The 3 Summer Dresses Every Woman Should Own

There’s nothing worse than scrambling to find a specific type of dress for an event at the last minute, can I get an amen? So even though I don’t wear dresses very often, there are three types of dresses that I try to always have in my closet.

The 3 Summer Dresses Every Woman Should Own

I might tweak these a bit for fall-winter, but if you have these three dresses in your spring-summer closet, you should be covered for just about any but the most formal occasions.

#1. LBD (Little Black Dress)

A classic black dress is a year-round wardrobe essential, and it’s a highly versatile piece that you can layer and accessorize in different ways to fit a myriad of occasions.

black sheath // black pumps // similar shoulder bag // earrings // necklace // bracelet

I always gravitate to a sheath, but it can be whatever style is flattering and comfortable for you. This black sheath is from Ann Taylor. I love the scoop neckline, the seaming details, and the cap sleeves. It’s fully lined, with a tailored fit, and it has just enough stretch to be comfortable. It runs true to size; I have the 6. It also happens to be on sale for $75!

Be sure to think through all the details and make sure you have the shoes, bag, and accessories you might need for the various events that might crop up unexpectedly and without much notice.

This is how I usually style a LBD for a funeral or visitation — I seem to have more and more of those these days. It would also probably work for the office, if you work in a more conservative corporate environment.

These Sam Edelman pumps have a tapered square toe, for an updated look, and I love the croc embossed leather for added texture and interest.

My black shoulder bag is an older Kate Spade style. I chose it for this look because it’s simple and conservative, and the chain strap is pretty — it’s almost like adding another piece of jewelry. It’s also a just-right size for most events.

I actually wore this dress to my father-in-law’s memorial service last fall, and I found myself without a bag that I thought was appropriate. Everything I had was either too large or too casual, or too much like date night.

Afterwards, I grabbed this bag on sale, and it has come in very handy. I often carry it to church, or take it when going out to dinner and I want something bigger than a crossbody. This one is similar, and this one is a bit smaller but just as appropriate.

And don’t forget your jewelry. I chose a couple of Kendra Scott pieces to complete the look. This silver tone multi strand necklace is a recent addition to my accessory wardrobe. It’s a nice neckline filler — it adds some shine without overpowering this classic look. And her filigree hoops are often my go-to when I want something simple and classic, but large enough to be visible under my dark hair.

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#2. Casual T-Shirt/Jersey Dress

Summer is the only time of year when I keep more than one casual dress in my closet. The ease and comfort of a one-and-done outfit is hard to beat, and dresses are a lot cooler on a hot day than shorts and crop pants.

dress // sandals // earrings // bracelet // similar crossbody // sunnies

This striped tank midi dress is from LOFT, and it’s currently 50% off and fully stocked! It is such soft fabric, and it really feels nice on. It has side slits for easy walkability, and they also just add a nice detail to the casual look.

I wore flat studded slide sandals to keep this look casual and comfortable. Pairing a beige or skin-colored shoe with a midi dress is a good way to elongate the line of the leg and keep the dress length from looking awkward, and I love how the studs add a bit of bling to the casual look.

These sandals run a little small, you may need to size up half. They’ve also been restocked at Nordstrom!

I carried a beige crossbody and wore the same silver filigree hoops and Yurman link bracelet as in the look above to complete this simple look.

My sunnies are Coach — actually, these are C’s. I grabbed them as I was running out of the house because I couldn’t fine mine, lol. They’re an older style, but I did find them in black at Sunglass Hut, and these are polarized.

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#3. Dressy Floral/Special Occasion Dress

Finally, a dressier style is important to have on hand for weddings, graduations, church events, or anything where the t-shirt dress is too casual and the LBD is too serious. I recommend a floral, or a solid bold or pastel color.

floral dress // woven slides // metallic clutch // earrings // necklace // bracelet

Florals are very much on trend right now, and I picked up this handkerchief hem tank dress a few weeks back because I didn’t have anything that fit this criteria in my closet. I haven’t worn it yet, but I’m sure it will come in handy eventually.

I love how the lettuce edge on the skirt helps define the asymmetrical handkerchief hem. This dress is filmy and flowy and romantic — perfect for a summer wedding! I would wear this to a daytime wedding, or an evening wedding if the dress code isn’t listed as cocktail or formal attire. The price is right, too, at just $69.

