The 11 Wardrobe Essentials Every Woman Should Own

Fotini essential clothing
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While trends come and go, these are the 11 wardrobe essentials that’ll last a lifetime.

Your wardrobe is an extension of who you are. It is a visual representation of your personal brand, which is why it is so important for every woman to reflect their beautiful, confident, and unique selves through style.

A well-established wardrobe is nothing without the basics. That versatile little black dress, crisp blazer, and go-to pair of jeans can transform the foundation of your wardrobe and take your personal brand to the next level. Plus, a closet built on streamlined selections can make day-to-day dressing infinitely simpler – letting you take on your day with confidence and ease.

After dedicating my life to fashion and working with clients to elevate their personal brand, I know, while trends come and go, these are the 11 wardrobe essentials that’ll last a lifetime.

1. Denim

Jeans are an essential item that every woman must have as part of her wardrobe. A good pair of denim act as a wardrobe staple that has the ability to easily transition a look from casual to chic – with the help of the right accessories of course. Next time you go shopping for your perfect pair of jeans, be sure to consider the fit, length, stretch, and wash to ensure they’ll last you longer than a season.

2. Suit

A well-tailored suit is an essential ensemble to have on-hand for those special occasions. These items can be worn together or as separates, expanding the versatility of this selection. The inseam must feel comfortable; the waist size should not feel tight and finding the right fit around your posterior is key. When we are comfortable in the clothes we wear, we exude confidence!

3. Moto Jacket

The essential motorcycle jacket remains a timeless wardrobe staple that never loses its cool factor. With their edgy vibes and timeless allure, these jackets are the ruling monarchs of the outwear world. If you are looking for an edgier look, opt for a classic black leather jacket, but if you crave a softer, more feminine style, ditch the black leather for a neutral tone in suede or tweed.

4. Cashmere Sweater

There is nothing more comfortable and versatile than a cashmere sweater. Undeniably warm and soft, throwing on a cashmere sweater feels like a little slice of luxury. Whether it is a crew neck, V-neck, or cardigan, select a style you feel most comfortable in. This piece can carry you throughout all seasons even on those chilly summer nights.

5. Trench Coat

A classic neutral trench coat is a practical yet stylish choice. Of course, it’s perfect for those rainy days, but the classic silhouette of a trench works just as well on dryer days by simply adding some layers underneath. Timeless and practical.

6. Coat

A classic wool coat will take you anywhere – from the office to dinner, from the grocery store to the shopping mall, and anywhere in between. You can throw it on over jeans and a casual sweater and look instantly chic, and it can easily elevate your favorite workwear looks. You can never go wrong with the staple colors – grey, camel, black or you can add a pop of color for a fun, seasonal feel.

7. The Little Black Dress

Every woman needs a well-fitting black dress that she can wear for any occasion. The little black dress is a classic piece that flatters every body type. You can never go wrong with black! It is chic and effortlessly elegant. Its magic lies in its simplicity. With the right accessories, it can be dressed up or down and made appropriate for any occasion. You know you’ve found the perfect black dress when you feel your most confident in it!

8. Sneakers

Every woman needs a pair of proper white sneakers that are basic and casual enough to go with anything you wear from jeans to a chiffon dress. They really are the shoes that can take you anywhere.

9. Sandals

A sandal is a must-have for those warmer summer months. Nothing feels like summer has arrived than displaying our freshly polished toes for their seasonal debut. However, it’s important to consider how much walking your day typically entails, if it is more than a couple of blocks, choose a sandal that isn’t too strappy. Comfort is key! To ensure the most use out of your sandals, choose a neutral color to match with all your favorite summer pieces and opt for a low to mid-height heel for versatility and comfort.

10. White T-Shirt

This staple is something many of us can’t live without! Whether we are throwing on a sweat set or dressing down a suit, the t-shirt is a wardrobe staple which isn’t going anywhere. Truth be told, it is the item that I recommend not overly investing in as you can purchase affordable options that do the trick!

11. Athleisure

Comfortable and chic, with the ability to be curated ever so stylishly, Athleisure has graced us on the most coveted publications and catwalks. A track-set, sweatsuit…essentially all the comfies in one! To get the most out of your athleisure, try selecting a style that is tapered enough that you don’t completely lose your shape so that you can go from the couch to the street and still look pulled together while staying comfortable!

About the author, Fotini Copeland

Fotini Copeland is a best-selling author, style expert, and founder of The Fotini Factor, the personal brand enhancement - through style consulting - firm for women. A lifelong entrepreneur and designer with an expertise in corsetry, Fotini launched her namesake line in 2010, and quickly became one of the most sought-after New York fashion houses of the moment. Her designs have been highly regarded on the runways at NYFW, The Met Gala red carpet, and beloved by iconic celebrities like Amy Poehler and Kendall Jenner. After years in the fashion industry, Fotini decided to pivot, using her experience designing for women to launch her new business venture as a Personal Brand Consultant. The natural progression from designer to style strategist enables her to help women identify the style that best represents their personal brand. Her focus is on fashion, demeanor, design, and expression capability – and most importantly, inspiring women to be the best version of themselves.