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There are certain items in your closet that we have come to know as timeless pieces, classic garments that are functional and manifest as the building blocks of your personal style. You probably identify these essentials as wardrobe basics, but the problem that some women have with these clothes are the very fact that they are, well, basic. The definition is often mixed up with terms like plain, simple and unsophisticated. While a white t-shirt may not be as statement-worthy as a feminine off-the-shoulder top, how well can the latter mix with the rest of your clothes? How much are you willing to bet that you will wear your t-shirt more times in the year than the shoulder-baring top? Never think of wardrobe basics as boring. Think of them as versatile pieces that are not bound by season or decade, items that can be worn for casual affairs and dressier events. Depending on the basic, these clothes can sometimes be a little difficult to dress up. Thus, some women leave the staples for everyday occurrences and refrain from including them in smart casual and and semi-formal attire. But Pretty Me is all about finding solutions to all the trials and tribulations often experienced with your clothes, and if one of the issues you currently have is with your closet essentials, we’ve got a few outfit ideas for you to upgrade your style. How to dress up your blue jeans Dark, black, and even white denim are quite easy to create dressier outfits out of, but it is slightly tricker with blue jeans in medium to light washes, such as our Old Style Stretch Denim Jeans. Anything with rips and distressed accents are also a bit tough. However, all you need to do to get yourself ready for a dinner party is by cuffing the pants at the right length to show off a pair of cute heels. Wear any fancy top you wish, finish the outfit with a bright clutch or casual jewelry and you are good to go. Try matching your shoes with your accessories to streamline your ensemble.
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How to dress up your white button-down shirt White button-downs and anything resembling our Front Pocket Long Sleeved Shirt are both everyday basics as well as vital pieces for an office capsule wardrobe. With that said, dressing up this item should be easier than other basics in your possession, since the tailoring can instantly add a chic quality to your look. Simply wear it with black pants or a blazer with capris. To keep things fun with a laid-back approach, wear it untucked with long shorts and heeled ankle boots.
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How to dress up your tank Tops like the Burn Out Sleeveless Tank Top are mostly worn as a layer underneath cardigans and outerwear, on its own with jeans or denim cut-offs, or part of workout gear. Some think that they aren’t the most fashion-forward of clothes, but tanks function more as foundational pieces to a snazzy outfit. Think of them as your starting point—a blank canvas, if you will. If you have vests, kimonos and maybe embellished accessories that you would like to balance out with something more subtle, tanks won’t distract from your statement items.
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How to dress up a black turtleneck Black turtlenecks are treated like white t-shirts in the spring and summer, only they’re used in the fall and winter. If you have a form-fitted one, similar to our Slim Long Sleeve Turtle Neck Blouse, you are in good hands. Turtlenecks like these which are less bulky in shape are already quite dressy and sophisticated on their own, perfect for highlighting accessories such as pendant necklaces. You can also wear it as a layer under a basic shift dress to diversify your silhouettes in the colder months.
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How to dress up black pants Another pair of must-have bottoms that every woman should have is black pants that make her look and feel good. Whether you have them in a cropped style, a high waist fit, or a loose leg like our Oversized Harem Wide Leg Palazzo Pants, it’s up to you. The hue and the slimming effect of the pants make it easy to mix and match it with any of your tops. For a formal vibe, opt for a beautiful silk blouse, and for an equally sophisticated look for your off-duty days, try it on with a plain white tee.
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August 02, 2019 | Filed in: Your Closet
Every time I put some extra thought into my workwear, I end up regretting it. The last time I tried hard, by which I mean I dressed up and wore black pants to the office instead of denim, I saw my colleagues wearing jeans and sneakers and felt such envy that I could almost feel myself turn green.
I’m 29, but I have the who-even-cares attitude of a grandma and the personal style of a college student. It’s the only way to describe my countless t-shirts, piles of sweaters, and collection of denim that would put Ralph Lauren himself to shame. And I used to feel bad about it, since it seems like the sartorial version of a failure to launch. But is that so terrible? I’m just more comfortable this way. And it’s the only way I feel like I’m wearing the clothes, versus the clothes wearing me.
