We've made our list. Now check your closet for these Southern staples.

By Ashley Williams
Updated May 28, 2021
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1. Pearls

Whether you prefer to drape them around your neck on special occasions or wear them every day in your ears, pearls—in any form—are an essential part of a Southern lady's wardrobe. We love J. Crew's multi-strand necklace that's under a hundred dollars.

2. The Perfect Pair of Jeans

If you're looking for quality-crafted, American-made denim, you don't have to look any further than your own back yard. From Marc Nelson denim in Knoxville, Tennessee to Raleigh Denim in (you guessed it!) Raleigh, North Carolina, Southerners are designing jeans right here at home and proving that they know a thing our two about great design.

3. An Oversized White Blouse

Universally flattering, and eternally stylish, every Southern woman should have at least one in her closet. We recommend investing in a few in varying fabric qualities—lightweight cottons to breezy linens—and let them become your wardrobe go-to.

4. A Gingham Button Down

Southern designers like Ledbury, Claridge + King, and Ann Mashburn all have their own takes on the classic gingham button-down—further supporting it's status as Southern fashion hall-of-famer. This widespread staple can be found in every color, cut, and cost. Stock up.

5. A Classic White Dress

Take a cue from Southern showstoppers like Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn. A classic white dress is a true closet cornerstone. Reach for it throughout the spring and summer seasons for a timeless outfit choice.

6. A Statement Piece

From small-scale pastel florals to big bright geometric motifs, colorful prints are a Southern must. We like them all in both small and large doses—simply accent your outfit or turn every head in a room.

7. An Eyelet Top

Southerners have long embraced lace's country cousin, eyelet, which was once prized as a way to show off made-by-hand openwork details. We recommend wearing all summer long.

8. Linen Separates

You might be surprised at how incredibly versatile linen separates can be. They run the gamut of formality—easily transitioning from casual bottoms with sandals and summer knits to polished formal wear with heels and sparkling accessories.

9. A Tea Dress

Tea dresses are arguably one of the most iconic Southern styles. Break them out for garden parties, art museum soirées, and of course, tea parties. Universally flattering and timelessly beautiful, tea dresses are a Southern closet must-have. And the shin-length cut allows room to really show off your shoes - win, win!

10. A Family Heirloom

We Southerners like to hold onto little pieces of the past, and there is no better way to keep them close to our hearts than to wear them on ourselves. Your grandmother's monogrammed locket, a passed down signet ring or even a rediscovered broach can be a sentimental way to finish any outfit.