By: Sharon Mosley
Oh, say, can you see past that closet full of clothes that you never wear? Yes, you can have too many clothes! Instead of complaining about your wardrobe, pare down your choices to a few all-American favorites. After all, fashion trends come and go, so it’s better to invest in classics that you’ll count on for years to come.
Here is a list of essentials that have stood the test of time, no matter the season of the year:
— A sharp white shirt. The key to this all-time fashion favorite is fit. Since there are so many new styles of the white shirt, it is best to choose one that is “not-so-basic” and has a stylish edge to it … whether it’s ruffles, bows or ruching. Go for the best quality you can find — cotton always looks chic. Steer clear of cheap and shiny synthetics.
The white shirt is one of the most versatile items that you can have in your wardrobe. Team it with jeans and platform sandals to dress up a casual look; wear it with a long, black skirt with statement jewelry to a cocktail party.
— A fitted jacket. Just like the white shirt, a jacket can be pivotal when worn with other pieces: skirts, pants or jeans. When choosing a jacket, keep it simple in style. You don’t want it to become outdated and stick to fabrics that will span the seasons like rayon. A great jacket can be worn over a dress for even more versatility. If you want to add a more fashion-forward look, search for a jacket in a bold color.
— A perfect pair of pants. Again, a simple cut in a classic fabric is the best way to go when it comes to choosing pants, which you will reach for day in and night out. You can thank Katharine Hepburn for making tailored trousers an all-American favorite. Today, the flat-front boot cut is a figure-flattering shape that has proved to be a perennial winner.
— A great dress. No, it doesn’t have to be black! Instead, choose your favorite color and make a statement in a feminine style and flowing fabric — skip the tight dresses and go for figure-skimming styles.
— A classic knit sweater. Whether you like twin-set cardigans, turtlenecks or V-necks, knits are always on the all-American favorites list. Choose the finest quality you can — cashmere is always a great choice — and mix and match with other basics for plenty of classic combinations that never go out of style.
— A flattering pair of jeans. Denim is another American favorite that hasn’t really changed, since the first pair of Levis “blue jeans” was introduced in 1873. Find a brand that fits you and stick with it. Be careful of trendy shapes (yes, jeggings are already a passing fad!) and overly decorated styles. Dark denim is always a flattering choice.
— A trench coat. Inspired by British military, the trench coat has become a favorite style statement on this side of the pond, too. A great fitting trench coat will be a fashion essential that you will grab for years to come … in rain and snow. You can’t go wrong with a neutral color, but colorful hot pinks and purples are turning up in stores for a bold change of pace.
Sharon Mosley is a former fashion editor of the Arkansas Gazette in Little Rock and executive director of the Fashion Editors and Reporters Association. To find out more about Sharon Mosley and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2011 CREATORS.COM