How to create a minimal wardrobe

And why it’s better than a capsule wardrobe. 

by | Jun 28, 2022

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Focus on a pared-down closet, rather than a capsule wardrobe. That entails buying things that are someone else’s idea of what you need: pencil skirts, anyone?

Before you even think of adding anything new, focus on getting rid of everything that’s not flattering, not loved, and is way out of your size range.

Gradually build back up from the bare minimum, like what you need for special events.

Figure out what colors look good on you.

In the closet

Buy clothing that will coordinate with what you already have (like grown-up underoos!). The easiest way to do this is stick to an overall color palette with pops of color to keep it interesting. My wardrobe consists of black, white and beige with my favorite colors (red and emerald green) as accents.

Repair, don’t replace

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The basics

Shop by function, not clothing type

Functional

Don’t create a capsule wardrobe, aim for a functional one instead.

There’s no reason it can’t be colorful and full of personality.

Instead of buying a cheap pair of flats in every color, save your money and splurge on a quality pair that will go with every outfit (shop sales or pre-owned). With a little upkeep they’ll last longer and you’ll end up spending less money in the end.

 Think about everything you do on a daily, weekly and occasional basis. Then figure out what you need to wear got each of these evernts and make a list from there.

Dissemination

Buy clothing that will coordinate with what you already have (like grown-up underoos!). The easiest way to do this is stick to an overall neutral color palette with pops of color to keep it interesting. My wardrobe consists of black, white and beige with my favorite colors (red and emeral green) as accents.

 

Paring down

When working with clients, I like to avoid the terms “minimalist” or “capsule wardrobe” – I find them to be intimidating for clients and a bit off-putting, as they imply, well, minimalism, which many people are not interested in or ready for, or, in the case of a capsule wardrobe, implies a lot of work on the part of the client to define their exact style and wear what amounts to a uniform every day.

So back to the concept of an edited wardrobe or closet: to me, it is the essence of having in your closet only clothing and accessories that you love, that fit you well, are not damaged or dirty, and let you express your personality. When you have an edited closet, it’s easy to get dressed in the morning (it might even be fun), because you know that everything you try on is going to look good (even if it doesn’t suit your mood that day. Sometimes it involves buying new pieces; sometimes it doesn’t.

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