This dress runs big, and rather long. I am wearing the 6, and I plan to have the straps taken up just a smidge. Nordstrom does alternations for free for card holders, so I just need to remember to take it in the next time I go to the mall.

For shoes, I went with a woven block heel slide sandal. I was styling this dress for how I might wear it to a wedding or graduation, and often those events require some walking on grass or turf, so the 2″ block heel is perfect for that.

Also, if you will be standing all day or dancing all night, high heels can take a toll on these aging feet. I love this 2″ heel — it offers just enough height to be dressy but not enough to cause me a lot of pain and discomfort the next day. Also, they’re easy to kick off under the table and slip on when you need to get up, haha! We all do that, right???

And just like I mentioned above for the LBD, be sure you think through all of the components of your outfit. Sometimes we focus on having the right dress and forget to make sure we have an appropriate bag or accessories to complete the look.

I keep several clutches in various neutral and metallic shades in my closet at all times, so I always have something appropriate for a special occasion. Bonus points if they have a removable chain strap, so you can have your hands free to hold food and a drink.

This metallic ruched clutch is right on trend, but it does not have a chain strap, which is kind of limiting. Still, I love how it looks with this dress so I carried it. It also comes in black and two really fun, bold colors that would add a nice pop to a neutral outfit.

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As I mentioned above, I would tweak these choices a bit for fall-winter. For instance, I would definitely add a sweater dress to this line-up, but if you have these three dresses in your spring-summer closet, you should be covered for just about any but the most formal occasions. Would you add anything else to this list?

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photos: Alison Cornell

How Many Clothes Should a Woman Have in Her Wardrobe?

How Many Clothes Should a Woman Have in Her Wardrobe?

January 14, 2022

Depending on your lifestyle, career, interest in fashion, and other factors, the amount of clothes you need will differ from others. Obviously, you want a varied wardrobe that supports your lifestyle. You also want clothing that fits well and looks amazing. So how many pieces of clothing should you have?

Though the number of clothes in your closet is a personal choice, the topic has become controversial.

With the increasing popularity of minimalism and capsule wardrobes, many influencers suggest that a woman should not have more than 50 pieces of clothing (including shoes and accessories) in her closet.

And influencers aren’t the only ones with opinions. Perhaps your significant other has commented on your full closet and ridicules you for saying you have “nothing to wear.”

While there may be many opinions about your wardrobe, our stance is that there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Depending on your lifestyle, career, interest in fashion, and other factors, the amount of clothes you need will differ from others.

The better question to ask is: Do you think you have too many clothes?

Obviously, you want a varied wardrobe that supports your lifestyle. You also want clothing that fits well and looks amazing.

So how many pieces of clothing should you have?

How Many Clothes Do I Need?

According to a 2016 survey done by ClosetMaid, the average woman has 103 articles of clothing. Of 1,000 women surveyed, 21% said their closet was unwearable. Respondents also said 12% of their wardrobe also goes unused, either because it’s ill-fitting or outdated.

Does that sound familiar?

If so, then the number of clothes you have is irrelevant. The real problem is that you own things that aren’t serving you. The goal is to have pieces that make you feel good, that you can wear for a number of occasions, and that will last for many years.

When determining what pieces you need, ask yourself a few questions:

How many days a week do I work?

Do I have work clothes and casual clothes?

Do I need formal wear?

Do I need seasonal clothing?

How often do I do laundry?

Do I need to change my clothing often?

For example, if you work from home, you probably don’t need a closet full of business attire. On the other hand, an executive working onsite needs several elegant pieces to choose from.

If you have an active job, such as a spin instructor, you’ll need several pieces of activewear, as well as clothing options for when you aren’t at the gym.

Although the amount of clothing a woman should have varies based on her lifestyle, there are a few staple items that every woman should own.

Clothing Essentials Every Woman Should Have in Her Closet

Wardrobe essentials are pieces that can be mixed and matched in multiple ways, dressed up for business occasions or down for casual. These items are classics that make good investment pieces, so they will last for years to come.

Here are the essentials to have in your closet:

1. Black Blazer

Structured blazers, especially those fitted to your body, are good layering pieces.

In an office setting, a t-shirt under a blazer paired with tailored trousers is a professional look. You can also pair a blazer with a sweater dress and ankle boots for a more casual look.

2. Little Black Dress

Another piece of essential clothing for women is the little black dress. So coveted is this item that it has its own abbreviation: LBD. The LBD is popular because of its versatility. A little black dress can be worn on a casual date, a stroll around the park, shopping, going out to eat, meeting friends at the bar, and any other activity you can think of.

