10 Essential Pieces To Have In Your Wardrobe

To make your wardrobe work in the easiest, most versatile way, there are a series of essential pieces that you should have in your closet. These are pieces from every wardrobe category (think tops, bottoms, layering pieces and more), that make mixing & matching and outfit creation so much easier. And easy is what we’re all going for in our closets! When you have the best foundation, pairing pieces and putting together looks becomes SO much simpler. And when you have those wardrobe essentials, you have the building blocks to outfit making.

We’re going to chat about the 10 essential pieces to have in your wardrobe to make getting dressed easy, and to make your wardrobe work for you. And if you’re ready to dive further into these pieces, I’ve created a FREE GUIDE for you with all of these pieces, a breakdown of the items, PLUS over 50 OUTFITS CREATED FOR YOU with just those pieces!

Let’s elevate your style and create the best foundation for outfit making!

10 Essential Pieces To Have In Your Wardrobe Style Guide, by Katie Zink, Personal Stylist, the 10 pieces image

DOWNLOAD THE GUIDE HERE!

THE BREAKDOWN

Your wardrobe is made up of different categories that are essential to creating outfits, like tops, bottoms, layering pieces, accessories and more. We’re going to talk about pieces from the first 3 categories and what items from them to have in your wardrobe to make getting dressed simple. First up is tops.

ESSENTIAL PIECES : TOPS

Tops are a big part of our wardrobe and bring a ton of versatility, personality and style to our looks. Having a variety of tops, or a variety of tops within certain types (say a cropped basic black tee, a v-neck basic black tee etc), makes expressing your style and creating outfits easier. While sometimes the top is the main attraction to your outfit, sometimes it can also be a more simple or basic piece that helps create a base for intention in other parts of your outfit. You want tops in your wardrobe that vary from basics and staples, to statement pieces. For your ESSENTIAL pieces to have in your wardrobe, we have 4 types of TOPS to have.

THE BASIC TEE

Everyone needs some great basic tees in their wardrobe. And if you don’t have one or a few in yours, you’re missing an essential building block of your wardrobe, and this may be why you have a hard time getting dressed. The basic tee is an essential base layer to have in your outfit making, whether you’re going for a more minimal, understated look, or if you need a basic top to pair with the rest of your outfit.

Choose a black tee, or a neutral colour of your choice, in a cut and neckline that you prefer. For the most variety and versatility, it’s great to have a couple of these tees in different fits and necklines, so that you can have the right style for the different outfits you’re creating, and in black, white and a neutral of your preference.

THE GRAPHIC TEE

The graphic tee is an essential personality piece to have in your wardrobe. Perfect for more causal lifestyle needs, the graphic tee can take you from a casual weekend look paired with jeans and sneakers, to a more edgy and fun look paired with faux leather pants and a blazer. The graphic tee is a great piece to express your style and your personality with, have fun with this one! And if a graphic tee isn’t in your style personality, opt for a striped tee or coloured tee if that suits you better.

THE LONG SLEEVE

Another wardrobe basic, the long sleeve tee is a great base layer to have. Like the basic tee, it is a building block of your outfit making, and an essential piece to have. Perfect for layering in cooler months, or as a full top layer when you need more than a tee. Depending on your style, this may be more of a simple, basic long sleeve for your wardrobe, or it may be more of an elevated piece that has a bit more personality. Go for a neutral colour that fits into your everyday wardrobe, in a neckline and fit that works for you.

THE BUTTON UP

A wardrobe classic, the button up is an essential in your wardrobe. If you don’t have one, adding this piece is going to give you a ton of versatility in your outfit making, and be the perfect solution when you’re desiring a look that is a bit more elevated. The structure and style of this top adds sophistication and easily elevates your look, while being a super simple piece to wear.

There are a ton of ways to got with a button up, from coloured, to patterned, to stiffer or flowy fabrics, but you can never go wrong with a classic white cotton button up, and then add to your collection from there.

