How To Curate A Capsule Wardrobe
In 1973, a unique clothes shop opened its doors in London’s West End. It was called Wardrobe and its founder, Susie Faux, filled it with all the clothes a woman needed to create her signature look.
This would later be the birthplace of Susie’s famous invention and contribution to fashion – the capsule wardrobe. A wardrobe that held a handful of beautiful pieces to be worn differently each day.
This wardrobe concept was snapped up by women the world over but particularly in France where wardrobe space in a tiny Parisian apartment was no larger than a pantry. With the capsule wardrobe, French women no longer had to sacrifice style for space.
“A capsule wardrobe is essentially a seasonal collection of clothes that can be mixed and matched to create a multitude of outfits,” explained Christine Maikousis, a certified personal stylist with Style You Chic.
The key word here is seasonal, which is what differentiates a capsule wardrobe from a staple or basic wardrobe of black pants/skirts and white tops. The capsule wardrobe takes a minimalist approach and is built around 20 to 30 items.
Impossible? Not when you exclude innerwear, sportswear, evening wear, beach wear and pajamas from this list. Bags, shoes and accessories also fall outside the capsule.
“When you pare it down that way, what you are looking at is a collection of versatile quality clothing that look fantastic individually and with each other,” Christine said.
“A well planned capsule wardrobe is only filled with clothes that fit your current body shape and lifestyle, and that you truly love wearing.”
This thoughtful curation of clothing spells the end of spending precious time deciding what to wear, erases the guilt of owning unworn impulse buys and offers an insight into your personal style.
“The best part of having a capsule wardrobe is knowing that no matter what you pull out and pair, you will walk out the door looking stylish, chic and immaculately put together,” Christine said. “Yes, it takes a certain amount of planning but I promise, it is well worth the effort.”
Six Steps To Curating Your First Capsule Wardrobe
1. Set aside all the items that do not belong in a capsule wardrobe but remember to still allocate wardrobe space for them.
2. Examine the remaining day-to-day items in your wardrobe. Only keep what fits you well and what you genuinely love wearing. Real style confidence comes from wearing what you love while well-fitted clothes can magically transform your appearance.
3. Separate the items into seasons and allow for some items to span two seasons. Select the season you want to work with and put away the rest.
4. Create a seasonal capsule wardrobe plan by deciding on a colour palette. Buy one or two items in the colour of the year to keep my outfits looking and feeling more up to date. And buying only a couple of pieces means that by the next year, you would have already had real cost per wear from each one.
5. Decide which pieces and styles work together. Often times, there will only be one or two missing items that are needed to pull everything else together. Identify the gaps and plan a shopping trip to buy only these items.
6. Experiment with creating different outfits with each item and take photos for future reference.
A Spring/Summer Capsule Wardrobe
4 or 5 tops
I cardigan/light knit
2 denim jeans
An Autumn/Winter Capsule Wardrobe
4 or 5 tops
2 warmer knits
2 denim jeans
Curate a different range of dresses, jackets, pants and skirts for your Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter capsule wardrobes.
Unless you are a personal trainer or exercise everyday, keep your sportswear to a limit of two pairs of tops and bottoms.
Your beachwear, pajamas and innerwear can be kept to a personal satisfactory limit.
Add daily footwear, evening shoes and a variety of handbags. Accessories play an important role. A scarf or a pair of shoes can easily and instantly transform, enhance and personalise each outfit even further.
Main image credit: fromthelaketothetrees
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