Have you dreamed of creating your own capsule wardrobe?
When I set out to transform my closet, deal with the issues behind creating a capsule wardrobe, and then eventually create a capsule wardrobe, I realized that really, it had to be my OWN. Not like anyone else’s. I perused Pinterest pictures for awhile one night and looked at all the different styles and types of clothes that people had in their capsule wardrobes.
But they do not live the life I do. They do not have the same activities I do nor the same lifestyle. That was when I knew I had stop looking at what “everyone else was doing” and do it my own way. And I want you to do the same. Take this post as just someone’s journey towards having a small-er wardrobe. May it encourage you to maybe pare down and make more use of what you have.
My capsule wardrobe will probably look nothing like yours (and maybe it will). When I took a look at my life, I realized that:
- I spent most of my time at home, working around the home, in casual clothes
- I spent a fair amount of time outside exercising or playing with my daughter
- I went to work 2 days a week during the school year, but didn’t have to get too dressed up
- I have to wear “church” clothes once a week and occasionally for a wedding
(I recently decluttered so I did not need to spend time doing that)
- What that list above said to me was that I needed to base my capsule wardrobe around these types of clothes:
- Workout Clothes
- Church Clothes
- If someone told me to just get dressed, not knowing what I would be doing, I would choose either my skinnys and a shortsleeve shirt or my workout clothes, both with my chacos for shoes. What else can I pair with my favorites?
- Skinnys, a shortsleeve shirt, a cardigan, and boots
- Skinnys, a sweatshirt, and chacos
- Workout pants, shortsleeve shirt, sweatshirt, and chacos
- Those are just a few examples of what I can pair with my favorites. I will show you what this looks like in more detail below.
- Nice tops for work
- Black pants – I have a pair of dress pants, but they are on the verge of being a little short and just aren’t comfortable because I am self-conscious about how short they are
- Quality short-sleeve shirts
- I had an Old Navy/Gap gift card, so I was able to find black skinnys on sale and a nice short-sleeve shirt to replace the two that I have had since college.
- I had a friend who was purging of her clothes and she knows I enjoy trying on what she no longer needs, so I was able to buy some perfect tops for work and sweaters, to round out my wardrobe.
- Speaking of, when you are missing a piece of clothing that will help round out your capsule wardrobe, don’t assume that you need to go ahead and buy new. Yes, I think quality of the clothing can make a difference, but do you have friends that you can do a clothing swap with? Do you have secondhand stores that offer good quality clothing? Some of my favorite pieces are things that I have found from Goodwill. Who knew? Don’t be ashamed if you can’t buy new. But don’t be ashamed of buying new either. Buy what is affordable for YOU.
- For me, like I mentioned above, quality versus quantity is key. My husband taught me this concept early in our marriage. I have learned that Under Armour clothing fits me very well and is very comfortable. It is a bit more expensive, but I have a black jacket that I have had for 8 years. I have a sweatshirt that I have had for over 6. It just lasts a long time and even though you may spend a few dollars more upfront, it will save you money in the end.
- Of course I did not swap everything out for new. I just found new ways to pair what I have with other items I may not have thought of, and got rid of what did not pair well. This is what I own:
6 shorts-sleeve shirts
7 tank tops
5 “nice” shirts
6 long-sleeve shirts
5 “black” pants
8 pairs of shoes
At first when I looked at that number, I thought WOW, that is WAY MORE than what I thought I had. And here I thought I was working on a minimalist wardrobe. The thing is, many of the capsule wardrobe pictures you see, do not include workout clothes. They do not include the “lounge” clothes. They do not include sweatshirts. If I had to guess, they probably wear those types of clothes too. I don’t know about you, but I prefer to not re-wear my workout clothes before I wash them!
Also, one thing to keep in mind: if you live in the north, you are going to have to have a wider variety of clothing because of the change of seasons. You will need shorts and tank tops, but fleeces and sweatshirts for winter too.
If you look at those pictures, you will see a common color scheme. Blacks, whites, aquas, navys, and pinks. With those colors, I can mix and match almost anything. I can add a cardigan with any of those tops, add a vest, my scarves, and change the style quickly with any of my shoes.
And yes, I realize I can pare down even more. I will get there. In fact, I already decided to get rid of one of my dresses that just doesn’t fit right. Getting my wardrobe to this point has taken a LONG time and as you can see, it is a work in progress! It has helped to take pictures of all of my clothes, like above, to truly see what I have. It made me ask, do I need all of this? My wardrobe looks nothing like those on Pinterest, but what I see my wardrobe to be is real life. The real life of a mama who can get filthy dirty with my child everyday, not worrying about ruining my clothes. It is casual, comfy, contains workout and church clothes. The very things that fill my life.
In the end I can say that my capsule wardrobe is filled with: simple and basic coordinating clothes that are essential to ME
I hope this series has helped you think about what is in your closet! Maybe you are looking to transform your closet and build your own capsule wardrobe. Remember, there is no right or wrong way to create YOUR capsule wardrobe. It is yours. It is your lifestyle and it is your style. It is your idea of living with less.
Make your wardrobe YOU.