ESSENTIAL PIECES : LAYERING PIECES

An essential category in your wardrobe is layering pieces. These are pieces that are paired on top of your base outfit, usually finishing off your look. While layering pieces may be necessary, like a jacket, they are also an interest piece in your outfit, and have the effect of being the finishing touch on your overall look. With the right variety of layering pieces in your wardrobe, you can create a lot of variety in your looks. Let’s break down 3 ESSENTIAL LAYERING PIECES to have in your wardrobe.

THE CARDIGAN

The cardigan is a classic piece to have in your closet. Perfect for layering during the cooler months, this pieces finishes off your look while adding warmth, interest and personality. The texture of the knit in a cardigan can add a lot of visual interest to your look, because it contrasts with the less textured pieces you pair it with, like a cotton tee or denim. The style of the cardigan really depends on your personal preference and style personality. Opt for a cardigan that is in a neutral colour that pairs well with the rest of the rest of your wardrobe, and in a cut and style that fits your personality.

THE BLAZER

Another classic essential to have in your wardrobe is the blazer. This piece has a ton of versatility, taking you from more casual looks paired with denim, to elevated workwear looks paired with trousers. Having classic essential pieces in your wardrobe give you quick options to instantly elevate your look. Even if you don’t have a corporate lifestyle, having a black blazer in your wardrobe will give you an easy option for an elevated look, and will pair with a ton of other pieces to fill so many different outfit needs.

THE CARDICOAT

The cardicoat or long cardigan is a great layering piece to add variety to your wardrobe. The length of this piece adds visual interest to your outfits, and creates more variety in your styling. Whether you’re wearing it as a coat layer or more of a cozy layer, it’s a great third piece to complete your look. Opt for a cardicoat that has some structure to the neckline if you want more of an instantly elevated look, as a non-structured piece will instantly create a casual look.

ESSENTIAL PIECES : BOTTOMS

Bottoms are a huge essential category of your wardrobe, and life the other categories, there are both staples pieces to have in there as well as a variety of personality pieces. Usually we have fewer pieces of bottoms in our wardrobes compared to tops, so you’ll want to make sure you have a variety of pieces to fit your lifestyle needs. Here are 3 ESSENTIAL BOTTOMS to have in your wardrobe to make outfit creation easy and versatile.

THE CLASSIC DENIM

An absolute essential in your wardrobe is a pair of classic denim jeans. You can’t go wrong with a pair of straight leg, mid-wash, non-distressed denim. These are going to be the easiest bottoms to pair with almost any outfit, and get a ton of wear in our wardrobe. Being a wardrobe classic, this style is going to last a long time and not run the trend cycle like other styles. The classic denim is a super versatile piece, and can be dressed up or down depending on your lifestyle needs.

THE CLASSIC BLACK DENIM

Like the classic denim, another staple piece to have in your wardrobe is black denim jeans. These are another building block in your outfit making, adding variety to your looks. Again opt for a pair that are straight leg, with no distressing to get the most out of this piece. Having denim in black gives you options to mix up your denim looks. And black denim often looks a little less casual, giving a bit of sophistication, while keeping the comfort of a denim outfit.

THE BLACK PANTS

The last essential to have in your wardrobe is a pair of black pants. These are in a style of your choice, and this is where your personality really gets to shine! Choose a pair of black pants that reflect your style personality and fit your lifestyle needs. Depending on your lifestyle, these could be trousers, faux leather pants, cargos, satin pants, structured black slacks, etc. If they are another pair of denim, go for something different than your classic style. The pants could also be in any cut, like flare, ankle cut, boot cut, wide leg, etc. Check this post here for more pant styles to try. Let your personal style express itself in this pair of pants and have fun with it!

Having these essentials in your wardrobe is going to create variety in your looks, as well as give you structure in your wardrobe by having the right building blocks for outfit making. From basics to personality pieces, your style personality can really be expressed through the pieces that you choose. And having just these 10 pieces show you how much variety you can have in your wardrobe!

And inside the FREE GUIDE: The 10 Essential Pieces To Have In Your Wardrobe I’ve used these pieces to create 50+ Outfits for you already! Download the Guide to get a ton of wardrobe inspiration, and use the outfits as inspo when getting dressed!

