Friday, June 7, 2013

Seven Wardrobe Workhorses

The other day, Lucky ran a piece with their recommendations for nine wardrobe workhorses.  That got me to thinking about the workhorses in my closet and what I’d recommend.  Turns out that I don’t have nine, I have seven, but like the Seven Samurai, they get the job done.

1 – A Striped Top

Summer Stripes
Clockwise from top: J. Crew via Net-a-Porter, J.Crew, Madewell & Pim & Larkin via Piperlime

I love striped tops.  I have several and I wear all of them all of the time.  Striped tops are great because they manage to be classic without being dated.  They also look good in every color on every build.  And they’re very versatile; they can go dressy or casual and they play well both with solids and other prints.   Whether the stripes are horizontal, vertical or diagonal, wide or thin, variegated or uniform, a striped top is a must-have.

2 – Dark Pants

L to R: Ann Taylor, Vince Camuto and Gap

You all know that I love my colorful pants.  And my printed pants.  And my colorfully printed pants.  But, the fact of the matter is that I reach for my dark wash skinny jeans more than any other pair of pants, except for maybe black leggings.  Fun pants are, yes, fun, but dark pants are more versatile and are universally flattering.

3 – A Solid Dress

L to R: eShakti, Banana Republic & Old Navy

I am a printed dress junkie, but even I have to admit that they can be a bit difficult to style at times.  A solid dress, however, is so very, very easy.  They’re easy to accessorize and with the right accessories, easy to take from night to day.  So, whether you choose the always classic little black dress, an au courant little white dress or a little colored dress, a solid dress will serve you well.

4 – A Blazer

L to R: Gap, Aqua Girls via Bloomingdales & Target

I have not always been on Team Blazer.  I was a card-carrying member of the Culver City Cardigans (not a real thing) for years because I could never find a blazer that worked with my broad shoulders.  But, little by little I’ve built up my blazer wardrobe and I don’t regret it.  Yes cardigans are comfortable, but blazers can be just as comfortable and have the added bonus of looking a little sharper.  And blazers aren’t all stuffy and staid; you don’t have to get a black blazer if you think it’s too boring.  A white one is equally versatile and printed and colored blazers are a great choice; they'll work well with those solid dresses.

5 – A Printed Piece

L to R: Old Navy, Sir Alistair Rai via Piperlime & Gap

Some people are not comfortable wearing prints.  Even though I’m not one of those people, I understand it.  Prints can be a little too “hey, look at me!” for some people’s tastes.  I get it.  I do.  But, I still recommend a printed piece as a wardrobe workhorse.  It doesn’t have to be a big piece either; a printed shoe is always fun. And scarves are easy ways to incorporate a print into your look.  Or, maybe a printed shell or a belt.  Choose the piece you like and use it to add some oomph to your solid basics or even wear it with your striped top.

6 – A Colored Piece

Color My World
Tinley Road studs, Alexis Bittar bangles, Nordstrom scarf, Kate Spade "Della" sunglasses, Gap belt, Nine West "Ambitious" pumps, Mar Y Sol "Opal" clutch and Tinley Road bangle

Just as some people aren’t comfortable in prints, I know that some people are also not comfortable in color.  And, again, I get it.  But I still maintain that color can make you happy as long as you’re wearing a color that, well, makes you happy.  So, find a color you love and buy something in that color.  As with the printed piece, it doesn’t have to be anything major.  That coral dress above isn’t for everyone, even people who like coral.  But, a bit of color in a shoe, a clutch, a belt, a scarf, a ring, anything, can add a little zing to your outfit and a little joy to your life.

7 – Comfortable Shoes

I know this seems like an obvious inclusion on this list, but hear me out.  Everyone should have a pair of comfortable shoes in their closet that are not tennis shoes, not flip flops and not slippers.  Notice I didn’t say a pair of comfortable heels.  No.  I don’t care if you wear heels or flats or something in between, as long as they’re comfortable.  And I do mean comfortable; you should be able to stand, walk and, if need be, run from zombies in these shoes.  And yes, boots are an option. My go-to pair of comfort shoes are my Born Crown riding boots and I’d be lost without them.
So, what about you, Reader Friends?  What are your wardrobe workhorses?

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