Fashion can be looked at in two distinct categories — fast fashion and mindful fashion. Fast fashion was introduced by large retailers that provide on-trend merchandise and change their stock every two to three weeks (think H&M and Zara). These clothes tend to be inexpensive and quality can be questionable. A mindful fashion consumer is interested in where the item was made, what fabrics are used and if the brand values sustainability. Shoppers are willing to spend a bit more for quality and longevity of their purchase when it comes to mindful fashion.
There certainly is a place for both. Fast fashion is fun, inexpensive and can provide you with the latest trends. Mindful fashion includes those pieces that can be considered staples, basics or must-haves that should be in everyone’s wardrobes. These essentials can be worn in multiple ways. They can be mixed and matched with trendy pieces and worn casually or dressy. Versatility is key. You may end up spending a bit more on these items, but quality will ensure they last for years and will not go out of style.
5 Essential Items for Every Woman’s Closet
Here are five essential pieces of clothing that should be in every woman’s closet. They can be mixed and matched in a multitude of ways and offer you choice but will inevitably help with the “What will I wear today?” dilemma.
- My first essential is a pair of black pants. It’s the only item of clothing I can think of that suits every age, body shape and size. They can be worn on a daily basis in a variety of interchangeable ways — from casual to business to dressy. I urge everyone to invest in a great pair. You may spend a bit more than you initially planned, but in the end, you will have an invaluable piece that fits perfectly and will last a long time.
- The second essential is a white top. It can be a short or long sleeve t-shirt, or a simple white shirt. This is an article that can be worn on its own or underneath a sweater, shirt or jacket. I’ve had clients object to white because they feel it’s not a colour they can wear, but I tell them it’s not necessary to wear white alone. Just having the white collar peak out of your favourite sweater can change the look of the outfit to be more polished.
- Essential number three is a go-to sweater. It can be cotton, cashmere or a blend of fibres in a basic colour of black, cream, grey, navy, camel or even red. It can be a V-neck, crew-neck or cardigan. A sweater will provide warmth when needed and still keep the outfit looking cohesive and well put together.
- The elusive perfect jean. This may be the most difficult piece of the puzzle to find, but it can be done. Be prepared to try on many — and I mean MANY! — pairs of jeans to find the perfect ones. Once you find them, celebrate with a well-deserved glass of wine! Great jeans can be an expensive purchase, but the right fit and good quality denim is well worth it in the end. A classic cut won’t go out of style and can be worn casually with a pair of sneakers or a sexy pair of heels.
- The fifth and final essential is the little black dress. In my opinion, this piece doesn’t have to be embellished or super fancy. The simpler the better. The degree of fancy comes with the accessories — jewellery, scarves, shoes, etc. You will know the right dress when you find it. You will see yourself in the mirror and feel comfortable and confident. Plan on having this piece for many years. I’m personally not a big fan of dresses. I prefer pants, but there are occasions — such as weddings, funerals, work parties and social engagements — where this LBD comes in handy. It’s nice to know it’s patiently waiting in your closet for when that special event presents itself.
Fashion is a celebration and expression of one’s own personal style. Remember to always choose what you really love, what is comfortable to you and ultimately what makes you feel beautiful having the white collar peak out of your favourite sweater can change the look of the outfit to be more polished.
By Johanna Ventoso, owner of Guapa Boutique
3059 Gottingen Street
St. Joseph’s Square