How to Dress Warm in Winter: My Favorite Clothing Items

When Jesse and I decided to start our off grid homestead in the Pacific Northwest, we knew that we would have to prepare for colder winters than what we were used to! I grew up in Southern California where the weather is always 70 degrees and sunny, so moving to a cold climate was somewhat of a shock to me.

One of the things I had to figure out quickly was how to dress warm in winter and colder climates. I am warm-blooded through and through, but I’m finally learning how to keep warm in this Northern climate and thought I’d share my winter clothing items tips and tricks!

In my past, I didn’t really know how to keep warm in winter… I simply cranked up the heater up in my home or apartment.

While this may be a viable solution to some folks, it’s not a solution when you’re living off the grid or are working outside all day!

how to dress warm in winter - warm winter clothes
This was me shopping for land a couple of years ago in the Pacific Northwest… brr!

We frequently work outside all day in all types of weather. Just recently, we demolished an entire house in exchange for salvaging the materials, it was cold, and we had to take the opportunity.

Whether it’s 70 degrees outside or 20 degrees and overcast, we work outside often!

Also, as we’re living in a travel trailer, we do have propane heat but we try to use as little as possible because we don’t enjoy spending every last dime on propane.

We also have a wood stove in our small cabin that attaches to our portable RV garage, but it really doesn’t get warm enough to wear t-shirts; warm winter clothing is still required to stay comfortable.

warm clothes for winter - our off grid cabin
This is our home right now. We have wood heat but that doesn’t get rid of the need for really warm clothes!

The only solution I’ve found to keep my core body temperature up during all points of the day is to learn how to dress for winter weather and cold climates, which has involved overhauling my winter wardrobe, but that’s okay because all of these clothing items last a long time and they keep a big smile on my face because I’m toasty!

Disclaimer: I am only recommending these products because I wear them every, single day and can personally say that they work awesome for me!

Steps to Dress Warm in Winter

I’d love to share with you my favorite warm winter clothing that have been lifesavers on this journey of starting a homestead from scratch.

If you can only wear three or four layers, the layers you pick will make or break you in terms of how warm you are. Here are my favorite buys within the past two years.

1. Wear a quality baselayer.

If you don’t already wear a baselayer in cold weather, this is the #1 thing you can do to increase your overall body temperature.

I wear a baselayer 95% of the time in winter (even when not working outdoors) and it truly helps. The brands I love are listed below.

Smartwool Thermal Long Underwear

warm winter clothing - long underwear
I love my SmartWool long underwear sets!

Growing up in Southern California, the only time I wore long johns was when we went skiingg in Mammoth Lakes! My mom would buy my sister and I each a set, and they fit terribly! We hated wearing them!

Somehow as an adult, this terrible experience with long underwear seemed to haunt me. I

gave up hope in long underwear and thought they were all uncomfortable, bulky, unflattering, annoying, and something I simply wanted to avoid at all costs.

Then, in 2014, Jesse and I took on a year-long house rehabbing project. The house had an inefficient pellet stove in the worst location in the house, which meant that the house was rarely above 50 degrees.

I was cold and miserable for over a month before I got desperate enough to go long underwear shopping.

I stumbled upon the brand SmartWool. I tried on a pair of the Smartwool midweight bottoms and midweight tops, and it was love at first wear!

They fit so perfectly, the crotch was where a crotch should be, the waist was where a waist should be, the waistband was wide which mean that muffin top was nonexistent, and they fit great under my jeans!

They are also modest enough that I can comfortable and confidently walk around in my long johns, without having immense fear that an unexpected visitor will stop by.

I bought the pair immediately even though they were more money than I was hoping to spend ($160 for the set… eek!). I wore them daily for about four months, and here I am again in the Pacific Northwest wearing them again… daily.

I wear them while outside working, and I wear them to bed. I actually just bought a second set because I refused to go without them for a day while we did laundry!

Cuddl Duds Long Underwear

how to dress warm in winter with long underwear
I love this Cuddl Duds v-neck top… but not the bottoms!

Okay, so I know I just went on a long underwear rant. but my mom recently sent me those long underwear I had for skiing (the ones I thought I hated) and they were Cuddl Duds. I tried on the pants and tossed them immediately.

