Veronica Beard scuba jacket | Grey hoodie dickey | ATM tee | Frame mini boot jeans | Neutral pump | Initial necklace
Are capsule wardrobes really worth it?
Someone recently asked me if I could help her create a list of must-have pieces to start building a useful, functioning wardrobe. Whenever I’m asked a question like this, it causes me to really think about which items are the most important to own. And, this time of year when we’re all in cleaning, purging mode, there’s always a lot of talk about capsule wardrobes. In theory, I think it’s interesting to pare down our closets. And, I do really believe in my heart of hearts that having less is more — ish! But, could I get dressed for a certain period of time strictly using a capsule wardrobe?
Probably not, and here’s why …
My experience helping women get dressed tells me that we all need the basics. I guess you could say we all need a “loose capsule wardrobe.” I’m thinking pieces like denim, a great basic blazer, a few go-to shoes, a couple of layering pieces, etc. But this can get a little boring, and besides, I’m not good at following rules or adhering to any kind of plan. Also, if you’re like me and LOVE fashion, then there needs to be room to add the fun stuff — regularly!
What’s the trick?
The trick is not too much of the fun stuff, because those pieces are the ones that tend to quickly fade in and out of style. Today’s post answers the question: are capsule wardrobes really worth it? And, it will hopefully give you a few ideas to help you get started building your wardrobes. I’m not sure I can fit it all into one post, but follow along and let’s see! 😌
P.S. This past week I shared “6 Essential Items That Work For Everyone” — and they all happen to be black! It’s my way of saying thank you for subscribing to So Susie. ICYMI, the link was in this past Saturday’s newsletter. Not a subscriber? Click here to join me now — you’ll receive the link in the welcome letter that will arrive in your inbox. We also added a style boards section to make it a little easier to shop the blog. Click to see them all, and click here to see the featured snapshots!
Street style inspo
Images via Pinterest – Emily Ratajkowski and Felicia Akerstrom
First, you must own a few black basics … I’m talking about black coated denim, cool black coats, bags, blouses, etc. They’re the backbone of your wardrobes, and they make all the cool stuff stand out. Below are a few tried and true black basics I think you’ll love. For more ideas on investment pieces, check out my new shop on the website here.
Veronica Beard blazer | Frame coated denim | Nordstrom &79 cardigan | Frame blouse
And, you must have great jeans … I believe in spending a little more in this category and getting at least two you LOVE and wear all the time — ideally a nice medium or light wash blue, and a black (or grayish black). These will cover you for every outfit. They should be updated and fit amazingly well, and of course be hemmed to the right length! Below are favorites I highly recommend — you can also check out the denim shop (hand-picked by me) here. Trust me on this one, these make (or break) every single outfit.
Paige Cindy | Mother Rider | Mother Tomcat | Paige Cindy
Right now, outerwear is key, so have a couple of stylish coats on hand … some good choices include a wrap coat and a sportier style. Think versatility and you’ll have outfits for days!
Theory flowy trench | Michael Michael Kors | Anine Bing | Michael Michael Kors
Apparis | Moncler | Bernardo | Sam Edelman
Build your shoe collection around a handful of basics that work with many outfits … See yesterday’s post for more info, but here are a few I highly reccommend!
Prada | Stuart Weitzman | Gucci | Schutz
Handbags are a key outfit maker, so make sure you have a great black and a neutral bag. This is another piece I suggest investing a little extra. A great Gucci bag like this or a YSL bag like this takes your outfits up several notches.
YSL puffer | YSL shoulder bag | YSL tote | Gucci crossbody
White sneakers always work no matter what time of year it is … plus, they’re comfy and super trendy right now!
Alexander McQueen | Loewe | Paul Green | Veja
Basics style board
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13
Trends style board
1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13
Now for the fun part … add trendy accessories, like this year’s baseball hat, seen on every fashion girl; a scarf in colors you love; and big, bold sunglasses. These pieces elevate everything!
Isabel Marant | Saint Laurent | Ganni | Burberry
Add a fun bag … I love this green Bottega one, and anything white always looks fresh. You’ll be surprised at how much you wear them, and they’ll add so much interest to your outfits!
Gucci | Alexander McQueen | Gucci | Fendi
Mansur Gavriel | Frame | Rebecca Minkoff | Marc Jacobs
Beautiful embellished shoes, or party shoes, are showing no signs of slowing down … and I absolutely love them with denim just as much as I do with a dress! I have my eye on these and these — so gorgeous!
Buy a few trendy pieces … Anything that catches your eye, and that can easily be worked into your wardrobes. For example, a brightly colored top, patterned blazers, cool coats or even a print blouses. They will work nicely with your black investment staples and all your denim. These are the pieces that keep your outfits on-trend. Right now, I’m eyeing tweed textured blazers like this, and this. Also anything bright like this dress and this sweater. all perfect heading into early spring!
On-trend jewelry has the ability to make your outfits look more expensive. Remember, the pieces don’t need to be expensive, and ideally mixing in trendier, less expensive pieces with your personal collection is even better. The key is layering: several necklaces at different lengths, and several rings across your hand is what all the fashion girls are wearing right now.
Thank you for reading! xx
What are your feelings regarding nylons? I am 60 and even though I still like the shape of my legs they are covered with age spots from sun damage.
I think nylons are ok, as long as they’re sheer and blend with your skin tone. Although I might prefer no hosiery!
Would love love love a post about tailoring,
your take on the best length for jeans, when to say yes to tailoring a piece and when to pass. This would be very timely for those of us revising our wardrobes! Love your blog and your inspiring ideas. Happy New Year!
Oh yes I need to do a bit of research before I say too much on tailoring, since I’m not an expert in that area:)
Hi Susie – I am short (5’1”) and always need to hem my jeans! How do I know the right length to hem them? Also, are tailors able to replicate the cool, unhemmed frayed edge well?
Nordstrom does a great job with hemming and keeping the fray hem. I like them right at the ankle.
What about clogs? Did I miss them? I totally get what you are saying. Capsule – bah humbug. Get rid of it if you haven’t worn it in a year – bah humbug. I think most of us live rather ordinary lives. Clothing provides a fun, daily way to add flavor to the everyday.
Ha ha I agree! I love clogs, and I’ve been wearing the brand No.6 lately