With Fashion So Basic, Why Do Without It!

I wonder why there are always 5 must haves or, for that matter, often 10 must haves that people talk of. For me, if I start to count, there are 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7… yes 7 must haves that bring fashion sanity to my closet. And, so they can for you.

1. White Top

Left: Gap Favorite Short-sleeve V-neck T; Right: Banana Republic Oxford Shirt

A white top is a safe bet for the times you are not too sure about what to wear. Go for a basic white tee for that casual, weekend look and pair it with shorts, jeans, khakis, cropped pants, or skirt. A crisp white buttoned down shirt, worn with formal skirt or trousers works pristine for weekdays at office.

2. Blue Jeans

Left to Right: Gap Recycled 1969 Always Skinny Jeans; Gap 1969 Real Straight Jeans; Gap 1969 Perfect Boot Jeans

If there is one item that you have to have, this one is it. If you can buy only one, buy a dark wash denim. It looks great during day and night alike; plus, it can be dressed up and down easily. Wear it with a color block sling bag and flats for a casual look; or dress it up with a statement neck piece and a box clutch.

Depending on your body type, some jeans might be more flattering than the others. For example, go for straight cuts if you want to emulate longer, leaner silhouette; skinny jeans look great on those who are tall and slim; go for flared or the so called boot-cut denims if you have a triangle or hourglass figure.

3. Black Pencil Skirt

Left: Loft Cotton Sateen Pencil Skirt; Right: Loft Pencil Skirt in LOFT Scuba

A well-fitted black pencil skirt has all the essentials that are needed in a universal piece of clothing—the very neutral color black that can be paired with almost anything, the fit that gathers the look together for the wearer, and the flexibility it renders to the coordinating elements, such as tops, shirts, accessories, and so on, to complete the look.

4. Little Black Dress (lovingly called LBD)

H&M Black Dress (fitted bodice, flared from waist to hem; unlined)

There is nothing as versatile as an LBD. It is one piece that can easily transform your look from day to night. Wear it with a string of pearls and nude or black pumps during the day. To dress it up during the night, wear your LBD with makeup and accessories of choice such as statement neckpieces, colored shoes/clutch, or chandelier earrings. There are umpteen choices for an LBD—for length (below the knee, knee-length, just above the knee, more than just above the knee [minidress], or much above the knee [micromini 🙂 – I doubt its versatility though]); for sleeves (with sleeves, without sleeves, offshoulder, cap sleeves, quarter sleeves); and for neck (halter, crowl, boat, U-neck). Pick your choice.

5. Leather Jacket

Left: Bebe River Moto Leather Jacket; Right: Tinley Road Quilted Vegan Leather Jacket

A black leather jacket is a classic element that goes over jeans/shorts with equal ease as it does over a formal skirt or even an LBD at times. Invest in this piece as it is for keeps.

6. Scarf

Left: Marc by Marc Jacobs ‘MBMJ’ Print Scarf; Right: Sonia Rykiel ‘Heart’ Square Silk Scarf

Most of the must have items in this list are either black or white, but this one. Have a printed or color blocked scarf that adds the pop of color to the otherwise neutral shades living in your closet. Scarves not only serve as warm things around your neck on those chilly days; they also add textures and colors that bring the best of what you wear them with.

7. Black Pointed Pumps

Top Left: Loft Pamela Scalloped Mary Jane Pumps; Bottom Left: H&M Leather Pumps;
Right: Christian Louboutin FILO 120 mm

This piece is chic, sophisticated, versatile, and classic; and so my reason for including it in this list.

Happy building the very basic wardrobe!

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