Back to Basics: Wardrobe Edition

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Happy September!  Even though it's still warm outside, summer is drawing to a close and inside I'm screaming, “Noooo!!!”  I can tell the days are getting shorter & shorter and as I'm seeing kids go back to school, it's a real reminder that autumn will be here in no time.

I shared in my last blog post that right now, half of my wardrobe resides in Virginia and the rest of my wardrobe is here in Los Angeles.  As I scan through my L.A. closet, I see that I'm really missing some of my core wardrobe pieces.  Now I have to decide whether I should just replace the items I don't have at the moment (translation: shopping trip!) or wait a few weeks until I go back to VA and then bring some of my favorite pieces back with me.

So as I think about my core wardrobe pieces (or lack thereof in my L.A. closet) and the changing seasons, Back to School, etc., I thought this would be a great time to take you Back to Basics with your wardrobe.  That's right!  For you, I'm going to break down the key, core pieces that you should always have in your wardrobe.  You can never go wrong with pulling outfits together from these wardrobe items:

Blouses & Dress Shirts – Regardless of your personal style, you will always need a nice looking blouse or dress shirt to wear for work or special occasions.  I'm more a dress shirt gal myself – my favorite ones come from Brooks Brothers!

T-Shirts – This is a no-brainer as we all need to wear tee-shirts from time to time!  I actually prefer fitted tees because you can easily wear them under a collared shirt for a cutesy casual look and it's also less bulky to wear under light jackets.  Another item I'd like to throw in this category is tank tops.  These are great for lounging around the house and are great for layer under tops for a bit more warmth.

Cardigan – Each woman needs a solid colored cardigan!  Cardigans are so versatile – it can be a classic, finishing touch when paired with a nice blouse and skirts/pants; or, it can be a nice lightweight alternative to a jacket when you're dressed more casually.

Pencil Skirt – No wardrobe is complete without a pencil skirt! Pencil skirts are classic, have clean lines and very flattering on most body types!

Classic Suit – Let's face it ladies – you need to have at least one high quality, tailored suit in your arsenal of key pieces!  A dark colored suit in black or navy is always a winner because of it's versatility.  Even if you happen to work in a business casual environment, you should always have a power suit on the ready for any client-facing meetings, interviews, presentations, or conferences.

Dress Pants – A dressy pair of well-fitted pants is also a must have.  Coupled with a pretty blouse, shirt, cardigan or sweater, a nice pair of pants always sets the tone for sophistication and style.

Jeans – I don't know one person that doesn't own a pair of jeans.  In fact with so many types of jeans to choose from (such as skinny, bootleg, and boyfriend), you probably will have at least four to six pairs!  Well-fitted jeans with a pair of pumps or sandals is such a sexy, feminine look.

Jacket – A lightweight jacket is a staple in your wardrobe because it can be worn three out of the four seasons year after year.  You can rock a short moto, leather, or blazer jacket to keep you comfortable in the cooler months.  If you're like me, you carry one around in summer just in case you go into a well air-conditioned space – I am always cold!

Statement Coat – This is probably my most favorite key items!!  If you're looking for a way to show others that you are a BOSS, do it with a bold statement coat.  Bold doesn't necessarily mean color, but also in structure, cut, and style.  Take a look at my recent blog post on Statement Coats and peruse some of my favorites from the Fall 2015 collection.

Statement Dress – The one-piece statement dress is what you go to when you want to exude sophistication and confidence.  This dress can be worn to work, business meetings, or even special occasions.  What immediately comes to mind are dresses from Victoria Beckham's line – love it!!

LBD – Little Black Dresses, or LBDs, are a woman's tool to transform into a sexy, fun look while showing some legs and a bit of skin.  LBD's don't have to be flashy though – in fact, a lot of them are understated which is a good thing.  Either way around, you literally have dozens and dozes of options when selecting a dress that's right for you.  TIP: In recent years, I've had some real winners from White House Black Market.

Evening Gown – For those more formal occasions (a la Black Tie events), you need to have lovely evening gown in your closet arsenal.  Like the LBDs, there are so many varieties to choose from as well as colors and fabrics!  You can get some nice Ready-To-Wear gowns from places like Nordstrom Rack – I've gotten a few lovely numbers from Nordies over the years!

Black Leather Pumps – This is a Holy Grail shoe, for real.  You can rock your black pumps with your jeans, dressy pants, pencil skirt, the list goes on and on…see how well it vibes with your other core pieces? 😉  And if you take good care of your shoes by getting them resoled and reheeled every so often, you will get many years out of them.  Invest in a good pair of leather pumps and you will never regret it.

Ballet Flats – OMG, I've probably worn these most of any other shoe these past few months! Ballet flats are so comfortable and easy to get in & out of.  When you're running errands around town but still want to look cute, these shoes are the way to go.

Accessories – Okay, so you've got my top recommendations for key wardrobe pieces, now what?  You can style them up with fun accessories such as scarves, handbags, sunglasses, statement necklaces and rings, hats, gloves, and belts.  You can really let your personality and style shine through these types of accessories so have fun with it!

Here's a quick collage highlighting examples of each core piece I've covered in this post…

Back+to+Basics Back to Basics – Key Wardrobe Pieces

So that wraps up my Top Picks for your Back to Basics Wardrobe.  Ready to go shopping? Is there anything on your personal must-have list that I haven't mentioned?  If so, definitely share with us by commenting below!

Stylishly Yours,

Roxanne Carne

Roxanne Carne is a recognized Personal Stylist & Personal Shopper styling women in Dallas, TX and virtually!  Visit to discover how she can help you define your style!

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Roxanne CarneKey Wardrobe Pieces, Roxie's Favorite Things2 Comments

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