3 STYLES OF PANTS TO TRY IN YOUR WARDROBE THIS SEASON

If you’re looking to spice up your style this season, here are 3 styles of pants to try in your outfit making. These different cuts, styles and materials will add interest to your outfits, and give you some versatility to what you’re pairing together. Gone are the days of skinny pants on rotation every day (or at all, sorry to say it), and there is so much variety in what is available for bottoms right now, here are a sample of different styles you may want to be considering. And as always, if you want to find what really works best for you, your style personality and your body shape, I’d love to help you inside one of my Personal Styling Sessions. 

As with every season, there are going to be some styles and trends that are and are not for you. As I always suggest to clients, go with what suits your body shape and style personality, and don’t forget that trying new things (not all things, but those that fit your personality) keeps your style exciting and fun. 

THE WIDE LEG DENIM PANT

The wide leg pant style is here to stay, and if you’ve been thinking about trying this cut, or wanting to add more to your closet, here are a few styles to try. The wide leg cut is great for a number of body shapes, and adds a new look to the silhouette of your outfit. If this is your first time trying this style, I’d suggest you go for a pair in your preferred wash, and opt for a pair that have little to no distressing. Keeping the wash and texture classic and clean, will help this style be more versatile and approachable in your wardrobe. 

THE FAUX LEATHER PANT

This is a style that has been around for a few seasons and is here to stay. Adding a pair of faux leather pants to your closet adds a ton of personality and interest in your outfits, making your style personality shine. If you’re a Dramatic or Romantic style personality, these pants were made for your wardrobe. And if you’re a little more classic or casual, these make a perfect statement look for a night out or special occasion. Adding texture to your outfit and mixing up materials is an amazing way to add interest to your look. Try these pants in a cut and shape that work best for your body shape, be it an ankle cut, straight leg or even a wide leg. 

THE FLARED LEG PANT

Coming back strong into the mix is the flare. Though this feels like a major throwback, this pant style is making a space in current fashion. If this style fits your body shape and personality, they are an amazing pair of pants to add to your rotation. And there are a ton of ways to try them, from denim, classic black, ankle cropped flare, to faux leather and beyond. I’d suggest you try something that you’re comfortable wearing in your current style. Say you’re a casual denim wearer, go with a denim pair, or if you wear a lot of black pants say in your workwear, try some moderate black flares. 

STYLES OF PANTS TO TRY IN YOUR WARDROBE

I hope you got some wardrobe inspiration with these styles of pants to try out this season! Trying new wardrobe items are a great way to experiment in your style and find what you love. And if you want help elevating your personal style, I’d love to work together and take your style to the next level!

FALL WARDROBE FINDS FOR YOUR CLOSET

If you’re looking for a couple of great classic wardrobe staples to add to your fall closet, here are a couple of classic fall wardrobe finds.

THE CLASSIC BUTTON UP

The classic button up is a wardrobe essential, and this black satin one is the perfect addition to your closet. Whether you have one or a few button ups already, this fall wardrobe find is a staple item in most closets, perfect to pair with casual to elevated outfits. The silky look of this shirt will add texture and interest to your outfit, and the satin adds a beautiful draped look. If you don’t already have a flowy black button up in your wardrobe, I suggest making this addition. 

CREAM DENIM

Another piece to add to your wardrobe this fall is a pair of cream denim. Gone are the days of not wearing light coloured pants after the summer time. These cream jeans are a great classic fall wardrobe find to your closet. Perfect to mix up the rotation of your denim looks, the cream colour adds a totally different tone to your look. These are also the perfect bottom piece for a monochromatic cream look, which is super luxe for fall and winter paired with a cream knit top. 

I hope these fall wardrobe finds help you with some fall inspiration.

Follow along for more wardrobe staples to add to your closet this coming season! I’ve got a Wardrobe Staples series coming to the blog this fall and winter, that will help you find great pieces to add to your closet and get some wardrobe inspiration. And if you’re looking to up level your style, hop into one of my Styling Services, I’d love to work with you!

