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Monday, May 26, 2014

how I got to create my capsule wardrobe basis over the years.

It has been a while since I wrote about my wardrobe... and I know this is a sensitive issue for most women (and even some men have confessed to me their clothing issues) starting on moving along on the minimalist path.  I often get questions where to start with clothes... how to choose what to keep, toss or donate... and quite frankly there are no easy answer to this one.  In the society we live in, so much emphasis in put on how we look... how we dress...  I would say too much emphasis actually but that is my own opinion! 

Of course dressing up or down is fun... playing with your image too... accessorizing your look can change everything.... and I can't say the opposite!  Don't get me wrong. For the longest time I have had WAY too many clothes... and to some extent, I still do.  I have more then what one really does need.  But I love clothes. 

What my minimalist path has shown me is how to choose clothes that are more in line with my lifestyle and the person I want to show the world.  What my yoga has shown me it that I am happier dressing in a way that let the real me shine.  

All in all, those 2 factors have help me select clothing items that I wanted to keep.  It was painful...  because there might be an ideal image or a life we wish we had...  but we don't... and you need to accept the life you live... or change it! But not pretend...

Therefore if I am to give hints on selecting your wardrobe, I would say:

1) Whatever does not currently fit you goes - unless you are pregnant or currently in the process of losing weight - meaning pounds are coming off - not wishful thinking they are.  Same for clothes that are to big because you've lost weight... do not keep them in case you gain it back! Unless your weight loss is related to a health issue and the weight should be gained back. You really need to be honest with yourself here.

2) Whatever does not fit your current lifestyle by far... for example fancy dresses you never wore but bought because you wish you'll go to a ball one day...  see what I mean??? All the items you bought for that pack back adventure to Africa years ago and never went... and you know you won't go... ever!!  Those are out the door!

3) Any items missing button, that need hemming, dry cleaning, or some kind of fixing and that has been in that state for longer then 21 days...  you know you won't do it after that long!

4) Then last but not least, find who you are, what life you have and what life you want to have.  Then keep the clothes according to that life!  And THAT is the most difficult part because it implies lots of work on yourself... you inner self! This is why, myself, and others I know, have kept the clothing for last...  after you've declutter all your home, you get a better sense of who you are and what you want.  Of course I have declutter and reclutter and declutter my wardrobe MANY times over the last 7 years...  and every time I know I am getting closer to what I want to keep...  and every time I know my wardrobe reflects more and more who I am... and that every time there is less and less "guilty" or "what if" items that are kept. 

This is why I am getting back to my wardrobe today.  I am getting closer and closer to creating a capsule wardrobe.  A real one.  Last post on my clothing (April 25th), I had said that I would have one wardrobe between May 1st and September 30th.  You can read it here.  Well this already changed. I had, at that time, 52 items...  I am now down to 39!  Why? Because there was one item that really was out of season... I was just still so very cold when I selected my items that I did not wanted to part with it! 2 items (t-shirts) were switch to my lounge wear section... 2 were discarded because of their not so great condition and the rest was given away because they don't really fit in my ideal capsule wardrobe which I am working on.

My ideal capsule wardrobe will be based on the following:


All seasons - this is the basic:
long black skirt, short black skirt and black pants - for work, formal occasions and dressier going out
2 pairs of jeans - week end and holidays

will also include shorts... for the week end, evenings and holidays as well as more summery skirts (2) for work and going out as well as week ends.   These will be kept between may and end of September - End of September, I will select my fall/winter items to add to the basics.

Summer will also includes those 2 items which I bought last summer but that I am not sure will stand the test of time.  I will not (or most likely not) replace them once they wear out...  The item on the left is a harem pants/dress and the one on the right are pants.

To this I have a bunch of tops which I also need to work on...  too many t-shirts not enough dressier tops for work/dressier going out.

So this is it.... a nice start to my capsule wardrobe... at last!  I wanted to create that for so many years... but I was too addicted to clothes and shopping...  I couldn't do it!  Now that I have worked on that, I can finally reach my goal!  Yay!!!

How about you?  What is your biggest struggle on your minimalist path?  What do you have the hardest time letting go off?  Or parting with?

thanks for reading!
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