According to research done by California Closets, the average person only wears 20% of the clothes they buy.
Let that sink in for a minute. We’re wasting money on more than three-quarters of our wardrobe for whatever reason. What seemed to fit great in the dressing room is now something that is too uncomfortable or too “meh”.
Fortunately, there is a way to prevent buyer’s remorse and “IHaveNothingtoWearitis.” It’s to stop spending money on trends that will be obsolete in a month and instead invest in some high-quality closet staples that never go out of style.
Here are ten classic basics that every woman’s wardrobe should have that you can wear in infinite ways and never get bored of.
1. Dark Jeans
Jeans in a deep indigo hue are much dressier and versatile than their faded, ripped, and torn denim cousins. A well-fitting pair of dark jeans looks great in the office, on a date, or weekend excursions.
Dress them up with a blouse, blazer, or tweed jacket or dress them down with a fun Star Wars t-shirt. Dark denim matches any kind of top and accessories.
You may need to invest up to $100 for a high-quality pair or two that will last you a few years, but it’s worth it.
2. White Blouse
It doesn’t matter if you prefer a stiff cotton cuffed number or something a little more flouncy. The white blouse has been mixed and matched with a variety of wardrobe pieces since the 1950s.
It goes with jeans, pants, skirts, and looks professional under a cardigan. Even Sharon Stone once famously wore a white GAP shirt to the Oscars with a floor length Vera Wang skirt.
There’s a white shirt for everyone out there, whether you prefer a longer one that you can wear over leggings or shorter so it can be tucked in. Find a comfortable and flattering one so you’ll enjoy it over and over.
3. Red Shoes
A comfortable pair of red shoes add an unexpected pop of color to any ensemble, especially neutral colored ones. It doesn’t matter if you prefer flats, stilettos, or even cowboy boots as long as you’re comfortable wearing them.
For some added pow, try a pair in shiny patent leather.
4. Little Black Dress
It’s the one fashion item that no woman should go without, as few pieces are as versatile as a little black dress. It’s also flattering on all body shapes and sizes.
A little black dress can be matched with simple jewelry and pumps for job interviews and client meetings. For a cocktail event, spruce up the jewelry or pair with a colorful wrap or silky shrug.
5. Belt Bag
While few things beat a classic handbag, sometimes you want to be a little more hands-free and have the weight literally taken off your shoulders. Belt bags do this for you and provide a safe place to store your smartphone, keys, and other necessities while you’re on the go.
They come in a variety of colors, styles, and sizes to suit any outfit. You can wear them shopping, during outings with friends, and on walks.
6. Cozy Cardigan
For those chilly autumn days or when you’ve discovered the office A/C is higher than you expected, a flattering cardigan is a must.
One that covers your rear looks nice with leggings, while slimmer ones can be worn with a belt to accentuate your waist.
We’ve said it before here on this site, but a scarf is one of the most versatile accessoriesyou can have in your closet. The great thing about scarves is they’re an affordable way to bring some color or an interesting pattern to your outfit and can pull a look together.
Scarves come in all kinds of styles and materials. There’s the classic silky scarf that you can drape over a top or around your shoulders, or the woolen knitted kind that adds extra warmth on a chilly day.
And if you’re the crafty kind, you can make one yourself.
Whether you prefer a black one like the kind you see on job interviews or a colorful tweed number, a blazer is something you’ll pull out of your closet year after year.
There’s just something very professional about a dark-colored blazer at work, or a preppy pastel seersucker one for those warm spring days. You don’t see too many women wearing one, which will definitely make your style sense stick out in a good way.
9. Trench or Pea Coat
These are two timeless coat styles that have never gone out of fashion. Both are very chic, very European, and will make you feel instantly like a grown-up.
Trench coats have come a long way since the beige one worn by Inspector Clouseau in the Pink Panther movies. You can get them in red, yellow, blue, black, or any other color.
The same goes for the pea coat; if the classic navy hue isn’t your thing, shop around for a fun fuschia or bright green one.
Actually, any well-made coat, whether for spring, fall, or winter, should always have a home in your closet. Investing in a classic coat will help you stay warm and dry season after season.
Everyone should own a quality pair of UV protected shades. Resist the urge to buy the cheap drugstore kind and invest in a designer pair that will hold up for several years. Many of these also come with their own storage case to protect them against scratches and smudges.
Try to aim for a style that flatters the shape of your face and provides the right amount of tint so that you’ll be sure to get plenty of wear out of them.