Friday, 18 March 2016

How to Start a Minimalist Wardrobe


This post is a continuation from my first blog post about moving towards minimalism and de-cluttering my wardrobe. By 'getting rid of the unnecessary, focusing on what is important and appreciating what I already have'. I've been working on my minimalistic wardrobe and it's about time I updated you all on how it's been going. Please keep in mind I've started this 'project' with tons of clothes, shoes and accessories. There is no way I would be able to live with a 30-piece capsule wardrobe but I do admire those who can. Instead I want to make sure I love and wear every single item of clothing I have and also change the way I shop in the future. I have some tips and hope the actions I've been taking will be helpful for any one out there who is thinking about streamlining their wardrobe. So here's how to begin...

MAKE A LIST OF EVERYTHING YOU NEED
This sounds daunting, so I split my list into categories. Starting with 'BASICS' which include things like cami tops, plain tshirts and long sleeve tops to layer with. Moving on through the rest of my wardrobe from head to toe. LOUNGE WEAR was an important category for me because I have so much of it! I like to have comfy joggers and hoodies to wear on days when I'm working from home but I really didn't need as much as I had. OUTERWEAR included winter coats, lightweight jackets, cardigans, blazers, scarves, gloves and hats. You get the idea. Below is a list of the major categories I split my wardrobe into...

Basics | Tops | Bottoms | Dresses | Lounge Wear | Pyjamas | Underwear | Outerwear | Shoes | Bags

Now everything is down on paper you can decide how many of each item you actually need. I only need one heavy winter coat. I need around six basic cami tops in black, grey and white (two of each) because I wear these all the time for layering. Having a list of everything you need will help when it comes to getting rid of stuff.

FIND YOUR STYLE
This was quite easy for me, I've definitely hit a style stride now I'm in my twenties. I'm not really experimenting with trends anymore, I know what suits me, what I like and what I'll wear again and again. You can use Pinterest boards to help you find your style. Pin outfits that you love without compromise and you'll soon see a overall theme emerging. When you look at your board as a whole you'll probably see certain colours, textures and patterns repeating. I made another list, this time splitting my style into 6 main categories and then listing my favourite things under each category.

Colours | Fabrics | Pattern | Fit | Favourites | Keywords

Here's what my list looks like...

Colours | Black, Grey, White, Nude, Maroon, Denim Blue, Khaki, Neutrals
Fabric | Chiffon, Leather, Crepe, Jersey, Denim, Knitted
Pattern | Stripes, Plain, Animal Prints, Tartan, Ombre, Gradient, Bold Florals
Fit | Skinny, Slim, Loose, Wrap, Stretchy, Oversized
Favourites | Jeans, Leggings, Tees, Blouses, Leather Jacket, Ankle Boots, Scarves, Jumpers
Keywords | Effortless, Casual, Relaxed, Styled, Fashion, Flattering

You now have a style profile! A mood-board of inspiration but also a clear layout of what your style is (or what you want it to be). Stick your list and photos up on the wall or pop them into the back of your diary. This will help when shopping for items in the future. If there's something you're thinking about buying, ask yourself, does it suit your style? Does this new item fit with a keyword from your style profile?


DONATE OR SELL
It's time to go through your wardrobe and decide what needs to stay and what has to go. Pull everything off the rail, out of drawers and lay it all out in view on the floor. I started by picking out items that I loved and knew I wanted to keep and wear again and again. These went back on to the rail (using the reverse hanger trick). I then started to divide the items I wasn't in love with/didn't fit into my style profile/I had multiples of into three piles, one pile to donate to charity, one pile to sell on eBay and one pile of damaged things only good for the bin (or better still, the textile recycling bin). You're allowed to keep a few items that have sentimental value but focus on only keeping the clothes, shoes and accessories you love to wear. It might mean your wardrobe looks a bit bare or is lacking in certain areas, but once you've sold some things on eBay you'll have the extra money to spend (wisely!)

SHOP SMART
This might be the hardest part! You'll have to change the way you think about shopping and ask yourself questions about every single purchase. I made a list of things that I felt were missing from my wardrobe once I'd decluttered it. There wasn't much on the list. I needed a few more long sleeve basic tops. I wanted a black and white stripey top to replace one that was getting a bit old. During the decluttering process I discovered I had more black dresses than any one person really needs. So black dresses are now on my ban list!  Here's a little look at my shopping list...

NEED | Basic Long Sleeve Tops, Black Ankle Socks, Breton Stripe Top, Coated Skinny Jeans
WANT | Wrap Blouse, Oversized Crepe Shirt, Print Trousers
DO NOT BUY | Black Dresses, Knitwear, Lounge Wear, PJs


Making a start can be tricky, but the hardest part is sticking to your own rules and fighting the urge to spend and accumulate items! It's very refreshing to get rid of things and see your wardrobe clearly for the first time. I'd encourage anyone thinking about downsizing their collection of clothes to give it a go. You don't have to become a minimalist in every sense of the word. I don't consider myself one! But I am learning to appreciate that having less stuff is very good for me. And it makes choosing an outfit in the morning so much easier.

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5 comments

  1. I absolutely love the idea of this, my wardrobe is so cluttered with things that I will never wear. Definitely will give this a try!

    Eilidh from Velvet-Winter

    ReplyDelete
  2. I can see we have the same taste!

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  3. these are some great tips which i found has worked for me in the past. definitely agree that shopping smart is the hardest part but you just have to be super strict with yourself

    xo Sarah
    http://absolutelysarahx.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi,
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  5. this is a great post, makes it sounds so easy and simple. only prob is I a throw on completely different styles from day to day and have every colour under the rainbow in my wardrobe. I don't think I was meant for the minimalist style lol
    Lauren

    livinginaboxx | bloglovin

    ReplyDelete

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