This is not the week for a neutral palette, and heavy wools reek of hibernation. Time to lift the spirits without lightening the wallet.
Fleece belongs on lambs, blazers are too severe.
The solution? A fine wool jamavar shawl. When I visited Delhi last year, I could not get enough of them, and learned to wear them folded, flung- any drape that pleases you is "right".
One good source is Heritage Trading, an eBay seller with a supply of subtle or vibrant pieces in several sizes. You can find Dinesh and his store at: http://stores.ebay.com/Heritage-Trading_Shawls_W0QQcolZ2QQdirZQ2d1QQfsubZ4QQftidZ2QQtZkm
Here's a sampling:
1. Top: Clear pinks and lavender in the largest size, a luxuriant sweep of 40 x 80 inches, $US 40 (All prices do not include postage, which is $7 to the US. They will ship internationally, too.)
2. Middle: Blue beauty in my favourite size, 28 x 80 inches, small enough to fold in a bag, large enough to drape, $US 37
3. Below: 21 x 72 inches, for petite frames or to wear as a scarf, in soft neutrals, $US 30
The simpler under your shawl, the better. I eschew the old-school style of wearing one over a coat: too babushka.