BrandBacker Member
instagram icon pinterest icon facebook icon twitter icon
January 22, 2020

Building a Wardrobe Starter Kit: Part 2

in, Fashion

Outfit Details

Dress | Shoes | Belt 

Welcome back to part 2 of our wardrobe building goal.

If you missed part 1, you can go back and read it here. 

This is as much of a personal discovery as it is an informative series and I’m excited to see where it takes us. Today’s post is all about adding in one specific base wardrobe item that I we can all agree is a staple no matter your style – the little black dress.

Although the modern woman has thoroughly embraced (or resigned herself to) the LBD, I’m sure it would be surprising how many don’t actually love the garment hanging in their closet.

Black Dress Picks

I think it goes without saying, but the goal of a building a wardrobe from scratch is to fill your closet with pieces you actually enjoy wearing. I’ve been in the position where you might be currently – you look at a list of items every woman “needs in their wardrobe” and you mentally check off all the pieces because you know somewhere in the depths of your closet is a black dress. But you don’t like. You don’t wear it. You don’t reach for it on occasions where it’s appropriate.

If that’s you, it’s time to get rid of that dress – sell, donate, burn, whatever – and start the process of searching for one that is YOU.

And while you’re searching the depths of your closet for the dress, let me remind you of a few scenarios where having a black dress is so helpful.

+ A work party (or a spouse’s work party)

+ A bridal shower or bachelorette party

+ Funeral ( dark, but you don’t want to have to go shopping for this piece during a sad time)

+ Dinner date (or just a nice date in general. It’s good to get dressed up now and again)

+ Client meetings / work events

+ Shows/ plays (who doesn’t love a night at the theatre. Alleviate the stress of dressing for it with your LBD)

+ Openings / Events / House Parties / New Year’s Eve events

+ Christmas parties


So now we’re onto choosing a dress that’s appropriate for all the occasions mentioned above and fits you/ your style better than ever.

Consider the Length

What we’re looking for here is an extremely versatile dress. In fashion, versatile can also be translated as “classic” and “conservative”. And there’s nothing wrong with either of those labels, it just means you can feel confidant in every scenario in the dress you’re wearing.

Ask yourself what length you’re most comfortable wearing. Knee length? Midi? Above the knee?

Tip: Stay away from a maxi or a mini dress for your wardrobe’s one black dress. You don’t want to be polarizing. 

Consider the Material

Without a doubt chiffon blend and crepe are my two favorite fabrics for versatile dresses. The dress in these photos is a polyester blend (also lovely) with a viscose lining. It’s easy to dress up (heels and gold) or dress down (I’d 100% wear this with tennis shoes like the Sezane Jack Sneakers.)

Consider the Sleeve + Fit

It’s likely you’ll be reaching for this dress year round, so it might not be a bad idea to choose one with sleeves. There’s nothing worse than having a staple dress that needs loads of add-ons to make it work. A 3/4 length or even long sleeve dress with sheer sleeves is actually a perfect solution for a year-round dress.

So, after searching through loads of dresses I wanted to leave you with another few tips to help you pick the right black dress:

+ try on the dress before making a decision

+ use Prime Wardrobe (free for Amazon Prime users) to help determine fit and style

+ in the interim, use a service like Rent the Runway to find a style and fill that wardrobe hole

+ try on lots of styles and brands

+ don’t be afraid to spend a little more money than you normally would on a dress so you buy a high quality item instead of a fast fashion piece that is likely to fall apart after a year

Join the


  1. Anna Elle Liz
    January 22, 2020

    I so need an LBD! I feel like a have some of the staples for a wardrobe, white shirts, jeans that fit, etc. but I haven’t found an LBD, thanks for reminding me about them!

  2. Monica
    January 22, 2020

    I’m such a fan of black and brown. You wear it well. This is a must have staple for every woman.

  3. Shayla
    January 23, 2020

    I love having a black dress. I need to go shopping for a new one. It’s such a staple!

  4. Nadalie Bardo
    January 23, 2020

    LOVE THIS! Everyone needs a great black dress. And come to think of it, I don’t think I have one that I really love that isn’t a MAXI.

  5. Emily
    January 23, 2020

    I sometimes think I should just wear black to look classy. I definitely lean towards it.