with a large bust and does stretch. If between sizes, I recommend sizing up with the Pivot Fitted Tee as it is not only fitted but a shorter than usual length. The Paradox Top is two sheer layers; together it is opaque in the bodice and no camisole is needed for modesty. The Tuxedo High Straight jeans have been treated to be lighter with a darker wash stripe about 1″ wide down the outside of each leg (I personally find this detail both cool and leg-lengthening).  Both necklaces have an extender to adjust the necklace about 2″. The Bond Blazer's belt is removable; the only “belt loops” is a tube of fabric in the back which doesn't look weird when there isn't a belt inside it. If you have any other questions about fit, fabric, or design do ask in the questions and I am happy to answer!

collage of 16 outfits on alison

Sample Outfits from the Cabi Capsule Wardrobe for Fall

While I created 16 outfits from these nine pieces, it's easy to create additional looks. Add in a few wardrobe staples already residing in your closet and you could create dozens of looks to get you through fall, winter, and even into early spring. Below is a gallery of all 16 looks. Click on any thumbnail graphic in the gallery to see the full-size images and descriptions. Hover over the images to find arrows to advance and go back within the gallery. Click the X at the top right of an enlarged image to close the gallery and return to this blog post.

I based this capsule wardrobe off the Bond Blazer and Bond Trouser. This spring, I fell in love with the Chance Wide Leg trouser; I loved that the Bond Trouser is a more polished and work-friendly version of the same pant and in a subtle plaid which is so on trend for this season. The matching blazer is chic but also incredibly versatile as you will see below. I loved that they weren’t black, but they work with just as many colors and situations. For my accent color, I went with all the greens and teals that cabi is showing this season. Jewel tones like these are so on trend this season, and this is a color that looks great on many but also plays well with other colors like burgundy, navy, purple, and even mustard and pumpkin. I specifically chose pieces that not only are versatile within this capsule wardrobe but will also work with pieces that may already be residing in your closet.

Breaking it Down: Why These Pieces for a Capsule Wardrobe?

Nothing in this capsule is used less than three times, but I still wanted the capsule to be fun and full of personality.  I started with the Bond Blazer and Bond Trouser as my base.  Since the pieces are a gray and black Glen plaid, I looked for pieces that would work with those colors.  Alone, the Bond Blazer and Trouser can feel very conservative and severe; to show the pieces' playful side I looked for a lot of prints to mix with which is an instant way to add style, humor, and a modern touch to any wardrobe.

I love striped shirts, they are so classic and add interest.  I always have several in my wardrobe, but I didn't have one that was gray and black.  Needless to say, this was one of my first picks.  The grays in the Bond Blazer and Pivot Fitted Tee coordinate, and being both gray and black prints, looked great together.  I love pushing up the sleeves of the blazer to let the stripes peek out. Since this tee is a bit shorter, it looks great tucked in but also left out.

Each year I make one of these capsule wardrobes, I challenge myself by picking one item I would normally not gravitate towards. This season, it was the Paradox Top.  As someone who is short and busty, I worried it would look like a maternity top on me.  I surprised myself by loving this top.  It is two lightweight layers that flow beautifully and are asymmetrical creating a very cool hem that adds modernity and a more expensive feel.  The colors are gorgeous, and the blouse looks cool with leggings and a longer necklace or tucked into trousers for the office.  I loved the mix of the plaid print from this top with the Bond pieces.

Cardigans can look frumpy and twee, but cabi has mastered creating ones that are chic and modern.  The Deco Cardigan is a gorgeous teal with really cool stitching that flatters the figure while adding interest.  The longer length and the shape make it work almost like a soft jacket for early fall days or overly-air conditioned offices.

I chose the Reveal Tee because I felt I may need a simple black top under jackets but fell in love with its cool silhouette and silky soft knit.  I love this fabric, I have other tops from cabi from previous seasons from it and it feels amazing, drapes beautifully, and washes up great.  The knot detail at the hem makes it a tunic that can cover without looking like a tent, but it's at a perfect place and size that you can also tuck in this tee for a different effect.

The goal of this capsule wardrobe for fall is to get you to see shopping as well as your current closet with fresh eyes. When adding to your wardrobe, look for pieces that can live multiple lives. If it can't be styled three different ways it may not deserve to be in your closet. Thank you cabi for agreeing to partner on this project!

19 Comments

  1. Briana
    September 24, 2019 / 7:29 am

    I found Wardrobe Oxygen based on a cabi post a couple years ago and now read it religiously. I’ve expanded beyond my primarily cabi wardrobe thanks to some of your outfit posts. I hadn’t gravitated to most things in this capsule initially, but now the Bond Trouser is on my Fall 2019 list. Thank you for always putting together great combos and making me look at the whole line differently in terms of what may look good on my body.

