Do you want to know the best wardrobe staples for women? These pieces are the lifeblood of every stylish woman’s closet.
Wardrobe staples are the most versatile items in our closet. We wear them often. They’re failsafe. And, they’re essential to styling an outfit in most cases.
In this post, I break down the most important wardrobe staples every woman should own. If you’re looking to stock up or refresh a beloved item, you’ve come to the right place.
This post is all about the best wardrobe staples.
Best Wardrobe Staples
1. Collared Shirt
A collared shirt is one of those wardrobe staples you should never be without. Whether styled over a fitted turtleneck or worn alone in all its glory, this item works any time of the year. Collared shirts pair with any type of bottom or even as a beach cover-up when oversized. It’s a chic piece that instantly adds class to an outfit without looking like you’re trying too hard.
Collared shirts come in all colors and styles, but if you favor white, take extra care with these tips (or budget for replacements).
This oversized button-down (below) has feminine Dolman sleeves and a sharp collar for a Parisian-chic vibe. Polished and comfortable. The shirt also comes in white.
2. Jeans Are Key Capsule Wardrobe Essentials
Every woman needs a pair of jeans for casual days at home or out and about. This wardrobe staple should be stylish, fit well, and be comfortable enough so that you don’t mind wearing them on repeat. Most people choose blue denim, but I say go with the wash and style that pairs best with your closet (and your personality). In this case, you may choose white, ivory, or black.
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Jeans should be washed inside out to help preserve the color. Avoid washing denim after every wear unless soiled to keep your jeans in better shape.
- AGOLDE Cherie High Rise Straight – click here – Slimming jeans in a vintage wash, super cute.
- Everlane The ’90s Cheeky Jean – click here – Rigid, straight-leg jeans with butt-hugging technology (LOL, but seriously, YES) with the choice of three, shorter hems.
3. A Long Cardigan
I’m not sure where some of us would be without the wardrobe hero known as the cardigan. Long cardigans are so essential because their length provides warmth. Wear them over a shirt and leggings and run out the door without an afterthought. Cozy up on the sofa or around a bonfire with these comfy wardrobe staples. The most versatile color choices will be your neutrals: black, gray, navy, beige, camel, ivory, and white.
I love my gray cardigan from Modern Citizen. Eight months out of the year I live in this…heck, I’m wearing it now!
A longline wool cardigan, like the one below, is sleek and looks great belted with leggings or skinny jeans!
This similar long cardigan, by Micas, looks so soft and cozy that I’d probably sleep in it!
4. Wardrobe Staples For Women: The Perfect Pair Of Trousers
Whether you call them trousers, slacks, or pants, these wardrobe staples are paramount to styling outfits. They’re not just for the office either. Trousers are growing in popularity as everyday pants for casual outings, streetwear, and traveling on an airplane. And, they’re actually more comfortable to wear than jeans (and no one’s talking about it).
Choose a neutral pair that’s neither skin-tight nor too loose for the most versatility to dress up or down.
Try Theory’s Demitria Pants in Good Wool. They have a mid-rise fit with pressed center creases for an elongating effect.
Try a similar bootcut pant in a cropped style from NA-KD, Bootcut Jersey Suit Pants.
5. A Classic Blazer
It’d be a major faux pas if a blazer wasn’t included in this list of wardrobe staples. A blazer can be dressed up or down, while a denim jacket keeps things casual and a leather jacket keeps things edgy. This list is all about versatility.
I’m finding more ways to add a black blazer into the mix of an everyday outfit. Most recently with a pair of dark-green velvet joggers and a black fitted turtleneck, with black boots. I felt more put-together shopping at the grocery store that night than if I had worn a hoodie.
The Madewell Drapewell Caldwell Double Breasted Blazer is for the ladies looking for a jacket that drapes nicely over the rest of their look. It’s not too structured, so you can dress it up or down just right.
The Borrem Blazer from Club Monaco is your timelessly sleek blazer that definitely elevates any look.
How about getting a bespoke blazer that fits you perfectly? This company will do just that and you’ll have a high-quality blazer for life (at a steal, IMO). Click here to learn more.
I also like the sleek look of this buttonless blazer from H&M. Perfect for belting!
6. Classic Wardrobe Essentials: The ShirtDress
We began with the collared shirt and now we’re onto the shirtdress. This adaptable piece can be worn as a day dress to work (and wherever) and then dressed up with nice shoes and accessories for happy hour or dinner. Add a base layer and a cardigan in the fall or winter, and roll up the sleeves in the summer. Belt it, add a scarf, or wear it with white sneakers on a walking tour in Europe.
