What Are the Wardrobe Basics?

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  • Written By: Patti Kate
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 25 September 2019
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Wardrobe basics can refer to clothing that meets essential needs for every time of day, every season, and every occasion. These articles of clothing are typically categorized into basic groups, including staples to mix and match, evening wear, and day wear. Another category of wardrobe basics will include clothing for work or professional attire. There are wardrobe basics for adults, for men and women, and for children and infants.

A wardrobe for a woman will typically include what may be referred to as statement pieces. Just as the name suggests, these articles of clothing make a statement by displaying the wearer's individuality, while meeting essential requirements for work or for casual wear. Some simple pants or jeans and casual tops are good for casual weekend wear. Standard clothing for evening wear may include a satin or sequined top to pair with dress slacks. A party dress may also be a part of wardrobe basics for evening wear.


A suitable wardrobe for a man will include the basics for his work or career. One category will be dress attire, either for his profession or for formal affairs. This will typically include sports jackets and dress shirts, several neckties, and a few suits. Wardrobe basics for a man will also include casual wear, such as jeans and T-shirts that may be layered underneath a casual jacket. T-shirts or solid polo shirts in various colors are good basics to mix and match with blue or black jeans, or with casual khaki-style cargo pants.

Children's wardrobe basics will include clothing for school. If the child attends private school, he may require a school uniform, an essential part of his wardrobe basics. Aside from school clothing, the child's wardrobe will generally consist of clothing for special occasions such as parties or church. For boys, this may include dress slacks, shirts, and ties, and for girls, dresses or skirts may be included. Children's play clothes typically will include jeans and T-shirts or other casual shirts and pants.

Infants' wardrobe essentials will include one-piece outfits, such as rompers. Sun suits for baby girls are a basic for warm weather. Socks and booties are a basic or staple part of the infant's wardrobe as well. Hats or cotton caps are another staple. Cotton T-shirts will also be included in a baby's wardrobe.

Seasonal wardrobes will vary according to climate. Summer wardrobe basics for adults and children will include lightweight clothing. This generally will consist of shorts and sleeveless tank shirts and light cotton dresses for girls and women. Swim suits for adults and children are part of the basics of any wardrobe for summertime or for anyone who lives in a warm climate year round. Winter clothing wardrobes consist of sweaters, hats, gloves, scarves, boots, and overcoats.


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