Author Topic: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe - Most recent update page 15  (Read 110453 times)

MsPeacock

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Update: starting on page 15 I am working on other wardrobe categories - "nice" casual clothes and workout wardrobe, and others.


orginal post:
This is a spin off from the no clothes shopping thread. I have a goal to cut back significantly in the amount of clothing I have, to increase the ratio of items that I love - and make sure that I actually look and feel good in what I wear.

Challenges:
1. I don't want to spend a ton of money.

2. I look good in preppy clothes but the punk rock girl inside my wants some interesting pieces. This is how I end up with a jumble of stuff in my closet that doesn't go together very well. I really do look best in classic preppy clothing - it just suits me, and I don't like to wear prints or patterns. But somehow when I shop get drawn to a a pretty print or something frilly even though the stuff looks terrible on me. With a specific clothing plan in place and specific styles that I am "allowed" I can cut down on purchasing items that are just plain wrong for me.

3. I have gained some weight due to medical issues and have joint problems - which makes a lot of waistbands and restrictive/structured clothes ( such as suit jackets) uncomfortable. Many of my old pants just don't fit any longer and this means I have to purchase some clothing. I need to take the stuff that is too small out of my closet because they take up space and I have to sort through them to find the things that actually fit on a daily basis, and the clothes that are too small make me feel depressed and defeated.

4. I need to dress professionally, but I don't need to wear suits, for work.

I have purged about 80% of my work clothes. Today I took out all the skirts (I just hate wearing skirts) aside from a black cotton pull on and a grey/black striped skirt that can be dressy or casual, or worn in the winter w/ leggings. I got rid of all my suit jackets today. I put all the too small pants in the basement ... (not quite ready to accept the inevitable - they will never fit again), I got rid of more shirts, blouses, stretched out sweaters, etc.

I bought a few things today: another pair of black elastic waist pants I can wear to work (HM $35), 3 cotton pullover cable knit sweaters ($4 each on clearance at HM), a white blouse, tan sweater and black sweater at Forever 21.

I ordered two pairs of elastic waist dress pants (Navy and black) from Lands End and a couple cotton cardigans.

I have an adequate number of shoes. I still have some heels, which have become too painful to wear - but they fit in the closet shoe organizer so they stay for the moment.

I am still trying to figure out the ideal number of items I need to have. E,g, how many pairs of pants so I can get through the work week w/o having to deal w/ laundry and still feel that I have enough variety in my closet (the answer is probably a lower number than I think).


So - what are your ideas, tips, experiences for getting to your own minimalist wardrobe.





« Last Edit: January 06, 2017, 06:17:52 AM by MsPeacock »

brooklynmoney

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2015, 05:47:49 PM »
I don't have any answers for you, but I am in the same boat in terms of paring down my wardrobe more and more. Now I feel like I have to figure out the holes and then fill them. Unfortunately, I suck at shopping. I only have one store I really like and they recently made changes and I don't think they can be my go to anymore. Sigh. I keep telling myself that shopping is like anything else and if I want to find good bargains, nice clothes, and really understand my style and what works for me, I have to invest more time in doing so. However, in my few spare hours I have zero desire to go shopping.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2015, 06:06:16 PM »
Thanks for replying brooklynomney!

When you say you are bad a shopping - what does that mean for you?

I am bad at being consistent in my style - which I guess in some ways makes me bad a shopping. I think my biggest challenge is just being consistent - and satisfied w/ having what will amount to a uniform of practical clothing.

brooklynmoney

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2015, 06:12:30 PM »
I am bad in a similar way -- sticking to a consistent style, finding things that work together, etc. Mostly I am bad because I just avoid shopping altogether. I would rather be anywhere than in clothes store. I hate shoe shopping even more.

Rubyist

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2015, 06:34:35 PM »
I highly recommend the blog Into Mind for help determining your personal style and building a functional wardrobe. Start here: http://into-mind.com/2014/11/03/10-step-wardrobe-revamp/

lizzzi

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2015, 07:57:55 PM »
Have you ever noticed the way Joan Rivers dressed? Almost any time you saw her, she was wearing a simple black top, slacks, and black shoes. Then she would just go wildly creative with colorful jackets, scarves, and jewelry. It reminded me a lot of what we used to do when I had to wear business clothes…we would wear solid black separates and then jazz it up with brighter jackets, brooches, etc. It worked well, and made getting dressed simple yet not boring. Of course our office wear was not as wild as Joan's nightclub outfits!  {:- D

I am RE now, but in my casual clothes just as in my jackets/nylons/heels days, I like to have two weeks worth of outfits. That gives me plenty to choose from, cuts me some slack on how often I have to do laundry, and also means that I'm not going to be left with nothing to wear if an outfit gets ruined in some way. (White-out, toner ink, mustard or coffee stains, whatever.)

Lian

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2015, 08:32:27 PM »
I have no useful tips, ideas, experiences - following because I want to figure out a good minimalist wardrobe. I'm a sucker for a good deal when it comes to clothes, so right now I have lots of random things that don't really work together.  My goal is to get a small, casual business wardrobe in place, and then shop only to replace things that wear out; but I have no idea how to dress for my body or put outfits together.

I'm frugal and efficient in other areas of my life; don't know why I can't figure out clothes. I have been shopping recently (weight change requires it), but can't find anything I like. Everything is made of sheer, cheap looking fabrics - nothing looks good on my middle-aged self. It's only clothes - it shouldn't be this frustrating.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2015, 08:58:42 PM »
I've been working on this since last fall, when I had a friend return the favor of being the closet clear-out taskmaster. I highly recommend having a second party play stylist for anyone going through their closets. She helped me realize I generally don't look good in pants, so I switched to the dresses I previously reserved for weddings and a couple basic skirts. Leggings in the winter kept me from freezing. Strategic scarf placement allowed me to wear otherwise inappropriate dresses to the office. Came to terms with the fact that I'll never be comfortable in heels, and I'm down to two pairs. Also accepted I never get around to dry cleaning, so if I can't wash it myself, out it goes. I have a color scheme of dark blue, green, and red, with a grey or black base. Solid colors or monochromatic patterns only. Right now I could easily list almost everything in my closet, I have under 75 items, and it's easy to get dressed in the morning with an uncluttered closet.