The waist encouraged #severemuffintop, the crotch was between my knees, they didn’t have adequate butt crack coverage, and it would simply be self-punishment to wear them.

Sorry Mom, I still love you and appreciated your care package!!!

However, I was pleasantly surprised when I tried on the Cuddl Duds top.

While I am still madly in love with SmartWool, I do like the Cuddl Duds top for some variety.

The Cuddl Duds are 100% polyester rather than merino wool, so they are a little bit thinner and more silky on the skin.

I’ve been wearing this top under normal long t-shirts when I spend the day indoors or working at a coffee shop.

2. Layer on top a t-shirt or long-sleeve shirt.

Next up on the list of how to dress warm… I wear a layer over my long underwear but under my jacket.

Some of these tops I don’t always wear long underwear over, but I’ll include them here anyways since they aren’t technically a base layer either.

Basic T-Shirts

carhartt-teeT-shirts seem pretty easy for me to come by and this may be the same case for you. In all honesty, I usually do most of my t-shirt shopping at Goodwill because I can get decent shirts for $2-6/piece.

Jesse has found great name-brand shirts at Goodwill (LL Bean anyone?) and I’ve found shirts from GAP, Mossimo and even Old Navy that have fit.

That said, if you want to buy one that has a quality build, these (one I just got) and these are both great options and built well.

Waffle-Knit T-Shirt

clothing for winter - warm long sleeve t-shirtThis waffle-knit t-shirt is a new item in my cold weather arsenal as well.

While I have many long-sleeve t-shirts that I love, especially when I don’t feel the need for an additional baselayer, this is marketed as a “midweight” long-sleeve t-shirt instead of lightweight.

I do notice the difference… it’s just a little bit warmer than a normal long-sleeve shirt. I think the waffle knit has something to do with that. This shirt fits perfect and is fitted without being tight. It’s great to wear alone, under a sweatshirt, or even with a vest over the top.

I only ordered one of these just to try it out but I wouldn’t be shocked if I order a second down the road, hah!

Long-Sleeved T-Shirts

warm clothes for winter - long sleeve carharttLong-sleeve tees are great as a winter baselayer. Even indoors, I’m not usually too warm if this the maximum I can strip down to.

I ordered one of these long-sleeved t-shirts and as I suspected, it fits perfect.

This comes in a crew neck (what I ordered) and a v-neck. I ordered the crew neck because most long underwear has a crew neck, so I thought this would be better if I wear anything under it.

This is a lightweight shirt instead of a midweight like the one above… so one or the other may be better for you personally depending on your cold-weather needs.

warm winter clothes - dressing in layers
Loving this shirt and it seems to fit me well.

Flannel Long-Sleeve Shirts

flannel shirt for dressing warm in winter weatherI love flannel… and I suspect you do too!

In summer, I use a flannel as my outer layer because it’s not as thick as a sweater but helps keep my arms warm if a breeze shows up.

In winter, I know many folks love flannel because it’s somewhat durable, versatile, and can be worn alone or can be worn over thermals with a vest on top to keep the core toasty but keep full range of motion in your arms.

I don’t have any winter flannel yet but I have some sitting in my Amazon shopping cart.

There are lots of flannel shirts at Goodwill but I personally have found that finding them isn’t consistent. They either aren’t in my size, fit weird, or have odd patterns.

In looking online there are three flannel shirts I recommend and that are on my wishlist… these from Legendary Whitetails (a hunting brand), these from Carhartt (I’ve tried them on in stores and they fit great and consistent in size) and these from LL Bean (haven’t tried these on yet but I know it’s a hugely popular brand for women’s flannel).

If you look hard enough, you may be able to find flannel shirts that are fleece-lined!

This is also on my wish list because I can’t imagine how warm that’d be with long underwear underneath and a vest on top. Golden. But again, this isn’t as common in flannel for women as it is for men.

3. Add on a warm sweatshirt or fleece.

Pullover (Or Even Zip-Up) Fleeces

fleece pullover- dressing warm for winterLately, I’ve been wearing this pullover fleece non-stop, on top of my long underwear!

I don’t know where these have been my entire life, I guess I was too busy wearing cotton sweatshirts, but this layer is also critical to my warmth and happiness.

