The 31 Basic Clothing Items Every Fall Closet Should Have in 2023

When it comes to versatility, nothing is more effortless than a wear-with-everything leather jacket. Even better, a high-quality investment item, like the one below from Cos, doesn’t have to break the bank in order to last forever in your wardrobe. Equally as timeless is a pair of Levi’s 501s, worn elegantly on evenings out with a minimalist heel or with a menswear-inspired loafer. Quickly becoming a closet classic are trouser-esque leggings, and these from Toteme are editor-approved. All-in-one outfit dresses are, of course, on our list from the likes of Tory Burch and Loulou Studio. And because it’s fashion we’re obsessed with, after all, there are also those irresistible trend-forward pieces like a statement red sweater or a  leather midiskirt that coexist beautifully alongside a roster of other basic clothing items. Plus, with winter drawing near, there also cold-weather wardrobe non-negotiables to rely on, from Zara’s structured overcoat, layering essentials from H&M and Massimo Dutti, and &Daughter’s cozy, yet chic cardigan.

Here, 31 basic clothing items that will quickly become go-to style staples. 

Nothing is more essential in a fall capsule wardrobe (or any wardrobe for that matter) than a timeless trench coat, and Mango’s belted beige trench is as traditional as it gets. When it comes to outstanding outerwear, start here. 


water-repellent trench coat

No wardrobe is complete without a pair of Levi’s—501s, to be exact. With a straight-leg silhouette and baby blue wash, wear it with anything and everything for an effortless effect. 

A nautical-inspired striped sweater is a year-round style staple. This fall, we’re wearings ours underneath several outstanding outerwear options, from timeless trench coats, leather jackets, camel coats, and so much more. 

Alex Mill

button-back crewneck sweater

Sometimes going back to the basics is best—and what is more foundational in a wardrobe than a sleek pair of black leggings? Crafted from high-quality stretch jersey, Toteme’s trouser-esque pair is a certified cult classic. 

Similar to a great pair of jeans or a plain white tee, a crisp button-up is another basic clothing item every closet should have. From Rag & Bone, this plain white poplin is a perfect pick. 

Rag and Bone

Maxine button-front shirt

Oh, the versatility of a plain but perfect white T-shirt! When it comes to styling the closet classic, anything goes; but if we had to choose, we love to dress ours up alongside a tailored trouser and minimalist heels. 

Every shoe collection needs an all-white trainer—and these from Loewe are perfectly practical and seriously stylish. 

An all-in-one-outfit dress requires minimal effort with maximum reward. From Tory Burch, this long-sleeve, pleated LBD is a style staple to last forever and not just seasons. 

It’s a fact: tomato red has taken the runways and street style scene by storm. And now, your fall wardrobe. Layer this statement sweater by Toteme underneath your fall coats and jackets for a subtle color pup. 

A little-black-bootie is another year-round wardrobe essential, but is especially fitting for fall. With a perfectly pointed-toe, style these from Khaite with a sleek jean and white button-up for a casual, yet cool weekend wardrobe. 

What is both cozy and chic in a fall wardrobe? A noteworthy knit dress, of course. Loulou Studio’s off-white maxi dress is the new neutral you never knew you needed. 

Ballet flats are back and better than ever thanks to labels like Aeyde with their masterfully minimal interpretations. With a subtle pointed toe, this is one sweet style to make your staple. 


Kirsten leather ballet flats

When it comes to versatility, you can’t get more effortless than a wear-with-everything leather jacket. Even better, a high-quality investment item, like the one below from Cos, doesn’t have to break the bank in order to last forever in your wardrobe. Unlike the classic moto jacket, this zip-up style is especially chic and clean.

From Khaite to J.Crew, luxe labels are leaning into suede handbags for fall. Not to mention that this timeless tote also acts as the ultimate work bag.

Call it the Miuccia-effect, but chic cardigans are everywhere (and on everyone) this fall. Sport this gorgeous gray cardi from &Daughter to stay on top of the non-trend trend. 

No winter wardrobe is complete without an anything-but-basic black overcoat. This version from Zara is especially flattering—and is truly timeless. 

When it comes to layering essentials, nothing rivals a slim-fitting turtleneck top. From H&M, wear yours underneath a roomy sweater, an oversized jacket, a winter coat, and so much more. 


pima cotton turtleneck top

Minimalist footwear is in for fall—and in a big way. These Mary Janes from Le Monde Beryl scream ‘chic’ no matter where you wear them. 

Le Monde Béryl

round-toe leather Mary Jane flats

With a slightly oversized silhouette, The Frankie Shop’s Bea blazer is tailored to perfection. Complete the full suit look and style with a sleek black trouser. 

While the holiday season is fast approaching, the need for a party-ready minidress is seasonless. Style this velvet mini from Rixo with a perfectly polished kitten heel and evening bag and expect to dazzle all night long. 


Michaela cutout bow-embellished velvet minidress

Err on the edgier side this fall in a pair of faux-leather pants from Veronica Beard. Finish off the elevated essential with a pointed-toe boot (see above). 

Veronica Beard

Joey cropped vegan leather pants

Back to those lightweight layering essentials: a long-sleeve T-shirt is also a must-have within the mix. From Massimo Dutti, this tee is barely there, but in the best way possible. 

Of all the menswear-inspired closet classics we know and love, none has more appeal than the luxe loafer. Gucci’s no-frills Horsebit 1953 is an iconic item, best worn with anything from a trendy jean midiskirt to a crisp shirtdress. 

For a take on modern workwear, choose a relaxed-fit trouser like this slate gray style from Bite Studios. The dark gray wash is a welcome switch-up to the classic black or khaki. 

A sleek leather midiskirt is one trend we’ve seen transcend from the runway to the streets in total style. Like a classic wrap skirt but with a modern twist, Nanushka’s Ama leather midi is a favorite amongst the fashion darlings. 

We’re always harking back to the sartorial simplicity of the ’90s. Case in point: this timeless tank top from Agolde. 

In any jewelry collection, a pair of gold hoop earrings is a consistent mainstay. To achieve this, we can always count on Mejuri. 

An anything-but-basic black swimsuit is a wardrobe requirement regardless of the season. Start with Eres’ Asia one-piece and expect sartorial success each and every time, whether you’re planning for an upcoming holiday or simply saving for the summer. 


Les Essentiels Asia swimsuit

Forget about the latest in eyewear trends and return to the effortlessly cool all-black shade. Saint Laurent’s retro pair flatters any face shape and is the epitome of timeless chic.  

Saint Laurent

Eyewear D-frame sunglasses

A belt is one of those essential accessories that often goes unnoticed. We’re here to change that narrative, starting with The Row’s Caspian leather belt. Not to mention it’s a prized piece of quiet luxury.

A roomy leather tote, like this one from Cuyana, is the ideal companion for commutes to and from the office or for a quick weekend getaway.