My main issue now is my ideal minimalist wardrobe is not reflected in what I currently own, and I don't want to buy more stuff. I ultimately want clothes I can travel with: breathable, hand-washable, quick-drying, and decent looking. Elie Tahari dresses look good and are great for the office, but I'm not walking 5 miles in one, and they're delicate to wash. My clothes fit my current lifestyle, so this isn't urgent, but any future purchases will need to satisfy my travel criteria.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #8 on: May 10, 2015, 09:16:32 PM »
One exercise that may help people who have excess clothing and don't know where to start is the total clear-out. This is what I've done with my friends. Take everything out of your drawers, off of hangers, and pile it all on your bed. Pick a category (pants, work tops, skirts, etc) and start with everything in that group. Just seeing how much you already have can be enlightening. Try every piece on and decide yes/no/maybe. Keep the maybe's to a minimum, but it's more important to make quick decisions. Ask yourself with every item "Do I wear it? Do I love it? Does it look good on me?" You should only keep things for which you can answer yes to all 3 questions.

If you decide to keep it, only then can you hang it back up. As your closet begins to fill back up, you'll naturally become pickier about what you want to add back, and may even reconsider some of your yesses. Once you've done your first sweep, take stock of what you've decided to keep and see what consistent themes you can identify. Take a break, then tackle the maybes. Stick the persistent maybes in storage and go back to them 3 months later.

Lian

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #9 on: May 10, 2015, 09:51:52 PM »
I highly recommend the blog Into Mind for help determining your personal style and building a functional wardrobe. Start here: http://into-mind.com/2014/11/03/10-step-wardrobe-revamp/

I just visited the site - clicked on the link to "why i don’t believe in dressing for my body type".  She pointed out that the concept was about how looking slim and attractive according to today’s societal ideals is more important than wearing clothes you personally like.  Maybe I'm overly concerned with hiding my flaws - really, who notices as long as I'm reasonably clean and well groomed? I might enjoy the process better if I tried to please myself (within the constraints of a corporate dress code).

The color wheel and color matching thing is just confusing. I need to keep that very simple.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #10 on: May 11, 2015, 04:49:56 AM »
One exercise that may help people who have excess clothing and don't know where to start is the total clear-out. This is what I've done with my friends. Take everything out of your drawers, off of hangers, and pile it all on your bed. Pick a category (pants, work tops, skirts, etc) and start with everything in that group. Just seeing how much you already have can be enlightening. Try every piece on and decide yes/no/maybe. Keep the maybe's to a minimum, but it's more important to make quick decisions. Ask yourself with every item "Do I wear it? Do I love it? Does it look good on me?" You should only keep things for which you can answer yes to all 3 questions.

If you decide to keep it, only then can you hang it back up. As your closet begins to fill back up, you'll naturally become pickier about what you want to add back, and may even reconsider some of your yesses. Once you've done your first sweep, take stock of what you've decided to keep and see what consistent themes you can identify. Take a break, then tackle the maybes. Stick the persistent maybes in storage and go back to them 3 months later.

I think this is absolutely +1. My purge started w/ taking everything out. I mean, the closet was "organized" - but it was so crammed that I couldn't see anything. And the reality is that I like to wear some small fraction of what I own - things that make me feel good and suit their purposes - and the rest is just excess.

RunHappy I love the idea of a pencil skirt and rock  t-shirt - but could not wear that in my work environment (conservative) and have likely aged out of looking anything but "trying too hard" in an outfit like that.

Maybe that is part of the struggle - coming to terms that wearing practical, easy to maintain, etc. clothing just isn't going to be as interesting as a rock t-shirt.

So - from what I gather so far many  of us 1) have trouble defining our style 2) have trouble buying clothes that are consistent with our style 3) have trouble purging the excess from our closets and 4) a subset really hate all shopping.

In all cases having a narrow set of parameters of a "uniform" would make life a lot easier.   I guess that is where I see myself headed - something amounting to a uniform. Pull on dress pants, shirt - most likely white - sweater... I just have to move the clothing that I actually own in this direction. And, I want machine washable clothes that do not require an iron.

Anyone else with an unofficial work "uniform".

I may start posting some photos or links if I can get the technology figured out.

lizzzi

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #11 on: May 11, 2015, 06:04:01 AM »
My unofficial work uniform, as posted above, was a black "column"…black top, black skirt or slacks, black or off-black nylons or black socks, and black shoes, either flats or low heels. Then I could go creative with different colored blazers or sweaters on top, with interesting jewelry. I was never a scarf person, but they would be a great way to add to this kind of outfit.

The hardest things to find when going shopping are the simple, well-made, easy-care basics. It's kind of a never-ending search. I find that clothes that work well for travel also work well for everyday life. I try to find clothes that will function for both. One outfit that has come in handy over the years…in various permutations as I wore them out and bought replacements…is a simple, matching pair of stretchy,  dark, pull-on, elastic waist pants with a 3/4 length sleeve tunic. In black, this can take you from work to conferences to church to dinner to theater and concert outings. Being a slacks outfit, it is warmer than a dress, and you don't need to worry about how you sit. It would suit all ages and body types. My current version is from Travelsmith's Jet Set Collection…the slim pants and 3/4 sleeve ballet-sleeve tunic, both in black. (They are currently showing it in some ugly colors, IMHO, but black is available.) I've found a couple similar versions in department stores over the years. The Jet Set fabric doesn't work in the hot summer weather if you are not in air conditioning, but other than that it's really versatile.


MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #12 on: May 11, 2015, 06:39:45 AM »
Today's "uniform"  - with tan sweater instead of white:


Bracken_Joy

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2015, 06:52:00 AM »
Following! I'm at a major life transition point, and I need to revamp the clothing. I've done pretty well paring down what I have, but much of it is starting to get warn out and needs replacing. What I do have tends to make me look younger than I am (cheap fabrics and construction), which does me no favors because people usually guess I'm 18-19. Does not inspire people's confidence in me right off the bat.

