Capsule Wardobe

The 15 Foundational Pieces Every Wardrobe Should Have

The 15 Foundational Pieces Every Wardrobe Should Have

Nora Attal’s self-portrait for Vogue Arabia
Building an excellent wardrobe takes time and patience. Looking at what you have – and what you might be missing – is a good place to start (refer to Vogue’s step-by-step wardrobe detox guide for tips).
However, there are certain timeless staples that the Vogue editors swear by. Let’s start with the basics: white T-shirts are team Vogue’s MVP. Find a style that fits just right, focusing on the hemline and sleeve lengths. Excellent shirting, too, is a necessity. Pair with trousers, a blazer and loafers – other clothing essentials – for smart occasions, or jeans and trainers for more casual moments.
Outerwear-wise, you can’t go wrong with a trench coat. Twists on the classic silhouette from Kassl Editions and Another Tomorrow are worth the investment. As for bags? Opt for a sturdy tote that’s roomy enough to hold all of your personals.
Here, Vogue’s guide to the clothing essentials that will serve you all year round.

The white T-shirt
Heavy-weight T-shirt
Cotton-jersey T-shirt

“I’m forever looking for the perfect white T-shirt because I pretty much wear one every day,” remarks British Vogue’s global content lead and European deputy editor Sarah Harris. Follow her lead with our pick of the best styles.
Hard-working jeans
501 Levi’s original jeans
Buy NowDistressed high-rise straight-leg jeans
Buy NowChamomile organic cropped high-rise tapered jeans
Buy Now
Finding the perfect jeans is no mean feat, but great ones will last you a lifetime.
An oversized blazer
Fitted essential suit jacket
Buy NowTristan double-breasted twill blazer
Buy Now
When done right, louche tailoring can be exquisitely chic. Our tip? Ensure the oversized fit doesn’t swamp you.
The trench coat
Trench coat in double-face wool-cashmere
Buy NowOrganic cotton-blend trench coat
Buy Now
There’s a reason why trench coats have stood the test of time. Easy to throw on, they instantly pull a look together.
Hoop earrings
Detailed twisted gold hoop earrings
Buy NowHinged 18kt gold-vermeil hoop earrings
Buy Now
No jewelry box is complete without a great pair of hoops.
The do-it-all tote bag
Japanese debossed-logo tote bag
Buy NowAgele coated canvas tote bag
Buy Now
Tote bags are an accessory that you can trust. These roomy styles will fit anything and everything.
Smart loafers
Leather lug sole Horsebit loafer
Buy NowChocolate brushed leather loafers
Buy Now
Facing a footwear conundrum? Loafers are your answer.
The roll-neck
Uniqlo +J middle gauge cashmere blend jumper
Buy NowRecycled-cashmere blend roll-neck sweater
Buy Now
Roll-necks are the ultimate layering piece. Pair with a thermal for extra warmth on chilly days.
The maxi skirt
High-waist split-hem woven midi skirt
Buy NowFront-slit felted-wool maxi skirt
Buy Now
Mini skirts were a key trend for SS22, but maxi skirts will always be in style. Pair with boots and a coat for winter, and sandals with a tucked-in T-shirt or tank top for summer.
The slip dress
Provence open-back lace-trimmed silk-satin midi dress
Buy NowThin-strap silk crepe de Chine slip dress
Buy Now
An effortless option for an evening soirée, slip dresses can be made work-appropriate with a snug knit.
Tailored trousers
Corette wool-twill straight-leg pants
Buy Now
Tailored trousers are a failsafe office essential. If off-the-rail styles don’t fit quite right, visit a tailor to make tweakments.
Trendy trainers

Almost any outfit can be dressed down with a pair of trainers. New Balance 990s are the ultimate “Dad” trainer among the It-girls, while coveted Nike Dunks and Jordans will add pizazz.
The white shirt
Men extra fine cotton broadcloth regular fit shirt
Buy NowOrganic cotton poplin shirt
Buy NowOversized cotton-poplin shirt
Buy Now
Never underestimate the quiet power of a white shirt. Be it clean and crisp poplin or breezy linen, there’s one for every situation.
Wide-leg trousers
Pleated merino-twill wide-leg trousers
Buy NowIgor pleated silk and cashmere-blend wide-leg pants
Buy Now
Breeze your way through 2022 in a flowing pair of wide-leg trousers. If a hemline is too long, get it altered (or alter it yourself).
Black leggings
High-rise zipped-cuff leggings
Buy NowWoolworth stretch-ponte leggings
Buy Now
No longer reserved for gym outings, let black leggings be your style companion in 2022.
Read Next: 20 Conscious Buys to Kickstart a More Mindful 2022
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