As Julie Andrews would say, ‘let’s start at the beginning. A very good place to start.” When it comes to dressing with panache we often look for the statement pieces. But, there’s a tried and true formula for killer style that starts with a more subtle approach — the basic, solid easy dress. It’s the foundation you lay for an outfit that can quickly transform again and again and it’s one of the easiest ways to mark your very unique stamp on style.

These simple shapes and solid hues are the sort of backdrop that can be worn year after year with the change of a shoe, a new necklace and trending hair do. Over at Brother’s we spotted a bold red dress that goes seamlessly from day to night with a cute little detail on the back that makes a top knot a great option. We love it paired with gold, but know it would look great with black if you’re looking for a Raging’ Cajuns kind of look and with any bold color if it’s color blocking you’re after.

beyond_basics

Vivid blue was hot last year and shows no signs of waning. A universally flattering color, this blue dress from Vanessa V. has the subtlest of high-low hemlines and our favorite — pockets. We’re picturing it with anything from a long amulet and dangling earrings to a short little chunky statement necklace with a bright color like turquoise. And it’s the sort of piece that can work easily with stacked heel booties before switching to a sleek pump.

This IND Styler’s favorite color of the moment (save for black because you know I always choose black if given the option) is found in this little V-neck number from Hemline. With a nod to the military trend, this army green dress is another study in versatility we would rock with combat boots and layered necklaces or nude sexy heels and demure bracelets.

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