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TOP 10 : Essentials

February 29, 2012


I will admit it shamlessly: I am a shopacholic. I go into a store for two pairs of underwear, and come out with a two-hundred dollar purchase pending on my debit card, a couple of tears in my eyes, and a bag of totally useless– albeit gorgeous– new purchases swinging in a shopping bag at my side.

Lately, though, I have grown up. Matured, or whatever– but that sounds too silly. My wardrobe has matured! After a fifty pound drop in weight, a makeover, and a closet emptied of oversized and off-trend pieces, I got to create myself all over again!

My wardrobe went from packed and useless to streamline and industrial. I purged nearly all of my old clothes and banished them to the depths of Goodwill, and I’ve slowly been building a practical– and FIERCE– wardrobe.

1.      Black Madewell T-Shirt

This baby is seriously one of my most prized possessions. It’s the perfect weight knit, and the cut of the neck couldn’t be better fitted for my body. These Madewell v-neck pocket tees come in dozens of colors, and you can always find them on sale suuuper cheap. They’re the perfect casual-chic tee to wear with anything.

2.      French Connection Jessica Black Denim Jeans

($118 – snagged at Marshall’s for just $29! SCORE.)

The. Most. Perfect. Black. Pants. Ever. Seriously. These babies are incredible. Although they are denim, the material is mega-soft and stretchy, which makes them super comfy and figure-flattering. The color is jet-black, so no fading or awkward shade matching to worry about here! I just had to throw out my first pair of these and seriously need to get a replacement. I’ll be feeling the withdrawal symptoms soon. I actually bought these pants in army green, too. Amazeballs.

3.     J Crew Perfect Fit V Neck T
($22.50 but always on sale for super cheap! I’m talking single digits.)

Now these T’s are a little thicker than the Madewell T, a heavier sort of knit. I have about five of these Perfect Fits in a ton of colors, and they really are a perfect fit. Usually I throw these on under blazers or cardigans and they always hold their shape, and the cut of the neck is just perfect for scarves or necklaces or that lovely décolletage. I think the cut and fabric of these are a little more feminine than the Madewells, so they’re both great additions.

4.     J Crew black cardigan
(I paid about $40 on sale! At the store I think a basic cardi runs anywhere from $50 to $100)

So I don’t actually know the name of my particular sweater, but I know it is THE best thing I’ve ever bought. Seriously, I throw this on at least once a day– even in the morning when I’m in my pjs! Its just so comfy! I really love J. Crew’s cardigans— they’re always the softest and most versatile, and are warm and wearable while still being very ladylike and simple. I bought mine on sale at the local factory store, and have been wearing it to death. It goes with everything!

5.     Franco Sorto Rapid Over the Knee Boots

So I just bought these from DSW about three months ago, and I seriously have to force myself from wearing them every day. These boots are made of supersoft leather, and the toe scuffs and wears in naturally and beautifully. I absolutely love these boots– totally worth every penny! My only complaint is that they slip and slouch a little, which wasn’t the look I was totally going for, but they’re absolutely still my favorite boots in my wardrobe.

6.     See by Chloe oversized black sweater

I’ll admit it. This was a stupid purchase. $75 for a giant black shapeless sweater?! I know, I know. In my defense, though, this sweater is probably my favorite item of clothing in my wardrobe. Although its oversized, its cut low and wide enough to really emphasize my collarbone, which I think is fab. YES, it was an irresponsibly overpriced purchase, YES. I have no guilt. (Also, I couldn’t find a picture of my sweater online, so I substituted it for this similar style from Old Navy!)

7.     Theory LBD
($59 via Marshalls!)

I am a Theory fangirl, 100% I love everything they do, so I always freak out when I can find a Theory steal hidden in the racks, just waiting for me to scream and dance and cling to them once they’re discovered. I was really in need of an LBD when this beauty came into my life from the glorious clearance racks of Marshalls, and my wardrobe prayers were answered. This dress is cut close to the body and its simplicity is just so chic. The fabric- mostly cotton with a wee little bit of lycra– makes it transition from day to night seamlessly. A simple, basic LBD like this is truly the superhero of dresses. I can accessorize for a fun look, or wear it alone with my hair pulled back  and it becomes the picture of modern minimalism.

8.     The Limited 917 Jeans
($74.90 online, $16.99 at Marshalls!)

So I have been losing weight like someone is paying me to, and right now I don’t want to make an investment in a great pair of jeans, but I still need some that fit! Enter the 917, found at my local Marshalls. I didn’t relize what an amazing deal these were until I searched The Limited’s website for them– um, whoa, thank you Marshalls for the fifty dollars-plus savings! These are great and stretchy and comfy and chic and dark. Better than that? They make my butt and my wallet very very happy.

9.     Chinese Laundry ‘At Once’ Black Suede Wedges
($45 on sale via Thom Brown!)

These shoes were Mission 1 for my wardrobe this fall and winter. I’ve seen the suede wedge all over– in magazines, on celebs, runways, and I just had to find a pair and make them mine. I’m not a big heel-wearer, but these are steady and even kind of comfortable! I wear them at least once a week, they go with everything, and they’re a nice change from the usual flats or boots! These are also super easy to dress up or dress down. Practicality! I love it!
10.     The Go-To Bra

I needed to find a couple of new bras, and this one – Betsey Johnson’s ‘Sugar’ bra – was a gift from the Bra Gods. The soft, pinky-nude blends perfectly with my skin, and the design of the cup, band, and straps are cute and girly, but disappear under tees and dresses. I feel so pretty whenever I wear this! Ladies, y’all need a bra that makes you feel pretty. End of story.


So what are your essentials? I love how much our wardrobes vary– inspire me with what you love and wear all the time! Is there anything you’d just die without?



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