Challenges for me: no dry cleaning (duh, MMM, don't have to explain that one here), has to be fairly durable, I am hard to fit for clothing (pretty tall for a woman). And as others have mentioned, clothes are HARD. What should be a 'simple' question in defining your own style becomes this existential exercise in identifying all your personal values >.<

I also struggle with the "buying clothes for the life I want, not the life I have" issue.
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MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2015, 06:58:47 AM »
My collar is messed up because I took my ID tag off - but here ya' go for reals in person.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #15 on: May 11, 2015, 07:01:29 AM »
Following! I'm at a major life transition point, and I need to revamp the clothing. I've done pretty well paring down what I have, but much of it is starting to get warn out and needs replacing. What I do have tends to make me look younger than I am (cheap fabrics and construction), which does me no favors because people usually guess I'm 18-19. Does not inspire people's confidence in me right off the bat.

Challenges for me: no dry cleaning (duh, MMM, don't have to explain that one here), has to be fairly durable, I am hard to fit for clothing (pretty tall for a woman). And as others have mentioned, clothes are HARD. What should be a 'simple' question in defining your own style becomes this existential exercise in identifying all your personal values >.<

I also struggle with the "buying clothes for the life I want, not the life I have" issue.

Welcome BrackenJoy! Yes - I think I am supposed to be a six foot tall size 2 model and having a hard time dressing down to the fact that I am not any of those things. And I've found that I can't tolerate clothes that I used to really enjoy (e.g. heels, as the most immediate example).

+++1 on the not needing dry cleaning - and even more important to me - not needing to be ironed. I don't mind a pair of chinos I can wear 3 or 4 times and then have cleaned and pressed at the 1.99 place. But everything else has to be able to go on "hand wash" in the machine and line or tumble dry and come out of the process looking presentable!

lise

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2015, 07:37:13 AM »
Ms Peacock - nice uniform!
I also don't look good in skirts.  I also don't look good in button downs (get pulling cos of the boobs - have found a few shirts made for curvier figures but still don't feel comfortable in them).

My uniform is in two parts:

Winter/Spring/Fall
Black trousers or jeans (I can be casual to work)
Black knit tops - long and short sleeve versions
Cardigans and Sweaters - colored, various weights

Summer
Dresses
Cardigans (Spring/Fall ones above)

My trouble spot right now is summer weekends - I either look over dressed in a dress I wear to work, or under dressed in shorts and a tank/t-shirt.
I don't look good in capris.  Need to find a casual dress, or might try some of the wide leg capris/culottes that I see in the shops right now - but since it seems so "fashionable" am I going to want to wear it more than a season????

Also - I have kept a few skirts and button downs because I keep thinking I might need them (eg if I need to go to a business attire event?)  - am I  nuts - should I just get rid of these things that are not part of the capsule?    I mean I also have a few formal dresses not part of the capsule that I actually wear more than this business attire stuff I keep!  I think I just answered my own question by writing this down - just keep one business attire outfit.  Three are overkill ...

lizzzi

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #17 on: May 11, 2015, 08:06:28 AM »
I meant "ballet neck" not "ballet sleeve" tunic up above. Doh.

One thing I've done over the years is just given up on wearing white or light-colored tops. I always wear dark color values of colors that flatter me. The reason is that I destroy white and light-color tops all the time by spills and stains. Also,  with everything darkish, I don't have to separate loads of laundry--all my clothes go in together and it makes life easier. And all my colors look nice together--no big issues trying to coordinate outfits. Also all my underwear is black or dark colors, too. No need to search out a flesh-colored bra to no-show under a white shirt. Don't get me wrong--I look good in white and like it--but for "real life" and for travel, my darks just work better.

Elliot

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #18 on: May 11, 2015, 08:48:07 AM »
It took me a while to find my "power silhouttes" but I did, and now buying clothes is really easy (almost too easy! ) but I find that I enjoy dressing and caring for my appearance now. I'm tall, mostly leg and a full chest.

Year round, a knee length fit and flare dress is flattering. I like a skinny pant or jean with a loose silk or cotton blouse that falls straight from the bust. I used to think buttondowns didn't flatter me but now that I buy for my bust and get the waist taken in (cheap fix at the tailor or dry cleaner) I really enjoy them.

In the hot weather, I wear chino shorts with the above style shirts. I find 5-7' to be the most flattering inseam. In the winter, I wear v or scoop neck wool sweaters, with the skinny jeans or pants.

I stick to mostly shades of greens, blues, and orange/coral, but I don't exclusively buy those colors.  I have simple accessories, one gold bangle bracelet, one sterling bangle bracelet, a couple sterling post earrings, two pairs of dangle style earrings, and a pair of pearl button studs. I have a silver necklace, a gold necklace, a classic pearl strand, a strand of large baroque pearls, and a strand of jade beads.  I also have three watches. Everything goes. It's glorious.

Of course, I wear an actual uniform to work.

ZiziPB

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2015, 10:44:35 AM »

I will alway reject any notion of aging out of anything.  I'm not sure how old you are, but I'm almost 40 and I hope I haven't aged out.   

Ha, that's what I thought too when I was your age.  I felt confident about my looks and rocked most any outfit I put on ;-)

Fast forward 8 years and I am now in the throngs of perimenopause: rapid weight gain, the deep wrinkles in my face and neck becoming more and more visible (genetic predisposition - they take on the same pattern as they do in a lot of women in my family), gray hair...  I am as self-conscious about my body as a teenager and I have definitely aged out of a lot of styles that simply don't work for my, ahem, more stately silhouette.  And, it's not like I've gotten really large but somehow all of a sudden I truly feel middle aged.  I went from size 4 to a size 8 and I feel like an elderly elephant.



MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #20 on: May 11, 2015, 11:03:29 AM »

I will alway reject any notion of aging out of anything.  I'm not sure how old you are, but I'm almost 40 and I hope I haven't aged out.   

Ha, that's what I thought too when I was your age.  I felt confident about my looks and rocked most any outfit I put on ;-)

Fast forward 8 years and I am now in the throngs of perimenopause: rapid weight gain, the deep wrinkles in my face and neck becoming more and more visible (genetic predisposition - they take on the same pattern as they do in a lot of women in my family), gray hair...  I am as self-conscious about my body as a teenager and I have definitely aged out of a lot of styles that simply don't work for my, ahem, more stately silhouette.  And, it's not like I've gotten really large but somehow all of a sudden I truly feel middle aged.  I went from size 4 to a size 8 and I feel like an elderly elephant.

