January is all about new beginnings. Whether that means joining a local gym or getting more organized at home, we all love to kick start the New Year with something positive that makes us feel great. The best part of clearing out your closets and starting fresh is this is the perfect time to create your very first capsule wardrobe.
The latest trend when it comes to fashion and accessories is actually an old adage that has come back to life: less is more. Call it minimalism, call it simplifying… Whatever you call it, it’s a trend with merit. Having fewer pieces of clothing and accessories per season but make them better quality and mix and match, for maximum creativity. To that end, the newest way to revamp and revitalize what you wear is a capsule wardrobe.
What is a capsule wardrobe?
Basically, a capsule wardrobe is a small collection of your favorite “in season” clothing and accessories. These items don’t include pieces that you like, or even love, but never wear. A capsule wardrobe consists solely of season appropriate items that you will happily wear on a regular basis.
What’s the benefit of a capsule wardrobe?
Quite simply, working with a capsule wardrobe eliminates the daily battle that you might have with yourself of “what should I wear?” Every single item in your wardrobe is one that you would happily don for most any occasion, from work to casual, evening to weekends away. They are the standby, reliable pieces that are your ‘go to’ in most situations. Everything fits, each piece is in good repair and you feel fabulous no matter which ones you put on. That is the essence of a capsule wardrobe!
Building your own capsule wardrobe
The first rule is that there is only one rule: customize it for your lifestyle. If you are all about yoga pants and sweaters in the fall and winter, your capsule wardrobe for the season should reflect that. If you dress for the office five days a week and for the cottage life on the weekends, choose your items with that in mind. Even within those two seemingly diametrically opposed ‘styles’, there is the possibility of crossover pieces: skinny jeans for dress down Friday and the weekend; a cashmere turtleneck for the office or by the fire. It’s all about choosing what you feel comfortable and best in, for maximum impact with minimum fuss.
Here’s a step by step system to get you going:
Step 1: Given the current winter season, pull everything out of your closet that is for spring and summer and put it elsewhere. A second storage cupboard in the basement or spare room is perfect. You’ll get to it eventually, but for now, focus on what you need today.
Step 2: Look at your clothes and accessories that remain and pull out the things that you don’t wear, whether or not you love them. Ideally, you can put them somewhere else for a while, as you whittle down the wardrobe to essentials.
Step 3: Speaking of essentials, figure out what they are. These are typically items that you will use year round: workout attire and pajamas, for example. Accessories like scarves and jewelry are also a part of this category. These are items that aren’t really seasonal and are add ons to your everyday attire. Keep your essentials in one part of your cupboard, separate from your capsule items..
Step 4: What remains will be the pieces that make up your capsule wardrobe; that is the clothes you choose from on a day to day basis. It’s probably best for this to establish what categories of outfits matter to your lifestyle. If you don’t work in an office, no need for that category, but here’s a sample category list, to give you a start:
- Casual day out and about
- Casual evening
- Work / office attire
- “At home” casual
Having categories makes it easier to pick the clothes that you will need most often for your capsule wardrobe, so that it matches your lifestyle. Look at all the clothes that remain and note which categories they fit into. If they don’t fit into any, that piece may need to be rethought.
Step 5: From these items, pick 10 tops, 6 bottoms and 5 pairs of footwear. If you’re struggling with which pieces to include, consider carefully what you can mix and match: ankle boots can work for the office, for casual day and for casual evening, so they’re a good choice. 6” glitter stilettos might be best placed in another cupboard unless that’s your daily jam! Ask yourself: “Would I be happy wearing this outfit TODAY?” If yes, it’s probably a good option.
Follow these steps to an easier morning routine, where you don’t have to wonder what you’re going to wear and you can pull together outfits that you like, that fit, and that you feel comfortable in. Happy organizing in 2022!
Marty Basher is the improvement and organization expert with Modular Closets, https://www.modularclosets.com. Marty regularly contributes on topics of home organization, improvement, design, decluttering, DIY renovations, and more, helping home owners get the most out of the spaces in their home. Modular Closets are high-quality and easy-to-design closet systems made in the USA you can order, assemble and install yourself, in no time at all. Using closet modules (closet pieces you can mix & match to design your own modular closet), homeowners everywhere are empowered to achieve a true custom closet look- for nearly 40% less than standard custom closets.
Start the New Year Off Right with a Capsule Wardrobe