I’ll say this loud and clear. Anyone coming here looking for style advice is just clearly mistaken because I don’t dispense it. Whilst I share ideas and experimentations of my own, the idea of me doling out advice to people on how to dress is just laughable because I am so seflishly inclined as to write about things that tend to be personally applicable to me. Trust me when I say that I’m not here to get everyone wearing dip dye tights and PVC pants… So when I get emails or receive comments asking me how to build/start off their wardrobe, what to buy as a set of ‘basics’ as it were, I’m stumped. Not because I don’t believe in the B word. Of course I do. I’m not going to say tosh like ‘Basics are for blah dressers’ just to sound purposely renegade.
It’s just that I feel that everyone’s set of basics is different and personal to that person. The white shirt, perfect blazer, trench, LBD, jeans formula that is often reeled off in magazines just doesn’t cut it with me or more specifically, it doesn’t really work for me. Those aren’t the sort of things that I wear to death nor are they completely necessary in my wardrobe. So back to the ‘people asking me question’ scenario, I have to shrug and say I have no concrete answers because (and this isn’t a cop out….) depending on the person, the basic could change dramatically. So all I have are my own answers that may or may not apply to people. Not answers in general. Things that have been tried and tested for a while, an even more basic level of the cogs that I wrote about a while back.
American Apparel headbands – Where would I be with these ¬£2 bits of hair cheer that brightens up the mess of a coiff I have going on… // Silver flats – I’ve been through a rollercoaster of silver flats over the past six years, wearing them out, chucking them away and replacing them. These Prada ones are serving me well at the moment…
Stripy tops – I have many but this blue and white vintage one and the longsleeved Uniqlo top get the most wear for layering reasons // Double layered black jersey top – Again, a layering tool that is made of such heavy jersey that it has gone through many a wash without bobbling.
Skinny belts – I ALWAYS travel with at least two skinny belts. They’re not really for showing off but for holding up things in a hidden way // Grosgrain ribbon and wide black patent belt – So these are both for showing off and I always need to belt things in/up
Black lace slip skirt – Nobody needs to see my knickers so this is v. useful and the lace edge peeking out of things makes me that bit happier //Jens Laugesen trousers, Yves Saint Laurent heels, H&M tank – Really really really cannot live without these trousers because they just happen to be one of the few pairs of trousers that I bothered to try on and fit properly… the tank is a colour that seems to work in many a situation… and the heels are good to snazz up up up as I wish.
Grey tights – I have two drawers of tights and it was hard to pick just one that I wear constantly but the grey fine ribbed ones just about trump it // Vintage body-con dress and navy leggings – I don’t wear this by itself usually but mixed with other things, it makes it a dress that I always travel with… one pair of leggings had to make it into the ‘basic’ list but the navy ones have start to bobble at the knee caps so I’m guessing they have gotten a few wears.
Mouldy, crappy grey beanie hides crappy hair pretty well without drawing too much attention to the situation. I go through a lot of grey loose sweaters bought purposely two sizes up (or man sized) for toning down any one of my fancy schmancy skirts. The opera-length leather gloves were bought a few years ago and may have been a once ‘on-trend’ item but I still wear them every winter where possible. Yes, I work in an office so an office skirt is necessary and this black COS one at least has a nice rigid structure. Let’s not talk about why I love Salvatore Ferragamo bow flats so much again. I just do.
I have several statement blazers of all sorts and funnily enough, they get more wear than the plain ones but that’s probably something to do with the abundance of plain tops/dresses I have. Tight grey jumper as opposed to the loose one above is rarely worn by itself but usually under a dress of some sort. American Apparel black latex leggings made the ‘2nd pair of leggings’ status on the basics list but I now tend to wear them by themselves.
Finally, the coat that keeps me safe from freezing to death had to make it on the list just simply because I can’t really step outside the house without it on these days. I don’t buy new ones that often and this vintage Balenciaga one will hopefully last me a few years.
Oh actually, that isn’t the finally as I have LOST my grey cardigan with gold buttons and I’m already sort of quietly panicking. It is afterall on the B list and thus has some sort of importance attached to it. Where the hell is it….