Oh thank goodness it’s finally FRIDAY! I know it was a shorter week, but they always seem longer for some reason! So you all know that I’ve been talking a lot about fall transitional pieces (such as HERE and HERE). I want to continue that convo today by looking at classic fall pieces and why having a capsule collection is important. A capsule wardrobe just means that you have a select number of pieces in your wardrobe that are must-haves. These are items that you can mix and match and that never go out of style. These pieces should be really basic so that they are more versatile. I typically buy designer for my capsule wardrobe so that I know I have pieces that are high quality and will last for years. But just in case you are on a budget, I have included items at a variety of price points. Let’s take a more detailed look below at the styles you must have to create your perfect fall capsule wardrobe. Also, if you’re not quite ready to buy items like coats, I recommend bookmarking this page for a later reference.
Fall Capsule Wardrobe Suggestions
Having a nice variety of tops in your closet is important. The main categories are tees, cami, button-downs, and blouses.
Your tees can be v-neck, crew neck, scoop neck, or whatever you’re comfortable in. I personally don’t like to show my chest so a crewneck is my favorite. You should get them in neutral colors like black, white, gray, tan, etc. These tees will be good for casual days and layering under cardigans and jackets.
Next, are tanks and camis. These must-haves are specifically for wearing under blouses with sheer material.
A basic button-down is next. For spring and summer, you’d want to find one that’s lightweight. But with fall and winter, look for one with heavier material like a thicker cotton blend. Avoid linen and thin silk. Check out my more comprehensive way to style a white button down HERE.
Lastly, you’ll want some versatile blouses. At least one white and one black. You might also consider one in gray or camel to create more of a fall look. These tops don’t have to be plain, get something that shows your personality.
First, I want to talk about the material of your sweaters. Obviously, a cashmere or wool blend is more of an investment but it will be nicer and last longer. But if that doesn’t work for your budget, it does not need to be cashmere.
Now…the first sweater for your fall capsule wardrobe is a basic black sweater. There are tons of styles out there but go with something more versatile, like a fitted crewneck cashmere sweater.
Next, you’ll want another sweater or two in a different color like camel, winter white, navy, gray, etc. This will be a supplement in your wardrobe to avoid wearing the same black sweater over and over. You might even consider getting a cable knit or fuzzy sweater to change it up.
You’ll also want to grab a classic black turtleneck top and/or sweater. Think about how you’ll style it. If it’s for layering, make sure it’s thin enough. If you’ll wear it on its own, go with a turtleneck that’s thicker.
Lastly, you need a cardigan. This cardigan can be a camel, gray, beige, black, etc. Whatever color you think will go best with the rest of your fall capsule wardrobe.
Pants & Jeans
The first category of pants and jeans are straight leg jeans. And don’t worry, you don’t have to throw away your skinny jeans. These are still good for fall because you can easily tuck them into boots and booties for fall. For jeans, make sure you have a pair in blue dark wash and in black. Since jeans are so in right now, I’d suggest grabbing a pair in a trendier style like cropped, flare, etc.
Next, you might need some trousers. Black and tapered are the most versatile but you could also go with wide-leg, cropped, or straight. Other color options are navy, gray, or camel. Even if you don’t work in an office, it’s nice to have at least one pair of black pants.
Lastly, you’ll want faux leather pants. These have become a wardrobe staple over the past couple of years. Coated jeans are similar if you are not quite ready to go full on leather.
Outerwear is the best part about fall and winter. I love throwing on a gorgeous coat and looking cool (if you wear a leather jacket) or incredibly chic (if you wear a faux fur or fur coat)!
The first outerwear must-have is a black or brown leather jacket. Depending on what else you have in your closet is what determines which color you should get. Another note: you do not have to purchase a leather jacket. You can definitely go with faux leather.
Next, you’ll need a blazer. Black will be most versatile but you can also get one that’s camel, gray, navy or even plaid.
You’ll also want to grab a chic trench coat. Most trench coats come in black, camel, or tan. I love the look of a tan trench but the black is another classic option.
This next category isn’t a must-have but I thought it’d be fun to throw in the mix…a faux or real fur coat. A fur coat is so luxurious and beautiful. You can wear it on date night, to events, etc.
Lastly, you need a wool coat. This is very important for staying warm. Get this in either black or camel for maximum use.
Depending on what you have going on during the fall and winter, the list of dresses you need in your fall capsule wardrobe may vary. The number one thing you need is a black dress that’s flattering, can be dressed up or down, and can be styled with tights if the weather necessitates them.
The first style of dress you need for fall/winter is a sweater dress. Get this in black so it’s easier to style. It’s your choice on sleeve length but think about how you’ll style it and where you’ll wear it. If you don’t usually dress up, go for a more casual sweater dress. If you like to go out, get something that’s a little dressier or at least easy to dress up.
Next, you’ll need a sheath dress. This style is sophisticated and easy to wear to almost any occasion.
The shoe category is where it gets a little hazy. Many of us have a preference when it comes to our shoes…heel height, heel style, cushion in the sole needed, colors, and just overall style. The categories I’m suggesting are only an outline.
First, you’ll need brown and/or back booties. The heel height is your choice. If you have foot problems, do a bootie with no heel. If you want a heel but you aren’t sure if you can really walk in them, try booties with a block heel. They will be easiest to walk in.
Next, you’ll need knee-high boots. These can also be either brown or black. You can do a stiletto heel, black heel, or no heel.
The most shoe in your fall capsule wardrobe…black closed-toe pumps. These can also be nude pumps if you prefer. Get some with a manageable heel so you aren’t completely uncomfortable every time you wear them. These should be versatile enough to wear with jeans, trousers, dresses, etc.
Next, you need sneakers for casual days. You’ll wear these running errands or just hanging out at home or a friend’s house. I think white sneakers are your best option but you can find them in different colors if you prefer.
Lastly, you need loafers. These are another casual option to replace sneakers but can also be worn for work. These Gucci loafers are the most popular but you can find something for less.
The handbags you have for spring and fall will be pretty similar. You need a classic black or brown tote and crossbody for everyday use. You’ll also need a clutch for going out, events, date night, etc. I shared these same tips HERE.
There are tons of accessories you need in your fall/winter wardrobe, like belts, everyday jewelry, sunglasses, etc. But I want to touch on the absolute must-haves. You can find more accessories you might need HERE.
First, you need a hat. This hat should be stylish but also keep you warm when you’re outside.
Next, you need gloves to keep you warm just as much as you need a hat. If you want to invest in nice gloves you’ll have forever, get some that are leather and/or cashmere.
Next, a scarf. For fall and winter, it’s nice to have a big blanket scarf you can wrap around to stay warm. If you don’t think you need that much warmth, you can go with something smaller/thinner.
Finally, you need tights. These tights can be opaque, sheer, patterned…whatever you want. Just make sure you can wear them under dresses. You can get them in black, navy, or nude.
Is there anything I’m missing? What are you adding to your fall capsule wardrobe?
xoxo – Tanya
shop the post
pin this image
Tags: capsule wardrobe, fall hues, fall trends
Such good selections. Thanks for all of your work on this great capsule wardrobe.
Great post! I can’t wait for cooler weather!
It’s finally here! In Dallas at least!
xoxo- Tanya 🙂
Well done! Editing my fall wardrobe this weekend and will use this to fill in any gaps/ refresh staple items.
Thank you so much Brenda. We’re glad you like this post.
Thank you so much. your blog has very nice content
Great post! I love all the classics!