As we begin a new year, many of us will take inventory of the items hanging in our closet and those tucked neatly away in our drawers. Do they still fit as well as they used to? Are the colors still bright or have they dulled with multiple washes, or most importantly, do I still like that (insert name of clothing) t-shirt, blouse, belt, scarf, or pair of jeans? Try as we may, plenty of us are prone to snagging items that appear, even if temporarily, on trend. We wear them a few times, after which, they get stuffed somewhere beneath other more practical items. Building a wardrobe filled with trends versus classics, especially amid a pandemic when many of us are working from home, may actually reduce stress.
A classic wardrobe is comprised of various high-quality pieces that wear well, remain fashionable through the years, and maintain a level of season-less versatility. With so many available options, it can be hard to resist impulse purchases that put a drag not only on our free closet space, but our wallet. In truth, we simply do not need that much clothing, and a classic, capsuled wardrobe lasts for years without ever seeming old or outdated.
Reasons why a classic wardrobe is fabulous
- Reduces decision fatigue. Avoid stressing about ‘what should I wear?’ by limiting your options to make decision making easier. Adding several foundational pieces that, in any combination work well together and fit equally as well, make getting dressed a much easier.
- Builds in greater sustainability. The disposal of briefly worn clothing (also known as ‘fast fashion’) is one of the greatest contributors to environmental pollution. A family in the western world throws away an average more than 65 pounds of clothing each year. Only 15% is recycled or donated, and the rest goes directly to the landfill or is incinerated. Synthetic fibers, such as polyester, are plastic fibers, therefore non-biodegradable and can take up to 200 years to decompose.1
- Leaves room for amazing accessories. A classic wardrobe doesn’t have to be void of color or options. In fact, just the opposite. It transitions the focus of your closet as clothing-only to a plethora of options to accessorize foundational pieces with signature necklaces, scarves/shawls, handbags, boots/sneakers/shoes, bangles, and belts!
Staples to create your classic wardrobe
A classic wardrobe contains a selection of interchangeable clothing pieces that complement each other. Many are composed of neutral colors, or those most favored within your personal color wheel. Some initial tips for creating your wardrobe include:
- Begin with the basics: Take a hard look at what you wear most frequently (jeans, skirts, leggings) and create a selection of those in neutral colors (black, white, navy, grey) for easy mixing and matching.
- Add a white t-shirt: This little gem works for both business and casual purposes and blends with almost every combination. It can be used as a layering element or tucked into suit pants or loosely worn with a pair of your favorite jeans. Source a high-quality option in a cut that flatters your body shape (crew neck, v-neck, scoop neck).
- Locate a little black dress (LBD): A little black dress serves as a timeless classic that can by layered with a blazer for the office or worn with eye-catching accessories for cocktail or evening. A high-quality sleeveless A-line may be the perfect addition to your closet. Along the same lines of the LBD is a well-tailored suits that hugs your shape in all the right places. A black, grey, beige or creme-colored option lends itself to timeless use as a suit, or when broken apart to diversify wardrobe combinations such as the blazer with jeans or suit pants with a more casual top for work.
- Accessorize: The addition of various accessories is the easiest approach to making every outfit chic and stylish. Sunglasses, hats, jewelry, belts, and scarves create different looks, therefore extending your wardrobe options. We are big proponents of layered necklaces, bracelets, and ring sets as well as signature items—like a pair of red sneakers or quality handbag —that add both color and sophistication to all outfits.
Photo courtesy of Ana Luisa Jewelry
- Footwear seals the deal: Footwear can dress an outfit up or down. A classic pair of white sneakers go with everything and never go out of style but finding a pair that meshes as well with maxi dresses and capris as they do with jeans and leggings can be a challenge. Source a comfortable and high-quality option that can be easily cleaned, to maintain the pristine white look that beautifully accents every wardrobe combination. We suggest our own white lace-up Weekender, white lace Occasion, or to add a bit of glamour, our new white and metallic silver slip-on Sophisticate, as Cocktail Sneakers mesh as well with maxi dresses and capris as with jeans or leggings.
Making an investment in foundational and timeless wardrobe pieces will ensure you look and feel your best. It can be challenging to resist new trends of the season an occasional splurge to add something fresh that coordinates well with existing pieces, is certainly OK, too. Clothing on its own isn’t what delivers a feeling of sophistication or elegance. It is the comfort you have in what you put on your body: clothing, accessories, and footwear, and how you feel in the combination of them.