Getting dressed in the morning can sometimes feel like a monumental task, especially if you don't have much time or if you really, really want to look nice today but NOTHING looks right. There are a few items that you can have in your wardrobe which will make the stress of getting dressed a little less - there will still be mornings where you're left red-faced with the contents of your wardrobe strewn around you, but it won't be quite so often.
1 A White Shirt
One of my favourite things to wear, ever - have a smart one for work, and then I also have a slightly over-sized one for the weekends, that I wear with blue jeans or printed trousers.
2 A Little Black Dress
I know, I know - you've heard it so many times before. But there's a reason it's a classic and that's because you can find one to suit everyone. Find the one that looks great on you and you'll have it forever.
3 A White Dress
White can be more difficult to pull off - you may need to consider spending more as it can look cheap if it's see-through - but I actually prefer it to a LBD, especially in summer. Take it on holiday, chuck it on for evening drinks outside; you'll find yourself reaching for it all the time when the weather gets warmer.
4 Basic T-shirts
Not particularly fun, but functional. You can't have the fun stuff - the bright colours, the crazy prints - without some plain black, white and grey t-shirts to pair with them.
5 A Good Winter Coat
Choosing a winter coat is a big deal - you'll be wearing it everyday for months, so you need to look good and be warm. Take your time choosing one, try and spend a bit more if you can and find one you really love.
6 A Transitional Jacket
This is the one thing I don't have and, in spring and autumn, I end up thinking 'I wish I had a trench coat or something' on an almost daily basis. You'll get so much wear out of it, especially if you live in grey, rainy England.
7 Jeans That Fit
Jeans are not an easy thing to buy, but they are now as much of a wardrobe classic as a LBD. You need to find the style that suits you - bootcut, skinny, straight etc - and the brand that fits, and stick with it.
8 Shoes for All Seasons
If you're anything like me, you'll want dozens of pairs of shoes, but try and at least have a pair of boots, a pair of sandals, a pair of heels, a pair of smart flats and a pair of trainers. That way, you'll always have something to go with everything.
9 A Clutch Bag
You don't need loads of clutch bags, you don't even use them that often. Invest in a lovely one in a neutral colour that will go with everything. If you need an unusual colour to go with a specific outfit, just buy a cheap one.
10 A Straw Hat
A summer hat - could be a trilby, fedora, anything that suits you - will be so useful, throughout spring, summer and all your holidays. Wear it to protect your face from the sun, on the beach, at festivals; I wore mine so much last year that I need to buy a new one this year.
You do actually wear sunglasses year-round (but NEVER inside) so it's worth finding a pair that really suits your face. Don't buy a particular shape just because it's in - cat's eye glasses, novelty ones, even wayfarers - if it doesn't suit your face, find a different pair.
12 A Printed Blouse
I have a few printed silk blouses and I wear them all the time. You can use them for work, or I normally wear mine for jeans for a perfect smart casual weekend outfit.
13 Tailored Black Trousers
You will always wear these. Obviously, they're ideal for work but they're also perfect if you don't like wearing dresses but still want to feel dressed up. If you're keeping them for evening, they're nice in crepe or a tux style.
14 A Standout Dress
I know dresses aren't for everyone, but I think having one dress in your wardrobe that makes you feel really, really good is lovely to have. It may take you years to find it, but you'll be happy when you do!
15 Shoes That Make You Feel like Carrie Bradshaw
Finally, I think every girl has to have one pair of shoes in their wardrobes that makes them feel like skipping down the street and twirling. I have fluffy pairs, strappy pairs, patterned pairs - find your magic shoes.
Once you've got the above items in your wardrobe, it's easier to build around them, because you'll probably already have something to wear with whatever you want to buy. What key pieces do you think everyone should own?