+1

 I would have said the exact same thing as RunHappy at "almost 40" - but now I am "almost 50" (OMG.... Aughhh) and while it used to be that I could pull anything off - I was tall and thin - shifts in weight...uh... distribution, weight gain (and I am not overweight, just heavier), wrinkles, being physically unable to tolerate heels, etc. At some point I just couldn't pull off the same things. It becomes that whole "mutton dressed as lamb" phenomenon. We have all seen it done and know that the effect almost always is to make you look older rather than ageless or younger. (Some recent outfits from Madonna come to mind.)


Anyhow - so far I've gathered that we all want:

1. Clothes that are easy to take care of

2. Some defined personal style that can be used as a basis for purchasing clothing. Many of us are bad at figuring out what that personal style is.

3. Sometimes our idea of our personal style doesn't fit what we purchase or what is flattering or easy to take care of

4. Many of us are "bad at shopping."

Other universals in our struggle/quest for a workable small wardrobe?

HP

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #21 on: May 11, 2015, 11:33:44 AM »
Re. colours, I can't tell what other people's "colours" are, let alone figure it out for myself because I can't detect the things I'm supposed to be looking for, but I found Imogen Lampert's explanation of how to find your colours better/less confusing than other books/articles I had read. She goes more into values and contrast and it's actually kind of fascinating.

Though mostly I just pick colours I like. :P

smalllife

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #22 on: May 11, 2015, 11:46:58 AM »
After reading this post I went through my list of clothing and realized that somehow I have achieved the capsule wardrobe I set out to create three years ago without realizing it.  A few thoughts to help others:

Quality is worth the price, especially as you wear and launder clothing more frequently.
+1 to limited colors (black, gray, green, teal, blue, purple are mine - with brown leather accents)
Shoes: quality and as casual as I can get away with.  This means that I have two pairs of heels, for when I absolutely need to look professional, but everything else spans from casual to nicely dressed (my office is appropriate-casual) depending on which clothes are worn.
Versatile clothing: dresses and skirts are much easier to dress up or down with a change of shoes or jewelry.  I wore out my shorts two years ago and have never replaced them.
Comfort above all else - if I don't want to lounge in it, it doesn't belong in my life.  Wool is amazing for this.  Out with button downs, in with belts.
A good tailor and cobbler (or sewing skills) are worth their weight in gold. 

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strongmag

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #23 on: May 11, 2015, 01:15:56 PM »
After reading a few similar threads over the last year or so here, I started paying attention to what I wore to work each day (business casual mostly, occasional suit required). I realized this winter I basically ended up in a uniform:

black or gray pants (four pairs of wash and wear, two pairs of dry clean only/suit separates)
white t-shirt or button down under layer (about 6 of these)
semi-fitted sweater (about 7 of these)
black leather ankle boots (I wore the same nine west boots about 95% of the time this winter)

I realize this is not really "capsule" as that's a lot of sweaters, but it really took the guesswork out of each dark winter morning and cut down on laundry - I wash the undershirts each week and the sweaters/pants about every other week. I've never been that into fashion and for a few years wore an actual uniform to work, so this low variety style worked for me and might work for others for the winter.

I haven't worked out a good summer plan so looking for ideas along those lines here. I like the idea of dresses that a few have put out here - but where do you guys buy your work-appropriate dresses that don't need to be dry cleaned and aren't crazy expensive?

ZiziPB

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2015, 01:29:53 PM »
Quote
I haven't worked out a good summer plan so looking for ideas along those lines here. I like the idea of dresses that a few have put out here - but where do you guys buy your work-appropriate dresses that don't need to be dry cleaned and aren't crazy expensive?

Depending on the temps in your office, you can probably pretty much have the same system in the summer as you have in the winter.  I used to wear skirts and dresses to work but since we moved into our new space a couple of years ago, my office has been too cold in the summer to have bare legs or arms.  So I wear pants in neutral colors, a sleeveless shell (silk or synthetic silk) and a lightweight sweater.  Sandals or flats.   I haven't worn my summer skirts or dresses at all last summer so I am bringing them to consignment this week.



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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2015, 04:25:09 PM »
I'm trying to get my wardrobe smaller and better without a giant influx of time or money! So I'm concentrating on getting rid of things that don't fit well, paying attention to what I really like and how I use my clothes, and being more intentional about what I add. ("No clothes buying" would be a nonstarter for me--I own only one pair of shorts that don't make me look pregnant and exactly zero dresses in that category.) So I made a mental list: I want 2 pairs of shorts, 1 work-appropriate casual dress, and sturdy 1 A-line skirt suitable for work as well as casual biking.
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TheRabbit

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #26 on: May 11, 2015, 06:23:00 PM »
I really recommend "Dressing your truth" (free trail with emailed videos). I was in a rut wearing a beautiful capsule of black, white, and a few jewel tones that met all criteria of well-made, fitted, appropriate. Yet, it WASN'T my style.
I've found DYT to be great at helping me defined what I feel best in and what gives me the most confidence.

Now I shop at secondhand or "thrift" stores in the richest neighborhoods! Tons of quality clothing for a fraction of the price.

Zaga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #27 on: May 11, 2015, 07:11:55 PM »
I'll echo what's been said about color by others.  Find a good base color and stick with it, then work in your accent colors around that.

My base color is black/grey, almost all of my pants, skirts, and suits are black or grey.

Then pick colors that you both like and look good on you to go along.  I look good in jewel tones, so I picked my favorites - red, teal, purple, and occasionally lime green.

I'll put outfits together that are generally black or grey pants, colored shirt, grey sweater, whatever scarf I feel like.

Now, some people will prefer their base color to be brown/tan.  That's fine too.  And some may pick navy blue.  I think that one is a bit odd because browns and blacks are so much easier to find than navy, but I do know it can work as a base neutral.

