Today continues our Essential 20 series. Yesterday I featured the schoolboy blazer, the field coat, the peacoat and the structured bag. Today we are looking at the fur vest, the silk blouse, the plaid shirt and the neutral clutch.
I love a fur vest because it works in a variety of climates and can be worn throughout the season. In early fall wear it over a silk blouse and as temperatures drop layer it over a plaid shirt. When winter really hits pile it on over a comfy sweater. It's super chic and a great investment piece. If you don't like real fur there are amazing faux options out there.
The silk blouse is such a classic item. You can wear it year round and it instantly upgrades even the most basic of outfits. Think about this: jeans, ballet flats and a t-shirt vs. jeans, ballet flats and a silk blouse. The blouse is just as easy to put on, but it looks that much more put together. I love Joie for real silk, but Banana Republic makes a nice faux-silk.
The plaid shirt. What can I really say other than it is a true classic? Think about the seventies, eighties, nineties...every decade has had some iteration of this All-American staple. And while it adds the perfect amount of menswear to your outfit, I recommend keeping it tailored to avoid looking too 90s Seattle grunge. I personally love it paired with a super feminine skirt, but it also works well as an everyday staple with jeans and boots.
You can't go wrong with a neutral clutch (and yes, animal print is a neutral) because it works regardless of what color you're wearing. I particularly love the juxtaposition of the rugged fabric on such a feminine bag here. Go for something small or elegantly oversized to get that cool-girl glam feel.