We Just Looked Into Our Gen Z Crystal Ball—5 Cool Staples That Will Take Over


(Image credit: @maddieziegler@kenzie)

If you haven't been paying attention to the fashion world in the last few months, allow me to catch you up. Anyone who's anyone is all about wardrobe staples—those classic items that you can wear a million ways and are always a good idea to buy into. I wanted to get a glimpse at the wardrobe staples Gen Z is currently after, and luckily, I was able to get on the phone with Maddie and Kenzie Ziegler for all of the updates.

If you've been wondering what the Ziegler sisters have been up to since their childhood years, you're not alone. So have I. I got the chance to catch up with them on all things fashion, shopping, and inspiration, and now, my shopping cart is full. Below, find the five best staples that they created as part of their collection for American Eagle and all of the inspiration behind it.


(Image credit: @maddieziegler@kenzie)

Tell me about your personal styles.

Maddie Ziegler: We're very similar honestly. Our personal style is definitely comfort based. We love one thing to be baggy and the other to offset that. I think it's fun to switch up the dimensions and the sizing of everything to offset one or the other. For me and Kenzie both, we love '90s-inspired items, and the model-off-duty look is our vibe.

Kenzie Ziegler: Totally, I feel like we have super-similar styles, so I agree with you, Maddie.

How has your experience with dance influenced your style and this collection?

MZ: Dance has influenced us because we have worn everything under the sun. We've really figured out what silhouettes are flattering. That was honestly really helpful in terms of making this collection. The silk skirt is something that we really got down on exactly what we want it to look like and the vest as well. We know where it should hit on the waist and how to make it as flattering as possible. There are a lot of things subconsciously we don't even realize are inspiring the collection.

Take me to the design room—what was it like designing with your sister? What did the process look like?

KZ: The process was honestly so much fun, and American Eagle was so collaborative on this collection. I feel like we based the whole collection around our vest. That was our starting point, and I feel like we just wanted to make this collection super versatile and make sure everyone feels comfortable in it. What was really awesome was that the first time we went to see our collection, we got to try everything on and give notes. It was a super-fun process, and Maddie and I agree on a lot of things, so it was easy for us to agree on this collection.

Where did you get inspiration for the collection?

MZ: Our original mood board was predominately lots of Drew Barrymore in the '90s. Think Kate Moss, Cindy Crawford, Julia Roberts, and even Jennifer Aniston—that model-off-duty inspo. A lot of images were also pulled from street style in New York City, which was a heavy inspiration. We love New York so much, and we're inspired by it always. We wanted it to feel authentic to us but also to remain timeless, for it to live on and still be cute in 10 years.

1. The Perfect Jeans


(Image credit: @kenzie)

"When we went into the first meeting, we were like, 'We do not wear high-waisted jeans or skinny jeans.' We really wanted to bring in a cut that represents our style. We wanted to do a baggy low-rise jean, but in reality, not every person loves that, so we did an in-between classic jean. It's mid- to low-rise in terms of the waist, and the jeans are baggy enough. Sometimes, Kenzie and I will wear it true to size to be more flattering, and sometimes, we want a baggier feel, so we'll size up." — Maddie Ziegler

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2. A '90s-Inspired Slip Dress


(Image credit: @maddieziegler)

"We had a lot of notes for the slip dress to make it perfect. We wanted it to be as flattering as possible but for it to still have an element of playful and casual. You can dress it up and make it a little bit more sophisticated or sexy, so it is really nice to have the balance of both. I think it's super classic." — Maddie Ziegler

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3. A Ribbed Tank Top


(Image credit: @maddieziegler@kenzie)

"I'm going to be wearing our ribbed tank top quite a lot. It's just so flattering, and I love the way it fits. I feel like I can wear it anywhere and love the colors that it came in. It's definitely a staple." — Kenzie Ziegler

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4. An Oversize Leather Jacket


(Image credit: @kenzie)

"I'm super excited to wear the oversize leather jacket. I feel like I never leave the house without one. You can wear it during the day or at night to go to dinner. I feel like it's very versatile. It's so simple you can pair it with everything." — Kenzie Ziegler

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5. A Silk Skirt


(Image credit: @maddieziegler@kenzie)

"It's just really classic and timeless and so flattering, and I think it's just the thing about that specific skirt is that you really can wear it in so many different ways. You can wear it with a sneaker and a scrunched-up sock and a T-shirt, or you could wear a vest with it. You could put a chunky boot on. You could wear a heel. There are so many ways that you could dress it up or down, so I really love that piece since it's a good starting piece to build off of it." — Maddie Ziegler

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Associate Editor

Sierra Mayhew was always destined to work in fashion, but she didn't know it at first. Growing up with no choice but to wear a rotation of school uniforms and activewear, her love for fashion really blossomed when she moved away for college and was able to finally define her very own personal style. Shortly thereafter, she interned at Elle magazine and instantly knew that editorial was for her. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame, she worked for ShopBazaar, contributing regularly to Bazaar.com, and finally made her way to Who What Wear, where she is an associate editor. When she’s not working, you can catch her always trying to catch a flight, rollerblading through New York City traffic, or exploring the latest luxury vintage boutique.