If you're having trouble determining what colors look good on you, listen for compliments.  I know I will tell coworkers from time to time that I think an outfit is cute or a flattering color.  Listen for that.  Now, just because you wear something and don't get a compliment, doesn't mean it's a BAD color on you! 

The other thing that I absolutely require my clothing to be is comfortable.  If it hurts, pinches, bunches, itches, or anything like that, I'm getting rid of it, end of story!  Oh, and washable.  You'd be surprised how often "dry clean only" clothing goes through the washer and dryer on delicate just fine.  Since I buy my clothes almost entirely from thrift stores and clearance racks, the occasional ruined item from washing doesn't bother me any.

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #28 on: May 11, 2015, 07:41:49 PM »
I haven't worked out a good summer plan so looking for ideas along those lines here. I like the idea of dresses that a few have put out here - but where do you guys buy your work-appropriate dresses that don't need to be dry cleaned and aren't crazy expensive?

Most of my dresses have come from Australia or New Zealand as I find I have more time to shop when I'm there (extended breaks down under to visit family). I did get two at DKNY (from the outlet) plus one at Uniqlo.

They are all wash and wear - no dry cleaning or ironing.  They are mainly rayon or cotton knit.  I do have one cotton dress that says to iron - but it doesn't need it as I wash it and then dry it on a hanger and looks wrinkle free drying like that.

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #29 on: May 11, 2015, 08:10:12 PM »
Wardrobe Oxygen FTW: http://www.wardrobeoxygen.com/

She has great suggestions on capsule wardrobes, and I love that she's a fashionista who has curves (and a working mom to boot!)

My base color is black (it's a city thing) with lots of grey thrown in. I rock a style that I like to think of as shabby-chic professor: lots of oversized cardigans with skinny pants and flats, or more fitted cardigans with skirts and dresses. My wardrobe is mostly mix and match, with everything practically matching everything else, and predicated on layering (hello, cardigans).

Use the 20/80 rule (you wear 20% of your clothes 80% of the time) to figure out what styles, colors, and cuts you gravitate toward (I know I *should* own a white button down, but I would never, ever wear it). Then buy those. I'd rather have 4-5 well-constructed cardigans and one great pair of boots that will last me years than a bunch of poorly made stuff that will wear out quickly.

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #30 on: May 12, 2015, 09:35:51 AM »
The best thing I did to move towards a more minimalist wardrobe was embrace DRESSES! I have always been a pants-person, but dresses are a whole outfit in one, and almost always look nice.

I bought 6 pairs of leggings from Costco and a handful of dresses that flatter my figure from a second-hand store. I feel more movement freedom because of the leggings, and I don't have to put very much thought at all into what I wear each day. Now I only add to my wardrobe when I find a dress I truly LOVE!

For high quality, easy care basics try Costco. My experience has been that it is the best quality I can get for the price. I get socks, under-shirts, leggings, and layering tees there and have had great success. To find good quality dresses, I like the nicer second-hand stores. If you buy something new, you don't know yet how it will hold up in the wash. But if something is used and still looks good on you, there's a better chance it will hold up.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #31 on: May 12, 2015, 11:07:36 AM »
Thank you everyone for replies and ideas!

I love the blogs. However, they feel very aspirational to me - e.g. I can't find a single fabulous blouse that I can make work with 12 different outfit. I also can't get by with only 2 shirt and 1 pair of pants + a sweater. It just isn't enough clothing. I could probably go that minimal for weekend stuff (I mean, I basically wear the same one pair of shorts in the summer), but for work it just isn't enough clothing to get through the work week w/o doing laundry or being all stressed out realizing that something isn't clean.

Keep the ideas coming!

For the sake of fidelity - here is what I wore today - another neutral pants, white shirt, sweater combo. Pants are <5 years old and were $5 at H&M (I have a Navy pair too). They look best pressed so I try to wear them 2-3 times and then send them to the cleaners. The blouse is about 1 year old and from Forever 21. Sweater is new from H&M, $5 on clearance. I would prefer to be a little less rumpled in this outfit, but it is fine (not my favorite).


handsnhearts

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #32 on: May 12, 2015, 11:28:05 AM »
Great thread!  I don't think I want a truly capsule minimal wardrobe,but I always notice that I wear the same things all the time, and when I pack to travel and have fewer options that are well considered, I am happy.  I have just done a major closet purge, and I am starting a new job in a month.  Business casual, but in health care so I have to be extra aware of not flashing people and having easily washed garments from germy people.  I am good to my clothes, even most of the cheapies last because I wash on cold and line dry a lot of things.

I really like wearing pants, but I also like the ease of dresses.  I am coming out of a period of dressing for other's approval and restrictions and hiding my true self, and I'm done with that.  I need to feel like myself!  Today I am wearing a dress with a white on white floral pattern top and black and white patterned bottoms, indigo tie dyed leggings, guatamalan flip flops, and an olive short sleeve open sweater with brass button details.  I know it is a bit weird, but I think it looks fun, creative, and fine, and it feels like me.  Comfy too. 

I struggle with sizing sometimes because I am plus sized on the bottom but M-L on top. So even though I love woven shirts, sizing is often difficult because of the hips.  I also would like to get away from fast fashion and more into self sewing and quality pieces, in more natural fabrics.  I am trying to arrange my new home space and time to allow for a bit of this. 

I have a ton of cardigans in different colors.  I will be able to wear more jackets and sweaters, now that I don't have to wear a lab coat anymore.  Thank god cuz those scrubs and lab coats are seriously the most unattractive, frumpy thing ever!  A uniform can be good, but not if looks like hell and makes you feel bad!  Some people loved it but not me! 

I am on a work break now and it is so fun to wear whatever I want.  I have rediscovered things in my closet that I love and had neglected because I couldn't find it.  I probably got rid of about 30-40% of my clothes this week.  I had forgotten how much I love olive as an accent and neutral.  I will try and check out some of those other blogs soon.  Thanks for the thread and discussion!

