the sunday brief | back to basics | bottoms

last week, we started a series called opens in a new windowback to the basics that discusses building a wardrobe with core essentials, or as i like to call them, the basics. remember, every successful wardrobe is built on a strong foundation, and often, some pre-work is necessary to lay that foundation.  the first step begins with a opens in a new windowcloset cleanse.  after you’ve finished that, assess the state of your wardrobe. ask yourself, “yeah, i want that new skirt with a bold print, but do i have anything that will go with it?”  you will if you have the basics; you won’t if you don’t.  remember, we’re looking to build a wardrobe containing essential women’s fashion: bottoms to tops.

always remember:  the basics as the items that marry any two garments together. they are typically year-round pieces that easily transition from one season to the next—outfit to outfit. basics are neutrals: black, white, nude/camel, grey, and navy. the goal of building your wardrobe with the basics is to have a closet filled with those essential items that will carry you during any transition period with as few updates as possible. when your wardrobe foundation is built correctly, you will only replace a few items each year which is easy on your pocketbook.

last week, we talked about opens in a new windowbasic tops.  this week, it’s all about bottoms. and since so many of you love opens in a new windowTalbots, most of my recommendations are pulled from there today.  are you ready? let’s dive in.

essential women’s fashion bottoms: skirts

a skirt in any neutral color will work. but most women have at least one black skirt. if you have room for only one skirt choose a style that can work for day and night. length, fit and fabric are key.

urban stripes

opens in a new windowpencil skirt | opens in a new windowponte skirt | opens in a new windowa-line skirt | opens in a new windowmidi skirt | opens in a new windowmaxi skirt 

both a opens in a new windowponte or opens in a new windowseasonless pencil skirt are perfect for the office, but they can be dressed down for the weekend with a jean jacket. if possible add a variety of styles: opens in a new windowa-line, wrap, opens in a new windowmidi, and opens in a new windowmaxi.


some women might forego a skirt altogether and head straight to pants. again, length, fit, and fabric are key.

timeless journey

opens in a new windowtrousers | opens in a new windowankle pants | opens in a new windowcrop pants | opens in a new windowwide-leg pants

 a opens in a new windowtrouser in will work year round. again, add a variety of styles that suit your figure: opens in a new windowankle, opens in a new windowstraight leg, and opens in a new windowwide-leg.


yes, blue jeans make the basics list. a pair of denim can be dressed up or down with ease and work for so many occasions. opens in a new windowstraight leg blue jeans in a dark rinse are the most versatile style. but mix in a variety of styles to give you options.

opens in a new windowstraight leg | opens in a new windowankle | opens in a new windowflare | opens in a new windowboot cut | opens in a new windowskinny

in my opinion, you can never have too many pairs of blue jeans:  boyfriend/girlfriend, opens in a new windowankle, distressed, frayed, opens in a new windowflare, wide-leg, cropped flare, opens in a new windowboot cut. the list goes on and on. and, yes, some of these styles are trendier than others. once upon a time opens in a new windowskinny jeans were a trend. now they are a closet essential. don’t forget to add white, black, and grey into the mix. plus denim skirts.

cargo pants

some of you might be scratching your head wondering why  opens in a new window(J.Crew) cargo pants made the basics list. aren’t cargo’s trendy?

honestly, these make my classic list as they flatter any figure but have a little edge. and now they’re a wardrobe staple. green or camel are my top color choices. try a straight leg or ankle.


opens in a new windowthe little black dress isn’t a bottom, technically. but this is a wardrobe basic nonetheless.

working shift

opens in a new windowflare dress | opens in a new windowwrap sheath dress | opens in a new windowa-line dress | opens in a new windowshift dress | opens in a new windowshirdress

add a variety of styles to your closet. opens in a new windowsheath, opens in a new windowwrap, halter, opens in a new windowa-line, opens in a new windowshift, opens in a new windowshirtdress. if you choose wisely one dress can work for any occasion. in order to accomplish this follow these guidelines:

  • length: not too short
  • fit: not too form fitting, let it hug your curves not squeeze them
  • style: don’t show too much skin or bare too much information
  • fabric: not too dressy

next week we’ll take a look at, wait a minute, why not keep you guessing? happy Sunday, ladies!


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  1. Becky Kerr wrote:

    Please discuss jewelry styles and sizes.

    Posted 2.4.18
    • Carme wrote:

      Beth leo tus blogs cada dia son una maravilla,gracias por tu informacion que estilazo tienes!!!!

      Posted 2.9.20
  2. Beth you exude style and elegance !These pictures totally prove it !

    Posted 2.15.18
  3. Teresa wrote:

    You are so beautiful, so stylish, and do a great job! I enjoy and look forward to your blogs! Thank you!

    Posted 1.19.20
  4. Anne Hughed wrote:

    You look fabulous in the striped shirt and dark skirt as well as the black shirt and pants. New hairdo? You also look thinner.

    Posted 1.19.20
  5. Dorothy wrote:

    Love the double wrap belt but don’t see a link. Great outfits!!!

    Posted 1.19.20
  6. jackie wrote:

    Gorgeous tan belt in the monochrome outfits

    Posted 1.20.20
  7. Sharon wrote:

    Beth I don’t comment much, but I read your blogs daily. Love your style and appreciate the information.

    Posted 1.20.20

Comments are closed.

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