For the next month I’m focusing on self-love, and next week I’ll be posting a more in depth guide to self love and how to create more of it in your life! But for now, I wanted to do something a little different, and talk about how creating a capsule wardrobe taught me about self-love. I know, crazy!
Imagine this: you open your closet to find it stuffed full of clothes. I’m talking so stuffed that you can barely move the clothes on the rod. And you have no idea what to wear.
Now imagine this instead: you’ve got a closet full of only the clothes that you wear and love. You have plenty of outfit options that you love, and it’s easy to put pieces together to create a killer look.
Second option sounds a lot better doesn’t it?! Well welcome to the concept of capsule wardrobes!
I’ve been living the capsule wardrobe life for about 6 months now. And surprisingly, it’s actually taught me some important life lessons! Now it might seem weird that I learned some self love lessons from my clothing, but I promise you it’ll make sense in a bit!
The Basics of Capsule Wardrobes
I haven’t done a storytime post since my I Went to 7 Ice Cream Shops in One Day post, so it’s high time that I just give you all a little insight into what’s been going on in my life – and in this case, it’s my adventures in capsule wardrobing!
But before we get into my capsule wardrobe experience and the lessons that it taught me, let’s talk a little bit about what a capsule wardrobe actually is.
For those of you that don’t know, a capsule wardrobe is a version of a minimalist wardrobe. Basically, you create a theme with your clothing, and fill your closet full of pieces that all work together, in a variety of combinations. That way, you can live with fewer material items – in this case clothing – but still have a crap ton of outfit options.
It’s a literal win – win for a person that wants to feel stylish but hates spending a lot of money on clothes and doesn’t have a lot of time to choose outfits (aka me)! And it’s a great way for those who aren’t ready for a fully minimalist life and are looking for minimal-ish instead.
So I decided to give it the ol millennial try. Now based on the endless Pinterest stalking that I did, I found a few pretty standard rules for capsule wardrobing. And they went a little something like this:
- Take stock of what you already have. Reminisce on that old sweater from high school. Remember that you didn’t even look that good in it back then. Resist the urge to keep it anyway.
- Only keep items that can be worn at least 3 ways (unless they are special occassion pieces). Try to come up with a third way to wear that one piece you thought you’d love but never wear. Call it a special occasion piece just so you can keep it.
- Notice any themes (similar color, style, etc.). Question why you own so much of the same color. Then embrace it.
- Notice your lifestyle. Do you work a very casual job? Regularly go to networking events and need more professional wear? Going on a lot of dates or just want to dress to impress for own damn self? Let the answers guide your choices.
- Make a list of must-have items to supplement your wardrobe. Remember to only include items that have multiple ways to wear it, and use your lifestyle as a guide.
And quick side note: now that I’ve written those rules, they actually are pretty applicable to life too (and self love!)!
- Take notice of what you have (all your perfections and imperfections),
- See how it all fits together (to make a beautiful you!),
- Notice the trends/what works/what doesn’t (those pesky negative things you say to yourself), and finally
- Fill in the gaps of what’s missing (give yourself all the love and self care!)
My Experience Creating A Capsule Wardrobe
So I followed the rules, cleaned out my closet, kept what I loved/fit/wore regularly and in multiple ways/fit my lifestyle. Andddd I was left with seven items.
Yup. Seven – count em SEVEN – pieces of clothing.
Good start I guess?
Next up I made my list of ideal clothes to complete my wardrobe. Now some capsule wardrobe officiandos (if they are even a real thing) will tell you to stick to a certain total number of items. But I don’t do well with such strict guidelines (ask my mother), so I kept it a little more freeform.
I had ideas of all my ideal outfits (thanks Pinterest), so I took the common themes for those and made a list around that.
And then I did what I do moderately well – I went shopping.
And it was frustrating af.
Do you know how hard it is to find clothes that fit an exact wish list??? And that fit this curvy af body of mine?! The answer is very, very freaking hard.