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #33 on: May 12, 2015, 12:41:19 PM »
This is a little bit of a tangent, but it's important for people who want a simple, long lasting wardrobe. Tumble drying kills clothing! I've stopped using the dryer for most of my clothes and let them dry on a rack instead. Since I started doing that, I've had very few issues with shrinking, pilling, fraying, etc. This method works wonders to extend the longetivity of cheaper brands like Forever 21 and H&M. I used to have the worst luck with those clothes falling apart until I stopped tumble drying them.
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MonkeyJenga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #34 on: May 12, 2015, 01:28:07 PM »
Last night I went through all of my clothes and ended up with the below list:

Home/exercise use only: 21 items (faded shirts, baggy jeans, yoga pants, sweater with a small hole)

Sell/donate: 15 items (unused Cole Haan boots, silk work tops that I never wear because I will ruin them, an extra winter coat, and work stuff that’s too big and/or never really fit)

Under consideration: 9 items (expensive shoes that I only wear to interviews, 3 dresses that are too big, short springtime wraps, long-sleeve t-shirt that’s getting worn out, jeans on the mending verge)

Winter: 16 items (coats, hats, scarves, tights, sweaters, and snow boots)

Base wardrobe:  24 items (9 dresses, 4 t-shirts, 1 long-sleeved shirt, 5 work/party tops, 1 jacket, 1 cardigan, 1 work skirt, 1 casual skirt, and shorts)

Extras: 11 items (an interview jacket, 4 light scarves, and 6 tanks/cleavage-hiders)

Not including shoes, but counting all other accessories, I’ve got 96 things, soon to be 70-something.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #35 on: May 12, 2015, 05:26:50 PM »
Last night I went through all of my clothes and ended up with the below list:

Home/exercise use only: 21 items (faded shirts, baggy jeans, yoga pants, sweater with a small hole)

Sell/donate: 15 items (unused Cole Haan boots, silk work tops that I never wear because I will ruin them, an extra winter coat, and work stuff that’s too big and/or never really fit)

Under consideration: 9 items (expensive shoes that I only wear to interviews, 3 dresses that are too big, short springtime wraps, long-sleeve t-shirt that’s getting worn out, jeans on the mending verge)

Winter: 16 items (coats, hats, scarves, tights, sweaters, and snow boots)

Base wardrobe:  24 items (9 dresses, 4 t-shirts, 1 long-sleeved shirt, 5 work/party tops, 1 jacket, 1 cardigan, 1 work skirt, 1 casual skirt, and shorts)

Extras: 11 items (an interview jacket, 4 light scarves, and 6 tanks/cleavage-hiders)

Not including shoes, but counting all other accessories, I’ve got 96 things, soon to be 70-something.

Very impressive MonekyJenga! I don't want to count - it is way more than you have. I keep pairing down and it is getting easier as the "uniform" falls into place.

My nanny wears the same size and loves that I've been giving her bags and bags of clothing, shoes, etc. I know she uses them because she shows up wearing things and I'm like 'I know that shirt!"

ETA: I did get rid of a huge - HUGE - bag of hangers today (and there are still plenty of "spare" hangers in my closet). It did bring home the accomplishment of pairing down.

I have extremely dysfunctional closets in my house - tiny, weirdly shaped. I was able to reposition almost all my work clothing into one closet. Goal - get it down to one. I feel better prepared to take more out as I get things liked up in terms of a uniform. Even looking at what I didn't part with this weekend - there are more items that now feel "meh."


Anyone else willing to post a photo or links to items from their capsule/uniform?
« Last Edit: May 12, 2015, 08:30:24 PM by MsPeacock »

brooklynmoney

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #36 on: May 12, 2015, 08:44:33 PM »
Went to the shops tonight . Wandered  aimlessly  and left  with  nothing . I really do need a srategy! This thread is helpful.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #37 on: May 12, 2015, 09:41:05 PM »
Thanks, Ms Peacock. I did the 30 day challenge last year (get rid of 1 thing on day 1, 2 things on day 2, etc), so I'm starting from a reduced inventory. I also love tracking, categorizing, and making pivot tables out of things I own/spend, so I had to count it. Had to!

I've given clothes and purses to friends, it's great when you know someone else is appreciating that itchy sweater or uncomfortable heels. (I'm delicate.) Although I once got really annoyed with myself for giving away a purse that became my friend's standard bag. Every time I saw her with it, I wondered why I kept the one I did, as it was clearly inferior. PURSE PROBLEMS.

I eventually solved my dilemma by carrying a backpack everywhere.

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #38 on: May 13, 2015, 12:50:03 AM »
Commenting to follow. :) I'm ~6 months postpartum and have lost 10 lbs out of 55. I wear scrubs to work, and usually just workout clothes at home. Jeans + t-shirt if I have to leave the house. Obviously I'll be buying clothes as I lose the weight, but I don't want to buy a lot. At the same time, I'm tired of feeling frumpy all the time, and I don't want to wait till I'm at my goal weight to dress nicely.
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Juju

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #39 on: May 13, 2015, 02:47:45 AM »
Love this topic.
I've been looking around the internet for the past couple of years as I tend to be a hoarder when it comes to clothes and never really had a good idea of what I should be looking for when it came to a base wardrobe.  I was always in that situation of having too many clothes but nothing to wear.
A few years ago a very lovely friend helped me to go though it all - as other posters have suggested, getting everything out, trying it all on and getting rid of what wasn't being worn.  It also helped me to identify those wardrob 'orphans'  (I can't remember exactly where that term comes from, but I love it).  I then realised that I had never shopped with any purpose - Instead, I might have the vague idea that I should be buying clothing (before it all fell apart) and then would wait until I fell in love with pieces.. that often went with nothing else I owned.
In the end of that exercise I realised that the reason I was struggling was that I was only wearing a tiny portion of my wardrobe.  The rest was either too old, too uncomfortable, too unflattering or just didn't go with anything else. 

Since then I have tried to be much more systematic and picky with purchases.  For any base items e.g. a pair of pants, the fit has to be really good and not just good enough.  Same goes for jackets, cardigans or shoes.  Colour too is important but I don't restrict myself as much as some people.   Base Items are in any of the neutral colours (I do tend towards black/navy though).  I've found that I don't like patterned bottoms (as much as some blogs recommend them).  Instead, I like to have a range of patterned, block or otherwise bright T-Shirts or other light tops.

