My First Capsule Wardrobe
When I first heard the phrase “capsule wardrobe” early this year I knew it was exactly the kind of challenge I was up for in 2015, which is why I spent a 3-day weekend this month planning and pulling my capsule together.
Let me say–I am enthusiastic about the experience, and looking forward to the next few months of being simplified!
What Is A Capsule Wardrobe?
Also called a minimalist wardrobe, a capsule wardrobe includes a limited number of clothing items that you commit to wearing for a season. I’m sure there a ton of reasons why people choose to put together their own capsule but my reasons were to streamline my morning routine, simplify my wardrobe, and reduce my belongings.
Plus it also just feels really good to purge a bunch of things from my closet!
How I Put Together My Capsule
But it was really this post from Jacey at The Balanced Wife, followed by this free capsule wardrobe planner from Caroline at Unfancy that helped me put my capsule (mostly) together over a 3-day weekend.
I stuck pretty closely to Caroline’s 37-item breakdown which helped me quickly identify what I wanted to keep, what I wanted to buy, and the few things I wanted to make.
My Quick Capsule Wardrobe Breakdown
I don’t wear a lot of patterns or prints in my wardrobe, and tend to buy basic staples, which I think makes a capsule wardrobe a little easier (accessories aren’t included in your capsule count which helps bring color and personality to basics).
After choosing the items I wanted to keep I bought 4 brand-new things: a pair of skinny jeans (out of necessity since mine ripped a hole in the knee the weekend before), a pair of black skinny jeans, and two pairs of booties.
I also bought 2 thrift-store garments: a graphic sweatshirt and an Aztec-inspired graphic cardigan sweater.
The last thing I bought was gold fabric paint to embellish a couple of plain-jane t-shirts I own and some gray knit fabric to make a dress.
My 15-Minute Purge
I’m a bit fond of purging in general (perhaps too fond sometimes), so my closet never gets too bulky before I take a pass to thin it out. But here are the quick, rather loose guidelines I used when I was setting up my capsule:
#1. I started with seasonal things I knew I wouldn’t wear in cold weather and put them in the back of the closet for storage.
#2. I moved on to stuff that I didn’t love anymore and wasn’t wearing. This pile was easy for me because (unsurprisingly like most of us) I know my steady go-to’s. It’s not hard to spot everything else that I only wear occasionally.
#3. Last I decided on a few things that I wasn’t quite ready to part with and stashed them in storage as well. Many of these are perfectly good, hard-working classic pieces that just aren’t quite today’s style. They may make it into a donation round a little later, or become fresh again when styles swing.
Getting Used to Less
I’m just in the early days of trying out my new capsule so it’s too soon for me to tell how much I’ll like it or how much easier it will make my life. In truth I think I’m spending more time trying to figure out what to wear because I’m not used to the creative stretch of my minimal choices.
That said, I had a ton of fun planning and putting it together and can’t wait to get more comfortable with it in the weeks to come!
Considering a capsule wardrobe yourself? Here are a few links/people that have inspired me:
- Capsule Wardrobe: Winter 2015 from The Balance Wife
- Unfancy.com, including her Free Capsule Wardrobe Planner
- “Being Content With My Closet” from A Beautiful Mess
- The Outfits series from Design for Mankind, starting with Part One
- Zero Waste Home book and site
Would you try a capsule wardrobe?
Also, related, I downsize my makeup here.