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The Complete Women's Wardrobe

It's tricky for women to dress themselves, with almost too many clothing options available; believe it or not, a closet full of clothes doesn't mean you'll always be dressed to impress.  Below, some essentials for every woman's wardrobe  and a few helpful tips to have you dressing fab and feeling great!  And speaking of fabulous, our guide to Figure-Flattering Clothes for Women can help you work your body type to its best advantages. Ready up on the below for all of the style buzz you need.

Bottoms

Jeans 

  • Bootcut  is universally flattering and current.
  • Dark denim  is dressy enough for a casual office, and can also be quite slimming.
  • Skip embellishments; if you find a pair of jeans that really fits you well, you'll want them to be versatile.
  • Our Women's Jeans guide is a great place to start your hunt!

Casual Trousers 

  • Often as comfy as denim, a nice pair of slacks are a good choice for times when you need to look professional, but also want to feel a little more laid back (i.e. if nobody wears heels to work at your office, you're probably in the Work Casual zone and it's safe to wear these).
  • Khakis or chinos call for interesting but casual shoe choices like , sturdy flats, or comfy ankle boots .

Dressy Trousers 

  • These are a fabulous wardrobe staple! You can wear them to work but also dress them up with a fancy top to go out.
  • Careful with your choice in trousers here as you're at risk for pants lines. Wear thongs  or boy shorts  to look sleek.
  • Make sure the trousers cover all but the front of your shoe.
  • For the best look and fit, make sure your pants are secure at the hip and fall straight down.

Long Skirts 

  • There's a time and a place for these; ankle length can look mumsy, but something shapely and hitting the calf is effortlessly sophisticated.
  • Wear with strappy sandals  to a party or casual event and close-toed shoes for work.
  • Balance a flowy skirt with a  fitted top or even a blazer to look sophisticated .
  • Be careful when putting together bright colours and patterns; only one piece of your outfit should stand out as both might cause a clash.

Mini Skirts 

  • Fabulous, but probably not appropriate for work (do the classic pencil skirt  instead). Still, minis are versatile.
  • Footwear can take your mini all sorts of places:flip-flops  for the beach, casual sandals  for lunch, fancy flats for a night out. These also go well with tights  and boots  for colder weather.
  • Depending on the length of your skirt, make sure your heels aren't too high! This might give you a different look entirely.

Tops

Button-Up Shirts 

  • Classic, tailored shirts are clean for work and casual and crisp for weekends.
  • Invest in expensive, durable fabric and a nice fit- this way they will last and can be worn just about anywhere.
  • Check the following: that the shoulders fit, the buttons don't gap at the chest (double-sided tape  is a good solution for this) and that the sleeves cover your wrists but not your hands.
  • Have fun with colours because you'll most likely be pairing these with basic solids (ie. dress trousers, casual trousers, suits).

Blouses 

  • Fancy, feminine tops can balance menswear basics for work, like a pair of dress trousers, or a very tailored skirt and/or blazer.
  • Flirty tops dress up jeans for evening.
  • A demure blouse can give a sophisticated edge to any look.
  • Read our guide to Women's Tops for a better understanding of your many options!

Tees 

  • Jeans and tees are a match made in weekend heaven.
  • A collection of different sleeve lengths, necklines, and colours ensures lots of layering options.
  • They can make fancier pieces like a blazer or a pencil skirt casual chic.
  • Make sure your tee is fitted as a long, loose shirt can make you look frumpy.
  • Long sleeved ,short sleeved,  and sleeveless  t-shirts will have you mixing and matching in every season.

Sweaters 

  • Just as with t- shirts, sweaters come in all cuts, shapes, and necklines: try sweater vests  and  turtlenecks  alone or under blazers for a preppy look.
  • Throw cardigans  over everything as the weather turns cool, and as a cover up for dresses.
  • Matching sweater sets  are an effortless way to look perfectly coordinated, and you can break up the set to make more outfits.

Dresses

Casual Dresses 

  • Many of today's styles are also machine washable and extra low key.
  • Pair with soft, feminine sandals  to look put together pretty and in warm weather.
  • Toss a cotton dress  over a swimsuit  to take you from the beach to lunch in no time.
  • Put on nicer shoes and a cardigan to dress up for a warm night out.
  • Consider your fabrics for each season: jersey knit, gingham and nylon are good for warmer weather while wool and heavier cottons work for winter.

Cocktail Dresses 

  • These are crucial to have on hand for a classy party or a casual wedding , so stock up on a couple of these.
  • You can never go wrong with a Little Black Dress. A classic, flattering LBD will be a go-to piece for every party. For a varied look, just switch things up with jewellery , a cardigan, fab shoes, or scarves--it's up to you!
  • Undergarments  will have a lot to do with how good you look in your cocktail dress. Put on your dress and check yourself out from all angles. Then shop for seamless knickers , a hose, a strapless bra , or even shapewear --whatever you need to look your best.
  • Match colours to the seasons. Pastels and lighter hues work well with summer and spring while darker tones like reds and deep browns complement the winter and fall weather.

