June 19, 2015

Basic Checklist: Tops

White tees here & here
Sweaters here & here

Happy Friday everyone and welcome back to the second installment of our newest feature. This week is all about Tops!

My Favorite 6 Basic Tops to Round Out Your Wardrobe
1. The White Tee.  By far the most difficult shopping piece.  There are so many options for fabric, cut, neckline and length that a girl could go crazy searching for the perfect white tee. Empires have been built on this search, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen founded The Row because they couldn't find the perfect white tee.  But you don't have to spend tons of money to find a great option. My favorite white tee is from Old Navy. It's a loose cotton blend v neck and I love it. I love the way it feels on my skin, how soft it feels coming out of the dryer and how the v neck elongates my frame by drawing attention to my collarbone.  If you are thinking - white tee how boring - get one with an added modern twist like the Zara one pictured. The added detail at the neckline gives you just enough edge while still being super versatile.  Added bonus, you don't have to worry about accessories.
2. Chambray.  I was on the fence about Chambray for years until I found a button down at the thrift store and decided to try it. I later kicked myself for not getting one sooner.  This top really does goes with anything. It can stand alone, be layered under a sweater for an instant preppy look or even tied around your waist to break up a monochromatic outfit. Like I said kicking myself for not getting one sooner.
3. Sweaters.  A must for colder weather, a light knit sweater is your best bet. Chunky cable knits are cute and all but they can only be worn in the winter. A light weight knit sweater can be worn 3 of the 4 season or even all year round depending on where you live.  You can layer over them or under them and you have the added bonus of removing layers if you get too warm.  You can't do that with a heavy chunky cable knit.  Search for sweaters in fun colors or with embellishments. The added color and or texture will instantly elevate your outfit.
4. Tank Top.  A must for the Summer months. My closet is full of tank tops.  I have everything from the very basic (pictured above) - great for layering over each other or under another piece for protection. To the more expensive - we are talking designer labels made of fine silk in bright colors.  I wear mine all year round. Yes even in the winter. I just throw a wool cardigan over it and head into the office. Remember how I said my office is freezing in the summer? Well its also extremely hot in the winter. I'll have the vents completely closed, a window cracked and I'm still sweating. 
5. Striped Tee.  Talk about instant class. This is my hands down favorite top.  It had a bad wrap for a few years - horizontal stripes will make you look fat.  But its really come back hard to buck the bad press. Now you can find a quality striped top at every price point. From Target, to J.Crew (LOVE their options) to designers at Neimans.  The one I have pictured above was actually worn recently by Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and who better to bring up in a conversation about basic wardrobe staples than the queen of great basic dressing.  The top is currently on back order, it sold out instantly, but its well worth the wait list. Added bonus you get to dress like a future queen and who doesn't want to feel like royalty.
6. White Button Down.  Aww the most basic and boring of all the staples.  Whether you are part of a wait staff or the CEO of a Fortune 500 you are going to need a white button down.  Invest in a piece made of higher quality fabrics, clean lines and has a crisp collar. You will thank me.  If you need a little something extra out of this piece before you buy it I suggest the Banana Republic one pictured. Banana Republic has really great wardrobe staples and their Fitted Non Iron Shirts are amazing. I have like 3 and this white basketweave one is on my "To Buy" list.  The texture gives it just enough personality without being boring.

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