Back to Basics: Basic Tops for a Capsule Wardrobe

I’m going to bring you right back to basics in the next few blog posts. In the journey of creating my Autumn Capsule Wardrobe this year, in order to do a really thorough job, I decided to stripe back my wardrobe to it’s absolute basics before adding in any seasonal items.

Below is my collection of tops. It includes t-shirts, bodysuits, jumpers and some dressier tops. These tend to be needed year round and can be stripped back or layered up depending on the time of year and the weather. I will introduce some heavier knitwear and warmer polo-necks into the mix once I create my Autumn Capsule, but these are my absolute essentials. This is the CORE of my wardrobe, if you will.

Basic Tops for a Basic Capsule Wardrobe


This is an obvious one. Wear them in Summer on their own, in Autumn with a cardigan, or in Winter under a jumper. I have 3 main t-shirts in my collection; a black v-neck and a grey and a white round neck. I like mine to be quite a loose & boxy fit, but you could choose a more fitted look. Even though these are the most basic pieces, they still need to be to your own personal style and taste. I love wearing a simple jeans and a tee outfit and sprucing it up with shoes and accessories.


This is one that I’ve only recently gotten on board with, so I’ve added 3 new bodysuits to my collection recently, which I picked up on Depop. I picked up a long sleeve, scoop neck white one, a sheer black version with long sleeves and a plunge neck black long sleeve version. I figured this was a good mix of casual and dressy, depending how i style them. The plunge one would look great with mom jeans for a night out. The sheer one would look great layered under some more lightweight summery dresses and the white one would be great for daytime with any skirt or trousers. What I love about bodysuits is that they sit really nicely under skirts and trousers becasue there isn’t any bulk from tucking in your top. Sometimes I put off going to the toilet just so I won’t have to re-tuck my tops into my jeans.. TMI? But the struggle is real!

Dressy Tops

This is my little collection of tops that I don’t wear super regularly, but come out more for occasions and nights out. They really dress up a simple pair of jeans or trousers if I need a fool-proof night out look. I love the sheer look on a night out to wear over a lacey bra. It looks very sexy! Or for something more modest, you could layer a cami top underneath, like I also have here. This is a really pretty top for showing off some décolletage with the skinny straps.  And this tank top is a really amazing sucky-in kind of fabric, that really boost my cleavage, so again, ideal for a night out, when I’m looking for that ‘nice top’ to wear with my jeans. I would tend to go for a more stand out shoe, such as my red sock boots, if I was wearing any of these tops with jeans on a night out, just to vamp up the look a bit and add some colour. That, or a red lip!!

Dressy tops can also be kept in your Capsule Wardrobe, instead of occasion-wear wardrobe, for work. Depending on your dress code you may need to wear something smart to work, so a blouse or two can come in handy.


I’m cold all year round, so a few jumpers stay in my wardrobe. I am addicted to the softness of my cashmere jumper, and it’s so basic being a round neck black jumper, so that is usually my go-to (when it’s not in a pile waiting to be handwashed!). I also love my grey jumper. It’s super cosy and lightweight. My stripe jumper was another go-to of mine because of it’s longer length, but I recently went to get tested for a foundation and the make-up artist spilled foundation on my jumper which did not wash out, sooo unfortunately I’m going to have to crop that jumper now (luckily is is sort of fixable), which I also think will be quite cool, and much better for tucking into jeans.


Standing alone up there is my cream lightweight polo-neck top. The reason I included it as an all-year-rounder is because I don’t live in a very hot or sunny climate, so you could definitely find yourself in a polo-neck in Spring or Summer too. Personally, I love the look of a polo-neck, so I like to hang on to at least one through summer. It can be very cute with an a-line skirt or something summery like that. I am very much looking forward to reintroducing my other 5 or so polo-necks though for AW.

So that’s my round-up of my 14 essential tops. What tops could you not live without all year? Let me know in the comments below. Stay tuned for my next Back to Basics posts where I will be sharing some essential bottoms (trousers, skirts etc) for a Basic Capsule Wardrobe.

To see my full Autumn Capsule Wardrobe for 2018, check out my video.

See you then and thank you so much for stopping by xx


    • mcleangemma
      September 14, 2018 / 9:16 pm

      I would love that!!! 😛 xx

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