"Buy less, choose well"
Although trends come and go, there are some enduring classics that will always be in. Could you eschew trends in favour of some staples that never go out of fashion? The answer is definitely yes! Creating a base wardrobe of staple pieces is the way to do it.
Wardrobe staples, or wardrobe essentials, are the main items in your wardrobe – the absolute must-haves – that form the basis of your attire no matter what is in fashion this season. They are the ultimate addition to any wardrobe. Wardrobe staples have several distinct characteristics, such as timelessness, versatility, and high quality.
Let’s run through the characteristics of wardrobe essentials to understand them in detail.
Wardrobe staples are timeless. They are ageless pieces that are made in a classic style and will always remain fashionable.
Wardrobe staples are versatile. Versatility is the most important attribute of the wardrobe staple. Colour plays an important role in versatility. Wardrobe staples are often in solid, neutral colours. That is why they can work with a variety of other garments. You should therefore be able to wear the same piece in a number of ways. With a few staple pieces, you can create various looks. For instance, the little black dress can be worn on its own to an evening do or with a jacket in a more formal setting.
Wardrobe staples exude high quality. They are made from premium materials and usually have interesting designs. Even after a couple of years, they will look pristine. Of course, premium quality often comes at a premium price, and staples do often cost more up front, but they are still worth investing in, because their price-per-wear is lower. Buying quality clothing is also environmentally friendly, as, overall, you will buy less per season and reduce your environmental footprint. You will create a more sustainable wardrobe, which is definitely worth it in the long term. Filling your wardrobe with chic staples will improve your style and make dressing well easier on your wallet and on the environment.
Below, you will find a list of ten of my favourite wardrobe staples, along with the reasons I think they are worth investing in. However, I completely understand that these might not work for everyone. So, if you need some more recommendations or guidance, do leave a comment. I hope the list of my ten key pieces will serve you well. And the good news is that you may already have some of these staples in your wardrobe.
1. Set of pearls
Jewellery has been an essential in a woman’s wardrobe for hundreds of years. Pearls, often called the queen of jewellery, are one of the staples. Pearl (clip-on) earrings, necklaces, and bracelets should definitely be a part of your wardrobe because they are always appropriate, no matter what the occasion. With their serene beauty and shining elegance, they perfectly complement any outfit. Pearls look lovely with most of your daily attire, as they go perfectly with any classic jacket, dress, and blouse pairing. For an evening out, women who prefer classic styles may slip into the little black dress and pearls. This combination is certainly a favourite of mine. What about you?
2. Little black dress
The little black dress, or LBD, is very much an integral part of fashion culture. Many fashion experts say that the LBD is a must-have for almost any woman's wardrobe. So, if you have heard of the ubiquitous LBD a hundred times already and still never purchased one, now is definitely the time to do so. A versatile LBD is always a wise investment piece. First, the LBD is a sensible and appropriate option for most dressy occasions. It can be worn for any day or evening event. Always remember you can never go wrong with a classic LBD. Simply choose the one that suits you best. Figure out the right dress length for your body type. The selection of the right dress neckline and the perfect sleeve length is also important. This should help you hide your tiny figure flaws and accentuate your best parts. Second, the LBD can be teamed with a variety of clothing, such as a jacket and a bolero. If you're opting for a classic LBD made from tweed, have a look at my favourite one below.
3. Classic coat
Just as the little black dress is considered an essential part of every wardrobe, a classic coat is another uniquely versatile garment to add to your cupboard. A high-quality classic coat is an investment piece that wears well and will definitely stand the test of time. It does not go out of style, so you can wear the same classic piece as often as you like and always look elegant, even with casual clothing underneath. Unless the sun always shines where you live, a classic coat is a necessary outerwear garment, and even if you are blessed with spectacular weather all year round, trips to colder climates, whether for business or vacation, will still require a good coat. Have you already seen my favourite alpaca and wool-blend hooded coat in black? Have a look at this beauty below.
