If you’ve been following us for a while now, you already know how keen we are on the idea of a capsule wardrobe. The concept is quite simple. It’s a closet full of pieces that can be mixed and matched for infinite combinations. In other words, it’s the permanent fix to your “I have nothing to wear” conundrum.
After a few-year hiatus, many of us have office days as part of our routine again (at least a day or two a week). Trousers, blouses, commute-ready shoes—they’re all back on rotation Monday through Friday. But contrary to popular opinion, there’s no need to wear itchy tops and non-stretch bottoms that’ll have you feeling miserable all day (it’s 2023—workwear has evolved from that!).
Like the rest of our wardrobe, workwear is also best from September through November. Our fall workwear capsule wardrobe proves that your fall work wardrobe can be cute, comfy, and autumn-chic.
What Is a Capsule Wardrobe?
The simple definition is that it’s a curated wardrobe made up of versatile pieces that you love to wear. Creating your capsule wardrobe should be a testament to your personal style
A capsule wardrobe consists of a set of tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, shoes, and accessories that can be easily mixed and matched together to be dressed up, down, and anywhere in between. It means your closet has less trendy pieces that will only be worn for one season and more high-quality, classic pieces that stand the test of time and can be worn for years to come. The best part? While it might feel more expensive at the moment, you’ll save money in the long run since you won’t be going through so many fast-fashion pieces.
Once you master a starter capsule wardrobe, it can be curated and swapped from season to season. It makes it easy to pack up and take out clothes for the appropriate season because every time you pull them out, they’re just as in style as they were at the time you bought them.
How to Build a Capsule Wardrobe
The first step to building a capsule wardrobe is to take a good, hard look at what you already own, then purge the rest. We don’t mean opening it and flippantly going through the hangers; we mean that you should take every single piece out of your closet, and then evaluate if it should go back in. Don’t forget to take a look at your shoes and accessories, too.
Then, sort each item into one of four piles:
- I love it and would wear it tomorrow: These pieces fit your body and your lifestyle, and you’re happy wearing them. Put these back first.
- Maybe: These pieces might not fit perfectly, have sentimental value, or you just can’t put your finger on why you don’t wear them more. (If you haven’t reached for it more than once, it belongs in this pile too). Put all of these items in a box and store them in a place that’s easily accessible. If you find yourself reaching for an item, put it back in your closet afterward; if you haven’t reached for it by the end of the season, keep it in the box to take to donate. This is noncommittal (for now) and allows you to change your mind later.
- Hard no: Whether it’s because it doesn’t fit or you just decided you don’t like it, pack these pieces up to donate them.
- Seasonal: There’s no need to keep a chunky sweater next to your summer tank tops. Move all of your seasonal pieces into a storage location that will be easy for you to swap out once the time is right.
The Everygirl’s Fall 2023 Workwear Capsule Wardrobe
How to Style Your Fall Workwear Capsule Wardrobe
Some work days require a little extra confidence (you can’t give a presentation or ask for a raise if you’re not feeling like the best version of yourself), and this look will give you exactly that. This classic pair of slingback heels from Ann Taylor will help you stand a little taller, and paired with a sleeveless sweater and satin maxi skirt, you’ll feel put-together and professional. If the weather is chilly, you can layer your favorite blazer on top.
It’s not fall without leather, and with some strategy, you can work it into your workwear wardrobe seamlessly. Pair a faux leather blazer with a knit midi dress and ballet flats for a cool, modern take on an office-ready ‘fit. Throw your laptop and lunch into a carry-all suede shopper, and complete the look with a gold necklace that’ll wrap the whole look up in a bow.
Button-ups are a mainstay in any workwear wardrobe, and this geometric, satin version is a welcome addition to a work top rotation. Tuck it into relaxed trousers and pair it with a chic pair of loafers, and you’ll be ready to tackle whatever your workday has in store.
Work weeks are bound to include a few mornings where you snoozed too many times, so it’s important to have a few go-to looks in the back of your mind for when you’re in a rush. This classic cardigan, trouser, and slingback heel combo can be a look you turn to every single week—you’ll look so good, you won’t care if you’re an outfit repeater.
It isn’t easy to find a perfect office blouse, but this tie-neck number is it. It’s classic enough to be worn on repeat but interesting enough that it’ll always feel elevated. For your 9-5, pair it with relaxed trousers, ballet flats, and your favorite accessories.
This post is sponsored by Ann Taylor but all of the opinions within are those of The Everygirl editorial board.