What is a Capsule Wardrobe? (and How to Create One You Love!)

One minute left to get ready and you are standing in your underwear frantically searching your (full, I might add) closet, but there is NOTHING to wear!! Have you been there?

We probably all have at some point! The vicious cycle of buying one trendy top, stuffing it into the closet of other miss-matched clothing, feeling discontent while getting dressed, then going out and buying a NEW garment that will "solve" all the problems, is a cycle that is hard to break once you're on a roll. Why is it NEVER enough? Why does over consumption not fulfill us or make getting dressed any easier?

If you are looking for an easy, effortlessly chic, and sustainable solution...look no further. Creating a capsule wardrobe is a GAME CHANGER.

What is a Capsule Wardrobe?

A capsule wardrobe is a thoughtfully curated selection of versatile clothing that can be mixed and matched to create multiple outfit options. They are often classic, high quality pieces that can be worn many different ways. The idea is fewer, but better.

Although capsule wardrobes have become very popular over the past few years, the concept is not new! It emerged in the 1970s when a woman named Susie Faux opened a boutique called " Wardrobe" in London, where she sold versatile, high-quality clothing that could easily be mixed. Her goal was to help women gain confidence and ease in the way they dressed.

In 1985 the concept gained traction in the USA when designer Dona Karan created her "Seven Easy Pieces" line. The show was a hit, and the idea of having an interchangeable, minimalist wardrobe become popular.

Ultimately, a capsule wardrobe can lower your decision fatigue and stress, leaving you with more time to focus on what matters, more money in the bank and a more sustainable lifestyle ~ all while looking chic.

Step 1: Assess What You Have

Some capsule wardrobe sources focus on getting rid of everything in your closet that does not fit into the capsule, or as Marie Kondo has taught, anything that does not bring you joy. I would like to challenge this way of thinking. EVERYTHING we've ever purchased and owned is still on this earth today in some form. When we throw something in the trash, it most likely is still sitting in a landfill.

A capsule wardrobe can help to eliminate the urge to over-consume in the future, but it doesn't erase the past! So let's first work with what we have!! Chances are, you already have many of the components you need to get started, and it is always a good idea to keep other options in our closet as well- even if it's only used for one occasion. As for items that don't fit, or you know you will never wear again, please donate or sell them online. ThredUp is a great resource when you're ready to declutter your closet. Order a free donation kit that you can fill and send back to them. They will then either sell or recycle your clothing properly.

Step 2: Clear & Clean

Once you've looked through what you already have, choose the items from your wardrobe that you feel are classic, versatile and most worn by you. Clear an area of your closet that is specifically for your capsule so that these pieces don't get lost in the abyss. If need be, wash, iron or dry-clean these items to create a sense of newness.

Step 3: Add With Intention

Although it can be expensive to add high-quality pieces to your wardrobe, it is SO worth the cost in the long run. A well-made, timeless garment will have a better fit, keep its shape, and require little to no repair for a much longer time. Add pieces slowly, with intention, and only choose pieces you truly love.

Once you've got your essential capsule items, the sky is the limit!! Experiment with how you wear each piece, and what outfit combinations you can make. As you discover your own personal style, your capsule wardrobe may evolve, and that's okay! It's all about getting creative and becoming more intentional and confident with how you dress- with way less stress and hassle!! I hope this guide is a helpful starting point, and would love to hear your thoughts or questions!



Take a look at my Fall into Winter capsule wardrobe in the next blog post!