. & Natalie N.
For all of you Smarty moms who missed the Oprah show on the top 10 “Must Haves” in your closet, here it is. We searched high and low around Charlotte to find all 10, try them on, and price them out for your shopping convenience. This was one of our favorite Smarty exercises! We hope you can take this information and get one thing or the entire list to spruce up your wardrobe.
Oprah’s Top Ten Must-Haves in your Closet:
1. Black and white turtleneck – this must be a year-round thing in Chicago, but not going to work for spring in Charlotte! So we substituted a good pair of khaki pants. Gap and J Crew are always a staple.
2. White trench coat with belt
3. A good pair of fitting stretch material black dress pants
4. The black dress to wear anywhere
5. A good-fitting pair of yoga pants
6. Jeans: both white and dark blue
7. A tunic
8. A black pencil skirt
9. Cashmere sweaters solid colors both long-sleeved and short-sleeved
10. The Brooks Brothers white “no iron” fitted white button down (must be crisp white)
So, first stop – Southpark Mall. Neither of us really have too many opportunities to shop since between the two of us, we have seven children – yikes! So you can imagine the excitement when we walked through the Nordstrom doors. We headed upstairs to the department next to juniors where there is a great spot to find jeans, tops, and coats that do not break the bank. Designers such as Michael Kohrs and Sweet Pea tops were easily spotted and oh-so cute. Natalie found a tunic for $89 by M. Kohrs – lightweight material, long-sleeved, with a giraffe print. Jen tried on the NYDJ “tummy tuck” jeans $109, in the must-have color of white. They have the best stretchy material and are extremely soft that really do “tuck” it all in! At the register while Jen purchased her white jeans, Natalie modeled the trench coats in different styles, colors, and prices. Check them out – gorgeous! We hydrated with the $2 Nordstrom tea and off to further our research.
We strolled into Brooks Brothers thinking we could try on the new HOT white button down that requires no ironing (brilliant concept!). The clerk said “thanks to Oprah” they are on back order for MONTHS! Fortunately, there were other colors. Natalie tried on the pink 3/4 length style for $79 and bought it instantly. LOVE IT! We added our names to the back order list for the white….it will be worth the wait!
Then we cruised into the Gap where right in the front there is a great assortment of colors for spring cotton pants. No, not on the list, but we think they should be. We loved the red and light blue pairs, $49.50. We also spotted a cute black skirt for $49.50. We didn’t try it on, but we did ask the Gap clerk if they had any white jeans in yet since we didn’t see any on display. Sure enough from the back here comes the greatest pair of white jeans for $49.50, with cute pockets on the back. We’re both not-so-tall at 5’5″, so the fact that we don’t have to hem them was a huge bonus! We instantly bought a pair for each of us. And Jen saved herself $50 and returned her tummy tucks from Nordstroms! An exciting first day…we planned our second day to meet at Kohls in Carolina Pavilion.
We fueled up at Chick-fil-A since we had 3 of our 7 kids in tow and off to Kohl’s we went. We were very curious to check out the new Vera Wang line. There were all kinds of fun tops, pants, and jackets by Wang and very reasonably-priced. And all of the fall/winter stuff is on sale. We also found some cute capris in many different colors. Again, not on the list, but a must for spring on our list. Kohl’s is a lot like Marshall’s where you need to spend some time to really look and don’t bring your preschoolers!
Then off to Old Navy right in the same shopping center. Natalie likes yoga pants here for $19. Old Navy is always a good spot to pick up most anything for your kids, too! Jen likes Nike yoga pants at Dick’s and Nordstrom. They are pricey at $50 but they NEVER fade and will last forever.
And to our final destination of the day, Target, the go-to store for everything. I bet you can find the entire list there! We were running short on time, so we focused on the trench coat. We heard there was a great one to buy. We spotted it. To us, this is the most important MUST-HAVE for this spring! It is by Sonoma for only $39 and it is fabulous (see photo). There is a mango-colored style with a striped lining. There was also a retro pattern in both navy and green. They are light weight with pockets, a belt and buttons up. Jen bought the green one. Natalie decided to wait it out. She was delighted to find that target.com has a beige one with white polka dots that is just perfect, along with a variety of other colors and styles to choose from.
As for the other items on the list, we pick Ann Taylor where we have always had luck in finding the perfect black dress. Jen prefers Harolds for a good pair of black pants. Natalie likes the “Editor” black pants from Limited Express for only around $50. Turtlenecks and cashmere sweaters can be found just about anywhere – choose your style and price – just make sure it is in your closet! One last thing – ballet flats are still in and white oversized bags can be worn year-round.
We hope this gets you excited about spring…..happy shopping! Share your tips!