As fashion editor at Who What Wear, I'd like to think I know a thing or two about searching out a great new piece or a timeless classic, but it's only recently that I learnt the trick to piecing together a truly great outfit. Let's face it: We're all guilty of spending valuable time agonising over what to wear in the morning, and no matter how many statement dresses or exciting new pairs of shoes I find, everything has a time and a place, and I invariably end up turning to the same forever pieces to dress up my day-to-day look. A case in point, the "basic".
Calling anything "basic" gives it a bad rap, but rest assured in this case I don't use basic to mean boring; instead I'm referring to simple, understated, well-thought-out pieces that can be worn time and again, and end up being the hardest-working things in your wardrobe. Often these are the best investments you can make (and well worth spending a little extra money on for their sheer cost per wear), as these core pieces can be building blocks in creating the perfect capsule wardrobe.
As a staunch advocate for high-low dressing and someone you'll always find in a high street jumper and a reliable designer bag, I've made the decision to shop in a way that favours buying less but better, and getting my wardrobe into good shape means shaping up its foundation. So I began the quest to find the very best designer pieces you can count on for exceptional quality, timeless design and versatility, eschewing all flash-in-the-pan trends that will fall out of fashion as quickly as they come in.
Sarah wears The Frankie Shop blazer.
After hours of research, I've put together a list of the luxury pieces that I think are really worth the investment. Think forever buys that aren't tied to a trending hashtag, just quality wardrobe essentials like a good quality jacket, the perfect pair of jeans or the attention-grabbing handbag that you'll be happy to wear on rotation.
Not only do these pieces seamlessly weave into your current wardrobe, but they've got the outfit-elevating power of any other designer buy, so the next time you're putting on a simple T-shirt and jeans, you can upgrade the look with a key blazer or smart pair of shoes. Wondering what makes the cut for best of the best? Well, on this list you'll find old favourites like Frankie Shop tailoring, elevated classics from Toteme and luxe offerings like the perfect flat shoes courtesy of The Row. Sound good?
Monikh with the Loewe puzzle hobo.
Keep scrolling for the best designer basics, including simple coats, jeans, blazers, dresses and accessories, to invest in now but wear for years to come. These are pieces that will never go out of style.
Aïda wearing a camel Max Mara coat.
1. THE BEST DESIGNER BLAZERS
2. THE BEST DESIGNER KNITS
3. THE BEST DESIGNER JEANS
4. THE BEST DESIGNER TOPS
5. THE BEST DESIGNER SKIRTS AND TROUSERS
6. THE BEST DESIGNER DRESSES
7. THE BEST DESIGNER FLAT SHOES
8. THE BEST DESIGNER HANDBAGS
9. THE BEST DESIGNER OUTERWEAR