Your essential wardrobe - Write of the Middle
Fashion The Lovin' Life Linky Wardrobe

Your essential wardrobe

November 9, 2017
fashion, wardrobe, sunglasses, tulle, pink

fashion, wardrobe, sunglasses, tulle, pink

This post is part of The Gorgeous 50’s series inspired by a book given to me by one of my sisters on my 50th birthday – ‘Grown-Up and Gorgeous in your 50’s’ by Pamela Robson.  I will be sharing some of Pamela’s words and my own thoughts along the way.  To see all posts published as part of this series, go here.

Pamela says:

Your essential wardrobe should consist of the following

Tops:  cotton Tshirts, black cardigan, cotton Vneck jumper, white blouse or shirt, camisole, cashmere wrap

Bottoms:  a couple of pairs of jeans, black tailored pants

Suits:  good separates [jacket, pants and skirt] in black or navy

Jackets/coats:  denim jacket, trench coat, wool coat

Shoes:  black ballet flats, comfy plain sneakers, moccasins, black work pumps, black high heels

Jewellery and accessories:  diamond stud/pearl earrings, classic watch, goodquality sunglasses, black work bag, brown everyday bag


Trends come and go:  older women can get away with some ‘younger’ items as long as they are balanced by good basics.

Good basics endure:  you can’t go wrong with wellcut classics in good materials.  The trick is to add a twist with a few stylish items.  Best stay away from those that are doomed to be discarded after one season.  If you must, source them from the cheaper shops not the teen departments.

Neutrals are your fashion friend:  think black and white, beige, tan, silvery grey and navy.

Quality fabrics matter:  they look better, feel better and survive longer it’s worth the investment.


My thoughts:

I must confess straight up that I am no fashion expert but I am getting better at knowing what suits me and my figure at my current age!  

Pamela quite obviously does not live in Queensland!  We rarely, if ever, need a wool coat here though it would be handy to have one should we travel to somewhere with a much cooler climate.  A trench coat is more suited to our winters here [if it gets cold enough] and a denim jacket is always handy, though I must admit I don’t own one.

trench coat, fashion, packing, suitcase, red trench coat, coat, red coat

This picture I shared on Instagram towards the end of September when packing for Canberra shows my red trench coat which I was very excited to use in Canberra as it hasn’t been used here in Brisbane since my corporate days working in the city.  Brisbane city, particularly George Street, can be quite the wind tunnel in winter!

I agree with having a couple or even a few pairs of jeans.  Personally, I like some options!  Style Options:  bootleg jeans or skinny jeans, and Colour Options:  denim jeans, black jeans, white jeans and so on.  Everyone needs to have some black tailored pants agreed!

jeans, petites, fashion, pants,

These are the jeans I bought myself recently. They’re Dannii Minogue Petites high waisted skinny jeans from Target.  Fantastic for the vertically challenged like myself [5 foot 3 inches and under], really affordable at only $39, and so comfortable!

I guess suit separates would be handy for many but not for all.  It depends on your occupation and style choices.  I also feel that there are lots of lovely colour choices other than black or navy!

As for shoes … moccasins?  I think Pamela may mean slippers or ugg boots?  The other shoes suggested are all handy and great essentials to have at hand.  I would add nude/beige options in there also.

Diamond studs and pearl earrings are gorgeous to have but what about good ‘ol silver or gold [depending on your preference] sleepers and studs too?  A nice watch is lovely to have but I’m finding that less and less people are wearing them these days because everyone has a smart phone on them all the time now and the time is available on those.  Also, you are more likely to find a FitBit [or equivalent] on the wrist rather than a watch these days!

Pamela’s points under ‘REMEMBER’

I totally agree with all that she says here.  Neutrals are must have wardrobe essentials and though I’m not exactly sure what Pamela might define as a ‘younger item’, I do think that balancing these with some good classic basics is a good idea, assuming that the younger item is a sensible choice for the wearer’s figure of course!  Perhaps by ‘younger item’ she means an ‘on trend’ item? 

Not only do quality fabrics matter, but quality clothes matter when you get older.  It makes all the difference and it most certainly is worth the investment.  I also apply this belief to the purchase of shoes. Well designed, comfortable and supportive shoes make life so much better!  Feet abuse is no longer able to be tolerated in your 5O’s.  Comfort is essential!  I recently wore my Frankie4 Ellie III Silver Star shoes all around Canberra and all around Perth as I was touristing and I never had one little hint of foot pain at all.  They are just that fantastic!

shoes, frankie4, footwear, silver

FRANKIE4 Ellie III Silver Star shoes. Instagram pic from July this year.