  2. Nihongo Dame Desu
    September 23, 2019 / 8:54 pm

    Is the only way to buy Cabi to sign up and provide my contact info? I’ve shied away from MLMs, or whatever one calls them, because I got (and continue to get) SO much spam starting the moment I type my email address. I’d love to give Cabi a try, but the fact that I can’t add items to my bag on their website suggests I have to go through a “dealer”. Is that correct, or is there another way? That python blazer, along with checkmate, is calling my name!!

    • September 23, 2019 / 8:59 pm

      I believe if you use their app, cabi Tap, you can get around working with a stylist. But when working with a stylist, you work with someone near where you live and you can try before you buy and get heads up on sample sales and such. I do get cabi emails, but it’s not like it has been for other at-home sales where I have had to report spam because they won’t leave me the heck alone. I do get where you’re coming from, but it’s their business model and has been for over a decade. Check out the app, I haven’t used it yet but I have heard good things about being able to be more… “remote” with it.

    • Penelope
      September 24, 2019 / 9:05 am

      Since Cabi’s sizing is all over the place it is best to have a stylist. My stylist knows my size and is so helpful.

  3. Lindsay
    September 23, 2019 / 8:19 pm

    All of the pieces look so good together! And that scarf, wow. It makes me wish I were a silk scarf person…it is beautiful!

    • September 23, 2019 / 9:00 pm

      Thank you! I love a scarf this length, it’s so versatile!

  4. Ann
    September 23, 2019 / 6:32 pm

    My cabi order with the Bond suit and the teal blouse just arrived. The Bond is a major departure from my comfort zone and I cannot tell you how much I love it!! And they did an amazing job with scarf – it is so beautiful with that blouse AND the Button Up (soft pink) Blouse from Fall 18. This entire capsule is amazing together – Now I’m going to have to get that cardi….. All your outfits look so nice on you!! My love of cabi continues to grow!

    • September 23, 2019 / 9:00 pm

      I’m so glad you like the capsule, Ann, and love your new pieces!

  5. Nebraskim
    September 23, 2019 / 5:18 pm

    I love this capsule. I went to a CABI show recently and really liked that suit. But since I no longer work in an office situation, my needs are swinging even more to “smart casual.” I ended up buying a gray v-neck sweatshirt with cable cream cable knit sleeves, and a color blocked varsity sweater. I think both will fit into my wardrobe well. I tend to have either gear, denim jackets or a straight on suit blazers and I need the latter much less now (and will probably thrift them all) but I need to upgrade from gear or denim jackets once in a while. CABI is not my style in terms of shirts (I am not a flowy top person) but I do like their colors and enjoy how they style the garments.

    • September 23, 2019 / 9:01 pm

      I know that sweater with the cable sleeves, it’s so awesome!

  6. Carol
    September 23, 2019 / 10:40 am

    This is a great post and wish I’d read before I starting shopping this season! I’m trying to pare down my closet and this is a great guide. Are you wearing the CAbi high leggings in one of the pix, as you don’t mention them.

    • September 23, 2019 / 10:59 am

      Hi Carol, yes I am! They are the first item mentioned in the list under the collage photo. For reference, I am wearing a medium. Love them!

  7. Amber
    September 23, 2019 / 10:00 am

    I really, really love this. What are the sleeves like on the blazer? We’re a similar size and usually I have to go petite to get a good fit on a blazer.

    • September 23, 2019 / 11:01 am

      They are a bit long on me. If I was going to wear them not pushed up I’d need maybe an inch trimmed off. For the Bond Blazer it’s not much of an issue because the jacket is unlined. I have a few blazers from this season; the Python is similar – a bit long but easy to tailor. The Checkmate Jacket is a good length on me as is the Chance Bomber. I LOVE the Renaissance Coat, it runs big, I wish I went down a size. The sleeves aren’t easy to tailor because of the zippers but it looks cute shoved up a bit on the arm.

      • Jane Steiger
        September 23, 2019 / 11:38 am

        I think it is important to note that the bond blazer has a button above each elbow so the sleeves can be folded and buttoned up.

        • September 23, 2019 / 11:44 am

          Good point! I personally found it really bulky and awkward on me, maybe because I am petite? I do like the look on others!

      • Liz Y
        September 23, 2019 / 3:37 pm

        The proper way to tailor these sleeves is to take them up at the shoulder seam, not at the wrist. This also means that the tapering of the sleeves stays intact. Naturally, this is more expensive, but it results in the correct alteration. (Don’t ask me how I know this!)

        • September 23, 2019 / 9:02 pm

          This is great advice, thank you!

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