For casual my uniform tends to be:
Jeans/black pants with a patterned top (sleeveless), cardigan and often a scarf for extra colour.  If it's cold, i can add a base top underneath and change the cardigan for a jacket.

For work/more formal:
Either keep the black pants or swap to a pencil skirt, same tops and cardigans work.  Change the scarf to chunky jewellery.

For some reason, as much as I love dresses, I tend to always gravitate towards pants/jeans unless i'm getting really dressed up.  They just don't feel 'casual' to me, no matter how casual they really are.

My advice is pretty much the same as what has already been said -
1) clear out that wardrobe.  Figure out if you aren't wearing some things because you lack the item to go with them (some tops/jackets only go with low waist pants, others with high waist skirts etc.).
2) If it doesn't fit, get rid of it (or get it altered). 
3) If you don't like it (even if you feel you should wear it because it's 'appropriate' or because of how much money you spent) get rid of it.  Someone else out there could be making use of it.  Free that space up.
4) figure out what basics you are missing and 'how' they should fit - just knowing you want a black jacket isn't enough - where do you want it to sit at the waist?  Do you want fitted or loose?
5) find out if you like patterns or blocks.  Do you like to wear them on the top or bottom or in accessories?
6) Realise that what you like on the hanger or on other people, isn't always right for you.   (It took me one pair of patterned pants to realise I hate to wear patterns on the bottom half - much as I love them in magazines and on other people).

The last advice is to then practice it.  Last year I was travelling for several months with limited baggage space which really made me look at my wardrobe again.  I took 2 pairs of pants, one of shorts, two dresses (one formal, one maxi), six patterned tops, three neutral base tops (for under), two cardigans, one warm jacket, one light formal jacket, one pair of dress shoes, sandals and casual ballet flats, two scarves and of course,  underwear.

Because I didn't have options, I made what I did have work.  When a couple of my items became too worn out, I found I really knew what I wanted as replacements.  By then I knew what sleeve length, neckline, fit, colours, fabrics and other details would be most suited to my needs and was far more particular when shopping. 
So once you have a base 'capsule' wardrobe, hide everything else away for a month or two.  Give it a real test.  You will soon figure out what the gaps are and what isn't working.

In a way I think it's taken alot of the fun out of 'shopping'.  Where I used to wander around aimlessly for something that caught my eye, I'm now on a mission with specific requirements ... but I'm saving money! and I know that I always have something to wear.

lpep

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #40 on: May 13, 2015, 02:54:45 AM »
I want in! I'm 6' tall and have some serious hips, and trying to find things that are long enough and also flattering makes me want to MURDER someone. Even stores that say they sell clothes for tall women (expensively, of course) frequently only add length and don't change proportions or rise or shoulder width. GAH!

Plus, add in an active job and hot hot hot climate so need to mask sweat.... sigh. Frustrated.

MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #41 on: May 13, 2015, 04:46:30 AM »
Sticking with my uniform on day 3 - posting because it keeps me honest.

Pants - Lands End - super comfortable. I think they look better in person rather than the photo at this angle. They are soft, unstructured, warm, and seem to be hold up very well to washing.

Shirt - same white blouse from yesterday

Sweater - from Kohls about 1 year ago. I don't love it for a few reasons but the color is pretty and it works with the "uniform"

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #42 on: May 13, 2015, 08:02:12 AM »
Okay, I started a capsule wardrobe from what I have about 2 weeks ago. (About 40 items total, not including underwear/workout clothes). I'm planning not to buy any new clothes until July, when I'll reassess my capsule.

I'm finding a couple of problems so far:

1) I have already spilled things on my 2 white shirts. :( They might be permanently stained.

2) I picked lots of dark items, grey, navy, and black (because of my propensity to spill things on myself, apparently, plus these are the items I already have that go with each other) and I'm really wishing I had lighter/brighter items to wear in nice weather. I feel like my clothes are way too somber!

3) I'm frustrated at the laundry, and at the wearing out of what I have. I have to wash things almost every time I wear them (I have overactive sweat glands, plus bike to work regularly).  I don't have super high quality items to start with, and I have bought a lot of my clothes from thrift stores to begin with and I'm finding my capsule is already looking raggedy/worn out. Instead of looking polished and together, I just feel like a big pill-ball.

Any others out there finding similar issues?

 

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #43 on: May 13, 2015, 08:35:28 AM »

1) I have already spilled things on my 2 white shirts. :( They might be permanently stained.


1) Shout! Advanced Set in Stain Remover Gel (got mine from Target)
2) Bleach-  if they are ALL white shirts this should work fine.
3) Oxyclean
4) Someone told me sitting it out in the sun helps fade stains. I've never tried it since I live in an apartment w/o a balcony.

handsnhearts

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #44 on: May 13, 2015, 09:07:47 AM »
Okay, I started a capsule wardrobe from what I have about 2 weeks ago. (About 40 items total, not including underwear/workout clothes). I'm planning not to buy any new clothes until July, when I'll reassess my capsule.

I'm finding a couple of problems so far:

1) I have already spilled things on my 2 white shirts. :( They might be permanently stained.

2) I picked lots of dark items, grey, navy, and black (because of my propensity to spill things on myself, apparently, plus these are the items I already have that go with each other) and I'm really wishing I had lighter/brighter items to wear in nice weather. I feel like my clothes are way too somber!

3) I'm frustrated at the laundry, and at the wearing out of what I have. I have to wash things almost every time I wear them (I have overactive sweat glands, plus bike to work regularly).  I don't have super high quality items to start with, and I have bought a lot of my clothes from thrift stores to begin with and I'm finding my capsule is already looking raggedy/worn out. Instead of looking polished and together, I just feel like a big pill-ball.

Any others out there finding similar issues?

Can you get some things out that were packed away to supplement your capsule?  Maybe 1 or 2 items that would change everything?

Bracken_Joy

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #45 on: May 13, 2015, 09:41:40 AM »
Okay, I started a capsule wardrobe from what I have about 2 weeks ago. (About 40 items total, not including underwear/workout clothes). I'm planning not to buy any new clothes until July, when I'll reassess my capsule.