Do you think you have your essential wardrobe in order?  What would you add to Pamela’s list? 

Ciao for now,

Link up here at WOTM or with another of us in the Lovin’ Life Linky team:

Leanne of Deep Fried Fruit
Lyndall of Seize the Day Project
Kathy of 50 Shades of Age
of Debbish
and Jo of And Anyways

It doesn’t matter where you link up as it will magically appear on all six blogs.


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  • Sydney Shop Girl November 9, 2017 at 6:50 am

    I love those silver trainers!!!!

    SSG xxx

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:29 pm

      They’re divine. I love them!! Best purchase ever! xo

  • Ingrid November 9, 2017 at 7:30 am

    I agree with your addition of the Frankie4 Silver Ellies! They are definitely a footwear essential for me!


    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:33 pm

      Aren’t they just fabulous! I love them!

  • Kathy Marris November 9, 2017 at 7:30 am

    I agree that this essentials list was obviously devised for a cooler climate. I think for Australia you would add a couple of little summer dresses and maybe some shorts (length depending on how good your legs are). Plus I think we all need a LBD of some description for evening dress. Oh and a pair of sandals. #TeamLovinLife

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:34 pm

      Summer dresses, shorts an LBD and a pair of sandles – totally agree agree with your additions Kathy!

  • Lydia C. Lee November 9, 2017 at 8:01 am

    I LOVE those shoes! I want a pair…off to google

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:35 pm

      I love them too! There’s a direct link to them within the post. No need for Mr Google! 😉

  • Jo Tracey November 9, 2017 at 8:29 am

    I’m failing badly. For work – when I have to go to Sydney – I have a couple of Thai silk printed A-line skirts that I wear with t-shirts, either long or short sleeved depending on the season. It’s boots in the winter and sandals in the summer. Maxi skirts all year round. No white at all – it doesn’t stay white with me – and absolutely nothing tailored. And thongs – I have 8 pairs of havis and a couple of pairs of terrell walking sandals that I wear all year round up here.

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:37 pm

      I can never buy maxi dresses or skirts. They’re always WAY too long for little shortie me! I love crisp and fresh white but have to be careful! I can be messy too! haha I don’t have a heap of havi’s but do have a couple of pairs of thongs for around the house plus my Birkenstocks. LOVE my Birkenstocks!

  • Vanessa November 9, 2017 at 8:32 am

    I hate plain bags with a wild passion – so kick me if you ever see me with a black work bag or a brown weekend bag. In fact, when I was trying to buy a new bag recently everything was black, brown or red and nope. I lucked out at the markets with something quirky that I was looking for.

    Plus I don’t wear dresses, skirts, high heels or jewelry. I am trying to get used to wearing sunnies but I hate having things on my face so I really struggle with that.

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:39 pm

      I’m guilty of plain black bags! Black, red, beige coloured BUT I have also bought a few colourful and quirky bags recently so I think I can be forgiven (hopefully! LOL).

  • Deborah November 9, 2017 at 9:56 am

    My aunt was talking about those Frankie 4s recently. I hadn’t realised she’d even heard of the brand but she was trying to explain them to me….

    I’m struggling a little with work clothes at the moment. I looked in my wardrobe at home this morning and was not inspired at all. Some of the shirts I wear I’ve now been wearing every week for almost two years and though I’ve inherited a few new ones I’ve not actually bought any new shirts. I’ve bought a couple of Adrift dresses in the last year and some pants but probably need to think of tops.

    I do agree on the notion of buying ‘plain’ though not necessarily beige / black / white tops. TS14+ is the only plus sized store around and their clothes are really bright with patterns and it’s really obvious when someone else is wearing the same thing!

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      I love the Frankie4 shoes. They are a little expensive but totally worth it for the comfort, support and style they provide. I’m totally drooling over some of their new summer range. There’s a couple of pairs I have my eye on! I love Adrift too … so much temptation in my inbox all the time! You’re working Deb – indulge in some more work clothes for yourself!

  • Natalie November 9, 2017 at 10:03 am

    I have the basics, Min, and would like to go through my wardrobe this winter to reduce my clothing volume.

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:42 pm

      I need to do the very same thing Natalie!

  • JODIE FILOGOMO November 9, 2017 at 11:10 am

    Considering I am a maximalist when it comes to a wardrobe, I’d add in a ton more shoes (yes..I have a problem…). I like having fun colors of shoes, and hardly ever wear my black ones when it comes right down to it.
    Take for example, silver. It’s one of those colors that goes with everything and is fun!! Or red. Or yellow! The list goes on…at least in my closet—haha!

