The Essentials

The Essentials
January 19, 2015 Rachel Spross

Since this is my very first post, I decided to start with something pretty basic: the essentials. In other words, my must-haves. I have compiled a list below of my top 10 closet essentials (in no particular order):

1. A nice pair of jeans. I usually splurge a little on jeans. Not only will they look better, but they will also last way longer than some cheapies. If I’m gonna go cheap, I tend to go a little cheaper for more trendy things that I probably won’t wear as much, such as printed/patterned jeans, or colored jeans. I prefer skinny jeans or a looser, cropped boyfriend jean.
Rachel’s picks:
$ Forever 21, JCPenney, Target (mostly for the trendy stuff)
$$ BCBGeneration
$$$ Joe’s Jeans7 for all mankindFrame

2. A pair of sneakers. I’m not talking about running shoes here (although I highly recommend having at least one pair of those too) I’m talking trendy. Converse, vintage inspired Nikes, whatever you like! Tennis shoes are totally in right now. Most of the time they’re not too expensive, and they’re actually comfortable! What I love about this is that you can look cute and still be comfy. Trust me, your feet will thank you.
Rachel’s picks:
$$ Converse All-Star, New Balance, Nike
$$$ Superga (I have these and they’re awesome)

3. A pair of riding boots/booties. I am a real sucker for boots. If you get a good pair of boots and you take care of them, they can last you for the next twenty years. Plus, they really never go out of style. Rough on your shoes? Opt for something a little cheaper so you won’t feel so bad about having to replace them. Either way the message is still the same—just like your converse shoes, boots are usually comfortable. Plus, you can dress them up or down. Wear them to class or out on the town.
Rachel’s picks:
$$$ Donald J. Pliner (I have these in 3 colors.. that’s how much I love them), Tory Burch
$$$$ Valentino

4. A Northface/Patagonia jacket. These jackets are durable and can take you from fall to winter, no problem. They’re also great for layering! Plus, they come in an array of colors. Personally, I tend to go for a neutral like gray or tan. Wear it over a t-shirt on the way to the gym or with something a little nicer. It works for both.
Rachel’s picks:
$$ look here for all of your jacket needs

5. Leggings. Leggings are super comfortable and can easily be dressed up or down. I like to throw them on with a big sweater and tennis shoes for class, then change into a nice top and riding boots for the evening. Your best bet is either black or gray, as these colors go with more.
Rachel’s picks:
$ Target
$$ BCBG Max Azria
$$$ Vince

6. A pair of black heels or wedges. Open toe, strappy, pump, it’s up to you! These will come in handy on a night out or for a more formal affair. Black goes with nearly anything so you really can’t go wrong.
Rachel’s picks:
check here for a great shoe site
$$ BCBGeneration
$$$ Donald J. Pliner
$$$$ Christian Louboutin (an investment that will never go out of style)

7. Dare I say it.. A pair of yoga pants. Yeah these aren’t exactly high fashion, but they are practical. They work great for class (again, comfy) and you can also wear them to work out in. Double dipping? Yes please. For when it’s warmer out, go for a pair of athletic style shorts. Same concept. I pretty much live in these.
Rachel’s picks:
$ C9
$$ Nike
$$$ Lulu Lemon, ALO Yoga

8.  A neutral purse. A purse that goes with everything is a necessity. You’ve gotta have that go to bag that you can grab on the way out the door. As I mentioned earlier with the jeans, it’s really smarter to pay more for something neutral that you will wear a lot. A nice purse will last you a lifetime.
Rachel’s picks:
$$ Urban Outfitters
$$$ Rebecca Minkoff, Tory Burch, Kelly Wynne
$$$$ Louis Vuitton, Chanel (investment pieces)

9. Simple t-shirts. A plain white v-neck, baseball tees, graphic tees, whatever your taste may be, go for it! T-shirts such as these can easily be dressed up or down, can be used for layering, and, you guessed it, they’re comfortable!
Rachel’s picks:
Target (I have the best luck in the mens section)
$$ Urban Outfitters
$$$ J.Crew, Free People

10. A flannel shirt. Ok I’m obsessed with flannel so maybe this one is just me.. But I truly believe you can do so much with it! Wear it out to dinner with jeans and cute pair of boots, wear it over a t-shirt, wear it with leggings. There are endless options. Like I said, obsessed.
Rachel’s picks:
$$ Urban Outfitters (I have this particular shirt in 3 different colors)

It is probably painfully obvious at this point that comfort is a big deal for me. My everyday style is pretty relaxed, but when I go out I tend to kick it up a notch (more to come later on daytime vs. nighttime looks). However, during the day, I do so much walking on campus that comfort has become a necessity. Along with comfort, I also love pieces that give me lots of options. I am very interested in quality pieces that I can use for years to come. As I said, my everyday style is more relaxed and comfortable, hence most of these items kind of fall under that category. But, not to worry, there will be plenty of posts (and pictures!) to come about dressing up! What are your essentials? Contact me with your favorites!

*If you read this entire list and hated every single thing, take nothing else away but this: for “the essentials”, buy things that are comfortable and that go with a lot.

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