Life is chaotic and messy, so, naturally, we seek structure and simplicity where we can.
One of the great ways to reduce unnecessary stress, anxiety, and let’s be honest – mess, is to take care of our wardrobes.
And there is a perfect tried and tested system to do that. We’re talking about creating a capsule wardrobe.
What is a capsule wardrobe?
According to Good On You Eco, the term Capsule wardrobe was created by British fashion icon Susie Faux in the 1970s. It refers to a set of 30-40 practical, planned out and versatile pieces of clothing put together to create an entire wardrobe for a season. This means you should have 2 or 4 capsules for different seasons – one-two for autumn/winter and the others for spring/summer.
A capsule wardrobe minimizes the decision fatigue we feel when the question “what to wear” comes up. It makes dressing up quick, saves space in the closet and money in the bank, and enables you to wear the things you really like (because those are the only things you have).
Finally, the capsule promotes minimalism and helps minimize the damage fast fashion and consumerism has on our planet and environment.
What does the capsule entail?
A well-thought-out capsule wardrobe is created out of high-quality items, usually of 2-3 base colors that mix and match well with each other.
Most of the time, the base colors are neutral – black, navy, white, beige, grey. You then add items that help style the looks in myriad different ways – think colorful scarves, belts, jewelry, hats.
An essential principle of a capsule wardrobe is buying something new only when the old piece is worn out or doesn’t fit anymore. That’s where high-quality comes in – these pieces will last longer and will be easier to repair.
How to start building the capsule?
Take your time
You don’t need to make decisions over the weekend. A wardrobe capsule is an emotional commitment and will require at least a little bit of investment, so don’t rush. Start with the current season and leave the next one for another time to avoid getting overwhelmed.
Review your closet
Take everything out of the closet and lay it out where you can see the items. Make sure you check every piece individually and ask these questions:
- Have I worn it in the last 12 months?
- Does it go with my other clothes and my current lifestyle?
- Do I really like it, and will I honestly wear it in the future?
- Is the item of high quality, can I repair it, and will it last?
This will help you eliminate the obvious things that can go to charity or the dumpster.
The key is to really spend time deciding which clothing items you want to include in your capsule and whether you will be willing to wear it over and over.
Before you make the final decisions, it’s useful to spend some time trying out the chosen pieces. What To Wear advises a 10-day remix challenge where you pick 10 pieces out of your closet, wear only them the next 10 days, and see how you feel.
Make a list and buy essential items
Once you’ve cleared out the closet, it’s time to plan the missing items. First, choose your color palette and decide on the budget. This way, it will be easier to create a checklist of the pieces you have, the items you need and where to buy them.
You do not need to buy everything at once (even though who wouldn’t want a shopping spree!). Start with the most important items, like t-shirts and trousers, and build up from there.
Essential items for your wardrobe capsule
We’ve created a checklist of a capsule wardrobe items that will help you start building yours. Review the list and adjust it based on your personal style and lifestyle. Make sure your base pieces are of the highest quality and comfort, such as Fresh Clean Tees best quality t shirts, since you’ll be wearing them every day.
Bottoms: pants, jeans, skirts, shorts, slacks
Tops: t-shirts, shirts, blouses, dresses, sweatshirts, sweaters, cardigans
Outerwear: coats, jackets, trench coats, parkas, blazers
Footwear: boots, sandals, loafers, high heels, dress shoes, sneakers.
Finally, add more personality with accessories such as hats, scarves, belts, and jewelry. Lifegoals magazine suggests looking into a watch, sunglasses, and a sleek backpack too.