Wardrobe staples lay the foundation for an easy, stylish set of outfits that carries you from daytime to night, from the office to cocktails or a casual night out with friends.
Like a solid-colored or neutral sofa that gets dressed up with funky pillows and a patterned blanket, wardrobe staples work the same way. You can wear basic, high-quality neutrals in classic styles and layer on statement pieces, trend-conscious patterns, and fun accessories.
The following eight wardrobe staples make it easy to build a variety of outfits and will be the workhorses of your wardrobe for years to come.
1. Dark-Wash Denim Jeans
Denim jeans never go out of style, especially dark wash that looks just as good with a leather moto jacket for a night outfit as it does with a fitted blazer and crisp collared blouse for office business casual. Choose the style and cut of jeans that flatter your figure and dress them up or down.
2. Crisp White Top
A crisp, white button-up blouse lends a chic dressy look that works with a pencil skirt as easily as it does with a pair of jeans. A white top can anchor statement or trendy wardrobe pieces, like colored denim and printed shorts. It also looks great under cardigan sweaters, denim jackets or blazers. Clothing lines such as zac and rachel clothing carry a variety of crisp, white blouses to flatter every figure, whether you prefer pockets, an untucked hem, or a fitted look.
3. Cropped Tweed Jacket
The cropped jacket was initially worn by Coco Chanel and has become a fashion mainstay. The fabrics and details may vary, but the classic shape remains the same. This jacket style looks as great with denim as with black wool dress pants for the office or a pencil skirt and tee for lunch with the girls. Choose a traditional tweed or solid-colored fabric so that you can pair this jacket with anything in your wardrobe.
4. Basic Black Pumps
A good quality, mid-heel black pump can take your outfit from day to night without a second thought. Choose styles with a pointed toe, which elongates your legs and lends any outfit a classic, polished vibe. Pointed-toe black pumps look especially great with straight-leg or skinny denim jeans.
5. Long-Sleeved Black Tee Shirt
The key to wearing a black tee as a sophisticated layering piece lies in the fit. Choose a style that fits well in the shoulder area and a length that flatters your figure. A v-neck or scoop-neck style is flattering on everyone, and you can layer this piece under a casual jacket, blazer, cardigan, or even a dress. Wear the tee alone with a statement necklace and a wrap for instant evening elegance.
6. Black Pants
If you buy a pair of black pants in an all-season fabric such as viscose or tropical wool, it guarantees that you can rely on this piece year-round. Pair your black pants with a chunky, oversized sweater or a sleek, black turtleneck. Wear a basic white tee and add a splash of color with a patterned cardigan or jacket. Black pants always look sophisticated while letting the other pieces of your outfit shine.
7. Ballet Flats
Ballet flats have been a wardrobe staple for decades, and you can splurge on a pair of Chanel ballet flats or find a reasonably priced pair that goes with everything. Choose a neutral color, black, or red (which is the new black).
Wear them with straight-leg or skinny jeans, a pencil skirt, or shorts. These versatile shoes are easy on your feet and come in versions that fold up for easy packing and travel options. Ballet flats are another staple item that lends sophistication to your look while being practical. Pretty much any outfit you wear sneakers with gains some polish with ballet flats.
8. Wrap Dress
This wardrobe essential is great because it looks universally good on any figure. Dress it up with a pair of pumps for a party or put on a pair of sneakers for a trendy look for your next brunch outing.
Wrap dresses come in a variety of prints and solid fabrics. They look great layered with stylish pieces such as a cardigan, cropped jacket, or blazer.
Looking great doesn’t have to be hard when you have some wardrobe staples to rely on. Mix and match your favorite staples, or use them as the basis of a capsule wardrobe. If you want to invest money into quality wardrobe pieces, these staples make a great place to start.