The Item I Wear to Death: My Ralph Lauren Corduroy Blazer

Trust me, you'll want one too.

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(Image credit: Tyler Joe)

In our biweekly series, editors share "the item they wear to death," whether it be a basic white tee or a super-trendy jumpsuit. Prepare yourself (and your credit card) for some guilt-free shopping.

One of the first things I realized when I moved to NYC for an internship at an advertising agency the summer after college was that my closet full of t-shirts and leggings just was not going to cut it anymore. Sure, I had a wardrobe section dedicated to office-wear thanks to past internships, but working full-time and interviewing for new positions meant that I got stuck on outfit repeat fast and frequently. To claw my way out of closet deja-vu on my small budget, I started thrifting. Lucky for me, New York is a great place to shop for gently used clothes with limited means.

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The details—folded leather buttons and cufflinks—on this blazer help make it unique.

(Image credit: Tyler Joe)

This corduroy blazer from Ralph Lauren was actually one my earlier finds. I was browsing a recent arrivals rack at a shop in Park Slope, Brooklyn, when I found it. I didn't even need to look in the mirror after I put it on to know that it fit perfectly. Seriously, the cut of this blazer is absolutely dreamy. The shoulders and waist are defined, and it looks great with the buttons done up or left open in the front. I knew immediately that this piece was meant for me.

I took it to the checkout counter along with a few other items I found that day. I remember the woman cashing me out commenting on how they'd just gotten it in and she knew it wouldn't last long. I smiled to myself on the subway ride back to my shared apartment and carefully hung the blazer in the steadily growing "office" section of my closet. Being summer, it was too early to add it into my rotation, but I knew cooler weather would be here soon.

Since that season, I've worn the blazer countless times. It's gone with me on interviews (including one of my interviews at Marie Claire!), to happy hours, and to the office. I love to throw it on over a t-shirt and jeans in the fall when it's gotten just chilly enough outside that leaving my apartment with bare arms gives me goosebumps. Or to layer it under a wool coat come winter. Probably one of the best things about corduroy is its resilience. I know that I can wear this piece over and over again and the fabric won't fade, tear, or get worn down. Which is a good thing, because I'm not going to stop wearing it any time soon!

Since I thrifted mine, you probably won't be able to snag the exact one, but here are some similarly great corduroy blazers to try.

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(Image credit: Design by Morgan McMullen)