I’m sure you already know what a capsule wardrobe is but for those (like me) who’ve spent the best part of 15 years bouncing from trend to trend and have always favoured fast fashion over any form of practicality, here’s a quick explanation.
A capsule wardrobe is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don’t go out of fashion and which can be seasonally updated
So why am I deciding to go this route?
At the age of 15, I had never worn a dress. I lived, up until that point, solely in Kappa tracksuits, Reebok Classics and whichever tops my Mum pick up for me in Select. I even went to prom in a pinstripe trouser and waistcoat combo.
By 18 I was dressing like Lindsay Lohan in Mean Girls – tight t-shirts (maroon, dark green, navy) and baggy cargo jeans.
Then I began working in River Island and the 75% managerial discount I had meant that I was a walking advertisement for them for about 4 years.
At uni, I was suddenly surrounded by fashionable students, all younger and way more Topshop than me. My best friend wore flip flops, a sweater and an aviator hat to lectures and I realised I’d never be that cool. So I started to take more of an interest in fashion.
I began reading blogs, magazines and following American IT girls and soon became obsessed with the style of Lauren Conrad, Lily Melrose, Milkteef and a Swedish girl who I can’t remember the name of. Soon I found myself ordering from ASOS, Topshop and New Look whenever these girls posted a new look I liked and I constantly tried to emulate their style.
Fast forward a few years and I still found myself letting Instagram and the Internet rule my online shopping basket.
But I got to a point.
A point where everything I had bought was a standalone piece featured on a thousand different people’s stories or hauls and nothing worked together or looked right together. My style was a complete mishmash of 90s, bloggers, and New In ASOS and it made me feel like shit.
I got to a point where I was looking at photos of myself or at my reflection and completely not feeling like me at all.
I’ve always longed to be fashionable. To be the girl that can spot pieces in a store or online and immediately know what to throw it with to make it stylish.
But that also comes with a healthy bank balance (or healthy discount cards from our favourite retailers). Neither am I in the possession of.
I want to have my own personal sense of style. I just don’t. And I have no idea of how to assert one or find one at 32. I’m pretty sure everyone who is fashionable by this age has been fashionable since they plopped out of their Mum’s vag and was immediately camera and clothing ready.
I’m neither a full tomboy or full ‘girly-girl’. I’m definitely not dressy but I feel like crap when I’m too casual. I’m into bright, fun and ‘out-there’ prints but I’m equally more comfortable in neutrals. I’m basically a mess.
I just want to be effortless. To sling something on and feel like myself. And right now – that’s just not the case.
So of course I could do what I’ve done for the last 15+ years every time I got into a style rut – which is throw it all away and start again. But I can’t keep doing that. I can’t afford it and it’s not ethical.
And that’s when I decided to do something new. To try a capsule wardrobe.
I realised that I already had some fantastic basics that I love wearing and that I could pare down all of the other stuff which I’ll be selling on Instagram (so watch out), or donating.
I need a huge declutter for my mental state. I need a refresh to pull me out of my current, ‘I’m a mess and I hate how I look’ funk and to be honest, I need the space. My current floordrobe to washing basket to floordrobe situation is driving me crazy and the thought of having less than 30 pieces, all hanging nicely and accessible in my wardrobe makes me feel warm and fuzzy.
To start with I watched a few YouTube videos and looked on Pinterest. But to be honest I found a lot of it unrelatable. Sure, you’re going to have a banging 20 item wardrobe when it’s all Celine and Chloe. So I decided to think up my own principles and guide and here’s what I came up with.
I already had most of these items in my wardrobe. But yet there I was not putting them together to make easy outfits. (lemme link everything I’ve got in a sec…)
This is where seasonal pieces come into play. I’m already looking towards autumn (because FFS I hate this heat) and know that I will be adding some fine knits and cardigans in neutral colours to the mix. Aaaand possibly a new denim jacket and a biker jacket to get the outerwear covered.
But my aim is to try and keep my clothes spending down, only adding pieces that will go with everything already in the wardrobe and items that can transcend seasons. I know I have a few jumpers from last year that I can bring back out and that go with everything listed above.
It means I can accessorise! I can add a bag, scarf, jewellery or belts into the mix to change things up which are a lot easier to buy and store than constant ASOS parcels.
Gone are the wacky leggings I only wore once. Gone are the slogan tees in colours that will make no sense for the next 8 months of the year and clash with everything else. Gone are the wildly printed trousers that don’t match with anything else and make me look like I’m trying too hard.
I’m looking forward to sharing with you ways you can shop a capsule wardrobe on a budget and how you can update it each season to be kind to your mental health, bank balance and wardrobe space.
Here are all of the items I have already got for my capsule wardrobe (affiliate links)…
Black skinny jeans, black mom jeans, light blue mom jeans, black denim mini, black joggers, plain t-shirts, black jersey maxi, breton stripe long sleeve, leopard cami, shirt, black trainers, black Vans, white Vans, white Converse, loafers, plain black sandals, leopard sandals and black ankle boots.
I’m sure you all must have similar if not the same as above too!
Have you ever thought about starting a capsule wardrobe? What are your wardrobe must haves?
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