If you have not yet heard of the concept of "Capsule Wardrobes," then you are missing out on almost 5 decades of brilliance! I would personally describe it as the latest minimalist challenge fad for fashionistas who are not fainthearted. Though the concept has been around for quite a while (thank you Susie Faux and Donna Karan), we can attribute a lot of its gaining momentum and traction due to social media and fashion bloggers making it more public and personal. Generally, this type of wardrobe is intended to encapsulate a few essential items of clothing which are seasonally appropriate, multifunctional, and timeless (aka: probably won't go out of style any time soon). Those who adhere to more strict minimalist guidelines tend to challenge themselves by including not only staple clothing items but also staple jewelry and accessory items as well which would include necklaces, bracelets, earring sets, scarves, belts, etc. Some even try to maintain a number as small as SEVEN items. For beginners, it has become widely acceptable to include anywhere from 25-35 items. The goal is to have an outfit suitable for any occasion without owning excessive items of clothing. This capsuling process is to be used as a means to declutter not only your physical closet space, but also mental and emotional spaces that have greater tendencies to keep us tied down and bound up.
So in saying that this challenge is not for the fainthearted, I truly mean it. Not that wearing a minimal wardrobe is difficult. On the contrary it is actually quite easy and freeing. The process to get there, however, is a road that is sadly less traveled due to its challenging nature. For some of us, it means finally letting go of pieces that hold some sort of sentimental value because the piece no longer serves any purpose. For others of us, it means deciding to stop believing lies that you are unworthy of allowing yourself to be presentable because of being unable to meet some unfair expectation of yourself. I'm sure most of you can directly identify with this quote from my capsuling friend, Katie:
My body image has been the biggest obstacle to minimalism and dressing my body intentionally. I wanted to dress the body I could see in the catalog but when the outfits wouldn't translate to me, the message in my head was, "I can't be stylish," or "I can't pull this off." - Katie via The Katie-Did
I could have taken an angle on this whole dressing your body thing as "it is JUST about clothes, so it's really not big deal. Just do it." But really and truly, it's a big deal. Especially if this post serves as a springboard for being your first go at a capsule wardrobe, then I need to let you know that IT CAN GET MESSY. But we gotta work through the physical mess to work through the emotional mess to find the Truth and cling to it and move forward. Amen? So I won't lie to you. The end result will be worth every hard and every FREEING decision that you make. So, you ready? Hold my hand, and let's go.
Below you will find 31 images of 30 pieces that I am using as my capsule for Fall 2015. 31 images because I HAD to show you the back of the grey stripe tunic on the second row. It's "totes adorbs." By just glancing over the images, you quickly pick up on the fact that I like neutrals, grays in particular. After moving to the midwest 6 years ago, I started developing my deep appreciation for a neutral palette in my wardrobe. Though you can ask my other friend Katy, and she will vouch for me that this love affair began as COMPLETE DISDAIN! I could NOT believe how "blah" people in the midwest dressed compared to all of the flamboyant colors and patterns that I was so akin to from growing up in the South. I slowly began to learn and appreciate that small doses or "pops" of color within each outfit have to ability to become far more palatable and appreciated rather than being drenched in hues from head to toe and almost literally yelling at people and pushing them away with my attire.
Kinda interesting to think about, huh? Your wardrobe, when tastefully and thoughtfully pieced together, can actually be a means of grace. Say whaaat? Yes, I did just say that. With each interesting detail and well-thought-out, confident selection, it can become a TOOL used to draw people in. I even believe that it is something God can use to be an attractive welcoming beacon of safety to others so that conversations can happen and gracious words can be ushered in from one friend or possibly stranger to another.
So in my capsule, you will find pieces that are all my absolute favorites for one reason or another. And if you would like to know more about each piece, then you need to make sure that you follow @luxewise on Instagram so that you don't miss any of our outfits of the day (#ootd) or #LWoutfits posts which will be JAM PACKED with all the info and insight you need for each outfit!
So you might be thinking that all of this looks and sounds great, but you're kinda feeling like you are about to be left to wonder and wander. Are you thinking HOW in the world do I even get to a STARTING POINT? Let me lay out a few tips on how to get started, and we'll go from there, ok?
No. 1 | Shop Your Closet
Before you can effectively build your capsule, you need to know what you have and what you don't. So I would challenge you to shop your closet first and get rid of everything you don't love. Just think about how defeated you must already feel when you look into your closet and have to sort through things that you really don't enjoy or feel confident wearing. If you can't look at an article of clothing and say that you love it within three seconds, then guess what? YOU. DON'T. LOVE. IT. So bag it up and send it on to someone else who will. Let go of everything that does not serve any purpose for you size, style, and lifestyle wise.
No. 2 | Utilize Pinterest
If you have not already, create a little Pinterest account and save all of your favorite outfit ideas to a style inspiration board. But listen to me. When you are looking at images, DO NOT THINK ABOUT ANYONE ELSE'S OPINION BUT YOUR OWN. Pin the things that you are genuinely drawn to, love, and are inspired by. Once you've compiled a decent amount of pins, analyze your board. Look for common color themes to see what palettes you like the best. Look for particular items of clothing that you have pinned repeatedly. Are the things that you have pinned reflected in your closet? If not, then you know that it's probably a good idea to make an investment in those flare jeans that you pinned 8 times. And if you are just ABSOLUTELY against Pinterest, then go old school and collect your magazine clippings. Keep them in a binder or glue them to a poster board and analyze away.
No. 3 | Do NOT Be Afraid
You know that thing you apparently love because you pinned it 8 million times but you swear you would never wear something like if your life depended on it? Yeah, go try it on. Get outside of your comfort zone. Think outside of the box. Don't paralyze yourself by fretting over numbers and sizes on tags! Try. On. Everything. And just because you may have one prefence for a certain magazine or blogger or store, do NOT limit yourself. Our bodies are constantly changing, so the tailoring of our clothes probably will too. And if you are STILL stumped, CALL US! Let's set up a consultation. We can come to your house, go shopping with you, or even consult via Skype or FaceTime. You don't have to do this alone. We would LOVE to help. And even for a little bit more inspiration, check out these videos: