Well, gentleman, I think it's high time we upgrade to a quality and versatile wardrobe we’re proud of.
Imagine reaching into your closet and knowing that every single piece of clothing will serve you, look great, and stand up to all of the wild adventures you throw at it. Here at TEREN, our goal is to create the perfect wardrobe for the modern, adventurous, and hardworking guy.
It took years of our own adventures and listening to the concerns of our fellow brothers for us to create what we believe to be the ideal wardrobe. Without further ado, let’s walk through how to curate a highly versatile, stylish, and quality wardrobe.
The Basics of Versatile Clothing
There are three basic questions you should ask when picking out clothing items:
- Can I wear it to most events and outings?
- Is it high-quality enough to last for several years of heavy wear?
- Does it go with the rest of my wardrobe?
Versatility means a piece can be worn out on a hike and also out on the town.
Hiking clothes need to be moisture-wicking, temperature-regulating, and have the right balance of comfort and durability.
But why can’t our office clothing do the same thing?
The Core Principles of Versatility
Versatile clothing is timeless, adaptable, and durable — which minimizes the need for a large wardrobe. This means virtually all of your clothing pieces should be interchangeable to make multiple outfit combinations.
When picking clothing, each piece should be:
- Neutral color palette: Statement pieces have a place in your wardrobe. However, sticking to neutral colors for most clothing items will give you much more flexibility in your wardrobe and keep your daily outfit selection effortless.
- Classic designs and cuts: Trends come and go, but there’s a reason crew necks, button-ups, and blue jeans have been around for generations. They pair with almost anything and make great staples in any wardrobe.
- Quality fabrics: Choosing fabrics is a matter of science. Some fabrics perform better than others and significantly impact the comfort, durability, and overall appearance of clothing. Opt for fabrics like Merino wool, bamboo, and high-quality cotton blends.
Following these principles ensures every item will work well together and last much longer than your typical clothing pieces.
Key Versatile Clothing Items
Here are some classic staples you should include in a high-functioning, yet minimalist wardrobe:
The Quality Tee
A quality t-shirt is arguably the most versatile garment item you could ever own. They can be worn under a button-up, dressed up for a weekend out, or even as a base layer on a multi-day backpacking excursion.
- How to dress it up: Dressing up a t-shirt is a matter of pairing it with the right pants and accessories. Adding a quality jacket, dress shoes, and a nice pair of chinos or dress pants is a great way to turn even a classic white t-shirt into a business casual outfit.
- How to dress it down: Opt for a pair of your favorite jeans, comfortable sneakers, and (weather permitting) a jacket that makes you feel good.
Our Favorite T-shirt
Our Daily Driver T-Shirt was designed to be the only t-shirt you’ll ever need. It’s one of the most versatile pieces you’ll ever own and can create nearly unlimited outfits for almost any occasion.
It has the look of a classic t-shirt but it's made from 70 percent bamboo, meaning it's naturally odor-resistant, breathable, moisture-wicking, and arguably—no, definitely—the softest t-shirt you’ll ever own.
The Quality Button-Up Shirt
Make any outfit a bit more interesting by adding a button-up. Just like a t-shirt, a button-up can be both dressed up and down for whatever occasion you find yourself in.
- How to dress it up: Pair it with khakis, a tie, and dress shoes.
- How to dress it down: Combine it with jeans, sneakers, and casual accessories.
Our favorite button-up:
The Daily Driver Shirt may look like your classic button-up, but this shirt is designed to handle anything from a wedding to a multi-day backpacking excursion through the mountains.
What makes this shirt so versatile?
It's made from a blend of bamboo, polyester, and spandex to give it a naturally odor-resistant, moisture-wicking, and wrinkle-free finish. This means you can dance your heart out at your sister's wedding, sweat like crazy, and not have to worry about stinking up the conga line.
The Daily Driver shirt is versatile, reliable, and fit for any occasion. It also comes in navy, charcoal, cement, and green.
Oh, and if you ever find yourself needing to commit sudden arson (or just light a campfire), you can find a fire starter in your collar stays. 🙂
The Quality Pants
While jeans have dominated the pant-game for years, it can be a lifelong endeavor to find a pair that not only fit right, but flatter you.
And while dress pants look great, I’ve witnessed exactly three pairs rip in the middle of a gnarly dance number at a wedding.
Finding a high-quality pair of pants is a tedious task, but worth the effort.
This is why we created the Daily Driver Pant. These pants are not only sleek enough to replace your dress pants but they’re also made of a blend of polyester and spandex, making them flexible enough to move with you both on the dance floor and on the trails.
They’re everything you want in a quality pair of hiking pants, dress pants, or just everyday office pants.
Plus, they’re fitted with a gusseted seat, so you won’t have to hold back on your legendary dance moves—even after eating too much cake.
- Dressing them up: Team with a dress shirt, leather belt, loafers, and a nice jacket.
- Dressing them down: Pair with a casual polo or t-shirt and canvas sneakers.
They come in five great neutrals—gray, khaki, brown, navy, and black.
The V-Neck Sweater
A classic v-sweater earns a much-deserved spot in our list of must-have versatile clothes. Trust us, your mother knows what she’s doing when she gives you one every year at Christmas.
