Three reasons why the little – blank – dress is one of my style staples

Why a dress is one of my style staples
Why a dress is one of my style staples
Why a dress is one of my style staples
Celine trotteur bag in black
Why a dress is one of my style staples

Ever since paring back my closet, starting my very first capsule wardrobe, and being more mindful of what I add to my closet, I’ve focused on trying to build up a healthy stable of style staples: those easy go-to pieces I can reach for in a pinch. For years, this has mostly revolved around separates; the kind that you’d find on any top ten wardrobe essentials list, that give you a classic look, yet can be mixed and matched at the same time. If it wasn’t versatile by any traditional means, I didn’t need it.

Though as I’ve tried to strike that healthy balance of femininity in my wardrobe and inject that Parisian nonchalance I’ve been craving (even more so as of late), I’ve found myself being drawn to the effortless elegance of a simple dress – whether it’s a classic black or otherwise (like this cutie I recently snapped up…!). I’m currently on a bit of a self-imposed shopping ban (after this winter haul and some sneaky Nordstrom purchases, I think I’m set for the next few months at least!), but I’ve found myself so much more drawn to the ease of throwing on a dress and instantly feeling put together. This little flirty ruffle dress from Storets is case-in-point. It’s a deep navy hue – a subtle difference that sets it apart from my stable of little black dresses – the ruffle hem adds a playfulness to the silhouette, and it’s instantly dressed up with the striped shirt detail. It’s probably not hard to see why this has become a recent favourite of mine. So, let’s talk about why the little – blank – dress has become one of my style staples…

IT’S AN EASY THROW ON PIECE

Never underestimate the power of a dress; unlike separates, it’s an outfit in itself. Just add accessories. I’ve been taking full advantage of this on those mornings where getting out of bed feels like an effort – I can hit the snooze button one more time as I know I’ll be dressed and out of the door in less than five minutes. If that’s not reason enough to make a dress one of your style staples then…

YOU CAN LAYER IT UP

It’s winter here in Sydney, and while I can’t quite put my finger on why, it’s been feeling colder than ever. Rather than invest in a long sleeved dress, I’ve been throwing my favourites over the top of a skivvy (this one from Uniqlo is perfect for layering) or a silky blouse, with a thick pair of tights on for good measure – 60 denier or higher, of course! This has helped me to breathe new life into so many of my dresses that I’d typically save for the warmer months, and you look chic while you’re at it. Alternatively, I love the look of the flouncy skirt of a dress peeking out underneath an oversized sweater, or something I did a lot during spring last year was to tuck some my more lightweight dresses into skirts and wear them as a top!

IT’S A CULT CLASSIC

While I’m a firm believer that you shouldn’t buy something just because a list on the internet tells you too – no two people are the same – there’s usually a reason why the same items keep popping up on those lists. The little black dress will always have a place in my closet, and for good reason, it’s a cult classic and timeless too. I don’t think you need a better reason than that! x

wearing

Storets dress, Everlane heels (more affordable here), Celine trotteur bag (also here)

Outfit on Repeat

minimal outfit wearing sweater and jeans
minimal outfit wearing sweater and jeans
minimal outfit wearing sweater and jeans
minimal outfit wearing celine trotteur bag
minimal outfit wearing sweater and jeans

Country Road sweater, Lonely bra (also available here or here in a grey green), ASOS farleigh jeans, Celine trotteur bag (also here), Everlane day heels (affordable alternative here)

This is one of those outfits that I’ve had on repeat; a lightweight oversized sweater tucked into a pair of straight leg jeans, dressed up with a pair of heels (my go to are this pair from Everlane). I’ve been reaching for this outfit so often, it’s started to become a little bit of a uniform for me – so much so, that it’s exactly what I’m wearing, right. now.

If decluttering my wardrobe has reminded me of anything, it’s how much I love a good uniform. I’m not stranger when it comes to outfit repeating, and there’s nothing better than finding a look that you can’t help reaching for over and over again.

I’ve given my closet a little bit of a revamp, and if you’d like to see some of the new additions that I’ve made (which include the Country Road sweater I’m wearing above), then I’d recommend checking out my latest video, which you can preview here. Essentially, I’ve been making steps to get my wardrobe at that happy medium between feminine and masculine, to channel that effortless Parisian chic style (as isn’t that the kind of wardrobe we all dream about?).

While there’s no denying that I do love a new addition every now and then – and as of late it feels like it’s been a little more ‘now’ over ‘then’… – the most rewarding purchases are the ones that you want to live in day in and day out, even if that means wearing the same outfit, or same look, five, six, seven days out of seven. And to me, this is just one of those outfits that I reach for at every opportunity – it’s easy, comfortable, and the criss-cross detail from my bralette add a sexy and feminine touch to an otherwise tomboyish outfit (though I suppose the heels help too!).

Do you have any outfits on repeat? x

Blazer, straight leg jeans, and a simple white tee

scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans
scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans
scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans
scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans
scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans
scandi minimal style outfit straight leg jeans

Grana boxy t-shirt, Topshop straight leg jeans, Helmut Lang blazer (I also love this option), Everlane day heels (more affordable here), ASOS sunglasses, Proenza Schouler PS11 satchel

If you take a quick look at my Pinterest boards, one thing is achingly clear; I’m heavy into everything norm core with a healthy dose of Parisian styling. Since giving my closet a much needed declutter, and taking the time to sit down and really define what it is that I want my wardrobe to look like, I’ve found my outfit options have started to lean more masculine, and more relaxed, in that nonchalant, just-rolled-out-of-bed-and-threw-this-on kind of way.

