My personal style philosophy has evolved from fast fashion to investing in quality pieces that will stand the test of time. These 18 items are my investment pieces. They are the items I reach for time and time again. The ones I can’t part with during a closet purge. The pieces I saved for months (or years) to purchase. I’ve slowly built up these items over the past 10+ years.
I’m a bargain shopper at heart. I splurge on jewelry and handbags and believe everything else can be found on sale. Along with sharing my 18 investment pieces, I’m sharing exactly which items I saved on.
I wish I could say I had a magic formula for determining which items qualified as investment pieces. While some were definitely a splurge and a couple were gifts, others didn’t cost as much but certainly weren’t a “need”.
I originally published this post in 2017. I’ve updated the links in 2020, along with adding a couple of clothing items that I’ve since purchased and love. Alright, let’s get to it. My 18 investment pieces every woman should own + a runner up!
ONE // Maya Brenner initial necklace: Jim gifted me this necklace with Lawson and Sybil’s initials after Sybil’s birth. It is one of my most cherished possessions. I wear it virtually every day and feel proud each time I put it on. While BaubleBar offers plenty of discounts, I’ve only seen this necklace included once.
TWO // David Yurman crossover ring: I bought this ring for myself after a rough period in my last job. It symbolized my hard work during a challenging time. Since Jim and I aren’t married and I don’t have an engagement/wedding band, it’s become my go to ring.
THREE // Diamond stud earrings: For my 30th birthday, I gifted myself a pair of diamond stud earrings (mine are 2 ctw). I wear them almost every single day. At this point that’s over 4,000 times! I originally bought a smaller pair at Macy’s. They had a trade-in program and I exchanged them for this pair. They are one of my power pieces and help me to feel confident.
FOUR // David Yurman bracelets (here, here and a bangle that is no longer available) – I bought myself a trio of David Yurman bracelets for my 35th birthday. I’m a big believer in gifting yourself something special for big birthdays. It makes them much more enjoyable. Similar to my diamond earrings, this trio make up my power pieces. I’ve probably had them on in every outfit I’ve posted on the blog.
When I originally published this list, it included the Chloe Mini Marcie crossbody bag. While I still own the bag, I’ve found that I rarely use it. It’s too small for everyday use and even on special occasions it doesn’t fit my current iPhone The bag I use almost every day is the Madewell Zip Top Transport Tote. I’m so passionate about it, I wrote a full review.
ONE // Clare V leopard clutch (also here)- For the longest time I never had a clutch to carry at weddings or nights out. That changed when I bought this leopard clutch. Leopard is surprising neutral. Worn here, here and here. There’s also a flat version that is a little less expensive.
TWO // Cult Gaia bag – This has become my go to bag to carry in the summer. It’s a statement piece that actually isn’t that expensive. It’s actually cheaper now than when I originally purchased it! I have the small version and it fits everything I need for a night out. Seen with my best dress, favorite striped shirt and white jeans.
THREE // Louis Vuitton Speedy 25 and Zippy wallet – The Speedy 25 was the very first luxury handbag I ever bought. It’s been twelve years and it’s still one of my favorite bags (seen here). A few years ago Jim and I were in Switzerland in a little mountain town called Crans Montana that happened to have a Louis Vuitton store. I wanted to buy something on our trip to remember it. A wallet by a Parisian brand seemed like an odd choice, but I’ve loved it ever since. It reminds me of a fantastic vacation and is the perfect size – not too big and not too small.
ONE // J Crew Regent blazer: I had been eyeing the J. Crew Regent blazer for years. Before that all of my blazers were from H&M. It was a tough choice, but I chose the classic navy. It fits like a glove and instantly makes me feel professional whether I’m wearing it with a pair of jeans or dressed up. It retails for almost $200, but I paid less than $100 by waiting for a 40% off promo along with a $25 rewards card.
TWO // Aether cashmere sweater (no longer available, similar here): Jim gave me this sweater for Christmas a few years ago. It’s soft, cozy and warm. Everything good cashmere should be. And it’s the main reason I look forward to cold weather. My go to everyday cashmere sweater is the Everlane cashmere crew.
THREE // Leather skirt: Three years ago I found a black leather skirt at Banana Republic (seen here). I’ve worn it with everything from a tee shirt to a sweater to a chambray shirt. I got it for 50% off and haven’t seen anything at a similar price and quality.
FOUR // Saint James striped shirt: I raved about this shirt recently (seen here) so I’ll try to keep it short. It’s classic and chic and I wear it every week. I bought it during a Black Friday sale for 25% off. I’ve since added to my striped shirt collection and created a separate post comparing the three brands that I own.
FIVE // Banana Republic leather jacket: Banana Republic continues to surprise me with their high quality leather. A black leather jacket is really versatile. It can be worn with jeans (seen here) or dresses. I bought mine during their 50% off friends and family promo.
SIX // J. Crew Lady Day coat: Everyone needs a fancier coat and this one is mine. I don’t wear it that often, but when I need a coat to wear with a dress, my ivory lady always saves the day (ha, pun intended!). I bought this coat so many jeans ago that I have no idea if it was on sale or not…but I definitely would recommend waiting for a promo.
SEVEN // Lake Pajamas Pajama Set: I never thought I’d splurge on a pair of pjs, but here we are. These pajamas are incredibly soft and cozy. I wear them every single night. I prefer the short/short and short/long sets in pima.
EIGHT // Dudley Stephens Park Slope Fleece: This fleece is made in the USA from recycled plastic water bottles and a weekly staple in the winter. I own the navy and blush.
NINE // One/Third Jacket 01: I originally purchased this jacket in ivory because it reminded me of something my grandmother would have worn. She was a stylish woman. It’s gorgeous piece. I wrote an entire post about it here.
Although they are not a splurge, my Birkenstock Arizona sandals in Copper are by far my most worn shoe 3 seasons out of the year.
ONE // Stuart Weitzman 505o boots (also here): These over the knee boots were on my wish list for 3 years. I finally tried them on in an effort to convince myself they didn’t live up to the hype. Turns out all those reviews are true. I have yet to wear them with a dress, but they are perfect with jeans (seen here and here). I bought them at 30% off (Nordstrom price matched a competitor) and used gift cards and rewards on top of the discount. They are usually included in Shopbop’s semi-annual sales too.
TWO // M. Gemi Felize loafers: If you haven’t tried a pair of M. Gemi loafers, you’re missing out. They feel like butter on your feet. I’ve worn them with shorts and jeans (seen here and here). I size up a 1/2 size in both the Pastoso and Felize loafers for a looser fit. I saved $40 off since they were my first purchase with the brand (use promo FIRST50 for $50 off your first purchase).
THREE // Stuart Weitzman Minx wedge sandals (similar): Two years ago I got rid of all my cheap wedge sandals and bought this pair instead. The neutral shade goes with all my summer essentials and I know they will be in style for years to come. I bought them at 50% off (Nordstrom matched the sale price).
The original graphic for this post is shown below.