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:44 pm

      Now why doesn’t it shock me that you’re a maximalist when it comes to wardrobe Jodie? LOL I like fun colours too and absolutely love my Frankie4 silver shoes with the quirky laces for that reason and because they look so fantastic and are SO comfortable! xo

  • Jo November 9, 2017 at 11:34 am

    I always need reminding about the basics of style – I am a great one for going off at a tangent and buying show pony pieces, then finding nothing to wear with them in my existing wardrobe. Love those silver FRANKiE4 sneakers 🙂

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:45 pm

      I’m exactly the same Jo – going off on tangents buying show pony pieces! lol I’m getting better though (I think!). I love those silver FRANKIE4 shoes too! Best purchase ever!

  • sue from sizzlingtowardssixty & beyond November 9, 2017 at 11:46 am

    Love this post Min as I have been wanting to sort my wardrobe for ages. You have given me the inspiration to start. I love your red trench coat and every woman should have a pair of silver trainers shouldn’t they?

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:49 pm

      Glad you’ve been inspired to sort your wardrobe Sue! I love my red trench coat too. Wish I got to wear it more often though. As for those Silver FRANKIE4’s they would be my best purchase for 2017 by far. They totally deliver on every count: stylish, quirky, and oh so comfortable!

  • Leanne | November 9, 2017 at 12:00 pm

    I agree with some of the stuff she says but I think black and white and beige without any other colours make me look washed out and older. I am a huge fan of a coloured top to brighten my face and I think you need more than just black in your shoe choices too. Maybe I’m forgetting my age but I intend to be colourful all the way through til I die – and then be buried in my colourful coffin (with glitter thrown if possible!)

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:52 pm

      OMG the vision of a colourful coffin with glitter that I have in my head Leanne! LOL Yes I agree that just black and white and beige can be boring for sure. I think she’s just talking with regards to ‘basics’ though, maybe assuming colour would be added with a scarf or jewellery etc. I like a bit of colour myself and have shoes and clothes in many different colours! 🙂

  • Maria | passion fruit, paws and peonies November 9, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    Oooo I wonder is I could get Danni’s jeans over here in the UK? Thanks for the tips x #Lovin’LifeLinky

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:54 pm

      Oooo I don’t know Maria but you could always order and have it delivered to someone here in Australia and then get them to mail it over to you! 🙂

  • Denyse November 9, 2017 at 4:15 pm

    This is a most helpful and interesting post as for the first time in “forever” I am getting into my wardrobe and taking a photo each day. It is doing wonders for my emotional health and self-confidence. I cannot wear any shoes as pretty as those but I recently found some Ecco sandals on special. Lovely post, Min! D x

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 5:55 pm

      Thank you Denyse! I’ve seen that you’re posting #everydayfashion photo’s now and you’re looking fabulous! I’m so glad that it’s helping with your self-confidence. xo

  • Jenni | Unclutter Your Universe November 9, 2017 at 6:10 pm

    I’m a big fan of quality basics that can be worked together to make lots of different outfits and love the Smart Closet app for keeping track of these outfits and also the individual pieces that are in my wardrobe. I purchased my first pair of silver sneakers this year and wear them all the time, so am now on the look out for some silver summer options.

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 9:44 pm

      I might have to check out the Smart Closet app! I’d like some silver summer options too … but I’m a bit distracted by some new rose gold slides that Frankie4 have in their new summer range. I need to win some money! I want too much! lol

  • Jan Wild November 9, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    Whilst I really don’t like those prescriptive lists, this is one of the better ones I have seen. However, as I age I find myself wanting more colour in my wardrobe. I will always have my neutral basics but definitely not beige. I also wonder about the need for a V neck jumper, I don’t wear V necks well. But we all need a starting point and this list is a good one.

    • Min November 9, 2017 at 9:47 pm

      Glad you think the list is a good one Jan! I think it’s pretty good but as I said, with a few additions and subtractions to suit my taste and where I live etc. BTW I’m not really into beige either but do love black and white! 🙂

  • Lyndall @ SeizeTheDayProject November 12, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Personally, I do love black and white as a wardrobe staple. I also love navy, as it goes with so much. I have silver sneakers too – they’re so comfy and lift a casual outfit 🙂 #TeamLovinLife

    • Min November 14, 2017 at 7:34 am

      I love black and white and navy too and I do love my silver Ellie’s. Loving the metallics at the moment! 🙂

  • Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit November 13, 2017 at 10:23 am

    I do love Danni Minogue’s style.

    • Min November 14, 2017 at 7:35 am

      Me too – love her range at Target! 🙂