For many women, embracing a designer wardrobe can be tricky. Adopting one as full-time mothers though, seems nearly impossible. It doesn’t matter if you’re a working mom, a stay-at-home mom, or a somewhere-in-between mom, the mere thought of ketchup smeared all over a new suede jacket is no task for the faint of heart.
However, I believe that the key is in mixing high-end investments with lower-end basics to pull your look together. Curating a smart wardrobe for moms-on-duty can make all the difference between a regular mom and a cool mom.
1. PUT YOUR MONEY ON FINE JEWELRY
No matter what you’re wearing – jeans, a dress, or a soft athletic set – jewelry will elevate your look. Some women rely on their skin tone when choosing between silver and gold jewelry. Women with warm undertones go for gold jewelry, while ones with cold undertones often prefer silver. Lucky neutrals can get away with either option.
I say go for the metal you vibe with the most; the one that brings out your features and complements your look that day.
Nowadays, the number of piercings doesn’t determine how far you can go with your ear party. You can always get the look of multiple earrings with only one piercing. Try an ear cuff or two. Mix metals and colors. Same applies to necklaces and rings. Don’t be afraid to layer different chain lengths and widths. Add pendants here and there. Stack a couple of rings together. Get creative! After all, the canvas is literally yours.
Start out your collection with simple pieces, always keeping an eye on the material so that they stand the test of time. It’s a good idea to look into family heirlooms. I like signet rings because they add a very elegant personal touch to your look.
Pro Tip: Small, dainty & delicate is how I roll in my everyday life – they’re easier to switch out and adapt to my style and mood. Leave your statement jewels for special occasions.
2. OPT FOR NATURAL FIBRES
The one thing that you should always look out for when shopping for clothes is the fabric. Buying natural fiber clothing is the most sustainable thing to do. They’ll last longer and you won’t have to repurchase anything in the long run. If you buy a well-tailored, black wool coat (bonus points if it’s vintage), you won’t have to worry about it coming apart. You can always take it to the tailor’s for a little refresh.
Cotton, linen, wool, silk, cashmere, and leather are just some examples of natural materials that you can delve into any season. Unlike human-made polyesters, natural fibers are breathable, durable, of higher quality, and better for the environment. They’re easy to take care of and wash, especially for all you moms out there! They’re more breathable than their artificial counterparts – you can basically wear them all year round. Cheap fabrics cheapen your look, and we don’t want that.
It’s commonly believed that high-quality clothes, made of natural fibers, are expensive but there are plenty of brands that offer options to best suit your budget. Start out with neutrals: black, gray, beige, ivory/white, navy.
Pro Tip: Skip fast fashion and seasonal trends. Look for classic simple cuts that you can easily incorporate to your wardrobe.
3. LET’S TALK ABOUT THE TOTE BAG
Behind every supermom is an army of functional accessories. I bet you’re surprised that I didn’t start this list by selling you the coolest handbag in the market. On the contrary, I urge you to invest in timeless pieces instead. There will always be new bags for you to lust over and buy when the time is right.
Try out different bag sizes and styles. If you’re petite, opt for simple small-to-medium bags to compliment your frame. On the other hand, if you’re tall, play with shapes and colors.
The dream of many moms is a big, roomy tote with ample handle space and, of course, a cute design. My go-to will always be a carry-all shopper tote – think of Louis Vuitton’s trendy Neverfull, Saint Laurent’s sleek Shopping Tote, or Stella McCartney’s bohemian Falabella Reversible Tote. They have clean, simple lines so they won’t look outdated in five years from now. They’ll pair easily with the rest of your wardrobe.
There are many brands out there that offer the same shape of bag sans logo. But, if you’re as stubborn as I am, visit your trusted second hand shops and hunt for your dream bag.
Pro Tip: Just as with clothes, bags in neutral colors will be your safest choice.
My mom used to say that shoes can tell a lot about a person. While my teenage self would rather wear PJs to school before ever agreeing with her, thirty years later I must come clean and confirm this idea.
Shoes are as important to your overall look as it is your bag. I’ve seen many women invest thousands in expensive bags and do nothing in the footwear department. Regardless of the type of shoe you prefer – sneakers, stilettos, sandals – start your collection of (again) neutral colors. A good place to start is a pair of white sneakers, black sneakers, black loafers or oxfords, nude and black heels, black and brown boots. Once you’ve mastered the entry level shoes, you can work your way into more colorful, occasion footwear.
Pro Tip: Don’t overdo it! Don’t buy them if you can’t walk in them.
I like to transition my wardrobe by adding a few key outerwear pieces. Investing in jackets that pop or layer easily over a tee and jeans look, are always good in my book. Look for high-quality materials, like wool or cashmere, for cold weather. Linens and cottons are always good for spring-summer.
A good tailored blazer will casual, smarten, or glam up your look. In need of a casual jacket? Try a long, under-the-bum oversized blazer. The sharp, masculine lines will make your outfit look more interesting. Pops of color work too!
A fitted blazer paired with a graphic tee and a pair of jeans is the de facto cool-mom look. Look for prints and big cute buttons to tie up your entire look together. They’ll pair perfectly with your jewelry.
Are you more of a smarty-parts? Opt for double breasted jackets to bring out the classic in you. Houndstooth, plaid, and heavy-weight fabrics complete the look.
Pro Tip: Find a good tailor and take your jackets in. They’ll fit you like a glove!