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Column: 10 wardrobe staples you need in your closet

Inside Caroline’s Closet

Inside Caroline’s Closet is Salute Magazine’s weekly column written by Fashion Editor and Blogger Caroline Noce. Inside Caroline’s Closet will provide weekly tips and trend alerts within the world of fashion and beauty, aiming to inspire women to look and feel their best. 

It’s easy to get carried away while shopping, and spend money on items you will most likely wear only once or twice. That sequined mini dress? Adorable but it will only be worn on New Year’s Eve and then never again.

Before spending money on statement pieces, it’s important to make sure you have all of the basics covered. I rounded up 10 items that every woman needs in her closet. Each item is a perfect basic and can be mixed with a multitude of looks.

White T-Shirt

Photo from Aerie

Photo from Aerie

The most basic of all the basics: the white t-shirt. If you don’t have one that fits well, feels comfortable, and goes with just about anything, you need to change that. Opt for a white t-shirt that’s soft and light so it’s easy to tuck into jeans, skirts, or shorts. Also, choose a white t-shirt that isn’t too sheer, some can look see through despite what type of bra you put underneath. Lastly, look for a round scoop neck. These are easier to layer under dresses or tank tops than v-necks and are often more flattering.

Shop Aerie’s Real Soft Tee- $13.96

Black Leather Jacket

Photo from Revolve

Photo from Revolve

An authentic, good quality black leather jacket may cost you a pretty penny but it’s so worth it. They will never go out of style and can go with any outfit. Throw it on with jeans and a t-shirt to add something extra to a casual look or throw it over a dress and heels to add some edge to a fancier ensemble. A plain black leather jacket is never a bad idea, and every woman should have one in her closet.

Shop Revolve’s Blank NYC Black Smoke Leather Jacket- on sale for $192

High Waisted Blue Jeans

Photo from Amazon

Photo from Amazon

You need a go-to pair of blue jeans that you wear so often you question if it’s even socially acceptable. The answer is yes, it is. High waisted may not be a universally flattering fit but it does work for most body types. If you love a different cut, then go for it, but make sure your jeans fit you well and hug you in all the right places. Also, make sure they have some stretch so you don’t feel uncomfortable all day, wearing stiff denim.

Shop Levi’s 501 Skinny Jeans- $98

Black Turtleneck 

Photo from J.Crew

Photo from J.Crew

A black turtleneck is a great layering piece that’s both cute and functional. Layer it under a dress to transition it from summer to winter. You can also layer a turtleneck under a chunky sweater or blazer for added warmth. They’re generally also very slimming, elongating your neck and arms.

Shop J. Crew’s Tissue Turtleneck- $29.50 

Little Black Dress

Photo from Lulu's

Photo from Lulu’s

When in doubt, opt for an LBD. Take the time to find a little black dress that makes you feel confident and beautiful. You can wear it for date night, or throw on tights, boots, and a leather jacket for a daytime look. The best part is you definitely won’t have to break the bank to find an LBD you love.

Shop Lulu’s High Hopes Long Sleeve Dress- $40

Nude Heels


shoppingNude heels go with just about anything and the skin toned color often makes you appear taller. Opt for a pair of nude heels that are simple and plain so they will be easy to style and choose a heel height that won’t have you in severe pain after thirty minutes.

Shop Sam Edelman’s Yaro Ankle Strap- $120

OTK Boots

Photo from ASOS

Photo from ASOS

Over-the-knee boots are a cold weather must. Black over-the-knee boots in suede or leather will be your best bet. If you’re looking to invest, Stuart Weitzman’s OTK boots are drool worthy. If not, you’re in luck because there are tons of more affordable options available.

Shop ASOS’s Katcher Heeled Over the Knee Boots- $47

White Button Down

Photo from Gap

Photo from Gap

The classic white button down is classic for a reason. Style your favorite white tailored shirt with black leggings or skinny jeans à la Audrey Hepburn, or knot the shirt at your waist and pair it with shorts for a more casual look.

Shop Old Navy’s Classic Clean Slate Shirt- $30

Loafer Slides

Photo from Target

Photo from Target

Loafers are back, although they never really left. Loafers are timeless and will always be appropriate. You can invest in a fancy pair like Gucci’s Princetown Slippers or choose something more low-key instead. Pair your loafers with jeans for an easy, day-to-day shoe. Comfort meets style.

Shop Target’s Rebe Backless Loafer Mules- $25


Shop River Island

Shop River Island

Bad hair days are a serious issue, so you need a hat that you absolutely love to throw on. My favorite is a baker boy cap. They’re chic and trendy and hide the fact that your hair is in some serious need of dry shampoo. Whether you love baseball caps, berets, or wide brimmed hats, find one that makes you feel confident and ready to conquer the day.

Shop River IslandGirls Black Chain Baker Boy Hat- $24

For more outfit inspiration and beauty and style tips, follow @insidecarolinecloset on Instagram.

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