Capsule wardrobes are on the rise, and have been deemed the latest and greatest (rightfully so) thing to hit lady closets everywhere.
I used to be a clothing hoarder. Multiple colours, styles and shapes – it didn’t matter, if I saw it on somebody else and I thought it looked good on them, I wanted it too. I also used to work for a large, popular clothing retailer where I would purchase new items weekly, mostly because I felt like I had to.
I think a lot of purchasing pressure came from a deep lack of self-awareness and self-love. But you thought this post was about simplifying your wardrobe, didn’t you? But of course I’m going to bring something more deep and meaningful into it…
I was painfully unaware of my actual body shape, because I didn’t love myself and I didn’t want to look the way I did – I wanted what other people’s bodies looked like! I’m finding as I grow out of my “young adulthood” into “full adulthood” that now is the time to get honest with myself, and dig deep, because baby – it’s just me and this body until the end.
So, this whole capsule wardrobe thing – it’s a powerful concept. The idea of every piece of clothing being something that fits you, works for you in conjunction with other pieces in your closet and most importantly – it’s what you love.
The downfall about this Capsule wardrobe business is that a lot of it is based on structure, rules and diagrams. If you’ve read anything else on my blog, you’ll know I don’t like to follow rules very often. In fact, they kind of make my skin crawl. So, instead of giving you a diagram of what you “need” to have in your closet to pare down, I’m going to give you some best practices for getting on track. I have been slowly getting rid of pieces in my closest for the past 6 months, and I’d say I’ve almost already gotten rid of 40% of my closest, and it feels so damn good. It’s not an easy process, some things are definitely sentimental so they take a bit more time to separate yourself from.
As I’ve started to put these practices into place in my life, I’m finding in every area that less is more:
Less clothes. Less make-up. Less stuff. Less drama. Less anxiety.
More time. More quality. More love. More space.
…Now you tell me which sounds better?
So – without further adue, these are my wardrobe simplifying steps:
- Know your body – Figure shape, hair, eye & skin colour. Look at photos of yourself with loving eyes. Be real with yourself, it’s freeing. Know your shape, and as you look at styles on Pinterest, etc., eliminate the desire to want to look like somebody else, and instead find your twin and see how beautiful they are! Find the styles of people who are similar to your body shape and size and move from there.
- Know what style(ish) you like & be realistic about what you spend time in. 80% of the time are you boho chic? Young professional? Casual & comfortable? The way you spend 80% of your time should be a key indicator of what needs to be in your closet.
- Try on every piece of clothing in your closet, putting the rejected clothes in a pile as you go.
Ask yourself while trying your clothes on:
- Am I comfortable in this? (ie: do I feel GOOD about ME in it.)
- Do I love it? (If yes – why do I love it? Because it was a gift, or it carries sentimental value? Not good enough. If you love it because it makes you feel GOOD about YOU, then that’s the right answer. So, same-same as step 1, but I was just testing you…
- Does the fit flatter my body type? Be honest with yourself. Bodies are all different in shapes and sizes, and not everything looks good on everyone – but all bodies are beautiful, don’t get me wrong there!
- Do the colours compliment your skin, hair & eye tones? Do the colours work with multiple other pieces in your closet that you love?
- Have you worn in it the last month? If the answer is no – why is that? Is it a special dress or top? Keep some of those for those occasions, but realistically – how much of them do you need? Keep the % of clothing as it relates to how much time you spend in it.
- Can you wear it to work? That’s a big one. If you work full time, that’s like 60% of your time!
- Look at yourself in the mirror and tell yourself you’re beautiful. If you believe it while wearing it – you’re winning.
- Let go of the sentimental and purchase price excuses. I’m saying this again, because ultimately this is what you will end up keeping that you shouldn’t. Because X cost you $Y. Because mom gave it to you. Because it’s a brand name. Don’t. Just don’t. Give those pieces to good home then – to a friend or a charity.
- Normally, I’d say get rid of the excess asap, but if you’re still feeling hesitant, take the “no” pile, and put it in a bag in storage for a month. If you go through the month without the thought of any of those pieces, I’d say you’re safe to give me them a recycle.
- I’m not going to say you should have a certain number of pieces, and they should create X number of outfits, because only you can decide that. You will know what kind of simplicity is right for you. I will say, you have to love it all, it has to make you feel good, and it has to serve a purpose.
- And of course, repeat this process until you are satisfied.
Other important things to note:
- If you find yourself making excuses, like “if I bought X to go with Y, it would look okay” it’s also probably a good indicator that you’re justifying it’s home in your closet. I try to look at clothing and it with what I already have. Imagine you couldn’t ever purchase another piece of clothing, and try to make all the items you keep work together with purpose. It’s kind of like a puzzle, no?
- *Recycling* is important. What doesn’t look good on you or fit in your wardrobe, might for someone else. Never, ever, ever, throw clothes in the garbage. Except maybe dirty underwear. I support that.
So, why is this important to ME?
I have stressed so much in my life about clothes, what to wear and body image.
Feeling confident in what I put on every morning is such a huge relief as a busy, sometimes slightly anxious female. Also, because – money. I’m learning the harsh reality of adulthood, and the cost of taking care of myself. I don’t have someone to lean on for extra dollars to put towards trips or paying my bills. Relieving myself from the pressure of always thinking I need more is a huge weight off my shoulders.
Also, I already have everything I need. (98% of the time)
De-clutter to save money. De-clutter to create more time & space for things you love. De-clutter for more self-love.