One year ago I decided that I would try putting a capsule wardrobe together. For someone who bought on impulse, focused far too much on trends, and wasted money on an outfit for just a single night out it was a real adjustment in purchasing. I have managed to whittle my wardrobe down to less than half its original size and I think so very much about what I buy and question why I need it. It’s changed my life in many, many ways, but the biggest rewards have been smoother mornings and truly feeling proud of everything I wear. It is with that kind of pride that I show you this capsule wardrobe.
It was also a year of investments, but the biggest investment was time because I decided to go almost 100% with a gently used wardrobe. I have 7 purchases that were not used and the rest and the majority of the items have been purchased this year using my thredUP credit (I get $10 and you get $10 to spend my referral) or I have owned for years. Thanks to pointing out this resource, I was able to get the majority of my gently used wardrobe for free. Be sure to visit my tips this year for purchasing your fashion capsule wardrobe second hand. It was a prompting really through this film (watched on Netflix) that has solidified my commitment to buying used and investing wisely. Watch it and tell me if it doesn’t make you want to do better with fashion purchases!
What is a Fashion Capsule & Why Should You Do One?
A capsule wardrobe is a collection of clothing which is designed using only interchangeable items, in order to maximize the number of outfits which can be created. The aim is to have an outfit suitable for any occasion without owning excessive items of clothing. This is usually achieved by buying what are considered to be “key” or “staple” items in coordinating colors.
The reason I think capsule wardrobes are worth exploring is that you realize when you have LESS in your closet you can do MORE with what you have. My closet used to be bursting at the seams with clothes and, what I like to call, one-trick-pony apparel. I felt put together after tearing up my room and trying to build outfits in the process, but it took me so long to get ready in the mornings and I never felt like I had a truly seamless style. Narrowing my wardrobe down to 33 items as outlined in Project 333 was just what I needed to make mornings less stressful and finding a real rhythm to getting dressed for the day. It’s been a beautiful shift in my life and I don’t think I could ever go back to the old ways of bursting closets and pointless purchases.
I tend to be a pretty colorful person so you will find color mixed in with basics in my wardrobe. Monochromatic isn’t my thing, but can be yours if you are trying to simplify your wardrobe. Many people begin their capsule experience very monochromatic and then find they are comfortable branching out into color after figuring out how to make everything work together.
Why My Capsule Shouldn’t Be YOUR Capsule
I show you my capsule mainly as some sort of accountability, but not necessarily for you to copy it. My style is probably not your style and that is okay. Your capsule can look nothing like my capsule. Your body shape could be different from mine and none of these cuts of clothing or ideas will work for you. When creating your capsule, create it around what you feel most confident in. I suggest peeking in your closet and selecting what makes you feel beautiful and start your planning around those pieces. That’s been the best place to start for me.
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What Trends Did You Embrace for Your Fall 2015 Wardrobe?
I can’t omit trends altogether so once I have my timeless pieces in place, I try to add a few trends that I love this year. For me, I am adding lots of plaid in, a blanket cape, midi skirts, and a classic chambray shirt dress. I feel like I am seeing most of the same trends from last year that fit my style. This girl will not embrace the high waisted jeans or large bell bottom pants due to my petite pear-shaped body. I am always comfortable bowing out on trends that don’t flatter my figure!
I add daily trends to my Fashion Capsule Pinterest Board to help keep me inspired with styling and ways to use the key pieces in my wardrobe.
Do You Count Accessories As Your 33 Items?
One question I get asked is if I count accessories and shoes as my items. I do not, but feel free to do that if you like. For me a scarf, belt, or great jewelry really do add to the enjoyment and experience of my wardrobe. I am, however, more selective about the accessories I am choosing and really making sure that they are worth the space in my drawers and the money that is spent.
This project was inspired by Project 333, but I am making a few of my own rules for my own personal challenge.
33 Piece Wardrobe- The wardrobe can have 33 pieces in it. This wardrobe does not include pajamas, workout gear, undergarments, or camisoles (something that is a necessity for me). The capsule is made from items I already own, some purchased to be workhorses in my wardrobe All of the items I am not wearing and still love are being tucked in storage for the next fashion capsule. I have created a Fashion Capsule Pinterest Board to help inspire me with the pieces I am using.
