The Hardest-Working Staples to Buy Now and Wear Forever

Emma Spedding
·5-min read

As an editor of a fashion website, I spend a lot of time reporting on new trends, new labels and new ways to wear things. However, sometimes you really never can beat a classic, and it's arguably more important to build a wardrobe that you'll love for years, if not decades. Thinking of the longevity of your purchases not only is a way to have a more sustainable approach to fashion but will also help you to carve out a style that is timeless and feels truly you.

The idea of a capsule wardrobe created a real buzz around 2014 when a number of industry figures promoted a compact closet built of pieces that all perfectly match. There are some items that we think will always rise high above trends, making them the perfect pieces to invest in and add to your capsule (or not-so-capsule) wardrobe.

From the jeans that have been popular for decades to the accessories you'll treasure forever, here are the chicest items that will quite simply never die.

Longer lengths have proliferated over the last couple of years, with midi skirts becoming one of the fashion crowd's go-tos for a polished getup.

Jonathan Simkhai Jalya Camel Pleated Faux Leather Midi Skirt (£400)

A new entry in the staple shoe stakes: chunky boots are set to become a trusty piece. Watch this space.

Arket Chunky-Sole Leather Boots (£175)

The jumpsuit is one of those pieces that work for every season and are so easy to style. For winter, add a roll-neck and chunky boots. In summer, just add a pair of strappy sandals.

Whistles Lf Markey Floyd Boilersuit (£180)

Flattering, timeless and chic, the shirtdress is the wardrobe icon that looks good one everyone.

Joseph Dold Crepe De Chine Dress (£495)

Black leather Chelsea boots are always elegant, and ACNE Studio's Jensens are our favourites.

ACNE Studios Jensen Leather Boots (£410)

When it comes to denim, we believe everyone should own a pair of white jeans. They work year-round.

Arket Ecru Jeans (£55)

In our experience, a neutral bodysuit is a serious multitasking wonder: Wear it with high-waisted trousers, slip under a dress or layer up with a shirt.

Heist The Outer Body in Black (£95)

As Burberry proves, a classic trench coat never goes out of style.

King & Tuckfield Two-Tone Cotton-Drill Trench Coat (£750)

This was a wardrobe staple for Audrey Hepburn, too.

Autograph Striped Long Sleeve Top (£21)

Another Audrey-approved buy? A little black dress that will last you decades if you opt for a classic shape.

& Other Stories Jacquard Lace Collar Mini Dress (£95)

When it comes to leather jackets, the ACNE Studios biker is the dream, but we also recommend this Mango iteration as a high street alternative.

Acne Studios Mock Smooth-Leather Biker Jacket (£1200)

White shirts aren't just for work, as they will slot into your weekend wardrobes too.

Arket Oversized Poplin Shirt (£59)

A pair of tan leather sandals are a wardrobe classic—whether you go for Hermès Orans or a Zara equivalent.

Dune Loupe (£85)

A gold pendant is another chic item that will survive all your wardrobe clear-outs.

Alighieri Il Leone 24kt Gold-Plated Necklace (£350)

When it comes to handbags, a Chanel 2.55 quilted bag is the definition of timeless.

Chanel Grained Calfskin and Gold-Tone Metal (£4620)

These Gucci horse-bit loafers could feature in Eva Chen's signature pose for decades, as they are that timeless.

Gucci Brixton Leather Horsebit Loafer (£540)

Whatever age you are, a cashmere jumper is always considered a stylish luxury.

H&M Cashmere Polo-Neck Jumper (£120)

You might have to replace your white T-shirts regularly, but they will forever be a wardrobe building block.

Arket Crew-Neck T-shirt (£15)

Belts might seem like a boring purchase, but they can actually make any outfit look so much more put-together.

Mulberry 30mm Boho Buckle Braided Belt (£195)

Ballet pumps are the "skinny jeans" of the shoe world. They are making a comeback that this year in cool, fun tones and were definitely one of the trending flat-shoe styles of 2020.

Dune Hellen Pointed Toe Ballet Pumps (£18)

When it comes to outerwear, a classic camel coat never dates. Especially if it's Max Mara.

Bottega Veneta Single-Breasted Belted Cashmere Coat (£3790)

As for jewellery, a pair of gold hoops is a solid investment—whether they are tiny, simple rings or a more statement silhouette.

Thomas Sabo Hammered Gold-Tone Clip-On Hoop Earrings (£179)

Simple white trainers—whether they're Veja or Converse—are also not going to date.

Veja Campo Sneakers (£140)

It's always worth having a polka-dot dress in your wardrobe.

Ganni Puff-Sleeved Polka-Dot Recycled Polyester Dress (£245)

When it comes to dresses, a vintage-style floral tea dress will have a place in your wardrobe for years and years.

Asos Design Tie Neck Button Through Maxi Tea Dress in Mono Floral (£35)

A.P.C.'s half-moon bag is a timeless accessory, and it's under £345.

APC Demi-Lune Leather Crossbody Bag (£188)

A printed silk scarf is the sort of item you'll pass on to your grandchildren. And the good thing is they can be styled in dozens of ways.

Paco Rabanne Silk Handkerchief (£53)

Black pumps are the pièce de résistance of trends, and you'll have them as long as the stilettos remain standing.

Christian Louboutin Kate 85 Suede Pumps (£525)

Denim trends come and go, but skinny jeans remain timeless.

Topshop Indigo Leigh Jeans (£30)

Thankfully, there are plenty of double-breasted jackets around this season.

& Other Stories Boxy Double Breasted Blazer (£165)

This piece was published at an earlier date and has since been updated.

Next up, Autumn/Winter 2020 Trends: The New Fashion Looks You Need to Know

Promo image: @femmeblk

This article originally appeared on Who What Wear

Read More from Who What Wear