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I personally wouldn’t mind having a shirtdress in every color after writing this up. I have a similar style to the one below and I love it with a chunky leather waist belt!
- rag & bone Diana Long Sleeve Cotton Poplin Shirt Dress – click here – From the length to the cut, to the moody color, this dress is perfection!
- Lily Silk Sand-washed Pocket Trench Dress – click here – Safari meets elegance; so pretty!
- Banana Republic Utility Maxi Shirt Dress – click here – I love the versatility of this dress in all seasons–layer a turtleneck, knit tights, and tall boots in cooler months!
7. Mid-Calf Boots
Boots are one of the best wardrobe staples if you live in a wet or chilly climate zone. If not, they are still a far more stylish choice than sneakers. A mid-calf boot is the most versatile to wear with pants, long skirts, and long dresses. You don’t even need a heel to look chic these days as brands are catering to the fact that more people want to wear boots whenever and wherever.
Black or brown are your best choices for wardrobe staples but branch out if you’ve already covered that base.
These solid chunky boots (below) aren’t too casual, but offer maximum comfort!
- Nisolo Everyday Chelsea Boot – click here – Classic Chelsea boots that blend nicely into a capsule wardrobe!
- Stuart Weitzman Avenue 75 Block Bootie – click here – Very chic pointy-toe boots with a block heel – great for the office or out and about!
8. Flats Are Timeless Wardrobe Staples
Flats are the perfect shoes in warmer weather and mild climates. These wardrobe staples elevate any casual outfit and of course, go with dressy looks when you need to pass on those heels. Flats also add a classy vibe to summer dresses, skirts, and cropped jeans (when everyone else is in sandals).
Last summer and fall I made a conscious effort to wear my flats as often as I could (they were collecting dust always being passed over for sandals). I was surprised at how many additional looks I was able to create with these versatile shoes and I remembered how much I loved these shoes in the first place.
Pro-Tip: Do your research when deciding to purchase a pair of flats. Measure your feet before choosing a size and consider width too. Test out your flats at home before wearing them out to ensure they don’t need any tweaks. I usually need to put pads around the back parts to avoid blisters, so I expect that and prepare accordingly.
In my opinion, these loafers (below) fall into the “flats” category and this cute style can be worn year-round.
- Semwiss Women’s Ballet Flats Comfortable Casual Dressy Shoes – click here – Cute woven pointy-toe flats that are highly rated to be comfy!
- M.GEMI The Danza – click here – The sweetest pair of ballet flats with a square toe and a hidden wedge!
A nice pair of leather or vegan leather sandals is the last shoe in this list of wardrobe staples. Sandals allow your feet to breathe in the warm weather and the leather material adds style. The best color choices are black or brown, depending on your preference and closet. Cognac is a beautiful shade of brown for summertime.
Remember, you can wear brown sandals with black outfits! I do it all summer.
- Emmanuela Leather Cross Strap Platform Sandals – click here – These look so comfortable and elegant for a casual style!
10. Capsule Wardrobe Staples: Leather Hip Belt
What is the one accessory you can add to most outfits to instantly look more stylish? A belt. The belt is like a cherry on top of an ice cream sundae–it just ties everything together. Elevate a pair of jeans or enhance your figure with a stylish waist belt.
Don’t be afraid to tie your hip belts around the waist, especially if they’re skinny or flexible. The excess strap can be folded under the belted portion so it’s out of the way. That’s one of my favorite style hacks.
- AYR The Essential Belt – click here – No nonsense leather belt (seriously no holes!) that comes in black or cognac
- Lulu’s Double Down Black and Gold Double Buckle Belt – click here – The gold double buckle adds a little something extra to a standard vegan leather belt!
Sunglasses are the epitome of cool and effortlessly make up the last of the closet essentials on this list. While trendy sunglasses come and go, these wardrobe staples are timeless and match any outfit or setting. If you don’t have a habit of losing sunglasses, this would be the pair you invest money in.
I’ve had a pair of sunglasses from Freyrs for years and plan to wear them many more. They were under $60, but the quality is at par (or better in some instances) with designer shades I’ve owned in the past.
- Freyrs Bon Chic – Oversized square sunglasses with bright tortoiseshell frames; very chic
- Ray-Ban Classic Polarized Aviator Sunglasses – I’ve owned these and agree, they’re a classic. What else to say?
- Z Supply Bright Eyed Sunglasses – Dark cat eye sunglasses for an upscale retro look
Which of these wardrobe staples can you not live without? Comment below!
This post was all about wardrobe staples
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