Minimalism A to Z: C Is for Capsule Wardrobe

 Capsule Wardrobe

 “A capsule wardrobe is essentially a streamlined collection of garments…. These pieces are timeless, versatile, built to last, and some can be transitioned from season to season. They can be easily mixed and matched….”

– Krissy Brady

According to Wikipedia, Susie Faux coined the term capsule wardrobe in the 1970s to mean a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don’t go out of fashion. This collection would be customized with seasonal pieces.

More recently, capsule wardrobe has come to mean a small collection of clothing in which all the pieces are interchangeable. As Francine Jay says, “Ideally, you should be able to get dressed with your eyes closed and still look well put-together.”

“To me, a capsule wardrobe represents more time and energy for what really matters … more money for our dreams + helping others … and more contentment and happiness.”

– Caroline Rector

Project 333 and UnFancy are two well-known blogs that discuss capsule wardrobes. Both are about keeping a set number of clothing items for each season, boxing up the rest. Every three months, you get to switch out your clothes again.

Project 333, created by Courtney Carver, focuses on 33 items. Caroline Rector, blogger at UnFancy, has 37 items. Each has a set of rules that explains which items “count.”

UnFancy counts tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, and shoes. Project 333 counts clothing, accessories, jewelry, outerwear and shoes. Neither one counts workout gear, underwear, or PJs. Both plans, however, allow you to change the rules to tailor them for your lifestyle.

There are plenty of others blogging about capsule wardrobes, so if neither Project 333 nor UnFancy feel right for you, do a quick Internet search or just create your own capsule wardrobe plan.

“Not only is it easier and more enjoyable to get ready in the morning…, but I also don’t spend time at the mall medicating myself with shopping, or feel like I always need to buy something new for different events.”

– Courtney Carver

One of the advantages of the type of capsule wardrobe advocated by Courtney Carver and Caroline Rector is that you don’t have to get rid of anything. The clothes you aren’t using for the season are simply boxed up.

Of course, just boxing up stuff you’re never going to wear isn’t smart. Before you choose your allotted number of items, go through all your clothes, accessories, shoes, outerwear and jewelry – whether or not they count for the capsule wardrobe plan you’re going to follow.

Get rid of the stuff that doesn’t fit, that you hate, that looks funny on you, that’s uncomfortable, that you never wear. If it needs mending and you love it, mend it yourself or make arrangements to have it mended. Each time you switch out your clothes for a new season, do the same thing.

Soon you’ll find you have a wonderful wardrobe – made of nothing but pieces that look and feel great on you.

2 thoughts on “Minimalism A to Z: C Is for Capsule Wardrobe

  1. Ah, finally a detail explanation of the capsule wardrobe concept.
    It didn’t make sense to me, so I never gotten into it…till now. Also, guys don’t tend to follow capsule wardrobe. At least the guys I know.
    My closet is pretty decluttered but I’ll be giving this concept a try.

    Thanks Christy!

    • I’m glad my explanation helped. I imagine men’s clothes are actually easier to work with in a capsule wardrobe, since (in general, anyway), the colors and styles tend not to vary as much. For instance, men’s dress shoes are usually in only a few colors, whereas women’s span the palette. Good luck with your closet!

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