"A classic white button-up is a piece nobody really gets excited about, but it's a great layering piece and gives any outfit a crisp finish."
"A structured blazer is one of my favorite styling pieces. It can totally transform a simple outfit from casual to polished. Keep it simple in black, or go for a print or texture, like a check or plaid."
"A good pair of black pants are a must. They're a great foundation for any outfit. They can be a go-to for work with a blouse, or you can dress them up with a cami and heels for evening."
"Black suede or calf-hair shoes—these materials create texture, and suede has a more polished look, even with less expensive shoes."
"Don't forget the underpinnings! Lingerie is the stuff no one wants to spend money on, but the right bra and cami make your clothes look better. Even if you don't go sexy, a pretty set of underthings always makes you feel a little more special."
"Bodysuits are back in a big way. They're a great base layer that stays in place and keeps things from bunching up around the waistline. I like it as a layering piece. It creates a smooth silhouette for bodies of all shapes."
"Animal prints are a great neutral that can be thrown in the mix to create texture and visual interest. Leopard goes with pretty much anything."
"A good-quality, well-lined black leather shoulder or messenger bag is key. A great hands-free catchall will stay in style forever. Wear it all year, or put it away for a while and come back to it later. Adding a texture, like pebbled leather, will make your handbag more scratch-resistant and keep it from showing wear and tear."
"Finally, a long-sleeve, knit crew-neck sweater in black or taupe can be thrown on with a skirt or dress, or over pants for a more business-casual look. Find something in a chunky knit to add texture. And a simple top is a perfect complement for a statement skirt or pant."