Creating a capsule wardrobe for myself has changed my life for the better in so many ways! I’m writing this for you today to share my struggles with crafting my perfect capsule wardrobe as well as my secrets that keep my wardrobe minimal and in control.
I studied fashion design at Parsons School of Design. I LOVE clothing and accessories – but I found that most of the time I was sticking to a utilitarian way of dressing, and wearing my favorite pieces over and over again.
Taking up too much space and causing clutter
Since I loved clothing so much I would often buy pieces that didn’t fit in with the other items I actually used, I bought them because I liked them or they were pretty, but I didn’t have a real plan for them.
It made organizing my closet difficult. There were the things I used and the things I didn’t use but they were all taking up the same space and causing clutter.
At some point I realized I needed to really take a hard look at what I was not using and let it go. I wanted to fine tune what I owned and get rid of the excess.
I am not the only one, some of the most productive people wear uniforms or have capsule wardrobes, (President Obama, Carolina Herrera, DVF)
Having less doesn’t mean you are less creative, it means you push yourself to be more creative wearing the same thing, and you can focus on getting results in your work and in life in general.
The concept of a capsule wardrobe
When I discovered the concept of a capsule wardrobe – I was hooked. According to bemorewithless.com, creator of Project 333, a capsule wardrobe is
“A small collection of 33 items including clothing, jewelry, accessories and shoes that encourage you to wear your favorite things every day (not the trendiest things, the most stylish things, or the perfect things … your favorite things).”
Personally, I think 33 is kind of a small number for a religious woman who layers her clothing all year round. But here is the deal – the reason why I think you should have a capsule or small wardrobe is that deciding what to wear is exhausting.
And decision fatigue is a real thing. When you are constantly having to make choices, your brain gets tired out even before lunch time! But having a capsule wardrobe will help tremendously with your decision making in what to wear since your closet will be paired down to only the clothes you like to and would wear.
Having less clothing also means an easier time keeping your closet organized!
This means you have room to maneuver in your closet.
It means that it is much easier to put laundry away, and you don’t spend my time shopping for things you already have but lost track of.
Creating My Capsule Wardrobe
Like I mentioned above – I think that 33 items is a bit small for a religious woman. I have to dress for all 4 seasons in a modest way (that often includes layering) as well as having clothing for occasions such as weddings or bar mitzvahs (again that have to be seasonally appropriate). But still, I went into this with an open mind and counted every piece of clothing in my closet.
Counting and sorting the number of clothes and accessories you own is the first step you must take when creating your capsule wardrobe.
At the time of counting, I owned 201 items in my closet. I decided to divide them into two seasons – Summer and Winter. 45 pieces for summer, 61 pieces for winter, and 95 pieces that could be used for either season.
Do not forget to include things such as underwear, sleepwear, or workout clothes! Those still count!
I then made a spreadsheet to have a visualization of what I owned and what category it belongs to. The second step you need to take when creating your capsule wardrobe is to see visually (either by spread sheet or laying out your clothes) where the item of clothing belongs.
You need to do this because you can see if you own too many pieces of clothing in any category.
Here’s an example of my spreadsheet:
|WORK OUT SKIRT||1|
|WORK OUT BOTTOM||3|
Managing your capsule collection list
I broke the list down into categories and then within the categories I made columns for the season, winter and summer.
When I have all the data laid out in front of me – the choice to keep, toss, or donate becomes much clearer.
For example, when looking at my summer clothing – much of my summer clothing needs to last longer. I live in Israel, which means it’s very warm for much of the year. I also tend to layer a lot of my summer clothing into the winter, for example, I wear a summer shirt under my sweater.
This is the next and final step when creating your capsule wardrobe. Once you have taken account of everything you own it’s time to make three piles. One pile for keep, one for toss, and one for donation.
Be honest with yourself. Do you really wear that skirt often enough to justify keeping it? Holding on to clothing that is too big or small? Found a sweater that is full of holes and not wearable?
You know what to do!
Creating your capsule wardrobe showcases your personal style
You’ll be AMAZED by how much you can pare down your closet. Also you have the added benefit of figuring out what your personal style is by seeing what type of clothing you keep vs tossing.
I know of one client, who when creating her capsule wardrobe, saw that she was keeping solid color garments and donating anything with patterns, such as flowers, on them. Now, with any future purchases she knows exactly what she likes and what she will wear – and this avoids unnecessary buying as well!
Capsule wardrobe challenge
I hope this article inspired you to reduce your closet and curate your best collection of clothing, and maybe even try for a capsule wardrobe!
Up for a challenge? Try to pledge to reduce by 25% in the next 3 months – what do you think? I would love it if you keep me posted on your progress and if you need help to reach out by emailing [email protected]
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Tune in to Rebekah’s podcast each week for your dose of organization heaven. There are so many benefits to an organized home and life and Rebekah’s weekly inspiration is a no-brainer, easy-win option that will tweak your organization capability week on week. Listen in regularly and let her easy to action recommendations help create your beautiful, calm life and home.
As always, happy organizing!