Denim: It’s one of the most hard-working fabrics in our wardrobe BUT it’s also one of the hardest things to shop for. Maybe it’s because we reach for it so often, or, because we tend to keep it in our wardrobe for much longer than other more spontaneous purchases. Whatever the reason, one things for sure, getting denim shopping right is incredibly important.
With that in mind, I’ve pulled together a fail-safe list of the essential denim items every great wardrobe needs. Nope, I’m not just talking jeans because as any true denim aficionado knows, the fabric stretches well beyond the realm of bottom-half dressing. From jackets to dresses, read on for everything you need to be a pro at denim dressing…
The straight leg jeans
If you invest in one style of jean this season, make it a straight leg pair. Characterized by, you guessed it, their straight cut from top to bottom, they flatter so many body shapes as well as working for petite and tall gals alike. Don’t believe me? Check out our handy guide to jean shopping here.
Plus, there’s not just one style of straight leg jean to choose from, meaning you can tailor them to your personal taste. I love a full length fit for elongating my petite pins, but cropped styles are also great for a more relaxed feel. You can even opt for a low rise 90s style if the mood takes you. My pick? The Levi’s ribcage jeans are a classic for a reason. Dress down with a white tee and trainers, or pair with a cut out body and heels for the perfect smart-casual look.
The denim shirt
This season double denim – AKA the Canadian tuxedo – has made a comeback and to do it with ease you definitely need a great denim shirt in your wardrobe. Rather than a soft tencel denim, I’d suggest opting for something a little sturdier, it not only looks more expensive but can also double as a jacket giving added cost-per-wear potential.
If you’re looking for the perfect denim shirt, this one from Stradivarius is a no-brainer. The oversized fit gives a relaxed feel and the heavy fabric still has a slight flex, meaning it can easily be tucked into jeans or trousers without feeling too bulky. The bone effect buttons also give a nice hit of nostalgia, implying you could have found this hiding at the back of your dads wardrobe and just threw it on for the ultimate in nonchalant dressing.
The denim dress
Denim dresses come in so many different shapes and styles, so I don’t doubt you’ll be able to find one that takes your fancy after a quick browse through any of our fave high street stores. Easy to dress up or down, they’re ideal for those days when you’ve got a mix of different events on and need to look put together but not too OTT.
This one from Topshop is a winner, made from a sturdy denim it holds its shape well, especially important when you consider the slight puff sleeved shape. Best of all though, the clever banding nips in slightly at the waist to give the hourglass shape we all dream of without the stress of spanx or skims. I’d wear it with knee length western boots for a chic yet comfy look.
The denim skirt
The It item of the moment, the return of the denim skirt is something I never expected yet couldn’t be happier about. My childhood is filled with denim-skirted memories, from shopping trips to Tammy Girl to find the perfect dark denim mini skirt to the tiered maxi styles of the 00s paired with circular belts and flat mules: there’s no denying the iconic status a denim skirt holds.
This season they’re taking inspo from the 00s (I mean, what trend isn’t right now?) and reaching midi and maxi lengths in chic column shapes. This one from Topshop is sure to sell out so move quick and add it to your wardrobe ASAP. Wondering what to wear it with? Fashion Editor, Krissy has all the outfit inspo you need here.
The denim jumpsuit
I never stop banging on about how much I love a jumpsuit and a denim style is a staple in my regular outfit rotations. Not only do they look great but they take minimal effort when you’re staring into your wardrobe wondering what to wear for the day, plus they’re much more practical than a dress when it comes to this unpredictable weather we’re faced with at the moment.
This one created by the We Are Twinset duo is a great option as it’s made from a lightweight denim, meaning you’ll be prepped for snow at 11am and sun come the afternoon. I also love the addition of a waist belt, which will give definition and add interest to your look. I’d wear this with trainers on a busy day running errands.
The denim jacket
If the denim skirt takes first place as the most iconic item on this list, the denim jacket definitely isn’t far behind. For this season switch up your basic styles and opt for something with a more fashion-focused twist. This one from Mango is the perfect example: the oversized pockets give it a little something extra while the wide sleeves not only balance your outfit but also give a more stylized silhouette.
Best of all, if you’re looking for ways to make your wardrobe more sustainable, this jacket is part of Mango’s circular denim collection, which features jeans, skirts and even a denim waistcoat. Not only are they made from recycled fabrics to cut down on waste, but, they’re also designed with future recycling in mind thanks to minimal detailing and fastenings. So, if and when, you do eventually decide to part ways with your pieces you’ll know you’re doing as little harm to the planet as possible.