Sick of searching through your wardrobe hoping to find something to wear?
If you’re like a lot of us, chances are good that you only wear a small percentage of the clothes you own. The others are too small, too faded, too old fashioned. All they do is take up space.
Having too many clothes makes getting dressed into an ordeal. It takes forever to find the things you do want, buried under the things you don’t. And because you can’t see everything at once, it’s easy to forget what you own. You go out and buy the perfect pair of black work pants, only to put them with the seven pairs you already owned.
Enter: the capsule wardrobe. As 2021 resolutions go, we’re pretty confident that this one will genuinely save you time as well as money. And of course, you’ll look great.
Here’s how to do it.
Step One – Declutter
Start by getting rid of the things you know you won’t wear.
Take everything out of your wardrobe, chest of drawers and anywhere else you keep clothes. Heap it all in one pile. It’s critical to tackle everything at once, even if you have to set aside part of a weekend to do it. Part of the exercise is to see how many clothes you have, including duplicates, and this is harder to do in stages.
Get rid of anything that’s too small, too big or you just plain don’t like. Likewise, anything that’s too shabby. We all need a couple of old tatty outfits for painting a bedroom or doing the weeding, but that’s all. If half your wardrobe has holes in it, it’s time to get out the rubbish bags.
Step Two – Identify the lifestyle you’re dressing for
There’s no point having a wardrobe full of formal clothes if you’re a stay-at-home parent of infants. Or maybe you’re pawing through a pile of paint-covered overalls to find your good suit pants? Either way, a capsule warder ester’s with understanding your actual needs. For this exercise, forget the adage that you should ‘dress for the life you want’ and concentrate on the life you already have.
You might end up with three or four categories. For example — Work, Fun and Exercise. You need clothes for each of these.
Step Three – Winnow it down
For a true capsule wardrobe, you need to end up with a few quality pieces you’ll wear over and over. There’s no specific number to go for, but one popular challenge limits you to 33 pieces (including accessories and shoes, but not exercise gear or underwear).
Others start with five pants or skirts, nine tops, one semi-formal outfit for weekends and a few jackets or cardigans for cooler days. The choice is yours.
The trick here is to identify clothes that:
• Are versatile and go with multiple things in your wardrobe. That pair of pants you love, but only look good with one particular top, can’t pull its weight in a capsule wardrobe.
• Fit well and comfortably. No matter how much you like something, if it’s uncomfortable to wear you won’t reach for it. Be ruthless.
• Are good quality and won’t stretch or pill. The point is to create a wardrobe that won’t need replacing any time soon.
• Fit with the lifestyle categories you identified above.
• Are suitable for the current season. You can swap them out when the weather changes.
Step Four – Store them so you can see them
Everything that doesn’t fit in your capsule wardrobe has to go. Not ready to donate them? That’s fine, but find a way to store them out of sight. Some of these clothes might be pressed into service when the season changes.
With so few clothes left, you should be able to store them in a way that means you can easily see them all at once.
If you have the room, hang as many as possible. Keep like with like. If you have an accessory (tie, necklace) that goes with a certain outfit, keep them in the same spot. The object is to reduce your decision making time down to as little as possible.
And that’s it. Now the only thing left to do is decide what you’ll do with all that free time!