I don’t know that I recommend any one particular fleece layer over another, but there are lots to buy online or even at Goodwill!

We stop by Goodwill frequently and if there are any fleece pullovers that fit, I snatch them up.

Zip Front Sweatshirt

how to dress warm in winter clothing itemsLately I’m loving anything Carhartt, including this zip front sweatshirt.

The material and design feels quality and I feel the sweatshirt is versatile enough to work in yet is also casual and comfy enough to wear lounging around the house in my pajamas!

In the end, I got this because I wanted an option to wear something other than fleeces.

I can wear a t-shirt under this, long underwear, or even a non-thermal long-sleeved t-shirt.

I bought this sweatshirt specifically because it doesn’t have a hood.

Generally, I prefer to wear beanies and if it’s really cold, then I’d rather just have the sherpa-lined hood on my jacket, otherwise I’m fighting too much fabric.

If I never planned on wearing a hooded jacket over the sweatshirt then I probably would have opted for one with a hood instead.

Kinda hard to tell in this photo, but I’m wearing this sweatshirt as my mid layer. No hood necessary since my jacket has a hood AND I’m wearing a beanie. Win!
Kinda hard to tell in this photo, but I’m wearing this sweatshirt as my mid layer. No hood necessary since my jacket has a hood AND I’m wearing a beanie. Win!

4. Add a quality jacket to your wardrobe that’s built for winter.

As if a quality base and mid layer aren’t enough, the cherry on top of the sundae is a quality winter jacket.

Here, I really go for function over fashion because being warm and happy is totally worth it.

Sherpa-Lined Sandstone Sierra Carhartt Jacket

warm winter jacketsThe most recent addition to my winter wardrobe is this womens Carhartt jacket.

Prior to getting this jacket, I was rockin’ out in a Northface jacket.

The Carhartt jacket is nice because it’s more durable than my Northface, it’s really meant to be worked in where my Northface jacket is better for hiking, and the jacket alone is both thick and warm, where my Northface jacket is simply a fleece with some sort of light windbreaker shell on it.

Before I bought this jacket, I was wearing my SmartWool long underwear, a long-sleeved cotton t-shirt, and the Northface jacket, and I was still chilled to the bone when working after sundown.

Now, I wear my long underwear, a simple fleece pullover, and the Carhartt jacket. I have yet to be cold, and I’ve worn it in single-digit weather.

warm winter jacket carhartt
So happy a warm winter jacket arrived in the mail!

Sherpa-Lined Weathered Duck Carhartt Vest

warm winter vestThis is also on my wish list, and this vest specifically, for a few reasons.

One, it has the same sherpa lining as my jacket and if my jacket is warm, this vest must be too.

I like the brown color because it will look good over just about anything (I’m kicking myself a little bit for getting a bright pink jacket for this reason, but hey, it’s all good).

Second, it has a hood and a hood that is detachable.

Many other vests have no hood or one that is attached. I think I would use this hood often as it’s a way to add a little warmth without adding an extra layer, but then I love having the option of removing it as well.

Why aren’t all hoods removable…? Seems like an easy feature to add to me!

5. Wear a lined pant or jeans on the bottom with thermals under.

Prior until this year, I had no idea there were options for my bottom half aside from thin jeans and snow pants.

Luckily, as time goes on, I’m learning that there is such thing as a lined pant or jean which adds extra warmth over something that’s unlined.

Pair that with a baselayer and I think we’re golden!

Women’s Fleece-Lined Pants

warm-winter-clothingI was browsing through our local feed and outfitting store when I stumbled upon these fleece-lined pants from Carhartt.

I immediately felt like my prayers had been answered!

I tried them on, they fit perfectly, and I rushed to the cash register and then kept an eye on the forecast for an opportunity to wear them.

My problem with all of my jeans is that they are super thing… the actually aren’t even jeans, they are a thin, stretchy, denim-like material, so they have zero insulation to them whatsoever.

I feel that I can wear these pants alone and stay warm, OR for extra warmth, wear some long johns under them, and be happy as a clam.

Stretch Jeans

carhartt-jeansI’m on a continuous hunt for quality work jeans that are comfortable.

