5 Basics Every Girl Should Invest In

Hi ladies!

I’m so excited for today’s post because, last week, I asked you how you wanted me to cover it and you were very clear out of the two options. You said you wanted me to cover both … a list of basics I’d recommend having in your closet and a list of brands that I think are worth investing in. I had to get a little creative with that request in order to get it out to you in a timely manner so I decided to meld the two together by sharing the five basics every girl should invest in, and I’ll share the brand that I recommend investing in for that particular basic.

So, why invest in quality basics when it’s so easy to buy basics that are between $10-20? Well, I’m certainly not above those purchases but, as the years have gone by, I’ve seen how much further my money goes in terms of quality and length of wear when I decide to put a little more money behind the purchases I’m going to be wearing the most. The great thing about this list of basics is that these items are good for most seasons and can be worn countless ways throughout the year so, I promise, you’ll get your money’s worth.

The other great thing about this list is that everything is available in the same place, mytheresa.com. I’ve recently shared how much I’ve enjoyed exploring this online retailer based in Germany but offers free 2-day shipping to all of us here in the States! It is just as easy to shop their website as it is the large online retailers that we are used to shopping. It’s also just as easy to return things, as well. They give you a free return label and you simply have to drop it off at your local USPS location. They have a wide variety of brands to choose from, as well, most especially for those investment pieces that you’re looking to add to your wardrobe! So, always keep them in mind!

I’ve shared more about what I love about mytheresa.com in THIS post and THIS post.

And, honestly, y’all … let’s sit down with some real talk for a second. Please do not read this list and get down about not be able to invest in every piece I mention right this minute. The biggest piece of advice I can give you is to remember that building a quality wardrobe takes TIME, so use this list as a reference sheet. Keep the information in the back of your mind and keep your eye on the things that you’re wanting to invest in. It really helps to KNOW exactly what your wardrobe needs in terms of investment pieces almost as much as it helps to KNOW the brands that are worth the splurge, so that when those golden sale opportunities come up throughout the year, you know exactly what to search for!

I won’t keep you waiting any longer! Here are my favorite basics and the brands I recommend for each one:

White, Gray and Black Crew & V-Neck Tees

rag & bone tee Cotton T-Shirt

While there are so many basic cotton t-shirts out there, rag & bone is a brand that I consistently go back to when I really want to invest in one that I know is 100% cotton and will stand the test of time. These are the clothing item in my closet that gets washed the most aside from underwear so I never mind spending a little more knowing how often I’ll be wearing it and that it won’t fall apart after a few washes.

While white is always my go to, I know gray and black are equally as attractive to others so grab whichever one strikes your fancy and fits your style! These runs true to size and are a great medium thickness.

Which color do you wear most often?

Casual Blue Jeans

AG Jeans ‘The Legging’ Skinny Jeans

There are few things I love more than throwing on a comfortable pair of jeans. I’m a jean girl through and through and it is probably the basic I invest in most frequently. Because I wear them so often, I don’t want to be in constant pursuit of a new ‘good’ pair. I want to buy jeans that I know I can turn to for … years! Yes. Years!

After trying countless jean brands through the years, I can confidently recommend AG Jeans as my absolute favorite. Their sizing is consistent throughout each of their styles, the material stretches but doesn’t loosen with wear, and their denim doesn’t weaken significantly after multiple washes. They also offer a lot of styles to fit your preferences. Their ‘The Legging’ Skinny Jean is my personal favorite! Skinny jeans just go with more outfits, in my opinion, making your money go even farther!

I recently purchased this pair of that style that hits right at the ankle which my 5’3 frame really appreciates. I love the ‘undone’ hem detail and lighter dark wash. They’re super comfortable and, as I always do with this brand, I went down one size from my normal and they fit perfect!

Here are a few other pairs that I would recommend:

Utility or Jean Jacket

Velvet Ruby Cotton Jacket

A utility or jean jacket is another basic that should be in every girls’ wardrobe. Think of them like your friend that always has your back! You can call on her during so many seasons of life, I mean .. the year, to help keep you feeling warm and confident! I love throwing my jean jacket on in the Spring and my utility jacket on in the Fall. I even love layering these pieces underneath cocoon coats in the Winter to add an extra layer over a sweater to give your outfit a little ‘extra’, if you will.

