Tuesday, January 29

fashion: must-haves for classic style

In high school, I once described my personal fashion sense as "gypsy cowgirl ballerina."  That's right, I said in high school, not when I was three.  These days, I'm trying to streamline my wardrobe a bit.  My style these days is best described as "classic."  Maybe I'm just getting older, but I'm starting to value a good fit over a trendy look, and my style icons are women like Audrey Hepburn, Michelle Obama, and the Middleton sisters- women who exude class and always look put together.

My Must-Have Items for Classic Style:

1.  Shells - Something fancier than a t-shirt to wear alone in warm weather and under a cardigan in cool weather, I like silky shells in solid colors, with classic patterns like polka dots, stripes, and florals, and with great details like bows and ruffles.

2.  Breton tops - I love French style and a striped sailor top is its simplest iteration.

Michelle Obama via Nitrolicious

3.  Cardigans - My favorites are Target's Mossimo line - they are affordable, available in a wide range of colors, and hold up in the washing machine.

Pippa Middleton via Bellemel

4.  Pencil skirts - My fashion "resolution" for this school year was to wear skirts to work more often.  My favorites are pencil skirts because they add instant polish to a typical shell-and-cardigan outfit.  Old Navy offers jersey versions that would be nice for business casual days; I've found some nice tweed pencil skirts for winter at Goodwill.

5. Black dress - The perfect black dress can be worn with bare legs in warm weather and with colored tights in the winter, and can act like a skirt for work under a shell or cardigan.  I think that a black dress with peplums like this one from J. Crew would be the ideal LBD for 2013.

6.  Dark wash jeans - The ideal pair of jeans for me can go from casual Friday at work to a night out with friends, so a trouser or slim cut is the best choice.  

7.  Colored jeans - They're a trend right now, but I don't think colored jeans are ever going to go away completely.  They're fun, available everywhere, and can be styled in so many different ways.

8.  Ballet flats - My favorite shoes go with everything and comfortable versions can be found at Target and Payless.  I have them in black, brown, leopard, and metallic silver.

Pippa Middleton via MSN Canada Lifestyle

9.  Riding boots - A polished pair of boots have become a must-have item in recent years.  I still haven't found the perfect pair, but I'm loving the two-tone versions I've seen on Piperlime's website.

Audrey Hepburn via GlamAmor

10.  Tortoiseshell sunglasses - if sunglasses are the right shape for your face, they never go out of style, and tortoiseshell complements every outfit.  I wear sunglasses year-round for driving, so I've invested in prescription lenses and Anne Klein frames.

More resources for building a wardrobe with classic essentials:
How do you describe your personal style?  What items would you add to this list of classic must-haves?

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