Many of my jeans are more like “jeggings” (jean leggings) and while they are stretchy they are incredibly thin. And, most womens’ work pants in my experience are like a tent for my body… large and unflattering.

Okay, it should be function over fashion, but can we at least try to find work jeans that are both??

First on my list are the Carhartt Slim Fit Nyona Jean.

I was fortunate enough to try on many styles at a Carhartt store but these were my favorite.

They are stretchy yet feel durable, and I feel that it will be easy to wear thermals under them.

According to their size chart online, the size is true to the chart at least for my body. I’d say I have an average to slim build and I like the slim fitting jeans.

The original pants are just a little more roomy, and the relaxed fit (the baggiest of all) I don’t like the fit of even in my size.

For the record, the fleece-lined pants above are an original fit and they’re certainly more loose-fitting but that’s okay.

I also love that these are pretty low-cost for a quality jean (most jeans I like are in the $80 category).

If anyone else has QUALITY work stretch jean recommendations, please let me know what they are! LL Bean seems to have jeans that look pretty good, including flannel-lined jeans, but I’m certainly not ready to splurge on them just to test them out.

I’ll wait until I’m really desperate or until all of my Goodwill jeans kick the bucket, hah!

6. Keep the feet warm with wool socks and quality shoes.

Merino Wool Knee-High Socks

warm winter socksBack in 2014, during the year-long house rehabbing project, I also purchased this pair of SmartWool socks during my winter shopping spree.

In the past, my winter socks were always for snow boarding or skiing, and they never fit properly so I was happy that I only had to put up with them once a year!

They were always too big and the calves were always stretched out!

SmartWool socks are made with merino wool so they’re incredibly soft and provide a lot of warmth. They also come in many fun patterns.

I don’t wear these daily because that would just be gross… but I really do need to buy a few more pairs of them to rotate through.

I really notice the difference between my SmartWool socks and my cheap, cotton socks from Target.

Down Booties

clothes to keep you warm in winterHave you ever heard of down booties? They are the BEST invention ever! Why wouldn’t you want your feet surrounded by down!?

I went on a snow camping trip back in 2011 or so and the woman that led the trip (also known as the pro snow camping) whipped out a pair of these after a long day of snow shoeing.

She was the only one with warm, toasty feet.

I wear these almost always when I’m in the travel trailer in winter. Even if the air is 60 degrees in the trailer which is pretty warm, the floor is always cold. My down booties have a thick sole which gives some air insulation between my feet and the RV floor, and the down really helps to warm up the bootie.

If you don’t yet have a pair of these and you frequently suffer from cold feet, do yourself a favor and treat yourself to some!

Or, if you have a special lady (or man? hehe) in your life that gets cold feet, I’m sure it’d be the perfect gift.

On the Wishlist: Bogs

warm winter footwearMy winter footwear is seriously not up to par right now, but I’m not ready to splurge on a bunch of new shoes. Bogs are one thing I think I’ll end up buying.

I see lots of hearty folks wearing these because they’re waterproof, great as muck boots, comfortable, and lined for cold weather.

I can see myself wearing these as an all-around boot during winter, although they certainly aren’t classy or fashionable necessarily.

On the Wishlist: Sorel Snow Boots

snow boots - warm clothing for winterI have a snow boot right now, but I really, really don’t like them because they are ugly and cold. I’m looking to upgrade and so far, these Sorel boots are the ones I’m keeping my eye on.

They look warm, durable, are a well-known brand, and I’d certainly wear them more than I wear my current snow boots.

On the Wishlist: Twisted X Work Boots

winter work bootsI’m trying to decide which work shoes to get next as my hiking boots are starting to fall apart.

This is a serious decision for me so I haven’t made it yet, but I’m leaning towards these boots.

I was looking at Justin and Ariat work boots but when I tried them on in stores, they felt a bit stiff and I’m unsure how they’d feel after breaking them in.

Then I found these boots by a brand I’ve never heard of before and the boots felt like walking on clouds when I put them on.

The boots in stores were a bit too garnished and wild for my personality, but they do offer a plain work boot.

I like that these are pull-on, have a round toe, great traction, and are versatile enough to wear not just for work but day-to-day as well (some work boots are pretty ugly and monsterous to wear when work isn’t happening).

