There are a few items in my wardrobe that contain special powers: 1. Pencil Skirts, 2. Basic Pumps. Paired together, they're my secret weapon.
Let's start with the pencil skirt.
It has to fit really well. I often size down and wear this skirt style a bit higher than normal...on my natural waist. The fit is so crucial. Too tight and it looks trashy (unless you're Eva Mendez). Too loose and it looks frumpy. The point is to look tailored (without actually tailoring). Some women blessed with naturally long legs can pull off a hemline slightly below the knee. But on a petite-average frame like mine, the length has to fall just above or at the knee. This means I'm shopping in Petites or Juniors if I don't want the hassle of hemming it myself (via mom). A pencil skirt is usually associated with business-wear, but really, it's a blank canvas for almost any style...all it takes is the confidence to work it.
Now, about those pumps.
I don't really care about the heel part. I go with whatever is available...chunky, wedge, stiletto, some may be preferred over others, but they all have their place. It's the leg line that matters. I've been buying more strappy styles lately, simply for variety, but ultimately the plain & simple get worn most. I'm especially keen (did I really just write the word keen?) on almond toed shoes. It's like a sleek, sexy pointed-toe shoe and a sweet, modest rounded-toe shoe hooked up and had a baby shoe. And it grew up to be the most universally flattering style of all (in my opinion).
Aw...shoes having babies. Now wouldn't that be cute.