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The Wardrobe ICONS guide to investment shopping

Making smart investments pays off in all areas of life, not least when it comes to your wardrobe. Here, Wardrobe ICONS founders Laura Fantacci and Petro Stofberg share their tips for mastering investment shopping – and the classic pieces well worth spending on

6 May 2022

Wardrobe ICONS founders Laura Fantacci and Petro Stofberg

Investment shopping has long been touted as the smartest way to shop in fashion circles and it’s no small wonder why. Choosing intelligently and thoughtfully when building your forever wardrobe means not only will your collection be high-performing, it will also be something you enjoy wearing for years to come. 

In the sustainability stakes, spending with consideration stacks up, too. Well-made, premium pieces that stand up to repeat wear will last for a lifetime in your wardrobe. Plus, if cared for properly, can even be handed down throughout generations, meaning beloved pieces can stay cherished rather than ending up in landfill.

So, what makes a good investment? The starting point is classic design. No matter what the category – outerwear, bags, jewellery – a timeless silhouette and colourway is key to both versatility and longevity. Look for designer signatures and heritage shapes in wear-with-everything tones that work with whatever you already own. If opting for prints, keep to classic motifs (checks, dots, stripes, logos) and vintage-inspired paisley and florals; if it already looks old, it can’t ever date.

Quality is essential. Fabric should be natural where possible and of the finest quality. Detailing – from stitching to buttons – needs to be executed immaculately. Nothing beats running a keen eye over future investments, so it’s well worth going in store to see pieces up close. 

When purchasing with purpose, pick a destination where beautiful quality and timeless design come as standard. Not only will this save you time, it will make seeking out your next investment piece a joy. Home to the flagship boutiques of global luxury brands, Sloane Street’s fashion offering is first class. 

For those looking to bolster their forever wardrobe for the spring/summer season, these are the six warm-weather investments worth their weight in gold.

The Summer Tote

Whether taking it on holiday, or carrying it for sunny days in the city, a summer tote is an invaluable piece to have in your seasonal arsenal. Keep the appeal light and breezy with pale neutrals and opt for sleek leather or luxe canvas. A style emblazoned with a designer logo or monogram will give any outfit instant elevation.

Anya Hindmarch recycled coated canvas tote, £695 
Bottega Veneta leather tote, £1,755 
Dior raffia logo tote, £2,600 
Louis Vuitton leather monogrammed tote, £1,880 

The Trench

The enduring appeal of a trench coat means that no matter the season, it’s a guaranteed no-regret buy. In fact, if there is one place to start investing, the trench is it. A classic beige or camel style has unparalleled versatility: wear it over everything in your spring/summer wardrobe, from low-key neutrals to saturated brights. Look for details that provide an extra-special touch: a flash of Burberry’s signature check; a Gucci logo patch.

Alberta Ferretti belted trench, £1,415 
Burberry check panel trench, £1,950 
Gucci cotton trench, £2,200 

The Logo T-Shirt

While an on-point white T-shirt is a wardrobe staple, a luxe logo version is a modern investment hero. Add one to your everyday jeans to immediately up their style credentials, or layer one underneath workwear tailoring to introduce contemporary cool. Ensure longevity by reaching for established design houses and keep the colour palette minimal. 

Burberry oversized cotton T-shirt, £290 
Dior cotton jersey T-shirt, £760
Gucci oversized cotton T-shirt, £400 

The Luxe Trainer

Trainers play an increasingly prominent part in the modern wardrobe and thanks to relaxing dress codes they can be worn just as easily on duty as they can off. The trick is to invest in sleek styles that give polish to weekend denim, and can be paired with tailored slacks for the 9-5. Look to vintage-inspired shapes such as high-tops or tennis pumps that will work with myriad trouser cuts and dress lengths. White is a failsafe, however a muted colour pop is also easy to wear and offers a point of difference.

Burberry logo check cotton trainer, £370 
Dior Oblique technical mesh trainer, £790 
Fendi suede low-top trainer, £680 

The Midi Dress

The one-step dressing ease of a dress makes it a smart wardrobe addition, and undoubtedly the most versatile length is a midi. This is one category that you can afford to double – or even triple – up in, so think about building a midi dress capsule to see you through every occasion. Dior’s printed shirt dress can be worn with heels to the office or styled down with black flats. Add a delicate mule to Emilia Wickstead’s Dellah dress for spring weddings, then add a tan sandal for holiday evenings. A basket bag renders Prada’s white cotton dress perfect for picnics or days by the beach.

Emilia Wickstead Dellah dress, £1,670
Prada cotton poplin dress, £2,950

The Gold Bangle

When making jewellery investments, think multi-wear. A gold bangle is the ultimate dress-up/dress-down piece and will offer whatever you wear it with an elevating touch of glow. Reach for those understated design icons guaranteed to become well-loved heirlooms.

Cartier Love bracelet, £5,800 
Chanel Coco Crush bracelet, £5,900 
Tiffany T Wire bracelet, £1,900 

Read the first in this Wardrobe ICONS series, a guide to transeasonal dressing

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