Creating a capsule wardrobe is an exercise in simplicity and minimalism. The process of creating a capsule wardrobe can be daunting, but it can also be cathartic and enlightening. By getting rid of all the clutter in your closet, you'll feel refreshed and renewed as well as creating space and clarity!
Less clothes doesn't mean less outfits!
What is a capsule wardrobe?
A capsule wardrobe is a small collection of clothes that can be mixed and matched to create a variety of outfits. It's an efficient way to dress, as it eliminates the need for you to have several different clothing items that look similar but are slightly different (e.g., multiple shirts). Plus a capsule wardrobe can be as bright, patterned, eclectic as YOU want it to be - it doesn't need to be pared back neutrals to be beautiful and effective, it simply needs to work for you.
Here's how to get started;
Let's declutter first...
Creating a capsule wardrobe can take some time and deliberation but it’s worth it as it will have a huge impact on the way you use your clothes, what you spend moving forwards and creating outfits you love with ease! Here are some tips to help you get started:
KEEP/LOVE Make a pile or hang on a rail all of your favourite items from your current wardrobe. Make the time to do this to really get to know your clothes and be honest with yourself about each item. This will help narrow down what stays in your current wardrobe versus being put into storage, repaired, sold or donated.
DISLIKE/NOT SURE Make another pile of all the clothes that you don't wear, actively dislike, not sure of or never feel comfortable in —it may be due to style or fit issues e.g., too tight, dated styles, itchy fabric, not suiting your current lifestyle etc. Assess each piece and either pop it in the keep or the repair pile and then everything else can be sold (hello Vinted!) or donated to a friend/family or charity. More on this later...
REPAIR/RE-WEAR There may be some pieces you like and which need adjusting/repairing - these can be put into a separate pile and either repaired yourself or taken to a local dressmaker/dry cleaners for simple alterations.
SEASONAL PIECES These will be the items you're not able to incorporate in to the current season, ie ski wear in the summer or bikini's in the winter. These can be neatly packed away and stored elsewhere to create more space and less clutter.
When this is done I want you to really consider the items you have kept and love wearing and look at why that is. Is it the colour, the fit, fabric, memory it evokes or the way it makes you feel when wearing it? This is what you want more of!
Time to play!
So you've now worked out what you love and want to keep. Now it's time to play dress up! This is the really fun part and enables you to build outfits and find out how hard you can make what's left work for you. Think creatively about how you can re-use pieces multiple times, can it be layered, worn over/under, tied up, unbuttoned - really go for it and see how many new outfits you can create!
If it helps you take photo's of each outfit you love as a handy reminder - you could even pin this on the inside of your wardrobe as your very own Style Lookbook!
The last element is the buying of new items, if needed and don't forget to consider buying preloved/secondhand too. I would suggest living with this wardrobe for at least a few weeks if not longer to really understand where the gaps are, if any, before going shopping.
Really get to know this new decluttered wardrobe space, enjoy it's strengths and all the new outfits you were able to create. This way you'll be able to work out if you do really that new coat, bag or shoes before investing. Make a list - it might only be 2-3 select items and work out a realistic budget which you are confident with and then go shopping.
So, let’s get started. First, you will have been learning to love the clothes you already own again and will have made a shortlist of useful pieces which will either elevate your current style or pull together multiple looks - ideally both! Plus we want these new items to become much-loved members of your new capsule wardrobe so they need to prove themselves worthy of a hanger in your new wardrobe space.
Invest wisely, make considered choices, buy the best quality you can afford - think long term so it's important you can imagine yourself wearing it in five years time. And voila you have the beginnings of a curated, edited capsule wardrobe!
And if this all feels way too much to consider doing this on your own then I can help you do this. Let me be your cheerleader, plus it's so easy to work with me as YOUR stylist!
Simply book a discovery call to find out how and take a look at my 1:1 Wardrobe Refresh experiences and group workshops which are designed to leave you feeling inspired, confident and with a renewed sense of direction to take on 2023 in style...