Formal Dresses 

  • Formal dresses are usually something you shouldn't worry too much about until you have an event in mind.
  • Remember, different occasions can call for very different styles of dresses, so consider how fancy or laid-back you'd like your style to be.
  •  Always keep formal dresses you've already worn. You never know when one can come in handy again!
  • Choosing a formal dress in a neutral colour like black or tan can guarantee that it can be worn again, so think about it when picking out your dress.

Career Dresses 

  • A sheath dress  in a dark or neutral color is the work equivalent of the LBD; on its own with pearls, under a blazer or cardigan... the options are endless.
  • Check the hemline before buying for work; if you're in a conservative office, you won't want to go too short.

Loungewear & Intimates

Pyjamas 

  • They're great for every season! Flannel  is deliciously soft and warm for winter, while cotton is airy and comfy in summer.
  • Silk  can make even pyjamas sexy. Read our Women's Sleepwear guide for more tips.
  • Go for a cute pair of slippers  to match your new set.

Robes 

  • Terry cloth robes  are cuddly and soft, and can be a much warmer substitute for a towel when you're stepping out of the shower--especially on a cold winter morning.
  • Silk  robes can be a sexy way to cover up at night.

Knickers 

  • Good underwear  is an important foundation of any wardrobe: the correct undergarments will make all your clothes look better!
  • Thongs are perfect under clingy dresses, skirts, and dress trousers to prevent pant lines.
  • Bikinis ,  hipsters , and briefs  are comfortable and casual, and work well under jeans and casual trousers.
  • Boy shorts are a great alternative to thongs and provide more coverage.
  • Don't forget to stock up on a few nice pairs of lacy underwear  - your partner will thank you for it.

Bras

  • When first shopping or if you feel you went up a cup size, be sure to get get professionally fitted and check out our Guide to Bras so you're investing in the right pieces for your bra collection.
  • Underwire  is the ultimate in support.
  • Soft cup  is the most common kind of bra, and provides moderate coverage and support.
  • Racer back  is great under tank tops of the same cut.
  • Strapless  is an evening wear essential.
  • Minimisers  can help busty gals slip into button down shirts without any gapping.

Camisoles 

  • With more shape than the sleeveless t-shirt, tank tops  or camisoles can look great on their own or mixed with a diverse array of outfits.
  • Stock up on solid-colours; they'll layer great under low cut tops and sweaters that are too racy for work.
  • Embellishments are welcome here! A casual cami with speciality details like beading or embroidery, can be unleashed from underneath a blazer to take you from work to happy hour.
  • Many camisoles have a built in bra, which is convenient for layering without making you feel or look too bulky.

Outerwear

Blazers 

  • A great lightweight cover up for work or play.
  • Check our our Women's Blazers guide to find the right look--professional or funky, girly or all business.
  • Materials can range from corduroy to suede to khaki, so pick the one that suits you best!

Jackets 

  • Heavier than a blazer, lighter than a coat.
  • You'll need a couple of these for either spring or fall.
  • Try one on with heavier clothes--like a bulky sweater--to know for sure if you can wear it in cool weather.
  • Fleece jackets  are perfect for outdoor activities in the fall, easy to wash, and thin enough to layer under coats for those drastic winter temperatures.
  • Windbreakers  are also a great layering piece, and extremely lightweight.

Raincoats 

  • Protect your wardrobe from the elements it from the elements with a mackintosh.
  • Invest in a durable one in a neutral colour so it goes with all your outfits.
  • Look for a good fit as a long belted coat that's oversized can look strange.

Coats 

  • The ultimate in outerwear! Make sure yours is warm enough for your climate.
  • Find a nice balance between trendy and classic. You'll be wearing it every day all winter, so you'll need to feel pretty--not dull but also not "last season."
  • Check out our Ski Jacket guide for best buying practices, as this piece needs to perform more functions than just look good!

Swimsuits 

  • Outwear is not just for cold weather, consider warm weather too! Stock up on one or two perfect swimsuits for your summer season.
  • Consider that you may need to mix and match sizes for the tops and bottoms. Make sure you feel comfortable in your bathing suit but also that it fits you securely.
  • Tip: A lower cut on bikini bottoms can make your hips look slimmer.

Accessories

Shoes 

  • Make sure you have a full range of shoes for all seasons to go with every outfit possibility!
  • Stock up on the basic colours like black and brown so you can be sure they will match up with anything.
  • Don't be afraid to invest some money in your shoes! You want them to last a long time and hold up throughout the seasons.
  • Check out our shoes guide for more helpful information.

Jewellery 

  • Collect a few classic pieces that will go with any look such as stud earrings or some long necklaces.
  • Remember, buying cheap costume jewellery can be just as useful as high priced jewellery. If you like to wear jewellery often it could be useful to have a few casual pieces to choose from.
  • Women's Jewellery and Hot Jewellery Looks are good resources to check out.

Makeup 

Perfume 

  • Perfume makes a lovely addition to any outfit or ensemble.
  •  Our perfume guide can point you in the direction of a scent that's just right for you.
  • Stock up on one or two signature scents so you can switch things up depending your mood.
 

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