It’s no secret that I’m not a huge fan of the recent craze for “basics.” Don’t get me wrong: I believe in the primary tenants of basics-dom. Yes, one should have a perfect white T-shirt, black turtleneck and pair of jeans.
But basics are, by their nature, boring. A plain sweater with jeans? Snoozeville. I am not alone in this viewpoint: Gap’s “Dress Normal” campaign, which championed basics, completely flopped. (Everything is currently on clearance.)
But basic doesn’t have to mean boring.
When I spent Saturday in Central Park, I juiced up a simple combination of jeans and a sweater. The twist? The sweater was a cashmere pullover with an exaggerated batwing silhouette, and the jeans were so high-waisted, they were practically a denim corset.
The sweater’s expertly constructed slouchiness is the best way to pay homage to the “oversized” trend. In most of its incarnations, the oversized trend is VERY difficult to wear — unless you are the height of a Brontosaurus and the weight of a toaster oven. (This version would look horrible on me.)
Because this sweater has definition — i.e., a cinched waist and tapered sleeves — I’m not drowning in a vat of yarn. The super high-rise of the jeans adds to the exaggerated waistline, transforming an uber-basic outfit into a super-feminine, not-too-baggy 1970s send-up.
What do you consider your non-basic basics? What makes them special?