Tailoring is back – long live the classic black blazer – and now that the weather has finally cooled down a notch, I’ve been incorporating a bit of suiting to help dress up a pair of distressed denim, or add a casual elegance to an oversized sweater (these trousers from Uniqlo have become a fast favourite!).

Perhaps the biggest change for me, in terms of aesthetic and styling, has been the addition of these straight leg jeans from Topshop, with a raw edged hem. Rather than a full slim fit through the body, these have a looser silhouette through the leg, with plenty of breathing room around the ankle, and while I’m still getting used to figuring out how to pair them with the rest of my wardrobe in a flattering way, I love how they look with a mid-heel and a simple while tee tucked in. It’s the kind of styling that I would have shied away from this time last year, but a little Parisian style tunnel vision never hurt anyone.

I’ve been building up my wardrobe with some core basics that I think are going to see me through the winter season, and then some, and I can’t wait to share with you all a full post on my new wardrobe heroes, that may be rooted in my core style, yet still feel like a bit of a step outside the box of my usual every day outfits. If you’re keen to get a little bit of a sneak peek of what I’m wearing lately, I’d highly suggest checking out my Instagram, as I’ll be sure to be sharing some of my current winter looks during my upcoming trip to New Zealand! x

Styling bell sleeves

how to style bell flared sleeves
how to style bell flared sleeves
how to style bell flared sleeves
how to style bell flared sleeves

Lonely ‘lost’ knit top in soot (similar more affordable option here), H&M patent skirt (similar here), Everlane day heels, The Daily Edited clutch, Astrid & Miyu rings

There’s a couple trends this season which I feel like I can really get on board with: anything with a ruffle, and oversized bell sleeves. After trying out a more affordable option, I decided to invested in this merino knitted sweater with exaggerated bell sleeves from NZ label Lonely, while visiting home in March.

This is knitwear that makes a statement, and I love how a simple update to the sleeve elevates what I would otherwise consider a basic wardrobe staple.

Given the huge focus I try to put on truly investing in my closet, trying to incorporate a trend-driven piece can always be a little bit of a gamble, particularly when trying to stay true to your own personal style. It’s really only just been starting to get cold enough in Sydney to whip this out, and as more of a trend-focused piece, I have had my doubts about how much wear this one would get. But given that I wore this three days out of seven in the last week, I have a feeling this is a trend that’s going to stick.

I’ve been wearing this top with anything and everything – from culottes and a skinny leg jean to a-line and pencil skirts – but I especially love this combo that I wore the other week to head out for dinner. A faux patent/vinyl skirt, my favourite pair of everyday pumps, and a deep burgundy toned clutch to tote around all my necessities.

While it’s safe to say that I’m pretty sorted when it comes to bell sleeves with this beauty of a top, I’ve popped a few cute alternatives to carry you from summer right through to winter. Have you gotten onboard the bell sleeve trend? x

The Everlane Day Heel

everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit
everyone day heel review minimal outfit

Grana silk cami, ASOS mom jeans, Everlane day heels*, Wilson Trollope x Pedro’s Bluff Soiree Pochette, Mejuri choker

It’s been a while since I have been this excited about a new pair of shoes. Having been on the lookout for a classic pair of every day mid-heels which could do double duty for work and for play, Everlane’s Day Heel fit the bill perfectly. Solid chunky heel? Check. Soft, smooth leather? Check. Minimal design? Check.

I’ve only had them for the past week, but I’ve really been putting them to the test; a full day in the office, running casual errands on the weekend, Friday night drinks with friends – when I like something, I really go for it.

I decided to keep things pretty safe – the black pair seemed like a good bet given we are heading into winter, and I thought that they would be the best choice if I wanted to layer up and wear them with some tights, but the tomato red is s-t-u-n-n-i-n-g, as is the milky beige suede option. I know that these are now on backorder (according to Stylecaster there’s a 15,000 person wait list), I thought I’d share my two cents, now that I’ve had a chance to properly break them in.

QUALITY & COMFORT
Over the years, I’ve amassed my fair share of Everlane shoes; their modern yet minimal take on the classics always draws me in, and I’ve never been disappointed with the structural quality or wear and tear for any of the pairs I own. But the one thing I wasn’t quite prepared for was just how beautifully made the day heel actually is. The leather is like butter, incredibly soft with a lot of give – it’s not often I can wear a pair of shoes right out of the box and end the day without a single blister. I’ve found that the elasticated back doesn’t really dig in (after 9 hours of solid wear, these were still comfortable), and the 2 inch heel height is perfect for dashing about in; not too high and not too low. I also loved the added cushioning across the sole – an unexpected touch that makes these even more of a dream to wear.

SIZING
I’ve typically found that most of Everlane’s shoes run on the narrow side, so I’ll often size up a half size to accommodate my wide feet. With this launch, they’ve completely nailed it – they fit true to size and the buttery soft leather just molds to the shape of your foot. For reference, I’m an EU40 and opted for the US9 – I thought that they might be a touch too small when I tried them on but the leather gives pretty quickly and after a week of constant wear, I can safely say I made the right choice. If you’re worried about the elasticated back digging in, then you could possibly go up a size but I had a full thumb width of space at the top of the toe box.

If you haven’t guessed, this is a total win for me – one of my favourite wardrobe additions for the year so far. I’ve been so pleased with the black pair that I’ve already placed an order for a second; while the classic black is the perfect accompaniment for day-to-day, the rose blush leather looks like the perfect nude hue, and when you’re on to a good thing, why stop at just one?

PS. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, my curated edit is now live on the Everlane site, which you can take a peek at HERE! x