Affordable Closet Staples When You’re Starting From Scratch

flat sandals with mom jeans

Are you starting from scratch with your wardrobe? Maybe a major life change or body change can have you craving a wardrobe reset.  Here are affordable closet staples to build your wardrobe.


There may be times in your life when you need to start from scratch with your wardrobe. Maybe your body has changed after babies, you started a new job or you’re moving to a totally new climate, or just shopping on a budget and need to rework your closet.

Here are some affordable closet staples to add to your closet.

I’ve chosen 4 affordable stores — Old Navy, H&M, Target, and Amazon, and want to show 10 different closet staples from each store so you can purchase all of them from one place, or have options from various retailers.


Affordable Closet Staples from 4 different stores

Here are the closet staples you should have in your closet. I left off winter closet essentials like coats and boots, since it’s summer. I can do another version of this in the colder months!

  1. BASIC TEE – you can choose crew or v-neck or scoop neck.
  2. STRIPED TEE – or if stripes are not your favorite, choose a different print like polka dot or floral.
  3. BETTER THAN BASIC TOP – this is any kind of top that is a step above the basics. It has interesting details, fabric, color, or style. I did a roundup of 55 great ones IN THIS POST.
  4. VERSATILE DRESS. Look for something in a solid color that can be dressed up or down. I own a ton of dresses, and my most versatile are the solid colored ones in a more basic style.
  5. JEANS – Choose which style you’d like, skinny, straight, wide leg, cropped, etc, and get a pair that fits you well in a mid or dark rinse, since those are most versatile and classic.
  6. SNEAKERS – A pair of sleek, simple sneakers in white or gray or another neutral color will be best if you’re starting from scratch
  7. FLATS – These are a great option if you want a more casual feel but don’t want to or cannot wear sandals or sneakers.
  8. FLAT SANDALS – Look for a neutral, simple pair that goes with everything and is nicer than a flip flop.
  9. DRESSY SHOES – Choose a heel or wedge or block heel, in black or nude, since those are most versatile.
  10. LIGHTWEIGHT JACKET – A lightweight jacket is important, even during the hotter months, when you need a layer for travel or going out to dinner or at work. A denim jacket is a great option, but you could also do a blazer or twill jacket or even a cardigan, if that’s more your style.


click on the collages directly to shop!



  1. Anna says:

    I love your content!! Thank yoU for making this post and compiling the soUrces!

  2. I started wearing biker shorts this year. They’re so comfy yet stylish! 🙂

  3. Julie Dellasega says:

    I refer to your posts more than anyone online! Thank you for the hard work you do to help us all with our fashion choices. I have a couple trips out of the country later in the year and you will be my go to inspiration on what to pack. I hope your family loves St Louis!

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