We all know the feeling of rushing to get dressed in the morning. As a stay-at-home mom, it’s so tempting to just grab a pair of comfortable yoga pants and a tee with some trendy slogan on it and run out the door, but I beg you to fight the urge! There’s definitely an appropriate setting for yoga wear (like, uhh, yoga class), but you do not need to make it your default closet staple. You can just as easily pull your outfit together when you have a few simple go-to basics in stock. Here are my top ten essentials for any woman on the go:
- A button-down blouse. I tend to stick to solids and neutrals, but feel free to play around with patterns and colors here. Try out a great plaid or a classy chambray, and don’t forget to roll up the sleeves for a more casual feel. Bonus – the button-down style makes easy access for nursing mamas. Chic and practical!
- A knit tee. So, I’m not really reinventing the wheel here with the tee-shirt style, but look for more luxe fabrics or soft knits to add a boost of interest to an otherwise ho-hum look. Don’t hone in on high price tags either. You’d be surprised how an affordable tee can look much more expensive with the right fabric.
- A high-neck tank. Remember how we talked about the frustration of keeping up with ever-changing trends? Here’s an example of a major shift in style as of late, but I’m really not mad about it. Necklines are rising higher and higher, making it much easier to look put-together and chic as you simply throw on a tank and go. This style tank looks great tucked into a fun skirt or more structured pant.
- A skinny jean. Look, they’re everywhere, and they’re definitely not going away any time soon. But there’s a right way to wear them, and there’s a wrong. Find a pair that you feel great in. If you can strut the skin-tight look, you go mama! But remember, we don’t need to read the label on your underwear. Make sure the denim is thick and structured with a little stretch. You may initially have to pay a bit more for a great pair, but I promise it’s worth it. My favorite pair are Seven For All Mankind that I found at Nordstrom Rack for less than half the retail price. I think I got my money’s worth in the first 2 months of purchasing them. I also love my Paige denim. (they’re actually maternity, but you’d never know! Shhh!)
- A slouchy boyfriend jean. Your skinnies need a break for the weekends, and sometimes this mama doesn’t feel like doing squats to get my pants on in the mornings. Pair these with a more structured blouse and a pointy-toe flat to keep it from looking sloppy. Casual is fine. Frumpy is not.
- A cropped chino. We don’t always have the luxury of wearing denim, but you’ll feel just as relaxed in a great pair of not-khaki khakis. Look for a slim, skinnier fit that hits just above the ankle, and don’t be afraid to try out some fun prints and patterns here. Pair these with a simple cotton tee or high neck tank, and your look with be elevated far above the plain tee-and-jeans combo.
- A cotton swing dress. You guys, it’s hot. And it’s not cooling off quite yet (or EVER in Miami. Sigh). It’s easy to look and feel comfortable with a great lightweight swing dress. I’m a sucker for a stripe, but it’s hard to go wrong with an easy dress like this. Transition it into the fall by layering on a great denim jacket or easy blazer. Done and done.
- A lace-up ballet flat. I love heels, but they’re just not practical for my day-to-day lifestyle. Besides, it’s hard enough to keep my balance without a squirmy 20 pound ball of cuteness in my arms. I have been searching high and low for a phenomenal pair of lace-up flats that won’t cost three months of mortgage, and I finally found a pair that I can get on board with. These can be paired with almost anything, and they definitely add a bit of interest to my feet until they get their turn in some date-night heels.
- A lightweight blazer. Throw this on over almost anything and you’re instantly chic. Even in your boyfriendliest denim, you’ll still be taken seriously with the right blazer. And don’t be afraid to try out colors and patterns here. I love a great blush blazer, and a navy can look just as chic in the evening as a black.
- A bucket bag. Crossbody bags are still very relevant, but the bucket silhouette this season is such a fresh change to the typical boxy clutch. Try it in a light nude for that clean daytime look, or amp it up with a dark suede for a more luxe vibe.
So challenge yourself this week to put away those sweats and try dressing like a grown up. You’ll take yourself more seriously, and so will everyone else. Practice mixing and matching some of these basic outfit pieces together for endless combinations. And as always, remember to find what works for YOU. Leave a comment and tell me about your go-to basics!