4. Leather jacket
A leather jacket is another versatile investment piece that can be styled in different ways. It is entirely trend-resistant, so you can buy one piece and enjoy it for many years. This garment has the advantage of durability and weather resistance. Even though you may pay more up front for a high-quality leather jacket, you can always be sure that, over time, it will be worth it. I prefer to go for an artificial leather jacket as an animal- and environment-friendly alternative to a real leather one. My top choice is GINTA’s fitted jacket, tailored from exquisite square-shaped quilted artificial leather with impeccable attention to detail.
The blazer is another staple that deserves to be a part of your wardrobe. A blazer, fitted or oversized, is a piece that it is essential to own, and it will last for decades and improve your look. You can dress it up or down, as necessary, with just a few well-chosen accessories. Worn with a shirt, a skirt, or a pair of trousers, a blazer is the most appropriate garment to wear in a professional setting. However, paired with a T-shirt and a pair of jeans, it can make you look chic even in your free time.
6. White button-up shirt
A white button-up shirt is an endlessly flattering piece that make any skirt or pair of trousers more elegant. While they can be worn on their own, under a sweater or a dress with braces, they also work perfectly with a suit. These shirts are often made of cotton or silk and are often imbued with formality. The most important thing about a button-up shirt is that it should fit you well. When choosing a shirt, it is worth paying attention to its attributes - the shirt should be both stylish and comfortable.
Even when you close the top button, there should be a comfortable gap between the collar and your neck.
When the cuffs of the shirt are undone, the sleeves should fall halfway down your hand. There is additional lenght of the sleeves.
When the cuffs of the shirt are fastened and you bend or stretch your arms out in front of you, this additional lenght of the sleeves will prevent the cuffs from sliding too far over your hand.
The cuffs should be tight enough to ensure that you cannot remove the shirt without opening the buttons.
- Shoulder and side seams
Check that your shoulder seam sits at the end of your shoulder. If you hug yourself, the shirt should not be too tight at the back. The side seam should be close to the armpit. There should also be some space left under your armpit, otherwise the button-up shirt will be too tight.
- Front buttons
Front buttons should be well placed to avoid showing your bra.
Having all these key attributes in mind, do you really have the perfect white button-up shirt in your cupboard? If you already have plenty of white button-up shirts in your wardrobe and are still thinking of refreshing your look or looking to add some colour, I would recommend choosing a shirt in a light pastel colour that will make your outfit a little less formal but more polished. For some ideas, take a look at my shirt in light pastel pink.
7. Knee-length black skirt
A knee-length black skirt is a definite must for your wardrobe, and has to be chosen carefully. First, it should fit you perfectly, so, choose the type of skirt that matches your body shape. My favourite ones are an A-line skirt or a box pleated skirt. The right black skirt can create a silhouette that flatters your shape and instantly makes you look slimmer. Second, the midi skirt offers the most versatility. You can keep it casual, choose it as your day-to-day office wear, or even dress it up for more formal settings. Third, the well-tailored black midi skirt has real longevity, and you will certainly wear it repeatedly.
8. Black trousers
A pair of high-quality black trousers is another foundation piece for your wardrobe. As with most of the garments on this list, a pair of classic straight-leg trousers is entirely trend-resistant and goes with pretty much everything. When choosing a pair, it is worth paying attention to the length of the trousers because this will affect your overall appearance. Also, always try to match the tone of the shoes to the colour of your trousers. For instance, your black trousers will go nicely with a pair of dark coloured shoes. This continuation of tone will visually lengthen your legs. Nowadays, a pair of trousers, like a blazer, is a safe choice for the office. A well-chosen pair of trousers will stay in your collection.
Everyone needs the right pair of jeans in their wardrobe – a pair that fits you well and makes you feel comfortable. You can easily find the right pair of jeans for yourself once you know what your body type is. Determining your body type will help you choose what suits you best from a wide variety of styles and colours. The right pair of jeans is a versatile staple, works with many clothes and can be worn in almost every season.
10. The black heels and flats
Heels or flats? Both are must-haves. It just depends on the occasion. The quintessential pair of black heels or flats looks fabulous with a variety of outfits and can be worn both throughout the day and for evening occasions. Invest in a fine pair of heels or flats, take good care of them, and they will last for years. Since you are planning to wear them a lot, choose a style that feels comfortable right away when you try them on.
So, here is my list. What are your wardrobe staples? Tell us in the comments below.