One big factor here is that I’ve always worked in an industry that encourages creativity. There were no business suits to be found at the magazines I wrote for, and beyond working at Vogue , a job for which I already knew my sense of style was deeply underqualified, no one seemed to mind my extremely loose interpretation of cool-creative.
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Still, I’ve now managed to find a sweet spot between casual and competent. While I’m a big fan of Casual Me—I, for one, think she looks great—I also want to avoid feeling deep shame when I bump into my old Vogue editor or another industry peer I’d like to impress. (I’ve run into my former editor before while wearing my Saturday best, and it’s never not made me want to hide behind a potted plant.) In refining my personal style, I’ve found that I can show that I want to be taken seriously while expressing my passion for a more relaxed vibe. It all comes down to a few simple tricks.
Leave the negative connotations of “basic” to the children. Basic at its best just means “classic,” and you can’t go wrong with it . First, nothing can take the place of a workhorse like a slim-fit black pant. The Hockley pant plays well with everything, full stop. Meanwhile, a basic tank like the Ronda top works well in a meeting when layered underneath a blazer or knit jacket, but can also be just as good with a pair of jeans for a night out. (Genius details, like snaps to keep your bra straps in place, will also take your comfort level to an all-time high.) A simple white button-up, like the Lila shirt , brings C-suite chic but, all of a sudden, becomes casual-cool when you roll up the sleeves. If this is making your casual self sweat, think of these pieces as ways to instantly step up your style: Whenever you need to look like you really care, just swap in one of them for the usual.
Patterns are ideal if you don’t want to come off as a try-hard. Revealing that you care a lot is deeply uncool, as I experienced firsthand in high school. But patterns are like the kids who’ll do your homework for you: They do the hard stuff and give you all the credit. Plus, patterns can make even a neutral seem interesting.
Take the indigo marble version of the Didion top . The blue-grey palette, watercolor details, and boxy shape work together to make it the centerpiece of your outfit, so you could probably pair pajama pants with it and be in the clear. With it, dark jeans, tailored pants, a skirt like the Dorchester , and even black leggings are fair game. Sit back and relax while the Didion top does the talking for you, conveying to everyone how capable and stylish you are.
A good print, like the swipe print on the Noel dress , can also give you the comfort of a classic silhouette—a wrap dress, in this case—while making it look completely reimagined. Plus, you can layer it with any solid piece, like a dark jacket, and it’ll have just as much impact.
It’s a universal truth: At a certain point in our lives, we start to figure out what works for us. For instance, I know that I cannot go wrong with an A-line dress, because that’s just what fits my body type, which leans towards pear-shaped. I can tell in a glance that, say, the Jessica dress would be a good option for me. Understanding the styles that will instantly click with you will make a big difference, guaranteeing your comfort without going too far out of your way to get it. That would describe a fitted dress like the Gwen or something cinched like the Nanette . Whatever it is, stick to it and you can’t go wrong.
The problem with t-shirts (forgive me) is that they’re rather two-dimensional. There, I said it. They fall straight down from the shoulders. Proportion, then, both at top and bottom, will make all the difference. The perfect example is the Bergman top in ivy print, which features not only a delicate print but also a dramatic cowl in the back. It turns what would otherwise be a straightforward top into something more sculptural and unexpected.
The same goes for culottes, which offer the volume of a skirt with the ease of pants. The Zhou culotte offsets a more slim-fitting top or tank, and while it may seem a little daunting at first glance, trust us: It’s good.
A pair of heels is the equivalent of wearing a badge that says, “I care about this meeting.” The pain in the ball of your foot, however, is the inevitable reply of: “…but how much?” The Ella sandals present the best of both worlds, because while they’re ostensibly heels, they’re only three inches high and feature memory foam on the insole.
How do you dress up a super boring outfit? Some people seem to have unlimited chic outfit ideas, but really, they just make tiny tweaks to basic outfit looks and staple pieces to make them look amazing! Somehow they style things you never thought of to create fresh, style trending looks using the most basic pieces.
It’s a simple process that’s really easy to master as long as you have some basic staples and accessories! After all, basic pieces are the building blocks of any fashionable outfit. So here are a few simple ways to spice up your outfits.
