One of the most frequent questions I am asked is what to purchase if you are just staring off your preppy wardrobe. My first piece of advice when people ask this question is to purchase the staples first and try not to spend a lot of money. You can look like a thousand bucks without spending a thousand bucks. I also often say to purchase things that you can wear a thousand different ways. It’s always a smart idea to start off a new closet by purchasing items that you can wear with one another and style for different occasions. Below are my suggestions of things to buy then you’re starting out your preppy closet.
Bottoms — For bottoms, I usually wear only a few things during the wintertime. I stick with a trusty pair of medium-dark wash skinny jeans, a navy skirt, and a fun wool printed skirt. I keep the print subtle and classy; it’s usually houndstooth or plaid.
Sweaters — I love to stock up on sweaters when they go on sale after Christmas and in the summertime. The best sweaters, I find, come from J.Crew and L.L. Bean. The J.Crew Tippi sweater is perfect for layering because it’s lightweight but very warm. It comes in a crazy amount of colors and you can monogram it! The L.L. Bean fisherman sweaters are a must-have for winter as well. They’re so thick and comfortable. Finally, I love to have at least one fair isle sweater in my closet because they’re festive and fun for skiing and the holidays.
Button Ups — I love button ups for every season but in the winter they really do add that extra layer of warmth. You can never go wrong sticking to classic oxford blue and a perfect crisp white oxford. If you want to add a little texture a KJP Cozy Cabin Flannel or a Scalloped oxford from KJP would spice up any layered look.
Vests — Stick with classic colors for vests when you first start out building your wardrobe. Once you get the necessities, add a little character to your vests. I love the J.Crew Factory herringbone vest and the J.Crew Factory blue and white gingham vest too!
Shoes — For shoes in the wintertime I always find myself coming back to these three pairs of shoes. My leopard print loafers, classic leather loafers, and L.L. Bean Boots. I also think it’s a good idea to invest in some Hunter wellies and a pair of black pumps.
Tops — You can’t wear button downs all of the time and when you’re not I suggest grabbing a striped boatneck from J.Crew. These tops are inexpensive and come in so many colors! I love pairing them with a pair of jeans, loafers or flats, and a vest and you’re out the door. If you want to really spice things up, go for a striped turtleneck tee. These are great for layering under sweaters and dresses along with wearing them on their own. You can find these for $10 at Target too!
When it comes to shopping for your wardrobe essentials is that when you shop at stores such as J.Crew, items tend to go on sale often — especially if you’re shopping J.Crew Factory. The best advice I can give to those who are trying to grown their closet it to sign up for emails from J.Crew and Factory. There are sales going on almost always at either of the two stores. Just keep an eye on your email and you can usually come up with an additional 40% off clearance or 50% off of your entire purchase.
Another tip is that you can find some great steals in the clearance section of J.Crew Factory. They usually have up for 16 pages of sale and the store usually adds an additional percentage off the sale.
Watch — I love the classic look of a Daniel Wellington watch. If you are looking for something a little girlier, try the Metro watches from Kate Spade!
Headband — For any girl who wants to channel her inner Blair Walforf (me!), try out fun headbands. The tartan headband is so classic and fun and as always, bows on the right!
Necklaces — I wear my Simply Pearlfection necklace from Kiel James Patrick every single day. It’s the perfect length to peek out of button downs or over boatneck tees. If you want to get a little fancier, try a long pearl necklace with a satin ribbon instead of a clasp!
Rings — I only wear two rings: my KJP rope bow ring and my Kate Spade bow ring. I love how delicate these two gems look on my hands and how the golds compliment each other.
Earrings — Pearls all the way. If you want to mix it up, try the Kate Spade tortoise shell square studs.
Bracelets — Once again, I love the way KJP bracelets are made and how they fit. I love my monogrammed Atlantic Pearl Bracelet in Pearls on Champagne.
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