I don’t know if these are technically waterproof, but they do look like they can handle the winter mud without a problem.

If anyone has experience with these please let me know, or if you have another day-to-day work boot recommendation.

7. Keep the head toasty so heat doesn’t escape.

You’ve heard the saying… keep your head warm and the rest of your body will stay warm!

Well, this isn’t exactly true, but if you’re trying to stay warm, it’s best to protect your noggin’ too.

I frequently wear beanies all day long during the colder months because they really do keep me warm, and also because if I wear it in the morning, I can’t take it off because my “hat hair” is pretty terrible!

Good reason to wear the all day long!

Wool Visor Beanie

beanie - warm clothes for winterMy #1 favorite beanie is this one by Pistil.

Honestly, I like it because it is somewhat stylish and I feel less like an abominable snowman. I love the little visor on it!

It also does keep my head toasty, or I wouldn’t wear it!

Carhartt Acrylic Watch Hat Beanie

winter clothing items carhartt beanieI got a second beanie to have some variety and wasn’t sure how much I’d actually wear this one compared to the visor beanie, but I’m loving it!

I guess I just like variety.

It’s kinda odd, but the first couple of times I wore this beanie my ears were a little sore after many hours, but after the third wear or so the soreness went away.

It isn’t tight or anything, but I guess my visor beanie is much looser.

This one covers my ears a little better than the style visor beanie I have.

wearing warmer clothes in winter
Liking the deep wine color of this beanie! My head is extra toasty with this combined with a sherpa-lined jacket hood.

Wrapping It Up

Great fall and winter wardrobe for homesteaders, farm girls or country girls! #homestead #homesteading #wardrobe #camping #outfits

If you’ve never lived in a cold climate, then the best thing I can share is to dress in layers, and that the quality of the layers matter!

Not all layers are created equally! You can wear two different sets of layers, and one will keep you toasty while the other will leave you shivering.

By investing in high-quality layers and warm winter clothes, they will last for years to come, keep you warm on a daily basis, and most of all, increase you mood as you can spend your mental energy on things other than keeping warm!

I have a lot of personal challenges on this off grid homesteading journey so being cold is the last thing I want to worry about.

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I am an aspiring homesteader on a journey to become self-sustainable and free. In my past, I've worked corporate jobs to make ends meet and get ahead a little; it didn't make me happy or confident in my future. Since taking the leap to self-employment and living a more simple life, my happiness levels have increased greatly and I've never felt more alive. I finally understand what I want in life and how to get there, and that is what this blog is all about.


  1. Plinker says

    Yes layering is the answer and if you get hot you can remove one layer at a time, one proviso is to switch the long underwear daily for clean ones or its an area for bacteria to grow, specially if you are working as you perspire.

    I use thermal tops and bottoms and a t-shirt then a sweatshirt and this seems to cover all situations, remove the t-shirt inside as you can get to warm.

    Ask your mum about trap door long john’s they had the advantage of not having to expose as much of your body during certain tasks, more important with an outside john!! lol

  2. Plinker says

    Sitting in front of the airtight wood stove at 6:20 am as its warmer than the rest of my house and was thinking about the sd 64 gig card, if you want you can put this into an sd card reader and then you have a small 64 gig backpack to store to when space is important.

    I also use usb memory of which I carry three in my pocket, one is diagnostic, one is for pure temporary storage and the other financial if working with my laptop.

    I am glad your using a MAC instead of a pc with w10 its a security nightmare and getting worse. This laptop is using knoppix live, well its on the hard drive but buts new each time and this prevents lots of annoying bugs from attaching themselves.

    As mentioned the tie down straps are invaluable for everything from pulling the chicken trailer to another location, felling tree’s or pulling the horse shelter back level. Mine came from a local town yard sale a few years ago.

    My friend has 16 hens and two roosters, one rooster is the king of the roost and hens lol. She is thinking of guinia hens (bad spelling) more for there eggs as she does not like the idea of killing a living thing.


  3. Doug dunlap says

    Hello to you both I am really enjoying following you two. Just read your post on winter wear. I know jeans are cheap compared to other stuff but I would ditch the jeans in favor of some thing that is more wind resistant. I am out side a lot and I use my X country ski shells for some work like snow blowing it makes
    a HUGE difference. Or may some carhart bibs for more rugged wear. That’s all. Keep warm I want to see you guys e your dream come true.