Table of Contents
- 34 Awesome Outfit Ideas To Showoff Your Bralettes
- 18 Wardrobe Essentials Every Woman Should Have In Her Closet
- 13 Practical Fashion Trends That Are Easy To Wear
- 20 Trendy Fall Outfit Ideas For Work
- 5 Sweaters You Need In Your Closet
How to dress up an outfit
Here’s how to dress up an outfit so you always look and feel your best.
1. Wear heels
Adding a cute pair of heels to your outfit will instantly make you look more put together and polished. Your choice of shoes can make or break your outfit. So it makes sense that the better your shoes look, the better you’ll look. And wearing a great pair of heels can make almost any outfit look awesome. You ever look down at another woman’s feet and you’re a little jealous of her shoes? Enough said.
It doesn’t matter if you choose boots, platform sandals stiletto heels, kitten heels, chunky heels you name it. Just wear some. Wear heels with your skinny jeans, your shorts, your skirts your dresses etc. Just choose something that’s comfortable and you’re able to walk in because that also adds to your confidence.
2. Tie or tuck in your top
One of the best ways to spice up a plain shirt or top is to tie it up in the front or tuck it into your jeans. If you do this you’ll highlight and show off your curves rather than hide them plus it’ll add a bit of flair to a boring top. And this just looks a lot better. So the next time you put on your most boring shirt or just want to spice up a button-down shirt, go ahead and tie it up or tuck it in!
3. Put something in your hair
Spending some extra time on styling your hair is always a great way to spice up an outfit and add some flair. Hair accessories seem to be everywhere these days so you’ll have more than enough options to choose from. You can try bows, barrettes, hair scarves or even a cute hat. The hat trick works really well during the cold months or if you’re having a bad hair day by the way.
And if hair accessories aren’t your thing, you can try that new hairstyle, that you’ve been thinking about. I know I’ve bookmarked plenty. Sometimes the best way to add some interest to your look isn’t with your clothes but with your hair. So go ahead and try something new!
4. Add some layers
Adding layers to your outfit is a great way to add some individuality and simply just changing what you layer on top of what, can also make a big difference. Like wearing a dress over a blouse or cardigan for example. We’ve all seen plenty of women rocking this look and it can look awesome if done right. So take out that dress put it over that shirt and make it work! Layering is also good for taking your outfit from day to night without having to make any changes.
For example, you can start off by layering a cute cardigan over your jeans and t-shirt and even take it further and layer a leather or denim jacket on top of that to complete the look. So what was once a super basic outfit now has some life and some spark. Now throw on a pair of heels and there you go. This little trick is super easy to do as the weather starts to cool down. Throw a camel coat over top of whatever you’re wearing and you instantly look expensive.
5. Add some colour
Adding colour to your outfits can be a major style changer and something too many people are afraid to do. I know, I’m like that too. Sometimes you want to stick to what you know but don’t. Go ahead and step out of your comfort zone. You might be surprised how much better you look because of it. And this doesn’t have to be a major change. To start simply add some colour with your little black dress, that’s it!
Now, this could be in the form of your jewelry, your shoes, your clutch, handbag. Anything, even a belt! There are some shoes out there that will make your outfit and you won’t need anything else. Remember the last time you saw another woman wearing the most basic looking outfit and yet still she looked so good? She was probably wearing colour. Adding colour to your outfit will always capture the eye and make you stand out from the crowd. Go ahead and try it!
6. Add a belt
Adding a belt over top of a dress or with a pair of jeans will add some style and spark to any boring outfit. And it’s also a super-easy way to pull your look together and emphasize your curves if you’re wearing a loose-fitting top or dress. You just look that much better if you’re wearing a belt with a bit of bling, colour or texture to catch the eye. It’s okay if your belt is the focal point for your outfit.
With just a few belts that you may already have in your closet, you can transform any of your oversized shirts, dresses, cardigans, and even coats to fit and flatter your shape. This trick also works amazingly well when you’re wearing lots of layers or when you want to create the illusion of a small waistline.
7. Add some accessories
There are so many ways that you can spice up a boring outfit, adding some accessories to what you’re already wearing can make all the difference. Adding a scarf, a chunky necklace or some big earrings, for example, can instantly make you look more trendy. And even better scarves will keep you warm if you’re cold; look good and feel good! Knitted scarves are great for chilly days and one with a colourful print works for spring.
