I love statement pieces and trendy everyday wear, we all know that. But it is a great idea to mix your new pieces with the tried and true wardrobe classics to give them a longer shelf life. You may not be a “classic gal” but regardless, it serves us well to have a few classics in the closet. Classic pieces are the safe zone. They’re acceptable in just about any fashion situation. Wearing a classic is good on many fronts –they are a great option when you feel you have nothing to wear and they never go out of style.
You hear that all the time, right? The classics never go out of style. I’m here to tell you that statement is only half true. All classics have a shelf life, and while it is longer than most trendy wardrobe picks, I contend that you need to update them every five years. There are some key components of classic items that, when older, they become a dead giveaway that your style is stale and needs an update.
Here are the key things that change over time that are the giveaways that your items need an update. One rule of thumb is not to overdo anything “classic”. If it screams “look at me”, it’s probably not a classic. It should appear effortless and timeless.
Things That Date A Classic
- The hemline. Cropped straight styles are the new classic. Quick tip – hem your full-length pants
- The point or rounded toe of the shoe
- The pleats on pants
- The size of the print in pants
- The high or low waistline
Now that we know what we need to edit out of our closet, here are some great ways to update your classic piece collection for spring.
Here are some classics for spring that are a must-have for your wardrobe. I recommend spending a little more money on these items, because if you choose wisely, they will last you five to ten years. Since they are classics you will get a lot of wear of these items – it is a very high return on investment, I promise. I also recommend that you revisit these items every five years just to make sure they are still current. Get what you love even if it’s a little more pricey. I definitely put more money in my classics. I also justify shoe costs because you truly are in your shoes half your life, LOL:)
LBD a/k/a Little Black Dress
This is such a versatile and necessary piece. It’s a classic, and you can make it trendy or change the look from fancy to sporty to street style in minutes with a quick switch up of your accessories. I’ve got a great article on how to reinvent your LBD that will help make the most of your little black dress. Check it out here.
Ladies that appear to be timeless don’t skimp on their outerwear. It’s one of the first things people see and with the exception of a denim jacket, your outerwear can make the rest of your outfit appear to be more expensive.
A trench coat is a wardrobe staple. Although it’s considered a classic, it’s getting a lot of focus in the trendy world. Since it’s the trench coat’s time to shine, invest in one that you will have for years to come. Stick to a neutral color unless you already have one that’s a classic. The bonus is that this coat isn’t just for rainy days. You can rock this beauty when the sun is shining too. Plus, you automatically look more put together when you slip into a trench coat. Just add a pair of killer shoes and BOOM, you are ready to take on the day.
This typically dresses down an outfit but it can take it up a notch as well. It’s great for chilly nights on the beach and for adding a little style to your overall outfit. If you have one already, consider purchasing one in white.
This sounds so basic and sometimes we put off getting basic because it seems boring, but don’t underestimate the power of a white tee. You can dress it up with jewelry, layer it or wear stand alone. Spend some money on a better quality t-shirt because it will endure a lot of wash and wear.
A nude pump or sandal gives the illusion of endless legs. Who doesn’t want that? Sticking to classic and comfortable styles like a pump, block heel, Chelsea boot, wedges, loafer or mule is one way to guarantee you’ll spend some time in the shoe.
The wedge sandal is so fun and easy for spring and summer. Stick to a basic color and these will be with you for a while. Wedges are also some of the most comfortable shoes in the shoe family, no matter the height.
These are hot new things this spring. And yes, sometimes classic pieces crossover into trendy but because it’s a version of the loafer it’s a safe bet they are here to stay.
No Frill Jean
I love a statement jean but you gotta have a basic no-frill jean that suits any occasion. It can’t be distressed (which is currently all the rage) or sloppy, like a boyfriend jean. Considering it’s spring, I would opt for a lighter denim that is ankle length. Tip – Darker denim is easier to dress up but I would hold out until fall.
White Jeans/White Pants
These are a great transition piece to break out. You can swap these out with your darker-colored pants and look fashionably spring. Read about my spring transition items, notably white jeans and pants here.
Structured Leather Handbag
The leather handbag is a must-have, as it will serve you on any occasion. Since it’s spring, I would choose a nude color but if you are only choosing one classic bag, choose black. Keep any embellishments low key. You don’t want your handbag to compete for attention with anything you are wearing. The classic handbag should play nice with anything you are wearing. You don’t want an oversized bag or a teeny tiny bag. Stick to medium or you’ll be in trendy territory. If you have a classic bag and want to add a trendy piece, circle bags are all the rage. Stay tuned for spring outlook in another article.
So remember, although it’s a classic, it has its limitations. Look at the details to determine if you need an update. Thankfully, the classic pieces don’t change much so you are probably good for five years, but revisit your wardrobe because the signs are always there and you don’t want to look outdated.
Stay tuned for the outlook for spring. This will be about the trendy pieces!
Images by Erin Smith unless otherwise noted.
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