By Boma Benjy – Iwuoha
A famous 90’s Television character and style icon Carrie Bradshaw once said: “I like my money right where I can see it: hanging in my closet.” Many women may not speak in those exact words, but they are sure as hell saying the same thing in many different ways. They want to see their money hanging in their closet.
Carrie was the lead character of the 90’s American romantic comedy television series, Sex and the City. I remember an episode where she was struggling to pay her rent while living the big city, yet she had tons of expensive shoes hanging in her closet and still went out to purchase a Manolo Blahnik. Hilarious right; that’s the case with a lot of women today; I’m not judging, I do that too.
Why do we keep buying all this stuff and filling up the closet? Most women can relate to having purchased a bag or a pair of shoes that cost so much, but after 13 months, they still haven’t found the right time or occasion to wear it. Weird right? You don’t want to give it out either and not because you just “Love” it so much, but you’re probably thinking about how much it cost you and how no one will understand the value as people generally assume hand me down items are usually cast-offs.
I’ve been trying to figure out a way to keep my money hanging in my closet, without waking up 13 months later to whine about my bank balance; so here’s what I found.
As a working girl, you basically have the need to upgrade your wardrobe from time to time, so keep it simple. With these 15 basic items in the closet, you’ll never be caught with anything to wear in the spur of the moment and you won’t have to splurge all the time. You can always make a calculated buy and you wouldn’t have to spend so much on that spur of the moment yellow jacket that you’ll never find the time to wear. Now, what are these basic items that you need as a working girl to get you going?
A Plain White Tee
You may be wondering, why plain white? Yes we all love designs; but a plain white T-Shirt is a classic. It knows no season, you wear it with your blazer and you’re ready to go. You throw it on a skirt and you can accessorize, you throw it on a pair of denim and its casual Friday. This is one item you definitely should keep in that closet.
Ballet flats are cool. My sister will probably laugh all through when reading this, because I’m a heels person. I couldn’t understand why I should keep flats in my wardrobe back in the day. Funny right? Good old days, I went almost everywhere in heels, I bought shoes that I never wore again, but right now, my ballet flats come in handy, trust me, you don’t want to wear those heels everywhere; you need this one in your wardrobe for those crisis days. I also used to think they weren’t elegant enough, how wrong was I?
An Elegant Blazer
Every lady should have an elegant blazer in the closet. It helps your clothes multi-task; you throw a blazer over a short striped dress that you ordinarily wouldn’t wear into an office building and you’re ready for a board meeting. Throw it over a worn pair of denim and a pair of heels and you’re ready to meet the girls; you dress up in those brightly coloured dresses that scream “The Beach Only” and when you throw on an elegant blazer, you can make a grumpy Monday look so bright.
This is one item every working girl should keep in the closet and make sure you get one that hangs your money where you can see it.
We all have those days when we have absolutely no idea what to wear. You do not want to look shabby and you do not want to look too glam. The Slip-On sneakers do the trick.
A Striped Shirt
Why a striped shirt right? It’s always extreme, either too stuffy or too conspicuous. Yes, a girl needs to be one of both at some point and you do not want to break the bank whenever you feel that way. Thin stripes or bold stripes, it’s a timeless classic and always in season. Whether it’s peeking out underneath your blazer, denim jacket; or worn over a classic pair of pants. You definitely need this money hanging in your closet.
Classic Black Pants
Every lady needs this baby, it cannot be overemphasized. The office, the bar, the church, with a casual chiffon tank top; black pants are always in, so keep your money where you can see it and use it wisely.
A Wallet you can Show Off
We all get to that age when you just can’t be caught pulling out just any wallet. Vintage, branded or just chic, whatever you choose to throw in as a wallet, make it classy. It may cost a bit, but you always hold it smiling. Don’t embarrass your girls on nights out.
A Silk Scarf
This comes in handy all the time, it an accessory every lady should have. Scarves can change the look of a white T-Shirt, from casual to chic. It can transform your party dress to office wear and it goes with the little black dress all the time. It’s not just a piece of accessory that embellishes your outfit, it an article of grace and style, so don’t make it a cheap piece. Get one that you can always throw around your neck and you’re ready to go.
A Classy Handbag
Now, this is one of the most important accessories in a lady’s wardrobe. If you can afford so many, ensure you have one in a colour that can fit all shades of clothing. The handbag is the most accessible item an ordinary working woman can afford. Dressed for a day at work, a little picnic or a lunch date, you are most certainly going to be wielding one; so don’t go too cheap, it’s time to hang your money where you can see it ladies; on your shoulders.
An Evening Clutch
Being a lady usually comes with a slew of invitations; weddings, cocktails, anniversaries etc. You will always need a clutch to go with your outfit and those things don’t come cheap. You don’t want to get one every time you are invited to an event. Get the perfect one that goes with all and splurge when the need arises.
A Little Black Dress
I am not preaching the little black dress; that’s part of being a lady, I know you have it, just do it right. Get a fantastic one and accessorize.
A Pair of Classic Pumps
Pumps may not be everyday shoes, but you need a good one for the heyday. Running around in stores at the last minute is not pretty and makes you buy things you do not really want. When you have a beautiful pair of pumps or more, yes I know “A lady can never have enough shoes”, you would be more comfortable shopping with your perfect pumps in mind. Trust me; it makes shopping easier and dressing up so much fun.
Get a pair of dark colour denim. Yes; dark colour. When they are dark, they serve different purposes, dress chic; a casual, working girl and no one will be the wiser. You don’t want to get light colour denim if you intend to keep just a pair; people will definitely remember a white pair. With the right shoes or blazers, you can make your denim ready for the congress and with sneakers same denim gets you on the boat with sailors. You definitely want to spend good money on this piece.
A Classic White Shirt
Just like the little black dress, a wardrobe essential for every girl. Don’t even think about it, just get out your credit card and splurge on this item. The white shirt is always right.
A Leather Belt
This is an absolute necessity. I do not know what I would do without my belts. Those pants, denim and even dresses need them to complete the look any time of day. It is a must-have accessory, One of those clothing items that many people never seem to notice they are there but is always needed. Try putting on your corporate pants without a belt. They’re the right size, but you look awkward right? So make it worthwhile and keep your money where you see it.
A Casual Jacket
Though you can wear the blazer everywhere, you do not want to overdo it. The casual jacket has its uses. Denim, leather or material girl, you need a throw over jacket every now and then. The more the merrier.
A Weekend Bag
You don’t want that embarrassing moment when you need to jet off in a jiffy and you rummage your closet to find you’ve spent all that money and not a single ready to go bag. You don’t want to be the girl next door that has to ask to borrow your neighbour’s perfect weekend bag or you spend a ridiculous amount that was never on your budget, not because you cannot afford it; but you spent all your time, shopping for the wrong items. Bottom line; invest in a classy weekend bag, this is one investment you will never regret it because every girl needs one.
The Famous Yves Saint Laurent says; “Fashions fade, style is eternal”, so don’t be afraid to spend good money on these items. If you get the right pieces in your wardrobe, you’ll definitely beat fashion in time. Classics never go out of fashion and you never look out of place when you’ve got a style.
Remember; “Fashion is what you’re offered four times a year by designers. And style is what you choose.” — Lauren Hutton