Between life, work and my last semester of school ( !!! ), this whole closet minimalist quest has gotten a bit off track. What started at the beginning of the year with good intentions to makeover my closet has lead to a series of impulse buys + online shopping excursions, which I repeatedly turn to when I want an excuse to feel better or procrastinate things like homework. The result of it hurts to me say, but I’ve spent too much money this year on clothes that I do not wear.
I started step one—culling—so well! I rid myself of clothes that I didn’t like and that didn’t fit or weren’t ever worn. But I totally lost it on step two—defining my style. I started filling my closet with clothing basics before taking time to analyze my personal style, lifestyle and daily fashion habits. I didn’t realize how important these things were for determining my needs.
Luckily, mistakes have a way of providing clarity just as much as self-analyzation. I know my style is casual, simple and a bit quirky, but that doesn’t mean I should buy every piece of clothing that fits those parameters. My impulse buying has gifted me frequent opportunities for learning what I actually wear vs. what I think I want to wear. Making this distinction has been, by far, the hardest part about curating a smaller, functional wardrobe.
The process of minimalism is tough. Everyone’s definition of ‘minimalism’ is different, but to me it means reducing my life to only the best and necessary of things. That shit takes serious thought. With a bit of troubleshooting ( and heck, a few glasses of wine ) however, here’s how I’m getting back on track towards achieving just that :
01. WHAT’S NOT WORKING
So…you’re probably wondering what I bought that didn’t work, huh? That would be a blazer, nude heels ( see here ), a super trendy dress, a pair of ill-fitting jogger pants + a few others I cannot remember because I already rid myself of them. And now I know that if I think of buying any of these again, I need to think long and hard before handing over the plastic.
02. GO-TO OUTFITS
Once I realized my impulse buys were not doing it for me, I began by asking myself : what is my go-to outfit? Skinny jeans, a slouchy tee, an oversized cardigan + flats—the answer was so simple! My back-up answer came just as simply. A dress, tights, boots + a jacket. Once my outfits get more complicated than that ( think lots of layers + styling ), I don’t wear them.
Simple is best for me. And simple can be both chic + easy with well-made clothes, a cohesive color palette + a fabulous lipstick. Lipstick, I am learning, is the great equalizer.
03. CAPSULE WARDROBE
Thanks to Unfancy + the prodding of a good friend, I’ve embarked on a new project—the capsule wardrobe. A capsule wardrobe is a mini 37-piece wardrobe made up of thought-out, versatile pieces that make it easy to get dressed AND love what you’re wearing. I *think* this might be a great solution for me. Thus far, I’ve realized that the sweet spot of what works for me is wearing pieces with both a masculine + feminine edge. Think Red Wing work boots + a lacy white dress. A men’s winter hat + delicate gold jewelry. A flannel-inset jacket + a bold red lip.
I hope curating my wardrobe from season to season will give me a true sense of which clothes I wear as well as curb those dang online shopping impulses. One of Unfancy’s guidelines is limiting periods of shopping, so dear God, here’s hoping it helps.
And if that doesn’t work, my grandma taught me there’s always lipstick and wine.