    • says

      That’s a great recommendation Doug… jeans ARE cold! The only alternative we have right now are our snowboard pants which probably wouldn’t be the most comfortable thing to work in, but I’m sure we’ll uplevel over the years. The Carhartt bibs, while not my #1 preference when it comes to fashion, do seem like they would be really warm and practical! OR even a pant with a little bit more insulation and some weather resistance, unlike jeans. Good news is that so far I’m staying warm, and there are still things I can do if I get cold 🙂

      • Plinker says

        Alyssa snowmobile suits are really good specially well made Canadian ones, I just wear thermal underwear under them when using the snow blower at -20~30c along with several pair of socks and warm mitts. When you actually work out side you find your body will become molten if you wear to much.

        I need to go with my trailer and pick up another cord of wood, they sell so called stove cords at $75 for 1/3 a real cord 4′ x 8′ x 4′ or only 4′ x 8′ x 16″ and loading the wood on my trailer then at home stacking it gets you really warm and sticky.

  4. Bob Gudgen says

    Good for you having found “wool”, nature’s perfect insulator; renewable, low carbon footprint. One more thing I have found (since the early 60’s) is a first layer next to your skin of fishnet , now only available from Wiggy’s here in the US. Keeps a layer of “dead, warm air” next to your skin and allows perspiration to move to your wool layer, i.e. keep you dry and warm. And remember, if strenuous activity causes you to begin to overheat, ventilate. Wiggy has a very detailed explanation of the virtue of fishnet. The populous has bought into the synthetic, petroleum driven, “all things to all people” undergarments, and I am extremely proud of you for figuring out the wool. You Go Girl!

  5. Virginia says

    When I was a girl growing older in Ohio (My birth place and home in my heart) my father was adamant that I put a hat on before I left house. “Hat on head, please.” He wasn’t even in the same room, yet he knew, LOL. My mother’s father told me once that your body was like a stove, and your neck the stove pipe, your head is the top. Put on a hat dear one. LOL

    Since I love hats it has never been a problem. Even here in relatively warm Tennessee, I wear hats. I am not a “hair” woman. My daughter is a hair dresser. go figure. I’ve never worried about how my hair looks, so long as it is short and brushed I am happy. Hats hide a multitude of sins (Grin) Love the look of your “beanies” will have to see I can find a red or purple one.

    And yes laying is the only way to dress for 20 degree (F) or lower weather. We have snow~ you would not believe it, but we got some dumped on us early this AM and I can tell that tonight the temperature is colder. My Patches says Meow! but he won’t go out and has had to use the litter box. He is 15 years old, so I cut him some slack, besides he is warm curled against my back in bed.

    Stay warm and well,

    Ginger (AKA Virginia)

  6. Paula says

    I also love Smartwool – great stuff! I agree w/ earlier poster on ditching the jeans but also add to ditch all cotton clothes in winter except when you are going to be inside. Cotton doesn’t wick well, nor hold heat or deal w/ getting wet by snow or mud etc – it just gets you cold and hypothermic. Cotton is fantastic in summer, but sucks in winter 🙁

    Winter backpacking I found it most comfy w/ longjohns under rain pants – the rain pants worked like vapor barrier and kept me surprisingly warm w/o overheating as long as I was moving. Once stopped for more than 30 mins, I would get a chilly derriere – likely from sitting on a log – but warmed up quick when moving again. Then, in camp, it was longjohns & fleece pants w/ the top layer what you already wear – longjohn top, fleece top and jacket. I really really loved my fleece pants. NOT a fashion statement, but oh so comfy and warm!

    You should be able to find some cheap rain pants online various places, campmor is one store that should have some cheap ones – some friends swore by frog togs. There was even one guy on trail who had made some raingear out of Tyvek wrap, seemed durable – met him north of the smokies and he still was wearing them! After you crumple it quite a bit, it became quite soft – but you could still hear him coming 😉
    any backpacking / hunting store locally may carry an inexpensive brand.

    if your desperate – there is always the duck tape & hefty trash bag option for rain pant / skirt – it actually works alright in a pinch, just tears up something awful so its a single day thing when a downpour catches you and you’ve got to go out!
    A lot of long term backpacking clothes work for work clothes cuz they have the important things in common – need to be able to move, sweat and not freeze, stay warm and dry quickly while wearing it when caught in rain or snow ( or you fall in a creek! ), not tear easily by catching on something, and be worn a few days in a row before washing.