Choose 3 More for Rotating- You may choose three additional items and put them aside in your closet. You may rotate these items in during the next three months, but three other items have to be rotated out. Consider donating those items.
No Shoe Shopping- I am not including my shoes for this challenge, but I am challenging myself to not buy any more shoes and use what I already have.
One Steal Per Month- Things and events come up and I am allowing myself one steal per month from items that I already own. I may find I don’t need this, but I think it might help with the shopping bug.
No Shopping For Clothing- I will wear the clothes I have selected and not shop for three months and only shop two weeks prior to the next capsule for items for the next season if needed. This is going to require a lot of discipline for me and I am planning to unsubscribe to shopping newsletters and avoid the shops as much as possible.
This month’s Project 333 Wardrobe is listed below. Feel free to give me a follow on Instagram for weekly wardrobe inspiration! I piece outfits together on my floor and try not to subject you to too many of my awful selfies unless I can’t figure out how to make it work without me in it!
1. J. Crew Chambray Shirt (gently used, thredUP)
2. fei Chambray Shirt Dress (gently used, thredUP)
3. White House Black Market Pinstriped Shirt (gently used, thredUP)
4. Willi Smith Black Tunic (TJ Maxx)
5. J. Crew Gray Wool Sweater (gently used, thredUP)
6. YA Los Angeles Gray Knitted Vest (Flourish Boutique)
7. Anthropologie Moth Ivory Felt & Knitted Cardigan Sweater (gently used, thredUP)
8. Old Navy Vintage T-Shirt
9. Ivory Cowl Neck Sweatshirt (TJ Maxx)
10. Cynthia Rowley White T-Shirt (TJ Maxx)
11. Lou & Gray Ivory Flannel Shirt (Loft)
12. White House Black Market Polka Dotted Silk Shirt (gently used, thredUP)
13. Cynthia Rowley Black & White Striped T-Shirt (TJ Maxx)
14. Ella Moss Red & Navy Striped Tunic (gently used, thredUP)
15. Navy & Red Plaid Flannel Shirt (boutique in CO)
16. J. Crew Red & Black Buffalo Checked Tunic (gently used thredUP)
17. J. Crew Black Dress (gently used, thredUP)
18. Madewell Gray Jumper (gently used, thredUP)
19. J. Crew Watercolor Dress (gently used, thredUP)
20. Anthropologie Angels of the North Mustard Yellow Knitted Cardigan Sweater (gently used, thredUP)
21. Anthropologie Daughters of Liberation Utility Jacket (gently used, thredUP)
22. Anthropologie Peacock Design Knitted Top (gently used, thred UP)
23. Blanket Cape (TJ Maxx)
24. Anthropologie Maeve Red A-Line Skirt (Anthropologie)
25. Black Midi Skirt (Loft)
26. J. Crew Khaki Buttoned A-Line Skirt (gently used, thredUP)
27. Brooks Brothers Kelly Green Pleated Skirt (gently used, thredUP)
28. Matilda Jane Willow Tree Rider Pants (purchase from Amanda Petit, Matilda Jane Independent Trunk Keeper)
29. Black Leggings (TJ Maxx)
30. Black Pants With Faux Leather Track Stripe (Loft)
31. Dark Wash Skinny 7 Jeans (Flourish Boutique)
32. Not pictured- eShakti Denim Midi Skirt
33. Still on the hunt for a NO-IRON basic white collared shirt (any suggestions?)
Coupons That Might Help If You Are Making a Capsule Too
Current Coupons for Old Navy (I am a big fan of their jeans and basic t-shirts)
Current Coupons for Target (their wardrobe is on the smart minimalist side this season- yay!)
Current Coupons for Gap (blazers, chambray shirts, collared shirts, jeans- oh my!)
Get $10 for your first thredUP purchase (this is my favorite online consignment resource)
Use web code WEB25 for 25% off your purchase at Flourish Boutique
Stitch Fix can be a fun resource for shopping for smart basic wardrobe pieces if a stylist might benefit you!
eShakti $40 off your first order!- Perfect for petite or tall girls because you can customize all their clothing to your own measurements!
*This post contains affiliate links. I only recommend what I love- promise! xo