All About That Base Wardrobe

We define style as the particular way or manner in which we choose to do something, a methodology or a process. Style can also be defined as approved fashion, elegance and even smartness. A favorite part of my job is to help clients find a style that best reflects their personality taking into consideration many factors that influence their lifestyle. Such factors include what they do and where they work, age, height, weight, body type, medical conditions and even the weather to name a few. Generally, I find that there is often a lack of confidence in wearing a specific item and the fear that others might not like your choices as well.

I advise most of my clients who want to find or enhance their current style to start from scratch. Begin by assessing what you currently have in your closet. Often times I find that the more items we have, the more we struggle with finding the right thing to wear on a particular day or occasion. The key is to have a few items in different categories of high quality that can be paired with others and serve multiple purposes. I find that investing in key pieces helps us to streamline our wardrobes and it prevents us from having to spend too much time in front of the mirror trying to decide whether something looks good or not.

Here's some general recommendations for creating your own base wardrobe across 6 different categories - having these items in your wardrobe will make it a lot easier to get dressed in the morning.

1. Outerwear

  • A black tailored jacket
  • A blazer
  • A white or beige jacket for the warmer seasons
  • 1 Down jacket or winter coat
  • 1 Wool coat
  • 1 Spring Jacket/Coat

2.  Dresses

  • 2 black dresses
  • 1 cocktail dress (not black)
  • 2 day time dresses

3. Tops

  • A white button-down shirt, preferably one that hits at the hips, in other words, avoid a button-down shirt that fits right at the belly button. And while they can be fitted, a tight button-down top can create that awful gaping at the chest. If you see such gaping just trying it on at the store, size up or try a different designer/fabric.
  • 2 silk blouses (at least). Depending on your skin tone, one can be cream or white and black or navy blue.
  • Depending on fabric, length and style, sweaters can be worn as tops. So I recommend having several Sweaters in various lengths, colors, styles and & fabrics. They can also be worn as outerwear if you live in a warmer climate.
  • Several cotton tops in varying colors and length (chose according to skin complexion, body type and item being worn at the bottom, for instance, a short top should be worn with a long skirt, and a long top with fitted pants/leggings)

4. Bottoms

  • 2 pairs of leggings. They must be of a thick material preventing any sight of your skin and your underwear. Leggings should be paired with a long silk blouse, tunic and a long sweater or a Jacket. It’s completely ok if the shirt/top is longer than the sweater or Jacket.
  • 1 pair of dark jeans
  • 1 pair of white jeans
  • 2 pencil skirts
  • 2 pairs of pants (not leggings or jeans). Length and color must be selected carefully based on height, size & shoes to be worn with them

5. Shoes

  • 1 pair of black pumps
  • 1 pair of booties
  • 2 pair of knee high boots
  • 1 winter boots
  • 1 pair of flats
  • 2 pairs of Low heels (Black & Skin tone)
  • Rain boots

6. Accessories

  • 1 big hand bag ( black or brown)
  • 1 colorful bag ( blue, red, yellow)
  • 1 clutch
  • 2 statements necklaces
  • Several scarves