Thursday, 13 June 2013

Capsule Wardrobe Part 1- "Toppings"

What woman doesn't want for a better wardrobe, most do right?  Most perhaps have a little too much unworn in their wardrobe and have skeleton outfits that have gone unworn for some time, but yet they can't part with it because " I love it too much" or "It's so pretty though..." or " I brought this when..."

Then we have the flip side and some women have too little and complain of nothing to wear. They spend time gazing at celebs in magazines or Facebook profile's hankering after a new outfit convincing themselves that it's not appropriate for them or "I wish I could wear that".

Sound familiar? Well I spent some time pondering over a capsule wardrobe recently and more importantly what my style is. I'm working on the "more importantly" part still but I am starting to find what my reasonable comfort zone is. My wardrobe which albeit is far away from sparse  is now resembling more of my personality after a large clear out, what goes unworn for a while is sold on (Not the 'special' outfits though, oh no they are far too pretty). However more often than now as quick as it's sold, it's quickly replaced as I do love a eBay bargain. So that's when I thought about a series of blog posts on a capsule starting with tops, shirts, vests etc. I will do "bottoms" next and then go on to others sub categories.

Now I know a capsule wardrobe is meant to be compact and not excessive (believe me I'm trying) and this blog post perhaps may not appear so compact, but they really are items that to some degree will slot well into most women's wardrobe. My best advice overall though is look at styles you like or celebs that you can most compare yourself with. Look at colours and shapes that suit you best and take this guide below as a guide to your own look.

So let's start. A printed blouse that's wearable with leggings or jeans- dressed up or down is a must for me. This Zara blouse is gorgeous and works well in warmer weather with white skinny jeans, pale denim jeans turned up with sandals or even with denim or khaki shorts. When the colder weather creeps back in a floral top is a nice way to brighten up darker jeans or leggings. Just add vests underneath  for warmth, boots and a warm parka or biker jacket. Perhaps even a sweatshirt over the top with cuffs poking through and a statement necklace. For a less fussy look stick to a one colour print like the Topshop one.
A white shirt is a complete classic that can be worn just as I described above for the floral shirt but would also work lovely with a leather skirt (tights in the winter), converse and a denim jacket for a different dressed down look. Or add some statement stilettos (think brights or print) and a patterned or tailored jacket for a dressier version. Next have a lovely offering that although isn't long enough to wear with leggings it's a trendy tailored take on a mans shirt or Zara have a lovely shirt without turn up cuffs.
Sticking with shirts a tartan shirt is another all year must have and with plenty of options you'll struggle to find a colourway that's not for you! Slinging a checked shirt on in the morning means you don't have to worry too much on anything else. The Next option is a lovely blue colour and the longer sleeveless shirt can look great with shiny leggings and converse if you are sick of jeans or for when it's warm go down the daisy dukes road and wear with denim shorts.
Stripes are always going to be around and I really like this take on a breton top from Next and Zara. They are floaty enough to be cool in warmer weather and perfect to layer underneath when its colder. You can't beat a breton and white jeans combo in the summer but with black leather you can give instantly make it a edgy look. A leopard print or a clashing colour like yellow looks great too!
One thing that I certainly can't be without is a animal logo top, perfect for throwing on a top and jeans day, clashing with other prints or with a leather skirt. The first one is a Topshop take on the more expensive designer option by Kenzo, but if this one is too in your face the Next option is perfect.
Now for something lace but fear not lace can be just as edgy for girls like me as it can be pretty and girly. Another versatile top to have for a smart look or casual, what better way to wear boyfriend jeans than with a girly top. Not only is this Matalan blouse very reasonable its navy so works well with anything and there is no worry of dropping spag bol down you, when feeding at the zoo commences! Brightly coloured contrast accessories would give it a great up to date look if you are wanting a more stand out look, fuschia pink is a great option.
Now this one most of you will already have, the denim shirt. I'm not a fan of the tighter fit shirts myself simply because I don't feel comfortable enough and I find the oversized variety much more wearable. This Zara option is long enough to be worn with leggings but equally looks great with blue skinnys, black skinnys, chinos or tucked into a leather skirt. Again I would also add a pop of colour with a statement necklace, scarf or shoes.
Now for a bit more pattern this blouse worn with dark skinny jeans, khaki trousers or shorts for a daytime look or add heels and a leather or denim midi skirt for a lovely dressed up outfit. This Whistles option may not be as cheap as the other items but its a great sale buy for a gorgeous shirt. For a bit less in your face the Topshop vest will work great with a black jacket, to dress it up a bit more wear it with a patterned tube skirt or bright skinny jeans.
We're lacking colour so lets change that. Whilst bright pinks are always lovely to brighten up a look, red is a great option as will work just as well in the festive season as it will with white skinny jeans or flares! One bright that I have in my own wardrobe is yellow in the neon variety. Both will look great with denim or even against black and white prints.
Metallics and glitz doesn't need to be just for nights out, if you want to quickly throw on a top and not have to think about anything else other than your bottoms choice then this top is perfect for you. Everyone needs some form of a sparkly top and worn with some tailored ankle trousers and heels you have a lovely night out outfit too.
Now for the basics, they may not always be worn but I bet you that without them there will be times you really wish you had some. Lets talk vests, not only are they brilliant for layering extra warmth in the winter, they work just as well for covering your modesty in sheer tops and are great to pair up with printed bottoms. I especially like the longer versions that cover your bum, these can be picked up very cheap in Primark and H&M. Key colours have to be white, black, khaki, nude and a bright that suits your colouring.
Don't discount a plain tshirt either. I love Topshop for those but again you can pick up some great versions in H&M and Primark. Perfect pairing for a statement necklace and boyfriend jeans or with some printed harems or trousers. The one below is from Topshop and just £10.
Lookout for the next blogs very soon, starting on 'bottoms' followed by dresses for either day or night, shoes & accessories and finishing up with jumpers, jackets and coats.


  1. I'm all about a capsule wardrobe. Despite working in fashion, my wardrobe is 2 slim Ikea ones and I hate clutter, so everything HAS to fit in them! I'm all about a boyfriend jean, classic shirt and a 'wow' flat. Then rotate with a breton and change the blazer! Done!