    Best of luck on buiding the barn this spring!

  7. Barbara Kegebein says

    I grew up in N Indiana and learned to layer to stay warm. I loved my flannel lined jeans to play outside.
    I found out I am alegeric to wool next to my skin! Cotton is better than wool for me and u know how bad it is. I am fortunate that the tall cuddle duds fit me very well. I also got some polyester leggings (for $1.00 a pair that work well as a bottom (inner) layer here in N. Louisiana.
    Even here, a hat helps in cold weather. Love your blogs and videos.

  8. Lynette says

    Great segment. I am 70 and work outside through most of the winter because I don’t like being cooped in. I find many of the good winter jackets are a bit short in length and reaching has a tendency to let in cold air. Have you found this to be a problem in your winter search for outwear and midlayers?

    • says

      Ya know… I haven’t found shorter jackets to be an issue because I wear so many layers, but I’d love to try a longer one out! In the past, I suppose I wasn’t aware of what a good winter jacket or midlayer was but I’m getting a pretty good idea and am finding good sources. I have two Carhartt jackets that I love but they certainly aren’t long. I recently have been stalking L.L. Bean because it seems they have a good selection of warm, even long, winter jackets as well as some 100% wool baselayers (on the wishlist for next year but can’t justify the purchase this late in winter!). I also like SmartWool… seems they have some decent midlayers but it’s much more of an active brand so I wouldn’t expect their jackets to be ridiculously warm. If anyone has good suggestions I’d love to hear it – I think we’re all in need of warm, quality, durable clothing!

  9. Plinker says

    I wonder if there are any war surplus outlets there for outer arctic type clothes, jackets, pants, underwear, socks. Even the old/new work suites one piece are really good winter and summer. Rather than the truck attached plow you might pick up a used farm tractor IH434 or something with a snowblower and front bucket, with cab is far better summer and winter. The older tractors are less encumbered with gadgets and easier to work on. Check out the transmission carefully and hydraulics. All tractors are high center of gravity so one needs be aware of the angles and have at least a roll bar and also safety first with the PTO as they eat hands, arms and legs, wear short clothing and turn off the tractor when working on it or unattended. Excellent for loading firewood but be careful of tipping!!!!

  10. Bob Mac says

    Take a look at Duluth Trading. They now carry a line of women’s wear.
    Like Carhartt, they aren’t cheap. They sell some real heavy duty clothing.
    Keep up the good work. I enjoy your channel.

    • says

      I will right now! We definitely aren’t about cheap but definitely enjoy quality workwear. At first glance, it seems Duluth Trading has some goods we’d love!

  11. Beige says

    Still waiting on glove recommendations? I went to NYC with 2 gloves (leather & a woven type) neither kept my hands warm. Ski gloves what I need, waterproof? Any brand you like?

    • says

      Hmm…. can’t say I have a glove recommendation! My little fingers and hands froze off this winter when it was -10 Fahrenheit. Jesse’s theory is that I don’t keep my core warm enough 🙂

    • gumby says

      Sorry this is too late for your NYC trip and maybe for you to see ever … but for anyone else who comes along and is interested for next winter … I’ve spent a fair bit of time outdoors in Upper MI, Northern WI, and in the mountains in OR and UT. For doing construction-type work, I’m usually active enough that typical winter work-gloves work and I like the thinner feel for using tools. For less active tasks where I’m not generating nearly as much heat (chores, hunting, hiking, etc.), I’ve had a lot of lame gloves. Years ago I came across a pair of Black Diamond gloves before the brand really got going and I loved them. Since, I’ve had great luck with a several BD gloves (and other gear) and the brand has gotten more popular so is more available. Warmest gloves are my BD “glacier gloves”. Warm even down to below 0F holding cold snow-blower handles for 1+ hour! I’ve come to really love BD stuff – serious gear made by serious outdoor folks. So far they haven’t seemed to “cave” to become a mainstream/store brand and drop quality like NorthFarce. BD are not cheap, but never had a BD item than didn’t perform well. I had a pair of BD mittens too (mittens ARE warmer than gloves) but since you asked about gloves, I assume you need finger dexterity. My BD mittens had a zipper down the index finger side of each so you could unzip and pop your fingers out. Was a useful feature when hunting … or when doing on/off activities to vent to keep hands from sweating but still in cold environment … like resort tele-skiing in sub zero weather where you generate heat coming down then ride a lift in cold bitter wind back up.

