Friday, December 18, 2015

Capsule Wardrobe: Five Capsule Closet Lessons

photo courtesy of samantha okazaki // today

It's been a while but I'm back now and I'm happy to report that I've made some exciting changes in my closet. I had so much clothes, shoes, and accessories yet always felt like I had nothing to wear - you may be familiar with the feeling. Every inch of my closet, drawers, and floor space was covered with clothes, clothes, and more clothes. Yet I was always searching for that perfect pair of black jeans or cognac bag, I never felt satisfied.

I spent too much time, money, and energy on my wardrobe and I still wasn't happy with it. I wanted to simplify my life in all areas. That's when I decided that things had to change and I haven't felt better. 

You may have heard of something called a capsule wardrobe and if you haven't yet, keep reading. A capsule wardrobe or capsule closet is a highly edited closet of a few versatile pieces that you love and wear all the time. Some suggest that a capsule wardrobe or capsule closet should consist of about 33-37 pieces but my take is that your capsule wardrobe can be as big or small as you need it to be but less is more. 

Hopefully this inspires some of you to clean out your closets and try a capsule wardrobe for the New Year! 

Editing Down My Closet and 5 Things I Learned Along The Way:

1) Buy Only What You Love & Always Wait At Least a Day Before Making a Purchase

When I was editing down my closet to create a capsule wardrobe, I noticed that my clothes could for the most part be divided into two categories a) things that were rarely touched, some with the tags still attached that I no longer wanted and b) things were clear favorites.

I started thinking about what made those loved pieces my loved pieces. And I figured it out. I love those pieces for two reasons: i) it fit my lifestyle and ii) those were pieces I bought because I truly loved them, not necessarily because it was on sale or I just saw it on my favorite blog last week. 

Pieces that work for someone else's life may not work for your life. If your job requires you to be in professional attire 5 out of 7 days of the week, then having a closet full of chambray, buffalo check, and fur vests will of course leave you with too much clothes and nothing to wear. 

So now, before I make any purchase, I always wait at least a day to see if the item I want is truly something I love or if it's just an impulse buy. And most of the time, it's the latter. 

2) It's Easy To Get Dressed When You Can See Everything 

Once my closet was edited down to items that I really loved, I had room for everything and getting dressed got so easy. I could see everything I had and could therefore put outfits together just by looking at what was there. And keeping a lot of pieces to those workhorse basics & neutrals allowed me to spend less time worrying about whether or not this was going to match with that. 

3) Less Time Spent on Your Wardrobe Means More Time & Energy For What Really Matters

Yes, it's true. You don't realize how much time and energy you spend over fretting about what to wear until you stop fretting. I can now get dressed in less than 5 minutes on any given morning and since switching to a capsule wardrobe, I haven't once looked at my closet in the morning and stressed that I had nothing to wear. Now I have time to make myself an avocado toast, yoga, and meditate in the morning before work.

4) Money Adds Up Quick!

A t-shirt here, a dress there - money does add up quick. You don't always realize how much money you've spent on your wardrobe when you're buying everything separately and on different shopping trips. But if you take a look at what's unworn in your closet and do some basic math, you'll see how much money went to waste but more importantly, how much money could have gone to other more important things in your life. 

5) Editing Your Closet Allows You to Confirm Your Style So You Can Make Better Purchases

Perhaps one of the most unexpected results from my capsule closet experiment was the fact that I was able to really realize and become aware of my style. With all the information that's thrown at us through social media and TV, it gets easy to lose sight of who you are and what you love. But through this capsule wardrobe process, you can really dig deep and have a moment to reflect and confirm your style. This will help you avoid many regretted future purchases, trust me.