I'm finding a couple of problems so far:

1) I have already spilled things on my 2 white shirts. :( They might be permanently stained.

2) I picked lots of dark items, grey, navy, and black (because of my propensity to spill things on myself, apparently, plus these are the items I already have that go with each other) and I'm really wishing I had lighter/brighter items to wear in nice weather. I feel like my clothes are way too somber!

3) I'm frustrated at the laundry, and at the wearing out of what I have. I have to wash things almost every time I wear them (I have overactive sweat glands, plus bike to work regularly).  I don't have super high quality items to start with, and I have bought a lot of my clothes from thrift stores to begin with and I'm finding my capsule is already looking raggedy/worn out. Instead of looking polished and together, I just feel like a big pill-ball.

Any others out there finding similar issues?

Is there an option to change clothing once you get to work, and bike in wearing workout clothing or similar?

If pilling is the concern, a sweater stone or similar may be a good option. I think most importantly, look at which items ARE holding up well for your life. What color and fabric? Then look for similar in the future.

As for somber, how are your accessories? I have a friend who stays very 'bright' and fashionable by trading out her 'highlight' items every season. She does a lot of scarves, statement necklaces, and boot socks. Any option like that that could work for you? It seems to me like a bright scarf doesn't count as part of the main capsule ;)
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MsPeacock

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #46 on: May 13, 2015, 10:39:15 AM »
I do think that the idea of a capsule wardrobe w/o enough clothing for 1 week (like complete changes of clothing) or even 2 weeks is simply unrealistic for many people. Even more so if you workout or ride a bike to work. I can re-wear something more than one time - but I absolutely don't have time during the week to deal w/ laundry and I'm likely to get really tired of only 2 shirts.

I personally hate accessorizing. I find scarves to be baffling and distracting - "What is this thing hanging on my chest." So - YMMY.

And I just have to have enough underwear so that I am not conserving and have absolutely no risk of running out. Its pretty nonnegotiable to me. They take up little space, last a long time, are critical for my comfort, and are relatively inexpensive (at least mine are).

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #47 on: May 13, 2015, 10:57:52 AM »
I do think that the idea of a capsule wardrobe w/o enough clothing for 1 week (like complete changes of clothing) or even 2 weeks is simply unrealistic for many people. Even more so if you workout or ride a bike to work. I can re-wear something more than one time - but I absolutely don't have time during the week to deal w/ laundry and I'm likely to get really tired of only 2 shirts.

I personally hate accessorizing. I find scarves to be baffling and distracting - "What is this thing hanging on my chest." So - YMMY.

And I just have to have enough underwear so that I am not conserving and have absolutely no risk of running out. Its pretty nonnegotiable to me. They take up little space, last a long time, are critical for my comfort, and are relatively inexpensive (at least mine are).

Totally agree with all of this.  I'm all about the uniform to minimize decision making in the morning and not having obsolete pieces cluttering my wardrobe, but I'm not going so minimal that I have to do laundry all the time.  I live in an apartment building with shared laundry facilities.

And I'm not a scarf person either!

RunHappy

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #48 on: May 13, 2015, 11:20:29 AM »

I will alway reject any notion of aging out of anything.  I'm not sure how old you are, but I'm almost 40 and I hope I haven't aged out.   

Ha, that's what I thought too when I was your age.  I felt confident about my looks and rocked most any outfit I put on ;-)

Fast forward 8 years and I am now in the throngs of perimenopause: rapid weight gain, the deep wrinkles in my face and neck becoming more and more visible (genetic predisposition - they take on the same pattern as they do in a lot of women in my family), gray hair...  I am as self-conscious about my body as a teenager and I have definitely aged out of a lot of styles that simply don't work for my, ahem, more stately silhouette.  And, it's not like I've gotten really large but somehow all of a sudden I truly feel middle aged.  I went from size 4 to a size 8 and I feel like an elderly elephant.

+1

 I would have said the exact same thing as RunHappy at "almost 40" - but now I am "almost 50" (OMG.... Aughhh) and while it used to be that I could pull anything off - I was tall and thin - shifts in weight...uh... distribution, weight gain (and I am not overweight, just heavier), wrinkles, being physically unable to tolerate heels, etc. At some point I just couldn't pull off the same things. It becomes that whole "mutton dressed as lamb" phenomenon. We have all seen it done and know that the effect almost always is to make you look older rather than ageless or younger. (Some recent outfits from Madonna come to mind.)


Anyhow - so far I've gathered that we all want:

1. Clothes that are easy to take care of

2. Some defined personal style that can be used as a basis for purchasing clothing. Many of us are bad at figuring out what that personal style is.

3. Sometimes our idea of our personal style doesn't fit what we purchase or what is flattering or easy to take care of

4. Many of us are "bad at shopping."

Other universals in our struggle/quest for a workable small wardrobe?

I guess I should start my 10 year phase out of concert tees.  Hopefully I'll be FI by then and won't need to care.

MonkeyJenga

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Re: Spin Off: Creating a minimalist/capsule wardrobe
« Reply #49 on: May 13, 2015, 11:58:47 AM »
Some things I've learned or been reminded of:

-I don't have any good long sleeved shirts. One is way too big, one is faded, and the other has an annoying collar situation. I'm going to try to get by with jacket/cardigan/scarf instead, and keep two for home/winter hiking.
-All black makes me feel blah. I need at least some color or a different neutral, preferably on top.
-I love my one outlier outfit, a flowy, patterned, faded green belted dress. I feel like a world traveler in it. This is a problem, since everything else I own is dark jewel toned and structured.
-T-shirts do not look good on me. I need something that shows I have a waist. I'll keep them around for errands and very informal hangouts, but I'm not going to replace any of them when they get worn out.
-My next, far in the future, purchase, should be a wrap dress that's appropriate for both work and travel. Minor weight changes won't be a issue, but I won't look like a box.

ETA: I used to hate scarves, and never even wore them during winter. I became a fan after encountering the joys of not needing to sweat on a long sleeved shirt when I'm chilly -throw a scarf over my shoulders and I can reuse it essentially forever without washing!
« Last Edit: May 13, 2015, 12:04:48 PM by MonkeyJenga »