How to Create a Capsule Wardrobe With Timeless Style & A Modern Twist

From a young age I have loved putting together looks and creating perfect outfits – not surprising that I ended up with this blog! But I wouldn’t describe my love as Fashion it’s more about Style. I’m happy to include the latest fashion must have if it fits with what I am wearing or styling but not just for the sake of being “in fashion”. So while writing my book on creating the perfect capsule wardrobe I have been keeping in mind looks that won’t appear dated in several years time. My absolute favourite style books are the Chic Simple Collection. If you get a chance to buy or look at any of them you will see that despite being written from the mid to late 90’s (almost 20 years ago) you could still pick outfits from them and wear them now.

timeless style

So how do you create a capsule wardrobe that has timeless style? Here are my suggestions:

Start with neutral colours and basic pieces.

creating a wardrobe, neutral basics

Similar basic pieces that give a completely different feel. If the sharp contrast of black and cream isn’t for you the same pieces look luxurious when done in a lighter palette. These core items will earn cost per wear in your wardrobe used over and over with other core basics or seasonal trends. They are made contemporary with the trainers and the mixture of lengths in the tops. Start with a tote bag in a neutral and add a colour later.

Image left Pinterest // Black jumper // Cream shirt Baukjen // Trousers J Crew // Bag Village England // Animal trainers // Cream jumper East // Pink shirt Ghost // Cream trousers J Crew // Pink Bag Furla // Pink Trainers Miss KG

See what happens when you add a pair of classic pointed heels. The outfit becomes a little more dressy.


Images Pinterest // Pinterest // Pinterest //

A pair of pointed court shoes are a timeless wardrobe staple. They will always be appropriate. We’ve seen trends with platform court shoes and round toes but if you have only one pair in your wardrobe the pointed toe is the one to choose. Black is the obvious choice if you wear it but alternatively you could choose a navy or grey if that fits better with your colour scheme.

Two more timeless pieces to add – the pencil skirt and a classic cardigan.

how to create a timeless capsule wardrobe

Image left // Image Right // Cardigan LK Bennett // Skirt Boden // Shoes LK Bennett // Cardigan John Lewis // Skirt Warehouse //

You will find a pencil skirt in every price bracket so there is something to suit all budgets. Teamed with a classic crew neck cardigan and those must have court shoes it is a look that will never date. Look for a Ponte skirt or one with some elastane for comfort, especially if you are curvy. Make it modern by choosing a statement print – this season it’s a floral or a stripe.

The full skirt has been huge for the last few seasons and is a great alternative to the pencil skirt if you want to conceal your hips or thighs. For an evening out choose a satin or for all out glamour a tulle version and wear with a knit or toughen it up with a biker jacket to bring it up to date. You might think it’s a little bold for daytime but it’s a skirt that you could bring out every party season.

How to create a timeless wardrobe

Image left // Image right // Cardigan Jaeger // Skirt Ted Baker // Biker Jacket Baukjen // Skirt Coast //

Note the addition of the large clutch (here and with the pencil and full skirts above), a more modern feel than the mini clutch or evening shoulder bag. They work just as well during the day too.

How to create a timeless wardrobe

Heart bag Alexander McQueen // Blue bag Whistles // Tan bag Dune // Ivory bag Baukjen // Lips bag Diane Von Furstenberg

I mentioned the biker jacket above and this is also a favourite to include in a timeless wardrobe. They have been around for so long now and look like they won’t be going anywhere soon. Not just in leather though, they now come in an array of fabrics so even if you have a full bust you can still find one in a less restricting fabric.

If you are looking for leather my first stop would be Baukjen – they do a version every season in a range of colours, this season even including white. I’m not sure I would be brave enough for white leather but I love the denim blue shade which looks almost teal.

How to create a timeless wardrobe

Moving on to prints. The Breton stripe always puts in an appearance in the stylish woman’s wardrobe and animal print is so popular it has been described as a neutral. When your outfit is completely plain (as in the black trouser one above) what elevates it from ok to great? The animal print shoe. But don’t just wear it as a shoe, look for bags, jackets, coats, belts – in fact anywhere in your wardrobe.

How to create a timeless wardrobe

Image left // Image centre // Image right

You can even mix your breton stripes with your animal print.

How to create a timeless wardrobe

Image left // Image right // Breton top Boden // Necklace J Crew // Sunglasses Giorgio Armani // Skirt Whistles // Bag Lulu Guiness // Shoes Dune

I’ve added two more of my essentials in to the look above, the statement necklace and a pair of sunglasses.

What is the one thing stylish celebrities always wear at the airport? Sunglasses of course. They know that a fabulous pair of sunglasses hide a multitude of sins.

A statement necklace makes an outfit, even when it is only a pair of jeans and a T-shirt.

So here are all my personal essentials – yours will be different to suit you and your lifestyle but I know you will find most of these endlessly versatile.


Once you have timeless pieces in your wardrobe mixed with a few trend items it’s how you mix them up that creates your personal style.

If you would like me to create a timeless capsule wardrobe for you choose the Personalised Capsule Wardrobe Dossier service.


  1. January 29, 2015 / 6:10 pm

    Hi Maria Thank you for this wardrobe update, since reading your articles I must let you know my wardrobe has really started to come together & I surprised myself on holiday recently when I was able to make outfits from what I had packed that I hadn’t pre-planned…. Just by having followed your advice….
    I love your Friday newsletter especially during these gloomy winter nights, please keep up the good work, it is much appreciated.
    Ps Cant wait to get my hands on a copy of your book.


    • Maria
      January 30, 2015 / 9:31 am

      Hi Debbie, thank you for the lovely feedback I’m so pleased you find the articles useful it makes it so rewarding! I am busy writing the book when not working on the blog and it is coming on. I will keep you updated as to progress soon. Have a lovely weekend. Maria