So I ditched the list, and kept a style and color scheme. Now this definitely made it easier, but it took me a solid month to find enough clothes to make enough outfits for a couple weeks. And I definitely found myself buying items that weren’t totally my style but that fit my guidelines. Even then I knew this defeated the purpose, but alas I did it anyway. Because once I commit, I freaking commit.
So a couple months go buy. I think at this point making up new outfits will get easier…and it does! Primarily because I wear the same five items over and over again in different combos. Yeah, go ahead and give me all the side eye you want; I’m giving myself side eye.
And tbh, this continued for months. I added in a few new pieces here and there, but never really got the hang of it.
But staying true to my commitment to the capsule wardrobe cause, I’m giving it another go this month. I got rid of items that I truly haven’t worn, and got a few new items that I’m really excited about and am pumped to wear (including this killer red jacket with studs. And yes, I do feel like a badass in it thank you very much) which is a true self love moment for me!
Now just because my first 6 months capsuling weren’t great doesn’t mean I don’t recommend it!
It definitely saved me a lot of time and a TON of money. Based on how often I used to buy clothes, I’d estimate that I saved a few hundred dollars by not buying new clothes all the time. Over a year, it’d probably be more like $500…which is a solid weekend vacation, or some serious investment money for your side hustle. So definitely worth it in that regard!
Related post // Why I’m Choosing to Love My Body
What My Capsule Wardrobe Taught Me About Self Love
Ok I’ve been blabbing enough. Now to the main point of this post – the self love.
I chatted a bit earlier on in this post about how the rules of capsule wardrobing align with self love practices, but in case that didn’t quench your thirst for self love, here’s a few more.
1. Be honest with yourself. For your capsule wardrobe, this means being honest about what you wear regularly (not what you want to wear regularly). Honest about what looks good on your body (not what you wished looked good on your body). Honest about how many items you truly need (not….are you sensing a theme here??)
How is this loving yourself? Well because you’re owning your truth. You’re not trying to be someone else. In fact, you’re allowing yourself to be yourself. You’re stepping up to the plate (or closet!) and saying “I’m going pick something that makes this beautiful being look good.”Things my wardrobe taught me: be honest about your style and don’t be afraid to own it! Click To Tweet
2. Take it slow. I think I felt so much pressure to buy new clothes right away because I literally threw all my freaking clothes out. It’s kind of hard to go to work when you only have one pair of pants to wear. And I tend to do this with a LOT of things! I want to dive right in, and end up throwing the baby out with the bath.
So take it slow. Ease yourself into your newfound self love. Tackle one aspect at a time (my top three are what I think, say, and do)! And make sure to leave yourself enough pants.
3. Switch it up seasonally. I went through two seasons (well really one because I’m in Texas so really it’s just hot and slightly less hot) or about 6 months wearing the same clothes. And it got boring sometimes.
And the same can go for my self-love practices. Sometimes I forget that every good love story has some spice, some change or big conflict. And I deserve that in my own personal love story with myself! So don’t forget to switch things up. Try a new routine, a new self-care practice, or a different positive affirmation (psst here’s over 90 positive affirmation examples!)
4. Do you. I definitely tried to hard to create a totally different persona through my clothing, and didn’t stay true to my current style and what I actually liked to wear. Making moves toward that ideal style is great, but just remember that it’s sometimes hard to feel comfortable in a style of clothing that you’ve never rocked before.
And it’s sometimes uncomfortable to transition into self-love when it hasn’t been a part of your life before. But don’t shy away from that discomfort! Embrace it, allow it in, and find a way to incorporate into your life that works for you.
5. Rock you. This one might seem like it’s the same as #4, but it’s even better. Remember that this is all about you rocking you. Capsule wardrobes are all about being a bit more creative with your wardrobe, and putting yourself out there in a visual sense. So rock your style, whatever it is, and make sure that you’re choosing pieces that help you feel like the rockstar you are!Things my wardrobe taught me: how to be unapologetically myself Click To Tweet
Since we’re talking all about fashion, have you ever made any big fashion choices that you totally regret? (Mine is everything about my vulnerability picture on my About Asha page!) Let me know yours in the comments below!
Until next time,