10 Items Every Woman Needs in Her Wardrobe

Every woman deserves to be well dressed, and stylist Kate Shifrin makes it easy.


In this 2-minute video, Shifrin shows us the 10 basic pieces that are essential to building a chic and versatile wardrobe. They can be mixed, matched and accessorized to create a variety of different looks. These are clothes you’ll wear again and again; it’s worth spending a little more on them to getting the best quality you can afford.

So go out and shop with confidence. With these items in your wardrobe, you’ll always be in style!

If you’re missing any of the 10 essential wardrobe items that Marjie mentions in her video, here are some leads both locally and online where you can fill those gaps:

Little black dress: Nina McLemore’s LBD ($695) is the perfect day-to-night dress every woman should have in her closet. You can find this, as well as event dresses, during The Lake Forest Shop’s Special Occasion Celebration. Until March 20, The Lake Forest Shop will feature 20 different designers at a wide range of price points.

Beautiful tote: For a show-stopper at an affordable price, visit The Bootery in Highland Park. Their Big Buddha tote ($79.99) is a dead-ringer for the tote in this video.

Shoes: Nude pumps are the shoe to have this season and every season. My new favorite source for shoes, Jessica Simpson! Even if you don’t like her singing, you’ll love her take on footwear. No matter how high the heels, they are comfy and typically half the price of department store shoes. Take a look at the “Milana” shoe in cognac patent. ($79…can you believe it?)

Jacket: Put your wool blazer away and choose a leather jacket! Frances Heffernan has a wide selection of leather jackets at a variety of price points. The Hache suede leather jacket ($1,250) in a deep mushroom color is my favorite!

Fitted white shirt: For a fabulous non-iron shirt at a great price, Brooks Brothers can’t be beat! If you shop locally, the shirt retails for $89.50. If you’re willing to travel to the Brooks Brothers outlet, you’ll be able to buy the same shirt for $30 less! (Maybe even more savings depending on the promotions available.) Brooks Brothers can be found at Northbrook Court and Old Orchard or at brooksbrothers.com. Brooks Brothers outlet is at the Prime Outlets in Kenosha.

Dark tailored jeans: Lucky for North Shore gals, great jeans are easy to come by. We’re big fans of Gavin in Evanston or E-Street Denim in Highland Park and Winnetka. If you’re in the mood for a bargain, don’t forget to roam the aisles at the Designer Consigner in Glenview, My Best Friend’s Closet in Highland Park, or Nordstrom Rack in Northbrook.

White t-shirt: These days we’re buying our t-shirts at Fresh Ideas Clothing Co. Fresh Ideas now has a t-shirt club and when you buy 9 basic tees, the 10th is free! Stop in at Fresh Ideas for more information on participating brands.

Black pants: These are a wardrobe essential! B2 and Bett’s in Highland Park have just the pant you need—in cotton or denim.

Sweater in a neutral color: I think Three Sisters in Lake Forest has the market cornered on adorable cardigans, like this gray baby wool one by Kerryn Leigh ($144). From cashmere to cotton, they have a sweater with your name on it.

Spanx: These are a must! Don’t waste another minute. Order yours today: Spanx Power panties with tummy control

Photo credits: Jacket, Frances Heffernan; Sweater, Three Sisters