With the new year, many of you are probably in full-blown clean-up mode. After a load of Christmas gifts enter my house, all I want to do is throw everything else away. Hopefully your closet is one of those places that is getting a clean-out (mine definitely is), so as you clean out, let’s talk about how to do it in a meaningful and positive way so you end up with the right pieces in your closet, rather than just less pieces.
Today let’s talk about bottoms — jeans, skirts, and pants. Which ones are the essentials you need in your closet?
I believe every woman should own at least one of the following:
1. Pencil Skirts
Even if you’re not a working woman, a pencil skirt is a great piece to have in your closet. They’re flattering to most women’s bodies, and are great for dressing up or dressing down. Although I own a bunch of non-stretchy, more professional-style pencil skirts, I’m also a huge fan of the stretchy pencil skirt — they’re perfect with a t-shirt and a baseball cap in the summer! I shared a few ways to style them right here! If you’re starting from scratch, choose a black, navy or gray one since they’re the most versatile.
I love this gray wool one from J.Crew Factory for $59.50. It also comes in a bunch of other gorgeous colors, neutral and bold.
Or if you’re looking for a more casual stretch one, this striped ponte knit one from Old Navy that’s on sale for $11.99 is perfect. The ponte knit is thicker and sturdier, so it keeps your lower half sucked in a bit more while still being super comfy.
2. A-Line Skirts
These are my favorite style of skirt, and are a girl’s best friend. They’re flattering, classic and feminine — all the things you want in a skirt, right? Plus, they’re super fun to twirl in. They go with everything and can be dressed down with a T-shirt or tank, or dressed up with heels. Look for ones with easily wearable patterns, like stripes, gingham, or floral, since those patterns are super easy to mix and match.
And remember: you’re tossing items in your closet, so get rid of any skirts that are too tight, too short, too big, too small, damaged, or worn too thin. If you’re petite, toss your midi-length skirts because they won’t do anything but make you look shorter.
3. Dark Wash Denim
These are a must. No matter how many pairs of jeans you have, a dark wash pair is the most classic and versatile style. They can be dressed up and dressed down, paired with anything, and are great for all occasions. Get the style that fits your body and aesthetic the best, and make sure they fit you really well. Then wear them with blouses, T-shirts, jackets, sweaters, sandals, heels, boots … everything!
4. Medium Wash Denim
These might not show up on every closet essential list, but they’re an essential for me. While dark wash denim is great to have, a good medium wash is my go-to for everyday wear. You can still dress them up with heels for a more casual sophisticated look, but typically I wear them with wedges, ankle boots, or flats. Again, choose your style, and then make sure you buy a pair that fits you perfectly.
5. Non-Denim Pants
As a grown woman, it’s good to have more than just jeans in your pants drawer. A pair of well-fitting pixie pants or slacks definitely has its place and fleshes out your wardrobe a bit. They’re great for casual or dressy events, and if you’re buying a pair for the first time, choose a neutral pair like navy or black with either no pattern or a small subtle pattern like polka dots or a grid pattern.
Old Navy has some great “pixie pants” right now that are perfect for all occasions, like this polka dot pair that are only $29! This plaid pair from Loft for $89.50 are also a great option and would go with anything!
And remember: when you’re tossing old pants, get rid of any that don’t fit you anymore or are a style you don’t wear. The key to a great looking pair of pants is the fit, but also the placement and size of the back pockets. Choose a pair with normal-sized pockets (not over- or undersized) that are right in the center of your backside — not too high or too low, since that will give you weird-looking curves.
If you own all five of these items, your closet will be well-rounded, versatile, and super re-mixable.