Fashion stylists and designers often talk about wardrobe foundations, the key pieces that every woman needs to have every occasion covered.
When I see a list in a magazine or on social media, I always have a quick skim, to see if there is a new addition that I may have missed, like an orange catsuit, or silver platform rainboots.
But no, the classics seem to have pretty much remained the classics, so it’s worth just doing a rundown of the top 12 so we know we are on the right path.
Top 12 wardrobe staples
1. A tailored blazer
A tailored blazer in black, navy, or in a neutral like sand or khaki, a smart blazer will pull any outfit together and can even be put on over workout gear. Current styles are a little oversized and boxy, for ease of movement. I am currently eyeing off one in teal blue velvet for some added drama.
2. High-waisted jeans
High-waisted seems to the defining trend for 2021, either straight legged, or loose fit. Warning – high waist and loose fit is heading into mom jeans, so probably better left to the young. High-waisted and straight is great look, with a heel and a jacket, at any age.
3. A white shirt
White shirt. You can’t have too many. Oversized man’s style is a good option, looks great over blue jeans and black leggings.
Aha, the legging. They are such a modern, comfortable, versatile option for any age. Wear them with a big white shirt, or with a T-shirt and a longer-line blazer.
5. A trench coat
The Trench. A neat khaki trench is a no-brainer, a bit of French girl cool with a utilitarian edge. And pockets!
6. A soft knit
A roomy black, grey or camel sweater is always appropriate, night and day. Short-sleeve sweaters are also a great trans-seasonal piece, very chic.
7. A well-cut suit
A well-cut suit is another timeless solution piece. Black is an obvious option and will double as a tuxedo for more formal events, if you add jewels and heels. White or crème is also a gorgeous choice if you can bear the dry cleaning. The jacket and pants can also be worn separately of course to make more outfit options; a cream jacket with jeans is a smart look for lunch or dinner dates.
8. A dress
Choose any style that suits your figure type. It might be a silky slip dress (a sweater, cardigan or trench can be worn with it) A-line, a sack dress with puffy sleeves, a sheath, a button-through shirtwaister, a tunic. I bought a new one this week, mid length, long voluminous sleeves, which are edged with a band of striking yellow fluoro trim to add interest. And with, joy of joy, pockets.
9. A t-shirt
T-shirt. A silky black T-shirt will work back with everything, a key wardrobe essential
10. A mid-length skirt
Current styles are a wrapped and line, but again, go with the cut that suits your body shape. I am currently mad about bias-cut slip skirts with elastic waists – I have them in metallic silver, navy silk and pink sequins. I love them worn casually with the cotton shirt and a sneaker.
11. A hoodie
I feel like this is a newish foundation piece, but since COVID, lounge wear and sportswear feel like they are here to stay. Make it cashmere for ultimate in casual luxe.
12. A comfy cardigan
The oversized cardigan. Chunky, ribbed or textured, the grandpa cardigan is key to easy weekend style.
There’s your basic perfect 12. Next week we will add some insanity. I need to discuss my new lime green patio pants.