Your jewelry also helps to add interest to your clothes. You can add a colourful necklace, a statement bracelet or earrings to add a bit of sparkle. Jewelry has always been one of the best statement pieces for any outfit. Just keep in mind that even your plain white t-shirt and jeans can look that much better when you add tasteful accessories to the mix. So experiment and have some fun!
8. Roll up your jeans
Now, this last trick might not even seem to make a difference but trust me it does. It’s so simple and easy that you may already do it and not even notice. Yes, cuffing your jeans or rolling them up makes your outfit look better. And it’s a great way to show off your shoes and ankles and make your legs look longer.
To pull it off though you have to make it look casual rather than perfect. You can try a single or a double roll. A single roll works well with stiff, straight-leg jeans and double rolls work with your baggier jeans. Just find what works for you and rock it.
What are some of your go-to tricks for how to dress up an outfit? Share with us in the comments!
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Avoid Faux Pas by Following Basic Guidelines
Do you ever wonder if the latest fashion trends are appropriate for you? Have you ever heard negative comments about pants or a dress being too tight, too short, or too anything?
Fashion and style involve much more than what you see in magazines. It’s about a personal look, comfort, and dressing appropriately.
Fashion trends change every season, so you’ll see pieces going out of style just as quickly as they arrived on the fashion scene. However, good manners will always be in vogue, so when you choose whatever current fashion to wear, don’t push proper etiquette aside.
Opinions and First Impressions
People pass judgment on you based on how you look, how you act, and how respectful you are to others. Give yourself every advantage by following proper fashion etiquette guidelines. It’s always a good idea to have something in your closet that is versatile enough to be worn for a variety of occasions. You can break up a suit and wear the jacket with a dress and the slacks with a tank top and cardigan.
When dressing for the workplace, you need to consider the environment and dress code of the company. Most companies today request business casual, but there are still some that want their employees to come to work in professional business attire. Many offices allow casual attire (jeans and T-shirts) every day of the week and not just casual Friday.
Professional business attire requirements mean you should wear a suit, hose, and closed-toed shoes. Jewelry should be understated and not flashy.
Before you go on a job interview, do some research to find out the company dress code. It’s always a good idea to step up your interview outfit a notch to show that you value the position and would like to stand out positively. Knowing that you look good will also give you more confidence during the interview.
When you are with friends, almost anything goes. Just make sure you don’t dress in an offensive manner that might embarrass, humiliate, anger, or annoy your pals. Before you step outside your door, take time to do some grooming. Shower, brush your teeth, comb your hair, wear clothing that suits the occasion, and check yourself in the mirror one last time.
Consider the Event
Always consider the event and venue before choosing an outfit. If you are attending a church wedding, you’ll probably want to wear something dressier than if the vows will be exchanged on a beach. If in doubt, you can contact the bride, groom, or someone from the bridal party.
Funerals are somber occasions, but that does not mean you have to wear black unless the family of the deceased requests it for religious or cultural purposes. However, you don’t want to dress like you’re going to a garden party or out to a nightclub either. Be respectful and dress in something conservative that doesn’t stand out. This is not the time to be flamboyant.
You want to dress your age. This doesn’t mean that if you are a grandmother you should wear a shirtdress, apron, and dowdy shoes. It simply means that you should cover up any parts of your body that have started to sag or drag, and have support for anything that gravity has caused to droop.
The older you are the more tailored your clothing should be. Gauzy tops that the older woman wore back in her teen years will make her look like she dug her outfit out of someone’s garbage can. While young women may look cute wearing cheap, bold fashion jewelry, older women may look like bag ladies in the same pieces. It’s always better to wear less jewelry of a higher quality than a ton of cheap shiny bling.
Pieces That Work for Many Occasions
The well-dressed woman knows what looks good on her and has a closet filled with the basics that can be changed with accessories, jackets, sweaters, and shoes. There are some articles of clothing that every woman should have. The key is to add other pieces to suit the occasion. Purchase the highest quality of basic pieces you can afford and pay less for trendy items that will go out of style by next season.
Basic pieces every woman should have in her closet: