Learn How to Build a Wardrobe:

The 12-Piece Professional Women’s Basic Wardrobe

Here's how to build a wardrobe...simply put together the right pieces, from womens business suits to blouses, and apply the True Style Tips and Strategies. Now that you know what cuts, colors, patterns, textures, lines, etc. to wear where, let’s take a closer look at some pictures of foundational professional wardrobe pieces...seeing examples of how to build a wardrobe facilitates the learning process.

Beyond the Tips & Strategies, when you’re building a basic wardrobe, your colors should coordinate. Color coordination is crucial to successfully creating a basic, yet multiple-look, wardrobe.

Key Point: Coordinate Your Colors

What are your neutrals (e.g., colors you can wear with any other color)? (Pick 1-3). The ones for the wardrobe we’re working on are charcoal grey, black and white.

What are your coordinating colors? (Pick 2-5). Ours are red/crimson and multi-color (combinations of red, white, and/or charcoal gray/black).

Hint: the neutrals should work well with the coordinating colors and each other (kind of de facto) and they should compliment your complexion. The coordinating colors should also match the neutrals (also pretty much a given), as well as each other (VERY important), and again, they should compliment your complexion.

The Basic Women's Business Clothes Wardrobe

Here's a sample 12-piece women’s professional wardrobe for a relatively traditional/conservative industry for a woman with a somewhat classic style, which shows first-hand how to build a wardrobe. Or check out the "Basic Wardrobe Planning for Women who Mean Business" video above.

It may be surprising how many different looks you can put together with only 12 items of clothing.

Start with a Two-Piece Women's Business Suit

Click an Image Below to Shop for Your Wardrobe Staple Suit

Add 5 Blouses that Coordinate with the Suit

Here are 6 Options to Shop

See the video above or Look Book below to see the 5 blouses we used.

White Solid Color Blouse

Multi-Color Print Blouse

Black Solid Color Blouse

Black and White Blouse

Dark Red Blouse

Red & White Blouse

The Three Bottoms

The Black Pump

Womens Professional Outerwear:
The Classic Trench Coat

How to Build a Wardrobe for Ladies Who Mean Business

The photos at the end of this page include a “look book” to also give you an idea of how you can mix and match the pieces to obtain a number of different combinations when you’re pulling together your wardrobe basics.

The concepts for the 12-piece wardrobe are similar for all industries, however, the cuts, colors and styles of the pieces may vary by industry and the personal style of the woman wearing it.

For instance, if you were in the fashion industry, your basic suit would likely have a bit more flair to it than the one shown above for a more conservative industry.

If your industry is traditional, but you have more of a romantic style, you might choose a women’s business suit similar to the one below, however instead of a tailored blouse, you might wear blouses with ruffles, or some other feminine detailing, underneath your women's business suits.

You may also take in to account the True Style Body Shape Fashion Tips when you’re choosing your perfect basic ladies business suit, blouse, skirt or pants as you discover how to build a wardrobe.

For example, if you want to minimize the appearance of your hips, you might choose a suit with a wider trouser leg than the one shown below and a jacket that sits just below your natural waistline instead of at the widest part of your hips. You may also decide that your coordinating blouse colors will be lighter than the color of your pants and skirts (click here for additional dress your body type fashion style tips).

The Look Book

For additional basic wardrobe building advice...click here.

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