Dressipi Blog

I am at school and would love some help creating a capsule wardrobe for spring/summer 2012…

Posted on: February 27, 2012

QUESTION: Hi:). I have been asking a lot lately.. sorry!!  I was wondering if you could give me a hand in creating a 24 piece capsule wardrobe for spring/summer 2012. Some examples and what are musts in my new wardrobe would be really helpful!

ANSWER: Ask as many times as you like -that’s what we are here for. Well, it’s very good to think of your wardrobe in terms of a capsule wardrobe. That way you get the best and the most wear out of your clothes. You don’t have to spend a lot of money and you certainly don’t have to rush out and buy 24 items or even 10 all at once. Also, we are at the beginning of a new fashion season, so over the next few months the stores will be filling up with some glorious new pieces. Building a capsule wardrobe is all about working with what you have already got and introducing a few gems to update your look. Use the ideas below as a guideline and see what you already have in your wardrobe that fits in. The whole idea behind a capsule wardrobe is that your pieces should all multi-task and work with each other – as well as flattering your shape. You also need to think what you need your wardrobe for. You are at school at the moment, so most likely your wardrobe revolves around weekends and hanging out with your friends.

DRESSES: Remember I mentioned to you in your first email to us that you should invest in a versatile dress. Something in a simple colour and one that you can change the look of with fun accessories and your shoes for example. If you have two of these in your wardrobe it’s a great start. This River Island sleeveless shirt dress (one of your likes) is great. Although it’s quite classic it channels the Safari trend because it has a cool utilitarian feel to it. Your beige fedora would look great with this, and leopard print ballerinas (or your long socks and lace up brogues). For a completely different look add bright bursts of colour with a fun scarf and coloured denim jacket. Have a look at H&M, they do fabulous inexpensive t-shirt dresses that are perfect versatile pieces.

JEANS:  Again in your last email, I suggested you have a bit of fun and buy a coloured pair of jeans. I explained how you could style those with a contrast coloured denim jacket. For spring/summer it’s all about pastels, but bright jeans are still here to stay. You can style a pastel jean with a pastel t-shirt or a t-shirt in a simple shade like black or grey. You should also have a regular pair of jeans in your wardrobe. Also snap up a pair of denim shorts (they come in every colour under the sun!).

JACKETS: This Forever21 denim jacket is from your first email recommendation. A fun coloured denim jacket is a must for your wardrobe. Candyfloss colours and pastel shades are key this season. This blue is great because it’s more of an ice-blue colour as opposed to a very pale blue, so you will have it in your wardrobe forever. This jacket can be worn with your versatile dress, with a skirt, jeans or shorts look. It’s also good to have a classic style jacket in your wardrobe – think Alexa Chung preppy chic. This grey jersey piece from Zara is both stylish and laidback. This jacket will give a versatile dress a completely different feel altogther. Imagine this piece with a versatile dress and lace up brogues. Or, the denim jacket with a pair of bright coloured high top trainers.

SKIRTS: Your beige Forever21 skirt is a good wardrobe piece. You can make it fashion friendly with an on trend print top. Pick another fun skirt like this Oasis polka dot number. It’s very cute! What’s more pencil skirts (and polka dot prints) are still here to stay thanks to the 50’s trend. This would look great with either of your jackets and a simple plain t-shirt. You could also do a fun head-to-toe polka dot look with the H&M spot blouse from your last email.

TOPS:  Hang on to any basic t-shirts and jersey tops that you have. They are essential wardrobe must-haves. Tees in plain colours work a dream with crazy colours or prints. Also, you’ll want to throw one of these on with a pair of jeans or your tracksuit when you come home from school. Tops are a fun way to introduce new season trends to your wardrobe, like the latest prints (think animal, floral, scarf, tribal) t-shirt or blouse. Also think of new styles that channel new trends. Another big trend this season is the Sports Luxe trend. Imagine athletics gear given a huge fashion glam-over. So, a silky like top with a racerback detail would be great, like this piece from Topshop. It would look fabulous with a simple pair of jeans or it will give an edgy touch to the polka dot skirt and a very cool spin to the Forever21 skirt. Dress up a pair of denim shorts with this cool top too.

You’ll also want a basic cardi and jumper like this H&M piece for those comfy days or to layer over t-shirt tops and your jeans.

ACCESSORIES: If you don’t want to spend a lot of money on a new season wardrobe, simply introducing a cool accessory will do the fashion trick. Even if your whole outfit is very neutral and low-key, if you throw on a printed scarf it changes the whole look. These two are gorgeous and completely different. The Dorothy Perkins oversized pink scarf is great when you want to brighten up a look or clash colours. So imagine the H&M dress in blue, with your blue denim jacket and this bright pink scarf and a pair of Converse. The River Island piece in a tribal print gives a subtle fashion touch to a look. Wear this with the safari style shirt dress and leopard print ballerinas. Or with a pair of denim shorts and a white shirt or t-shirt. You might also like to snap up a statement cuff. These oversized bangles in metallics or bright colours stormed the catwalks. If you’re having one of those “I’m just going to hang around in my jeans and t-shirt” days, popping on a statement bangle (like this piece from H&M) gives an instant fahsion touch without too much fuss. After all just because you’re taking it easy doesn’t mean you cannot do it in style.

SHOES AND BAGS:  Think about a pair of animal print ballerinas (or something in a wild colour), a pair of Converse trainers, maybe a metallic pair of flat sandals and lace up brogues – it really depends what you like wearing. You’ll want a bag that looks fabulous and keeps your bits ‘n pieces safe for when you go shopping with friends or out for pizza. This across the body bag from Topshop ticks all the boxes. It’s in a moc-snakeskin (a hot catwalk look) and is quite a ladylike style but still very cool. This candy colour will go with everything recommended here…remember it’s ok to go for a bit of a clash.

TO SUM UP:  A capsule wardrobe is all about playing fashion maths (see – those maths lessons are important!). The main thing about all of these pieces is that you can mix and match them with each other to create different looks. Use this as a template. It’s not a question of snapping up 24 pieces for your wardrobe all at once, it’s more about slowly building up a wardrobe that works with everything in it and that you enjoy wearing. Some of your pieces might also be investment pieces. For example, you might want to spend a little bit more on a coat (not now) or a parka. You might also think that you’ll need a good dress in case you have to go to a wedding or an important birthday party. Enjoy building up this wonderful wardrobe. Natalie x

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