We highly recommend looking for a great Merino wool sweater because it won’t be itchy like the ones you find in big box retailers. Merino wool is a fantastic temperature regulator and can even keep you warm when it gets wet.
- Dressing it up: Layer over a collared shirt with dress shoes and a nice jacket.
- Dressing it down: Wear it over a plain tee with boots or sneakers.
A high-quality sweater is one of the best winter clothing items you can buy. If you live in a cold place, it’ll be especially game-changing.
The Dark Jeans
Okay, I know we had a mouthful to say about jeans, but they are admittedly reliable. A dark pair of jeans is versatile and can be dressed up or down in hundreds of different combinations.
- Dressing them up: Add a blazer, one of your favorite jackets, and dress shoes.
- Dressing them down: Pair with a hoodie and sneakers.
The biggest word of advice we have is to go try on as many pairs as you can. When you’re in the fitting room try walking, squatting, sitting, and doing a little jig to make sure they are comfortable no matter what.
And if you’re just not a jean guy or you’re bored of jeans, check out these jean alternatives.
The Fleece Sweater
Again, if you live in a cold climate, it's imperative that you dress in layers and choose the right fabric. Fleece is an excellent insulator and also serves as a breathable mid-layer.
We created The Daily Driver Fleece Mid-Layer because we wanted an option that was breathable, sustainable, and void of any bold branding. This fleece zip-up features four-way stretch, a breathable blend of fabrics, and is made from 7 percent recycled polyester.
- Dressing it up: Layer over a collared shirt with nice pants and dress shoes
- Dressing it down: Wear it over a plain tee with boots or sneakers.
Also, unlike the fleece sweaters you’re used to, this one is sleek enough to fit under your outerwear comfortably.
Adapting Versatile Items For Different Seasons
Layering is the name of the game when it comes to adapting your wardrobe to the different seasons.
Lightweight fabrics for summer
In summer it's important to wear lightweight and breathable clothing. However, it's never a bad idea to bring a long-sleeved layer in case the temperature drops.
This is especially true if you live in the desert or somewhere that gets a lot of rain.
The best fabrics for summer are bamboo, merino wool, linen, and cotton blends. Check out our comparison of bamboo vs merino wool to understand why.
Layering options for fall and winter
Layering during the cold months can be a bit of a tedious task. You don’t want to underdress and freeze, but you also don’t want to carry around extra bulky layers.
This is why we highly recommend investing some extra money in high-quality and well-designed pieces. You want your layers to be the most effective at keeping you warm and dry, without unnecessary bulk.
This is why you should choose a base layer like Merino wool, a mid-layer like our sleek fleece zip-up, and a coat you know you can rely on.
Building a Versatile Wardrobe
Hopefully, you’re feeling much more informed on how to choose the right pieces for a truly versatile wardrobe, but here are a couple more tips to tuck in your back pocket:
Creating a capsule wardrobe with versatile pieces
A capsule wardrobe means every single piece you buy can seamlessly pair with the rest of your wardrobe.
Choose colors that fit into a stylish color palette, fits that make you feel great, and high-quality pieces that will perform well for you every single time.
Smart shopping tips for investing in quality clothing
Higher price doesn’t always mean higher quality, unfortunately. Always check your tags when purchasing clothing to see what they’re made of. Also check the seams to make sure they’re tight, free of any loose threads, and void of any raw un-serged edges.
More so, check to make sure the maintenance is something you’re willing to keep up with. If you’re a guy who just wants to throw a load of laundry in without thinking about it, be sure to skip the pieces that strictly require hand washing or dry cleaning.
Mixing and matching to maximize versatility
Don’t be shy when it comes to layering your clothing. Mixing and matching your clothing is a great way to make your staple pieces feel fresh.
Clothing Maintenance and Care
Here are some quick tips to keep your wardrobe looking new for longer:
Tips for prolonging the life of versatile clothing
I know some of you aren’t going to want to hear it, but throwing your laundry in and clicking “hot” is almost never a good idea.
Think about it—most clothing has at least a little bit of synthetic fiber mixed in. When you blast this fabric through a hot wash you’re melting the fibers and compromising its integrity. Not to mention the fact that any cotton items will shrink and have you questioning whether or not you need to cut down on the snacks.
Proper cleaning and storage techniques
It's worthwhile to invest in a spot cleaner for the times where you accidentally spill red wine or ketchup on your favorite pants.
But a few tips we wish we’d have learned sooner was to use less detergent, hang your clothing to dry as much as possible, and never skip the extra rinse cycle.
Alright guys, we hope you’re ready to upgrade from the $5 bin at your local big box store and upgrade to a quality, stylish, and versatile wardrobe that works for you.
Versatility doesn’t mean void of any personal style; in fact, it means the opposite. When you invest a little extra in a quality piece, you should make sure it aligns with the kind of image you’re wanting to portray to the world.
Are you a $5 bin guy? Or a hardworking, intelligent boss that knows👏 how👏 to 👏shop👏?
…sorry, we got a little carried away.
Regardless, we have your back here at TEREN. We know that shopping for clothing can be a stressful task, so let us take the stress and guesswork out for you.