A high-quality utility jacket is one of the things that I am still on the hunt for this year and, as I was perusing mytheresa.com recently, I found this one by Velvet. It’s the perfect green, has breast and side flap pockets, a drawstring waist [which can easily transform the style of the jacket] and is 100% cotton.

I purchased this one for myself and absolutely loved it! Sadly, I had to return it because the XS ran big and there isn’t an XXS option, however, if it did, this would absolutely be the one I would invest in.

Signature Sandals

saint laurent leather sandals

Saint Laurent Nu Pieds 05 Leather Sandals

Investing in a good pair of neutral, leather sandals is an absolute must for any gals wardrobe. You want a pair that will get better with age and I am confident this new pair by Saint Laurent I snagged back in March are going to do just that! They have an effortlessly chic design with the interwoven smooth leather straps. I started wearing them a lot recently and they have quickly become my go-to!

Mine might be more of an investment than most people would prefer, so I would also highly recommend considering Tory Burch sandals. They are still a little pricey but you will wear them so much and they will last and last!

Here are some sandals that are still available thatI think are super cute! Keep in mind, stock is lower than usual because of where we stand in the Summer season:

Summer fashion is winding down across most online retailers so Fall items will be rolling in soon! If you’re going to be shopping for booties this year, another wardrobe staple when it comes to footwear, I’d recommend investing in Gianvito Rossi. I recently purchased these suede ankle booties because I know they will sell out and they will get a lot of use throughout the season!

Versatile Neutral Handbag

Gucci Marmont Matelassé Leather Shoulder Bag

One of the greatest investments you can make in your wardrobe is in a quality handbag that is neutral in color and versatile in style. I personally invested in  the Gucci Marmont Matelassé Leather Shoulder Bag a few months ago and I couldn’t be happier. It’s high-quality leather, doesn’t scratch easily and offers a lot of security with the front-flap lock feature. It can be worn as a shoulder bag and a cross body handbag. The chain shoulder strap can be worn long or short, as well. I absolutely love this bag and reviewed it at length in this post from earlier this year, the Designer Handbag Review.

So, that’s my short list of must-have basics for every woman’s wardrobe! What are your favorite basics?


Editor's Notes



  1. Jennifer wrote:

    That white tee looks so nice! I do love my J.Crew one though! I really want to get a nice handbag but sadly I cannot afford one right now.

    Effortlessly Sophisticated

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  2. Roses for Fridays | by mia wrote:

    A simple white shirt is a must … totally agree! ????

    ??ROSES FOR FRIDAYS ??| by mia | A Creative Lifestyle Blog

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  3. Sara wrote:

    Couldn’t agree more with the white tee and a good pair of denim! It’s a go-to outfit for me! Question: Do the Tory Burch Miller sandals usually go on sale during the Nordstrom sale? Would love to have a new color in them!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  4. briana wrote:

    Great post and I love your outfit, too. So simple yet chic and you can tell it’s high quality 🙂

    briana | youngsophisticate.com

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  5. Kim J wrote:

    Great list! I have been looking for quality T shirts thanks for the Rag and Bone info! You look great as always!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  6. Chloie wrote:

    Love this list!! I’m definitely looking for a new handbag (my old one got in an accident sadly)! I’ll have to check out those jeans, I currently rock Lucky.

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  7. Bethany wrote:

    Yes!! This might be my favorite post!! I am so a basics girl and love finding new quality brands to invest in. Thank you!!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  8. Ashley Baca wrote:

    I wpuld love to buy an expensive bag someday. I love dressing in basics. Thanks for the list!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  9. Nicole wrote:

    I love those Saint Laurent sandals, but they are so expensive! Can you find/post an affordable dupe?? Thank you as always!!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  10. Cadian Lawrence wrote:

    Love this post. I’ve been searching for a new white tee. I’ve heard great things about AG jeans too.

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  11. Hannah wrote:

    I love a great neutral, but I’ve always struggled with choosing the right color of leather good like a shoe or handbag. Do you think a light “nude” sort of color or a medium tan shade is the color that has the most versatility and stands the test of time? Thanks!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  12. Amy Bohannan wrote:

    Agreed on all of your choices! I can’t say I am able to spend much on every piece but finding the perfect purse, shoe, or Jean I am willing to make the investment! These are all great versatile pieces to keep in our closets!

