Wednesday, October 3, 2012

How to build a Classic Wardrobe

Choosing what to wear each morning is a headache most of us could do without. Juggling the changing seasons, weight fluctuations, office and weekend demands when we'd much rather pull on the same old thing and not have to think about it.

The solution to ensuring you always look and feel your best, whatever the occasion, is fill your wardrobe with classic pieces of clothing that not only mix easily with each other but will also never go out of fashion. After all, being chic isn't about having the most expensive handbag or wearing the latest trend; It's about being true to who you really are and feeling comfortable in your own skin.

With that said, there are Some items that I believe every stylish woman worth her fashion salt should own. These are the items that will carry you through season after season and never let you down. They are the classic must-haves that will serve as the backbone of your wardrobe.

Trends will come and go, but these are the items that will loyally serve you year after year.

1. A Classic White Shirt

white shirt has been the staple item in working men's wardrobes for decades, and in recent times has become an essential for women inside and outside of the workplace.This perennial favorite will never go out of style. 

Paired with denim or a slim pencil skirt, the button-down white shirt exudes elegance.Whether you opt for a wrap front, three quarter-length sleeves, a frill neckline or huge flamboyant cuffs a beautifully ironed white cotton or silk shirt is chic simplicity that flatters every face.

2. Dark jeans

There is a very good reason that Yves Saint Laurent once mused that he wished he had invented the blue jean. A well-fitting pair of jeans (preferably dark denim and boot cut) flatters most body shapes and can easily be dressed up or down depending on one's mood. A great pair of jeans can be accessorized a million and one ways with what you already have in your closet.

3. A well fitted Blazer/Jacket

Find one with a proper, fitted shape. Your jacket should follow the silhouette of your body and accent the hourglass curve at your waist. It is also a perfect piece to pair with the pencil skirt, black pants and white shirt. Or make it casual with a pair of jeans. It's a timeless cover-up that will work in black, tan or beige.If, it's a Leather one, think of it as your investment which will just get better with age.

4. Black trousers

Black trousers are a fail-safe item of clothing that will look brilliant with everything, and will see you through all seasons.
Stick with a cut that you know flatters your figure and be wary of high fashion styles that have a short shelf life. Look for good quality wool in the winter and linens and cotton in the summer. The addition of Lycra to the fabric will help your trousers keep their shape if you're sitting behind a desk all day.

Look for a slim fit and make sure the hem falls just an inch or so above the floor. You don't want your pants dragging along the floor as you walk. And unless you are 6′ and very thin, avoid too many pleats or pockets, as these tend to add bulk where we really don't need it.

5. V neck sweaters

V-neck sweater is universally flattering for while neckline trends fluctuate this useful top will be the one you turn to when dressing in a hurry. 

Flattering on both large and small busts invest in three colors:  classic black, a pastel shade and something brighter. This season cream chunky cable knits are perfect for weekend warmth.

6. A pair of Ballet Flats

I love a 4″ stiletto just as much as the next Louboutin-loving girl, but it's my ballet flats that I turn to time and time again for ease, comfort and weekend casual. 

There's a certain insouciance to the ballet flat that says, "clearly I know my way around the fashion block, but I just don't have to try so hard to look fabulous."

7. A pair of High Heels

Whether peep-toe or classic, stiletto or chunky heel, a high heel pump in a neutral color (black, brown, navy or gray) will work well with all of your other wardrobe essentials.

And here, I don't mean to refer to the 4" or higher heels, work as per your comfort with those smart and easy not so high heels.  

8. Classic Watch

An essential item that you wear every day, but might not update every season, is your watch so pick a classic silver or gold watch in a timeless design.

Bracelet-style watches look elegant on the wrist and are perfect for office and formal events. For weekends trying something more sporty, or a chunky man¹s-style watch for casual chic.

9. Trench Coat

This is one of the classic pieces that also seems to always be on trend. While Burberry is probably best-known for their trench, there are many other brands such as Theory, Kenneth Cole, Tahari, DVF and Tory Burch (sorry, we don't have these in Nepalese Market), who have created their own version of this timeless staple. The trench coat has come to the rescue of many a "bad wardrobe" day.

10. Little Black Dress (LBD) / White or Black Saree 

Channel your inner Audrey. This timeless piece can take you from the office to an evening on the town with the switch of a few chosen accessories. 

A simple, yet sophisticated black dress will also serve as the perfect backdrop to a killer pair of colorful stilettos or a statement piece of jewelry.

While being a fan to the 9 yards (Saree), i am always partial for it. A classy Saree is never out of fashion and an ultimate investment that will pass to the generations. If we don't have the brocade, cocktail or heavy embroidered saree, make sure to incorporate a White and Black Saree in the wardrobe. They will look good in almost any type of body.

11. Pencil Skirt / Classy Salwar Suit / Formal Evening dress 

Pencil Skirt : Much like the Little Black dress, this item will take you from the boardroom to cocktails in style. 

Easily paired with a classic white shirt, V-neck Sweater or cashmere crewneck.

Formal Evening Dress/Frock : It can help us throughout business meetings, boardrooms, evening parties and cocktail dinners. A shift dress is a wise option. A classic shift or bias cut knee-length dress in a good quality luxurious fabric such as silk or cashmere is easy to wear. 

Each season we can update the details or simply change our accessories ­ a sequinned cardigan or wrap will change the line of the dress while shoes and bags change the focus.

Salwaar Suit (Kurta Suruwaal):This one is widely used in Nepalese wear as it easily blends in our culture as well. There are wide range of the choices from classic cut Salwar suits to Anarkali ones. 

But a classic cut Salwar suit can be our best friend forever and turn out a good investment in long run. Just make sure to choose the right color for your skin tone.

What to remember while making a classy wardrobe:

  • Great style is having the discipline to invest in just a couple of beautiful statement pieces each season and then mix these in with your wardrobe essentials. As Coco Chanel so eloquently said, "Elegance is refusal." It's not about constant acquisition; it's about working with what you have in a confident and creative way.
  • Only keep those pieces that make you feel really good. 
  • Play to your strengths: If you have great legs, wear skirts. If you have an hourglass figure, cinch your waist with fabulous belts. If you have beautiful skin and piercing blue eyes, wear accessories that draw attention to your face.
Now that's great style.

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