Posted on: January 1, 2024 Posted by: Comments: 0

After nearly a decade’s worth of experience in styling and fashion writing, I’ve found the questions I get the most are still exactly the same. Most commonly, “What do I wear to this event?” or “How do I dress for this season?” But the truth remains that the most basic questions are usually the ones we’re asked the most, and it always comes back to how to make getting ready in the morning that little bit easier. 

Even the very best of us are prone to a style mistake or two every now and then. Yes, even fashion insiders are guilty of wearing a too-small shoe size (I blame sample sales!) or pairing the wrong bra with an outfit. But sometimes it just takes someone else pointing it out for us to see the light. That’s why I decided to figure out some of the most common styling queries we tend to make—as well coming up with the best ideas for fixing them.

Whether you’re wondering how to dress for a certain age, size or event or just how make your clothes look better and feel better. We’ve got you covered. Read on to see which styling mistakes made the list, and shop the items that will help you avoid making them ever again.

To paraphrase the famous words of Coco Chanel, before you leave the house you should always look in the mirror and take one thing off, and while that isn’t always strictly true, it is a good reminder that the best outfit formulas are usually the simplest. While style is subjective and should always represent your personality first and foremost, looking back through the archives at the outfits of some of the most influential and fashionable women in history shows one thing in common. Sleek, refined and considered pieces always look more premium without over-accessorising. 

If you’re looking for the trick to putting together the most expensive-looking outfits (whatever your budget), my top tips are a considered colour palette, strong silhouettes and timeless accessories. Clever layering of minimalist pieces will always do the trick, and adding a pop of colour, print or a piece of eye-catching jewellery will keep things fresh each season. 

COS’s bags are some of the best on the high street, and this supersized tote proves it.

A diamond hoop can instantly elevate your look.

Buy now; love forever.

With age comes confidence, and being true to your own style is paramount. While there is a lot of advice out there about what you can and cannot wear for your age, the best outfits are always the ones you feel the most comfortable and confident in. 

We’ve learned a lot from fashionable women in their 40s, 50s and 60s, but most importantly is how to make fashion work for you, and not the other way round. If you like it, wear it, and don’t be afraid to put your own spin on current trends to make them feel uniquely yours. The trends our favourite influencers are currently loving? Colour clashing, leather trench coats, playing with texture and supersized tailoring. 

The Frankie Shop’s blazers have a special place in our hearts. 

You’d be surprised how versatile a leather trench coat is. 

A platform loafer, you say? Count me in.

Hands up if you know there’s a piece of unworn clothing in the back of your wardrobe because it’s either too small or too big? With inconsistent sizing across stores, shopping can be often a guessing game that ends up more frustrating than fruitful. But buying the wrong size in the hopes that it will fit often means that the proportions of sleeves, length of trousers and waistbands are all off (not to mention the difficulties of finding full ranges to fit tall, petite and plus sizes).

Believe me when I say having your clothing altered isn’t anywhere near as much hassle or expense as it sounds, and you get the added benefit of having your clothes tailored to fit your shape. Find a well-reviewed local tailor (and don’t be afraid to trial their service with a test run before handing over your wardrobe). They’ll be able to eliminate some of the most common clothing issues like waistband gaps and extra-long hemlines, and just one small tweak can elevate a piece and make you look more put together.

Raey’s relaxed wool-blend coat is an investment, but it will certainly last you for years. Wear over dresses, loungewear, jeans and more.

The only thing better than how expensive-looking this jumpsuit is are the petite, regular and tall size ranges spanning 6 to 24. 

Jeans are a winter wardrobe hero. Wear these in with a blazer and trainers for a simple yet stylish look.

We’re all guilty of panic-buying last-minute purchases, and express delivery really helped to change the game, but if you find yourself buying and rebuying the same items over and over again, it might come down to the quality of the item. It can be frustrating when your white tee or everyday denim inevitably wears out, but it’s far better on your wallet (and the environment) to invest in a slightly higher-quality one that will stand the test of time. If three tops for the price of one sounds too good to be true, it usually is.

At Who What Wear, we’re staunch advocates of shopping “smarter,” that is always considering purchases before we make them. We never push buys for the sake of it, we love to support to slow fashion and conscious retailers, and we prefer to invest in wardrobe staples that will last you lifetime, so before you you click “add to basket,” consider the manufacturer, the cost per wear and how it works with the rest of your wardrobe too. 

Is this not a perfect classic shirt?

This sustainable jumper will look so chic layered over leggings or a silky midi skirt.

The perfect true-black denim.

It’s easy to think if it isn’t on show, why spend more? But your underwear has more of an impact on your outfit than you might think. Not only is your comfort important, but poorly fitting and unsupportive underwear can change your whole silhouette. If the underwear-as-outerwear trend has taught us anything, it’s that anything you’re wearing is worth investing in, and should you want to nod to the trend (or sheer dressing for that matter), you’re going to need to refresh your underwear drawer with the kind of pieces to help elevate your look. 

To give your look the smoothest, most seamless finish, invest in good lingerie and shapewear. Your clothes will sit better and look better on a foundation 

I just can’t get enough of Skims right now. This bra comes in nine shades. 

This body is so comfy and will instantly boost your confidence. 

These comfy, breathable and stretchable briefs should be a staple in your underwear drawer all year round.

Changing-room queues can be a hassle, but they are always worth it. Before I buy anything new, I always run through a mental checklist: Does the item fit properly? How does it look from every angle? Does it go sheer? Am I comfortable enough to wear it all day (especially in the case of shoes)? If you struggle to get into it, you’ll struggle wearing it and getting out of it, and no one wants to spend their day readjusting cut-outs, pulling at hems and applying blister plasters. There’s a lot to be said about the luxury of pieces that look good and feel good too. 

Comfort is king, especially in winter, and if you’re stuck between two options or wondering what to wear for brunches, parties or dinners, think about what is going to be the most practical option. We love platforms, but look out for padded soles, and that showstopper dress might look good on the hanger, but if you can’t sit down in it, you probably won’t wear it again. The best buys are the ones that will seamlessly blend into the rest of your wardrobe and you’ll wear on repeat, and not the ones that inevitably end up gathering dust. 

A cable-knit jumper always looks so chic, especially when paired with other neutral hues. 

The perfect base for a cosy yet polished winter look.

Yes, we still love knee-high boots. This riding-style pair is particularly lovely.

Next Up: 12 Easy Ways to Make Your Favourite Dress-and-Boots Outfits Look So Fresh

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