What’s a Capsule Wardrobe?

Capsule Wardobe

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If you haven’t noticed, simplifying is a bit of a trend these days. From Marie Kondi’s mega best-seller The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up to women on the Today Show gasping at the idea of only 30 pairs of shoes, it seems like everyone is talking about getting rid of the crap.

Proponents of the movement believe it will reduce stress, make us happier and leave us with more time and energy to focus on things we love.

We agree. We love minimalism. Adopting the mindset, as it applies to everything from our kitchen gadgets to our calendars, has improved our lives dramatically.

And we have a feeling that the idea of less but better will improve yours too.

For the ladies specifically, there is one area of our lives where the negative effects of our consumerist culture, and the subsequent effects on our confidence, stress levels and financial stability are unfortunately very strong. It’s in our closets.

Think about it.

How many times have you:

  • Been stressed out rushing to get someplace because you spent an hour standing in front of your closet in a damp towel feeling like you have nothing to wear?
  • Gone to an event and instead of having fun and meeting new people you felt totally self-conscious because you hated how you looked, felt uncomfortable in your own skin and couldn’t wait to get home to your sweatpants and your couch?
  • Spent money you didn’t necessarily have, not because you needed or loved something, but because you were bored, or it was on sale or you just thought it would make happy?
  • Looked at your clothes and thought: when did I buy these things? I hate them.

I mean, how much money have you wasted on mediocre pieces of crap you never really loved to wear in the first place? I bet if you added it all up, you could have bought the beautiful leather jacket you’ve had pinned for three years (sneeze-I’mtalkingtomyself).

We’ve all been there. And as Bridget and I have embraced minimalism we’ve inevitably found ourselves cleaning out our closets saying “really?” as we held up sparkly halter tops and Juicy Couture jumpsuits we’d been holding onto since college. Wait, was that just me?

Getting rid of the clutter in your closet frees up mental space and shines an interrogation light on your spending habits. That’s all well and good but, it also goes to show how few of our current clothes we actually like.

It’s simple. We don’t need a ton of clothes.

We need fewer, better clothes. A closet curated of intentional pieces that we love, that fit really well and that won’t go out of style.

So how can we make that happen?

The Capsule Wardrobe, that’s how. Bridget and I are obsessed.

And we wanted to start talking about it, if you’re not familiar. You very well could be. We’re not reinventing the wheel here. In fact, I’ll link to some awesome sites that have inspired us below.

But if you’re not, we’d like to share this idea with you. It’s ridiculously fun. And such a relief to get dressed easily every day, love your clothes and save a bunch of time and money in the process.

So, what’s a capsule wardrobe?

Apparently the term was coined in London in the 1970s by a woman named Susie Faux. She owned a boutique called Wardrobe and according to her, a capsule wardrobe: is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don’t go out of fashion, such as skirts, trousers, and coats, which can then be augmented with seasonal pieces.

Our definition…

The Capsule Wardrobe:

a versatile, mini wardrobe that you intentionally create and really love to wear

How tiny, though?

There are a lot of numbers flying around the interwebs when it comes to the capsule. We’re going with 37 because it’s the Un-fancy thing to do. Some go with 33, others in the 50s, or 40s. The number is arbitrary. The mentality is what’s important. We can’t all have a Kardashian closet, and even if we had it, it wouldn’t make us happy. The idea is to opt-out of wanting it in the first place.

How does it work exactly?

Before each season begins, you plan out a wardrobe that you’ll love and that will work best for your lifestyle. And then you curate your pieces. A lot of pieces can, and likely will be, from what you already own – either from last year’s season or the previous season rolled over. And some will be from carefully planned purchases. Then you put the rest of your clothes in storage, and donate what you no longer use or love. For the entire season, you only wear those 37 pieces (33, 40, 49, whatever). You don’t do any other shopping.

To be clear, you won’t be buying an entire new wardrobe every three months. You’ll take stock of what you already have and love and note what you could use or would like to have. Each season will hopefully have you buying just a few new things.

If you’re doing it right, you should have more than enough style combinations to get you through.

How do I get started?

The first step, without a doubt, is cleaning out your closet. The right way. So get started there. And then we’ll be back with an in-depth post on how to actually create your capsule wardrobe in the near future.

So what do you think? Interested in this whole capsule wardrobe idea? Do you already do it? Leave a comment below. We’d love to hear about how you’ve simplified your closet and how it’s improved your life.

And if you’re interested in simplifying your life for real join our 7-Day Simplify Challenge now – just enter your email address right here: 



Our Capsule Wardrobe Inspiration:
Un-Fancy
Project 333
Into Mind

Dana

7 Comments

  1. I like the idea of a capsule wardrobe but don’t think I could do it haha. Shopping is just a great passion of mine! I do agree, however, with closet cleaning and keeping things you love that make you happy, as well as only buying things that you know you will use.

    http://www.maggiealamode.com

  2. Hey Maggie!

    Yeah, a capsule definitely won’t be for everybody ha. But, if you’re already operating under the mentality of only keeping/buying things you truly love and will wear, that’s half the battle anyway!

    Thanks for commenting!

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