      (BTW, Jessie’s theory about keeping core warm **IS** a huge part warm hands! AND you head, keep that warm and your hands stay warmer no matter what is on them! 🙂

      • Beige McNabb says

        I am from FL, is BD short for something? Or is that the brand? Sorry need to dumb it down for me 🙂

        • Delta says

          I’d guess that Gumby is talking about Black Diamond Equipment Company ( makers of extremely high quality gear and clothing that traces their roots back to Yvon Chouinard and his hand-forged pitons in the late 50s that made possible the high standard climbing in Yosemite Valley.

        • Kaci says

          Yes, he’s definitely talking about Black Diamond. He mentions at the beginning Black Diamond, but then shortens it to BD for easy-reading-sake through the rest of the comment. Anyways, thanks for this recommendation on gloves, Gumby! I can’t wait to go check them out.

  12. says

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    I had a pair of felt lined boots growing up in Maine and my feet were always warm even at -50 degrees or out on the ice all day. Also you can use mink oil on leather to make it water proof, it will darken the leather though.

  13. Les says

    Everyone has their opinions about staying warm and I have mine and they are base on ten years experience in Search and Rescue (in the Northwest) ,doing winter medivac in some very nasty winter conditions. I have also taught winter survival skills. The one reference I would send anyone to is a book by Hal Weiss “Secrets of Warmth”. In this book he goes into the reasons for heat loss and how to prevent it.

    In SAR we had a saying “Cotton is killer” and my winter advice is “DON’T WEAR ANYTHING THAT HAS COTTON IN IT”.

    Enjoy the first snow storm of the 2017-2018 season here in N Idaho.

  14. Anurag says

    Love your article, Alyssa 🙂 Best wishes from New Delhi (India). Here temperatures don’t drop below 2° celsius, but your article sure helps! 🙂

  15. Julie Ott says

    I live in Maine, and since we have livestock, I have to be warm but also wear something that isn’t going to tear while doing farm chores.

    Since I was a child, I have enjoyed shopping in the boys (now mens) departments for shoes and certain clothes. For instance, I’m not big on most of the women’s styles for winter wear, or shoes/boots, and women’s shoes have never fit me right.

    If you tried Ariat, but weren’t sure about the fit, try on a pair of them in men’s. I have had my pair for about 2 years now, with about 8 months of non-stop use (I was pregnant, so they sat for a while, and I also don’t wear them for summer chores too often). They have softened nicely, and are even comfortable on my broken foot.

    I like to wear bear paw, fleece lined boots for short trips out of the house. They keep my feet so warm, and they slip on so it is quick to head out. I am also looking into some muck boots, though!

    I have a collection of women’s and men’s flannel shirts. The men’s are thicker, and so much nicer. I do not see a difference in the fit of the mens vs. womens, though. They look the same.

    Also, I LOVE waffle long sleeve shirts. I wear these to bed on cold nights, and even layer them over a tank top when it is below zero and we ‘feel the chill’ in the house.

    Love watching and going on this journey with you guys! My fianc’e and I are cutting our own lumber next year (with a woodmizer), and watching you guys is great inspiration and motivation.

  16. Amy says

    what a great blog and thank you so much for this post. My husband and I are experiencing our first semi-off-grid winter. We started in November in a teardrop camper and figured out quickly that wasn’t going to work. We are now in a very tiny house, and figuring out quickly how to stay warm in this arctic weather MI is getting. So reading your reviews of items I’ve been looking at but not sure if they were worth the money, is very helpful. Thanks again and I look forward to reading more! Happy Homesteading!

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