Do you ever go into your closet and think, “I have nothing to wear”? Yet, you’re staring at rows of clothing, some falling off of the hangers. Been there. And then after you have stood there for about three minutes, you end up choosing the same blouse or tee that you have worn the past few weeks? Been there too. So why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we fill our closets with clothes we never end up wearing? Generally speaking, it’s because we don’t have the right essentials to build an outfit with, otherwise, we haven’t started a capsule collection.
A wardrobe capsule is basically a group of timeless, quality made pieces that fit perfectly and can transition through a few seasons. These are the items you will wear consistently and spend a little bit more of your paycheck on. It doesn’t mean that you can’t go out and buy that super trendy top—I completely encourage that; it just shouldn’t be your foundation. Take a few moments and do a quick closet edit. Make sure you already have these items and if not, I have linked my picks you can add to your list for your next shopping trip.
They are sold everywhere, and for good reason. The black leather moto jacket will always be in style, and you can wear it with dresses, jeans, sweats, etc., it’s worth the splurge for genuine leather. I love this one by BB Dakota because of how the lines are still feminine but the details are a little edgy. Plus, it comes in a bone color, which is also a great neutral if you want something softer than the black.
The Peep-Toe Bootie
Booties work across all seasons, and I love to wear mine with a dress or a wide-leg pant. If you go with a nude or tan bootie, like these by Marc Fisher, it will give your legs the illusion of looking longer and leaner—yes please!
The Easy Pullover
A fine-gauge knit sweater, like this one by Vince, can be worn over a tank dress, with a skirt half tucked or with shorts for cooler nights. It’s also perfect for traveling because it’s lightweight and can be easily rolled up in a weekender or tote.
The High-Waisted Pant
The nice thing about a high-waisted pant is you have options—if you want to show off your waistline you can, or you can conceal it with a longer top. A skinny leg will keep your look sleek and sophisticated, which is why I love these leather-trimmed pants by Club Monaco.
For me, jeans are like jewelry, they are personal. I can’t stress enough that when you find that perfect pair that just fits you in all the right ways, buy them in every color. We have seen a lot of different cuts and styles of jeans the past few seasons, so it can get overwhelming. I would recommend a cigarette jean like these by AG, because they are similar to a skinny jean but don’t have quite as much elastic and there isn’t a tapered leg. They are just a functional, classic jean to own (AG Jeans are my go to for denim and they are worth every penny).
The Button Up
Button-up shirts are great to leave open over a tank, tied in a knot over a dress or with a fun printed skirt, or keep it all business with a trouser pant. There are so many varieties; I would recommend you have at least one that is a cotton blend, like this white version from J.Crew, Lehigh Valley Mall, Allentown, and one that is more of a feminine material, such as silk.
You can never have too many; I would stock up on at least three—I have four that are on constant rotation in black, grey, nude and white. If I want an easy evening look, I will wear a relaxed fit tee, like this grey one from Nordstrom Rack, Allentown, a dark skinny jean and a statement heel that is either embellished or metallic.
A-line, skater or fit and flare dresses are flattering on pretty much any shape. They are cut in a little bit at the waist and then slightly flare out. Choose one that is sleeveless so you could wear it in the summer or during the cooler months with a jacket, such as this cut out skater dress from Ted Baker.
About the Author
Carrie Mehl is a fashion and style specialist. Originally going to school for fashion, Carrie has always had a deep appreciation for design and style in which she incorporates into her daily life.
She has had an extensive career in marketing management, focusing specifically on creative strategy, branding and digital. Carrie has applied her vision and expertise in a variety of industries from finance to media. Within all of her roles, she has been fortunate enough to sharpen her knowledge in many areas such as styling, creative direction and content development. She has led projects for national companies, from wardrobe styling to designing a 20,000+ square-foot wellness center.
Her goal is to provide styling tips for everyone, discuss the application of designer trends and marry the world of fashion into functional lifestyle.