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Essentials 101: The Capsule Wardrobe

Hayley O'Neill

The Capsule Wardrobe.

A collection of essentials can be dressed up or down to create an outfit for every occasion. You’ll never go wrong with these pieces in your fashion arsenal, especially as the trans-seasonal chill starts to creep into our city…

THE LITTLE BLACK DRESS

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A wardrobe perennial, the little black dress is a no-brainer. In the words of Coco Chanel, “One is never over-dressed nor under-dressed in a little black dress.”

Dress, $199.95 and bag, both by Witchery; sunglasses, by ZanZan at Eyecentric.

THE TRENCH COAT

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This iconic piece needs no introduction. Originally popular for its utility principles, it has taken its place as an essential layered outerwear piece in the everyday wardrobe.

Trench coat $59 by Forcast, Canberra Outlet Centre; top $119.95, skirt $149.95 and bag, all by Witchery; bra, $16.95 by Cotton On, Canberra Outlet Centre.

THE WHITE SHIRT

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This timeless and versatile piece can go two ways: think crisp cotton for a ‘borrowed from the boys’ feel; or soft silk for a more feminine approach. It’s all about effortless simplicity.

Shirt $34.95, by Brent Wilson at Trade Secret, Canberra Outlet Centre; bra $16.95, by Cotton On, Canberra Outlet Centre; jeans $99.95, by All About Eve at Parliament, Canberra Outlet Centre; boots by Witchery; bag by Zara; earrings (worn throughout), by Lovisa; ring (worn throughout), by Veronika Maine, Cue Canberra Outlet Centre.

THE LEATHER JACKET

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The leather jacket is a wardrobe mainstay and can create rock-chick edge or sophisticate-chic with its pairing. Its character only increases with each wear, making this an investment piece you’ll never regret.

Leather jacket, $99.95, blouse, $59.95, and jeans, $89.95, all by Portmans, Canberra Outlet Centre; belt, by Bardot; shoes, by Lipstik, Canberra Outlet Centre.

THE TAILORED SEPARATES

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Two pieces that are perfectly paired – a tailored blazer and trouser combination – will always demand attention. Mix and match with other pieces and killer accessories to take power dressing from desk to dinner.

Blazer $259, and pants $179, both by Cue City, Cue Canberra Outlet Centre; bra $16.95, by Cotton On, Canberra Outlet Centre.

THE CARDIGAN

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One of the most under-rated items in
the modern wardrobe, the cardigan encompasses smart casual dressing. Neither casual as a t-shirt nor formal as a jacket, it can be worn alone or styled over (and under) items to create directional layers for every occasion.

Cardigan (worn backwards), $19, by Forcast, Canberra Outlet Centre; pants, $159.95 by Witchery.

CONCEPT + CREATIVE DIRECTOR JAVIER STEEL

PHOTOGRAPHER TINA NIKOLOVSKI

STYLIST HAYLEY O’NEILL, ASSISTED BY MAÉVA NAVAS AND EMILY CRABB

HAIR KATE LILY DRESSING HAIR

MAKEUP TELISA ORZELEK

MODEL LAURA LITCHFIELD, DEVOJKA MODELS

COORDINATION BELINDA NEAME

LOCATION A FLICK OF HARES, KINGSTON

SPECIAL THANKS CRAIG AND MELANIE RHODES, A FLICK OF HARES. TINA NIKOLOVSKI AT DEVOJKA MODELS.

This article originally appeared in Magazine: Back to Basics for Autumn 2017, available for free while stocks last. Find out more about Magazine here

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Hayley O'Neill

Hayley O’Neill is a Canberra based fashion stylist and fashion editor for HerCanberra. Hayley works as a freelance stylist at Westfield Belconnen and Woden and began her career styling for The Work Diaries blog. Hayley has lots of experience dressing real people with every size, age, budget and body shape. More about the Author

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