One minimalism trend that many people are finding beneficial is the “capsule wardrobe” concept. Simplifying your closet for a more focused life is a noble objective.
Every single day there is a mental weight on you to determine what clothes you will put on your body. Women especially feel a lot of pressure to conform to social expectations of beauty and attire.
Minimalist fashion and in particular the capsule wardrobe can be utilized with or without becoming a minimalist overall. If you want the basics on implementing a capsule wardrobe in your life, read on.
What is a Capsule Wardrobe?
A capsule wardrobe is a collection of clothing items that can be worn in different combinations to create a variety of outfits. Typically a capsule wardrobe will consist of around 20-40 pieces.
Your capsule wardrobe will include timeless, comfortable, and versatile items in a cohesive color palette. Items in a capsule wardrobe can include tips, bottoms, dresses, shoes, jackets, sweaters, and even accessories.
Why Should I Create a Capsule Wardrobe?
The goal of a capsule wardrobe is to simplify your closet. When you have less options it reduces decision fatigue which causes stress.
Each morning sets the tone for an entire day. Creating a streamlined wardrobe allows for easier morning routines.
Benefits of a Minimalist Capsule Wardrobe
Your morning routine will go from decision fatigue to streamlined. With fewer items to choose from you will have an easier time getting dressed each morning.
- Saving Money
By investing in high-quality, timeless, versatile pieces you’ll save money in the long run. Plus, you won’t be tempted to make impulsive purchases, which will help you maintain your budget over time.
Keeping clothing pieces longer reduces your carbon footprint. Fast fashion is a major contributor to environmental degradation. Wearing clothes with less turnover is a positive personal change.
- Stress Reduction
All of your clothes fit and look fabulous. There are no more mornings where you have nothing to wear because you’ve gotten rid of all those old ill fitting clothes. Your closet inspires confidence and functionality.
Your personal style will emerge as you create your capsule wardrobe. When you focus on a cohesive look instead of a sale or impulse purchase, a more defined style develops.
Physical and mental space will be freed up by creating a capsule wardrobe. Empty bar space or an empty drawer eliminates ever needing to use your brain power on the items that used to occupy that space.
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How do I Create a Capsule Wardrobe?
Full-disclosure, my closet is filled with rompers. I call my style, “Romper Life.” I don’t go anywhere or do anything that a romper isn’t the appropriate attire. That being said, I’ll dive into how you can create a capsule wardrobe that you love.
- Step 1: Purge Your Closet
In order to prevent slipping back into old habits, you gotta start with a clean slate. This doesn’t mean you have to start from scratch. But it absolutely means that you ditch everything that doesn’t fit, you haven’t worn in the past year, or that doesn’t make you feel confident.
Donate or sell unwanted clothing as you purge.
- Step 2: Identify Your Style
Now that you’ve widdled down you closet to pieces you love, that fit, and make you feel confident, it’s time to assess your future style. Do you mostly wear bright colors or neutral tones? Are you more on the black color palette or the browns? Are these outfits you would wear with sneakers or heels or something in between?
- Step 3: Organize Your Closet
Determine if you have outfits that serve the functions of your life. Do you have endless work outfits and no play outfits or vice versa? Group your wardrobe into categories based on the function of the piece.
If you go to one formal event per year and half your closet is dedicated to formal wear, it’s time to go back to step one.
- Step 4: Create Your Shopping List
Now it is time to determine what essential pieces your closet is missing. Add items to your closet that work with multiple tops and multiple bottoms. Ensure you have appropriate outerwear, shoes, and accessories to round out your looks.
Get creative with ways to dress items up or down. Be sure to keep most things neutral while having a few select statement pieces.
- Step 5: Maintaining Your Capsule Wardrobe
Some people have the discipline to create seasonal capsule wardrobes. This would mean switching out your wardrobe or parts of it between two to four times per year.
Another modification I’ve seen is having a vacation specific capsule wardrobe that suits a different version of yourself. Decide what fits your lifestyle and write your own rules.
Not All Minimalists Have a Capsule Wardrobe
Having or not having a capsule wardrobe does not make or break your minimalist journey. The minimalist capsule wardrobe trend is just another element you can decide to adopt or leave for someone else to enjoy.
I love my romper life rules and it doesn’t fit any of the traditional rules for a minimalist capsule wardrobe. As a minimalist full-time nomad the one piece outfits allow for minimal thought and easy packing. I don’t wear bras, so a romper and pair of underwear is all I need each morning until I leave the house and throw on a pair of shoes.
For women especially, the closet holds a lot of emotions. Feelings of self-doubt, body shaming, and wishful thinking take a hold of an otherwise rational mind. For help navigating the difficult closet mindset shift, be sure to buy my e-course Messy to Minimalist.