An ideal dress is one with modest length (just above the knee) and a high neckline.

3. Light Cardigan

During the spring and fall in seasonal climates, daytime is warm, but the evening and night are cooler. Cardigans are perfect for these occasions when you may need to add more clothing later in the day.

Plus, cardigans layer well and come in a multitude of colors, styles, lengths, knits, and textures. Find a few that compliment your style and other pieces of your wardrobe, and you’ll always have something warm to wear.

4. Basic White or Black Tee

Select a few white or black tees with various necklines. These will be a staple for many outfits, since these colors pair well with just about everything. Dress up or down your basic black or white tees with other essential pieces and accessories.

5. Dark Wash Skinny Jeans

Skinny jeans are incredibly versatile, especially ones in a sophisticated dark wash. You can wear jeans out on a date, to a party, or on a casual shopping trip with friends. Pair your jeans with a statement leather jacket, simple flats, and basic tee for a classic look.

Or, if you don’t like skinny jeans, a timeless option is a tapered straight leg jean.

6. Pencil Skirt

Pencil skirts have long been a staple in the workplace, but they can also be worn casually. Dress down a pencil skirt by pairing it with a leather jacket and t-shirt or a button-down shirt.

7. Wrap Dress

If you are looking for a dress that flatters any figure, consider the wrap dress. This style can be dressed up or down, and it can be found in dozens of patterns and colors. You can pair a wrap dress with sneakers, ankle boots, flats, or pumps. In the spring, a white wrap dress looks incredible with a leather or denim jacket.

8. Leather Jacket

As we’ve mentioned several times above, a leather jacket pairs well with so many items. Vogue called the leather jacket a 2021 investment piece. Here’s why: A high quality leather jacket not only goes with just about anything in your wardrobe, it’s going to last for years and only improves with age.

9. Black Trousers

High-waisted, tie-waist, straight-leg, flared. Regardless of the type, black trousers will never go out of style. Black trousers are a staple for the modern business woman, as well as those who just want to look chic.

10. Denim Shorts

Denim shorts are timeless. They work with a variety of tops, be it a knit cardigan, plain t-shirts, blouses, blazers, and more. Plus, you can wear them to casual outings, on a date, or on vacation.

11. Basic Tank Top

A tank top is even better for layering than a basic tee shirt. Purchase 3-4 tanks in black, white, and a couple of your favorite colors, and then get creative in pairing them with other essentials.

For example, pair a tank top with your dark wash skinny jeans, or even layer it beneath your black blazer for a sleek and elegant look.

12. Knit Sweater

The knit sweater is another piece that should be in every woman’s wardrobe. Knit pullovers work dozens of ways, from dressing down with a pair of boyfriend jeans to matching with a pleated skirt or tailored pants.


1. What should every woman’s wardrobe have?

Every woman’s wardrobe should have a few basic t-shirts, a little black dress, a blazer, a cardigan, two pairs of well-fitting jeans, a skirt, tank tops, and a knit sweater. Once you have those items, you have a good foundation for a functional wardrobe.

2. How do you know if you have too many clothes?

When you open your closet and you’re overwhelmed by the choices, or when a majority of the clothes haven’t been used in years, then you know you have too many clothes. However, if you wear all the pieces in your closet and have enough clothes between laundry days, you have the right amount.

Though magazines, influencers, minimalists, and even your significant other may have an opinion about how many clothes you should have in your wardrobe, only your opinion really matters. If you are wearing everything in your closet, then you have the right amount of clothes for you!

15 Wardrobe Basics Every Woman Should Own

15 Wardrobe Basics Every Woman Should Own

While you may be a pro at mastering the latest makeup trends, there are also certain timeless looks that should be a staple in every woman’s wardrobe repertoire. And much like makeup, when it comes to basics, fashion tends to follow the same rule—you’ve got to have them! The same way your makeup kit isn’t complete without certain essential items, like foundation, concealer, and mascara, your closet should hold certain wardrobe basics that you can wear through all four seasons. Of course, we love a good statement piece inspired by the latest runway show, but there will always be a few wardrobe basics that are total necessities no matter the latest trends. Not sure if your closet is stocked with all the right fashion staples? Keep reading for 15 wardrobe basics that every woman should own!

Maryan Barbara
Maryan Barbara

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