And make sure to check my LTK for more wardrobe staples or head over here to find more.

Outfit Round Up: Easy Summer Layers

This week’s outfit round up features some perfect, easy layers for your summer wardrobe. These are great staple pieces to have in your summer rotation, and can easily become staples all year round. The sweaters are the perfect go-to for your cottage weekends by the lake, and will be great when the day starts to cool off. And you can’t go wrong with a staple pair of white jeans in your closet.

Shop these pieces here.

Click items to shop

4 Styles Of Bags To Have In Your Accessory Wardrobe

As accessories play a super important role in our wardrobe, and bags are one of the most dominant accessory pieces and one of the most used, we’re going to talk about the 4 styles of bags to have in your accessory wardrobe. Bags serve the function of being practical, a necessity to carry pieces of your life around with you. And they also serve an a key piece in your outfit making, helping to complete your look and add in your personal style.

There are a million styles, sizes and types of bags out there, and here I’ve rounded up 4 different style types everyone needs in their closet for both functionality and practicality.

The 4 Types

The Everyday Purse

The everyday bag is a wardrobe essential and the workhorse of your bag collection. This is the bag you probably get the most use out of, and is your go-to when running out the door. It holds a little more than just the essentials, without being a dumping ground for every single piece of your life to end up in.

The Everyday Purse is a key personality piece, as it is part of your everyday lifestyle. It’s usually neutral in colour, perfect to just throw on with any outfit, a no-brainer when getting ready. There is no decision fatigue when it comes to this piece. It’s best when it has some structure to it, and built in organization.

Key Features

  • Mid-size
  • Neutral Colour
  • Basic structure and build in organization

Shop This Bag

Everyday Purse Black

The Tiny Bag

The tiny bag is made for just your essentials. Perfect for running out the door with just your keys, cards, phone and lip balm. Your go-to for errand running or school pick-up.

I have found this to be my favourite style of bag now that my diaper-bag days are far behind me, and I just want the easiest, quickest, no-fuss option. An amazing perk of this style is the amount of options out there right now for this type of bag, from stylish little super-functioning ones to trendy belt bags, the options are endless.

This is the perfect style of bag to let your personal style shine with. Go for an option in a print, colour or texture you love, to show off your personality. Since you only throw the essentials in here, it’s an easy and quick switch bag, so even if you have more than one, changing up your style to match your outfit or mood is super simple.

Key Features

  • Super small
  • Basic shape and organization
  • Easy to grab and go
  • Personality piece

Shop This Bag

Small Cross Body Bag

The Classic Bag

The classic purse is part of your core accessories and the perfect pairing for your elevated needs. This bag is usually more on the elegant and classic side, made for wearing with your elevated lifestyle outfits. Whether you’re styling this bag with a floral dress for a summer wedding, a leather jacket for date night or a blazer for a work function, this one has you covered for the more formal side of your life.

The size of this bag is dependent on your lifestyle needs and personal style, and its core attributes are structure, elevated material like leather/faux leather, beautiful texture or quilting, and chain finishes.

Key Features

  • Elevated
  • Beautiful finishes
  • Average to small in size
  • Personality piece

Shop This Bag

Classic Purse Black

The Tote Bag

No accessory wardrobe is complete without an everyday, go-to tote bag. Obviously perfect for toting your life around, this bag is a staple piece for those days when you need to bring more. Whether you’re headed to work or off for a weekend away, the tote bag is the perfect, easy piece to carry more.

Either way you use this bag, for work or for fun, you can’t go wrong with a classic neutral colour in a faux leather look, for this timeless accessory staple.

Key Features

  • Easy
  • Larger, carries more
  • Structured and sturdy
  • Neutral colour

Shop This Bag

Tote Bag Black

And those are the 4 different styles of bags to have in your accessory wardrobe! Of course there are other types to fit other needs, but these are a good starting point for the 4 main functions and needs of bags in your closet. I hope you’ve found some inspiration for pieces that you might not currently have in your accessory wardrobe, and got some ideas on the styles and ways to incorporate your personal style.