There are days that I wish someone could wave a magic wand over my closet and make it all perfect. I am a simple girl with only a few wants. I want to open the door and know that I have the perfect outfit to wear. I don’t want to spend a lot of money to make it happen. I want to work with what I have. Even as a professional organizer I continue to look for solutions.
About 9 months ago I divided my closet into seasons. Before that my closet was organized by color and sleeve length. And very organized! But living in the Midwest I really used only half of my clothes in the winter months and the other half in the summer months. I had a spare closet in my house so I had some flexibility with the space. I found out that there is a fancy term for dividing clothes into seasons and you can now use the fancy term too. It is called a capsule wardrobe. If you have never heard of a capsule wardrobe type it in the search bar of Pinterest and you will be flooded with images.
Capsule Wardrobe can be defined as a set of clothing, typically around 30 items that are considered essential pieces to create a wide variety of outfits for all occasions created seasonally.
I do mine twice a year, I do not create ones for all four seasons. Because of where I live, it is difficult to do it four times a year. In May I could be wearing a dress or a sweater depending on the weather. The swing of temperatures can even happen in one day.
Here are things I have used to help me figure out my capsules:
- Clothes that make me happy. I am done wearing clothes that don’t bring me joy. I usually gravitate towards things with color and patterns. Needless to say I am tall and can be found in a crowd with my vibrant clothes. I want to grab a shirt and be happy when I put it on.
- Clothes that make me feel beautiful. Last week I put on two different tops that fit me but were not flattering. Just because it fits is not reason to keep it as part of your capsule. I truly need to feel beautiful in it. I am old enough that I don’t need anyone to tell me what outfit makes me beautiful. But just in case I have my best friends that keep it real for me.
- Focus on timeless pieces. I have one sweater that I have had for maybe four years. In fact I loved it so much I bought a second one as my first one got a hole in it. My closet now contains two basic black dresses that I love. I can put on a different necklace and a different pair of shoes and it looks like a different outfit. True capsules focus on the versatility of the basic pieces.
- Focus on a number. The blogs I follow on this topic use the number 33. I just counted my clothes and I have 46 items. I do not count shoes, purses or jewelry. The hardcore capsule people do. My goal is to just get my clothing to 33. I know I could easily get rid of 13 items right now if I had to. I have found with my organizing clients that they like have a number as a goal. Pick you number and see what you come up with.
- Give yourself permission to not be perfect. Going hardcore with 33 pieces is a daunting task for most of us. If you work in a professional setting and go out in the evenings it can be even more difficult. My life is pretty flexible so I don’t need to worry about wearing the same thing to work everyday. In fact you will find me wearing some clothes two days in a row because I only wore them for three hours the day before. As long as I am not seeing the same group of people I am ok with that.
The goal in all of this is to realize that you have enough clothes already. We really wear our favorite pieces over and over again. Why not take the time and focus on the ones you wear and removes the ones you don’t. I moved the ones I don’t wear to another closet. I had already pulled the ones to donate and consign. Some people box them up and donate them after a few months of not wearing them.
Take some time this week to have a look at your closet and start putting your summer capsule together. And don’t forget the most important part in all of this, to have fun. Call your friends and make a party of it!
To Joyful, Simplified Organizing,
Melissa is a Productivity Consultant living in Fargo, North Dakota doing her best of living a life full of adventure. Filling a life of memories and not of things!