Beauty & Fashion

Outfit Inspiration: 27 Ways to Create an Entire Wardrobe Out of a Few Crucial Pieces

by Lisa Lozano 4:16 PM, January 4, 2017

Aired July 26, 2017

The days of struggling with an overflowing closet are over and the minimalism of a capsule wardrobe is where it’s at. Two of our favorite fashion experts, Gretta Monahan (author of Style and the Successful Girl) and Zanna Roberts Rassi (Senior Fashion Editor of Marie Claire magazine) faced off to see how many outfits they could create for a mother and daughter from a wardrobe of only 11 pieces, all from J.Crew. What they did is pretty amazing -- and you can do it too!

Zanna dressed mom Roseann, coming up with a jaw-dropping 16 outfits!

A plaid four-season top is a must-have at any time of year. Wear it tucked into a pencil skirt for a sophisticated yet still on-trend look, go casual by layering over a turtleneck, or spice it up with a jean jacket and short skirt.

Adjust the length of a pencil skirt depending on the occasion -- longer for the office and short for a night out. Make it casual by adding a jean jacket, a plaid top around the waist, and booties.

Must-have wardrobe staple alert -- you need a jean jacket in your life. It can be worn with almost anything at any time of year.

Same sweater + same jeans + same shoes = two drastically different looks by simply unbuttoning the sweater, unrolling the jeans and adding a turtleneck. Pack this for your next trip and you definitely won’t need to check a bag!

Transform khaki pants with your choice of heels or booties, and just a few layering tops.

Change up your wardrobe in unexpected ways -- like wearing a turtleneck under a sheath dress to take it from summer to winter.

Gretta dressed daughter Coriann, and created 11 fun and flirty looks.

A blazer is a cornerstone of any wardrobe. Pair with pants for a professional look, wear inside out over a dress for a more formal occasion, and dress it down with layered tops and a fun skirt for a collegiate look.

A jean shirt and sweater can be transformed by simple styling tricks like tying your shirt at the waist or rolling the sleeves up. Don’t be afraid to experiment to see what you can do!

To keep your wardrobe compact, think outside the box. Layer a sweater over or under a dress for two completely different effects, and you can even try wearing your sweater as a scarf around your neck!

Don a tee as a shirt (above right) or try Gretta’s idea-- wear it as a skirt (above left)! This trick is perfect for wardrobe emergencies!

While Zanna and Roseann won the wardrobe challenge, both mom and daughter were winners, as they both walked away with a boatload of fresh ideas for styling their wardrobe, and better yet, they each got a $1,000 gift card to shop at J.Crew!

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