Best of Portland 2022 AND 2023 Winner! Voted Best Clothing Resale Shop in the Willamette Week's reader poll 2 years in a row!
Our Broadway boutique is now closed. Come visit our bigger and brighter west-side shop!

Wardrobe Basics vs. Wardrobe Staples

Wardrobe Basics vs. Wardrobe Staples

*all images are linked to the online shop. shop away!

When it comes to wardrobe curating, there are two main categories that make up our closets: basics and staples. Sometimes these words are used interchangeably, but I think there is a difference. 

The Definitions

Basics: They are foundational, they are the building blocks of every outfit. Basics need styling with other items, they help add to the overall look.  

Staples: These pieces can stand on their own. They are the star of the outfit, they showcase your personal style.  

The commonality between basics and staples is that they can be worn with almost anything in your closet. Let’s take a deeper dive into each category here. 



Because you will be wearing these items quite often, they should stand the test of time. These items might be the most expensive items in your closet and in my opinion, they should be.   

When you think of basics, what comes to mind? A white tee? A pair of jeans? While yes, these do have an important place in your closet, don’t get caught up in what you might think of as a “classic”. You have to define what a classic means to you. For example, I recently bought a button-up blouse because almost every closet list says it is a must-have. While it looks great on many, it didn’t work for me, no matter all the different ways I tried to style it. The matter of fact is: if you don’t feel good in it, you won’t wear it.  

Another thing about basics is not to assume they are neutral or boring. As someone who doesn’t wear much black, I have found joy in combining colors in unexpected ways. My closet does not look as cohesive as many Pinterest capsule collection boards do, but it is versatile for me. So buy those army green pants, just as long as they can help create at least 5 other outfits. 

Below are a few examples of some closet basics:

wildfang, wildfang denim, portland resale shop, shop portland resale, hwga       burberry bag, burberry cornwall hobo bag, portland luxury resale, portland luxury consignment

bryn walker, bryn walker dress, portland resale, portland consignment         ecco sneakers, ecco white trainers, portland resale, portland consignment, shop portland



As said before, staples should be the “totally you” pieces. “Totally you” pieces are the items that shout your name, and anyone who knows you will think of you when they see it. These items should be a mood booster, they should help you out on your bad days when you don’t know what to wear. 

Once you understand your staples and start incorporating them in different ways into your outfits, you will create some really stylish looks. And the beauty of this all is that it won’t bother you that you are re-wearing outfits or wearing similar outfits because they make you feel so good. 

Here are some staples to add to your closet:

cecilie bahnsen, cecilie bahsen black blouse, shop romantic style pdx, portland consignment, portland resale prison art bags, prison art, portland resale, portland consignment, shop portland resale

anthropologie pants, anthropologie style, anthro portland, anthro portland resale, anthro resale   free people clogs, fp clogs, portland style, portland boho style, portland resale


In the end, understanding what basics and staples mean to you will help make your closet much more satisfactory, ending the cycle of unnecessary consumption. 

Did I miss anything? Drop it in the comments section below! 

Till next time, 


Previous Article Next Article

Leave a comment

Get All The Deals!
Pretty pictures, pretty bad puns! Sign up to get us in your inbox each week!