I've Assembled the Perfect London Capsule Wardrobe With Just 12 Pieces

When the term, ‘capsule wardrobe’ first entered our collective consciousness, it seemed like a radical idea. Along with the suggestion of a considered, streamlined wardrobe came the implication that we should overhaul our shopping habits. When I first heard about it, as a newly-salaried graduate with money to spend on clothes for the first time in my life, I quickly disregarded the idea.

But in 2022, my attitude to shopping has completely changed and I’ve naturally gravitated to a more capsule-like wardrobe. I’m definitely not alone in adopting a more thoughtful approach; many of the influencers and celebrities whose style I admire lean toward classic, versatile pieces that are easy to mix and match. Between the environmental impact of fashion and the short-lived nature of trends, there's a strong case to be made for focusing on timeless designs crafted from high-quality materials.

If you're a Londoner who's starting your journey towards a capsule closet, I know exactly where you should start. Taking the unpredictable UK climate and perennial Brit-girl favourites into consideration, I've curated the perfect beginner's capsule—comprised of just 12 easy-to-style, trend-defying essentials. Scroll on to see and shop.

1. Belted Coat

Style Notes: In London, a longline coat is essential—especially at this time of year. The belted variety is particularly popular; not only does it give you shape, but it also successfully keeps the cold out.

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The wide lapels and thick belt make this coat feel quite androgynous.

2. Chunky Chelsea Boots

Style Notes: After you notice one pair of chunky Chelsea boots in London, you'll suddenly see them everywhere you go. It makes sense—in unexpected downpours, thick soles are a necessity.

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These come in at the more affordable end of the spectrum, but they're no less stylish.

It should come as no surprise that Arket has nailed this staple.

3. Neutral Cashmere Knit

London Capsule Wardrobe: @_jessicaskye



Style Notes: The key to keeping warm? A cashmere knit. Opt for a neutral hue (think beige, sand and rust tones) to maximise the versatility of this core item.

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Thanks to Jessica Skye, I've added this straight to my wish list.

Reformation is fast becoming our go-to source for sustainable cashmere.

4. A-Line Mini Skirt

Style Notes: A black mini skirt goes with just about anything. Cardigan tucked in? Trés Parisienne. Turtleneck top? Oh-so ’60s. Complete the look with black knee-high or ankle boots.

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I'd style this with a cream knitted jumper and knee-high boots.

COS's mini skirt is an influencer favourite.

5. Bucket Bag

Style Notes: British celebs like Suki Waterhouse and Alexa Chung have solidified the bucket bag as a must-have. Practical and polished, this it-accessory is perfect for everyday use.

Zara has lots of classy designs to choose from.

Opt for a rigid shape to give your outfit a more directional feel.

6. Loafers

Style Notes: Loafers, particularly the cleated-sole variety, are being walked all over the streets of London right now. But they're not just a trend piece—invest in the right pair and you'll be reaching for them day in, day out. 

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I've bought several pairs of H&M loafers over the years and have never been disappointed. 

These are a nice departure from the classic black Gucci loafer.

7. Printed Midi Dress

Style Notes: When in doubt, throw on a printed midi dress and voilá: you're ready to go. No staple is as effortless as this one, especially if you go for for a comfy smocked silhouette.

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This doubles as a great outfit for winter weddings.

Monochrome prints are particularly easy to style.

8. Straight Blue Jeans

London Capsule Wardrobe: @chrissyford



Style Notes: As much as we love a jean trend at Who What Wear (right now, wide-leg denim is in the spotlight), there's no matching our affinity for straight-leg blue jeans. Apparently, the London style-set feels the same way.

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Weekday jeans are underrated, in my humble opinion.

Just because it's a capsule wardrobe, that doesn't mean you can't have a little fun.

9. Oversized Blazer

London Capsule Wardrobe: @modestmira_



Style Notes: A boxy blazer is a fail-safe outerwear option, whatever the season. Treat it as a light cover-up in the summer months, and layer it under a wool coat come winter.

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Just add jeans, a tee and some chunky loafers (see above).

This muted blue would look divine with red lipstick.

10. Breton Top

London Capsule Wardrobe: @femmeblk



Style Notes: The Breton top may have originated in France, but it's safe to say Britain has wholeheartedly embraced it. Wear your stripes in cardigan, jumper or T-shirt form.

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Merino wool is a super insulating option.

A wear-everyday kind of piece.

11. White Cotton Shirt

London Capsule Wardrobe: @astyleedit



Style Notes: Whether you're dressing in the depths of December or during a heatwave, a white cotton shirt is about as wearable as it gets. Tuck into trousers, layer over a tank or tie a knot and turn it into a crop top.

12. Gold Jewellery

Style Notes: Silver-toned jewellery is having a moment, but gold is enduringly sophisticated. Stack your rings and layer your necklaces to elevate every ensemble.

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I often overlook bracelets, but this one has caught my attention.

Try wearing several delicate necklaces on various chain lengths.