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  13. Nicci wrote:

    For an amazing utility jacket I would HIGHLY recommend the Barbour Beadnell Waxed Jacket. I bought mine about a year and a half ago and have gotten so much use out of it! I’ve worn it from early fall over short and long-sleeve shirts through early winter over a heavy sweater. It was the only jacket I brought on our trip Scotland and Ireland in late May/early June and it was perfect (especially the waterproof properties). I sized up one size to comfortably fit my bulkiest sweaters underneath, but I’m considering buying another one in a different color that’s my actual size for a slimmer fit since I love this one so much. I got mine from Nordstrom, but their stores are amazing if you can find one near you.

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  14. Shauna wrote:

    mytheresa.com is down for updates. Just an FYI. Not sure if it matters 🙂

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  15. Kyrie Collins wrote:

    Hi Haley,
    Thanks so much for doing this post. I loved it. You are such an inspiration to follow. I love your outfit ideas and how you pair things together. I have a weakness for designer purchases that will stand the test of time. I will say a lot of my purchases have been inspired by you. Your the best. Keep up the great work. The Lord will bless you.
    Looking forward to your Nordstrom top picks.

    Published 7.10.18 · Reply
  16. Janitsy Anderson wrote:

    My favorite jeans are also AG jeans. You cannot beat the quality and the amount of wear really makes up for the price. I love the pair you are wearing here with the tee hem.

    Published 7.11.18 · Reply
  17. Joni La Fave wrote:

    Great post!!! Love It! How to style things is always welcome. Sometimes the simplest outfits can make your brain hurt thinking about what to put with it. Lol. Thanks so much for your time! Xo ?

    Published 7.11.18 · Reply
  18. Karen wrote:

    Unfortunately the tiny leather sole of the sandals won’t work with my feet. I love my Memphistos and my Naots.

    Published 7.11.18 · Reply
  19. I Love Uniqlo for t-shirts! They are a nice weight, have a little shape and cost under $15! I Love expensive handbags too! Problem is bags cost as much, if not more, than jewelry! Barneys Warehouse ( online too) sometimes have designer bags at really good prices. Jewelry is on my basic list! I love vintage Tiffany jewelry in 18k, Deborah Pagani and Colette earrings especially! The Colette Eri studs are on my wish list. For everyday sandals, I like G.H Bass sunjins.

    Published 7.12.18 · Reply
  20. I’m such a big fan of basics! They make up 90% of my wardrobe, thanks for this post!

    Published 7.12.18 · Reply
  21. Gorgeous! I really want a Gucci bag!

    Published 7.13.18 · Reply
  22. Aliya wrote:

    Wow you look stunning Alyson Haley i follow your tips and continuously read you blog post. Your website is really awesome and there lots of informative blog post available which is helpful. Thanks and keep posting

    Published 7.16.18 · Reply
  23. In love with your super amazing photos! The color is too perfect.


    Published 7.26.18 · Reply
  24. Scarlett randolph wrote:

    The Gucci bag is on my wish list for luxury bags and I bought my first pair of ag jeans and I completely agree they are ones I will have years from now. I wish I would have invested in them earlier.

    Published 7.26.18 · Reply
  25. I definitely need a good utility jacket!


    Published 7.27.18 · Reply
  26. Great post! That dress is so gorgeous on you, and i love the vintage flirt details of the dress. Gorgeous!


    Published 7.30.18 · Reply
  27. Angela wrote:

    Hi! I personally really enjoyed your post about the essentials to invest in and really did help! But I do have one little point to add in, I used to work at Tory Burch! And a sad side note I think you should know since you recommended them, is that if people invest in the brand to be sure to invest in ONLY full price, and not outlet… the products do not last well from outlet. Full price is good! I have a pair of millers myself and love them! But my outlet items do not stand up to real wear. I hope this helps you in your post!

    Published 8.3.18 · Reply
  28. Jo wrote:

    Oh you’re so right
    Loving this post

    Kiss kiss.*Jo
    Jo & Company Style

    Published 8.18.18 · Reply
  29. M wrote:

    Love the look. Where is the ring from?

    Published 7.24.19 · Reply
  30. Sandra wrote:

    What a great list!!! A list most people can have. I’m 52 and many of these things I can still wear. Thank you. Although, I’m STILL working on that Gucci bag..lol

    Published 4.28.20 · Reply
  31. Jessika Packman wrote:

    Hi! Just stumbled upon this post. Because this post is from 2 years ago many of the items are not on the website anymore. Would you have equivalents for the t-shirt and jeans? Thanks!

    Published 9.3.20 · Reply