Images Courtesy of Elle.com & Dave Martensen
Written by Peyton Haahr
Fashion tends to focus on trends. We’re always looking forward to what’s around the corner and what will be the next hot ticket item that will sweep the runways. In the busyness of everything, shoppers often glaze over a classic or traditional piece that they may need in favor of that trendy, eye-catching one that they may wear once or twice. It’s easy to do - bringing home a leopard print dress seems a lot more exciting that pulling out a pair of tailored black pants. But the things we refer to as “classic fashions” and a “classic fashion style”, are often very useful in our wardrobes, regardless of if the other parts of our closet assimilate or not. And classic styles aren’t boring - sometimes that word gets thrown around because these styles are often associated with professional environments, workplaces, and by extension possibly stress, deadlines, and morning meetings. But this doesn’t have to be the remaining association for the style. Instead, we’re highlighting our favorite classic pieces and the hallmarks of the style that can be applied to any wardrobe.
Image Courtesy of Hypebae
First off, the best and most versatile pieces on the market are often labeled as ‘classics’. Think: button-down tops, tailored trousers, blazers, pointed-toe heels, and structured handbags. The list can go on. They’re pieces that can transition from a professional setting to styled with evening wear looks, party outfits, or travel styles in a pinch. Our stylists here at Matti D have highlighted that a good blazer is a must-have for every woman’s closet, as well as a comfortable pair of sneakers to go with everything. Both of these pieces can be worn a multitude of ways.
Take a blazer, for example. For the streetwear lover bent on not giving up too much ground on their California style: try layering a hoodie underneath your blazer. It could be patterned - tie dye is huge now, or maybe with a graphic print on it. Throw this on over some distressed jeans and sneakers and you’re ready to hit the boardwalk or a beach-side bar. For the casual shopper looking to put a fashionable spin on their workwear wardrobe, we recommend finding a blazer in possibly a navy or grey, and layering with a punchy graphic tee or try a tank top and mesh top for an added special detail. Even stay in that classic vein with a patterned button-down underneath a blazer to maintain a more traditional feel but with a modern twist. For those in love with the nightlife scene, make a blazer and tailored pair of pants just as sexy and sophisticated as any dress would be. For the daring, wear a blazer with nothing underneath or a lacy bra or bodysuit peeking out. If that’s not you, experiment with different bodysuits underneath or sheer tops. You can still achieve that evening look with high-neck bodysuits or sheer long-sleeves. There are some pieces in the fashion world that have a lot going for them, and serve a wide array of people doing a wide array of things. That isn’t to say everyone needs to have each classic piece in their closet, but rather that they will serve most people longer and better than a trendy piece will.
Photos Courtesy of Ferragamo, Burberry, & Stella McCartney Spring 2019 Ready-to-Wear; Indigital.tv
Accessories and handbags should have a sense of purpose to them, and they can be the place for you to show off some color and brightness if you aren’t going for a fully traditional look. A tailored suit can be the perfect canvas for a chunky chain necklace or a bold belt bag to add a bit of personality to your look. Accessories shouldn’t be piled on without thought, but rather should highlight the look as a whole, and made everything cohesive. If you’re worried about a suit look coming off too professional when you’re headed out to dinner with friends, accessorize accordingly. Necklaces with a bit of sparkle or heft are recommended, even pieces that hang down with decorative pendants. Even layering several bracelets and adding rings on multiple fingers can be a very fashion-forward move, offering a less feminine touch to your look.
With handbags, if you’re sticking to a classic and traditional style, we recommend a bag with structure, and little pattern. Supple leathers and polished finishes are our go-to favorites, and structured pieces give off a very sophisticated, put-together vibe. Stay away from crossbody bags to avoid looking slouchy or frumpy, and instead target top-handle bags or clutches. If your outfit is edging towards traditional and you want to bring it back to center, find a bag with a pop or color or a unique texture. Belt bags are incredibly popular, and can give off a gorgeous street-wear feel that makes you look more ready to strut the streets of Los Angeles rather than walk into a board meeting. Or try a backpack (even a mini one) for a bit of prep in your step. Your accessories and handbags can be the place to shine, regardless of what style you’re going for.
Images Courtesy of Valentino, Chloe, and Burberry Spring 2019 Ready-to-Wear; Indigital.tv
In essence, simplicity doesn't mean boring. Simplicity and minimalism in traditional style should be your statement and your message. People connect a traditional style with someone who isn’t into fashion, who spends most of their time in the workplace, or someone out of the loop with the biggest fashion trends. That simply isn’t true. Traditional and classic styles absolutely have a seat at the table, and top the leaderboard of fashion’s most useful and versatile pieces. These styles can be incorporated into virtually any closet and serve so many purposes that there’s no doubt you’ll get your money’s worth out of it in the long run.
Think outside the box of just tailored pieces of clothing and button-down tops. Yes, these pieces are very much the cornerstones of classic dressing, but challenge yourself to incorporate these into your personal style. That doesn’t mean you need to wear it with everything, everyday, but don’t be surprised if you find yourself throwing it on more than you thought you would. Classic styles often remove the hassle from finding things to wear, and allow you to have a lot of fun with the rest of your outfits instead of struggling to piece together disparate, past-trend separates.