If you are looking to pare down your clothes to maintain a smaller and more versatile wardrobe as part of your minimalist journey, here are a few questions to get you started. Grab a notepad because it might help to write things down as you go:
What colours do you wear the most? Group all like colours together and this will give you a better idea of which colours you are drawn to and ones you feel flatter you the most. If your wardrobe consists mostly of black, white, grey and nude, this is your personal colour palate and clearly the colours that bring you joy. If there are any clothes that don’t fall into your colour groupings- ask yourself if you like each piece enough to keep them even if they stands out from the rest. You are entitled to have pieces that go against your personal ‘rules’ if you love them and wear them often.
Write down you preferred colours.
Do you have a particular style? Perhaps you wear jeans and a top 90% of the time, or favour leggings and tunic tops. If so, this may be your trademark look. So, pick out things that fit into this category and anything that is left- ask yourself if you will wear it, even though it differs from your typical ‘uniform’.
Write down what styles you favour and perhaps one or two that don’t fit the trend, but you know you like anyway. Anything else can go.
What are you comfortable in? It might help you to try everything on at this point to remind yourself of how it looks on your body- and be honest with yourself. If something doesn’t feel comfortable- ask yourself why? Is it the fit? The colour? The fabric? This will help to further narrow down the things that you want from your clothes. For instance, from this activity, you might decide that you only like things made from lightweight materials, that are fitted and that have a colour palate of four or five shades.
Write down what fabrics, fits and colours you feel most comfortable in and anything that doesn’t fit into these categories can head for the charity shop.
Do you feel like ‘you’ in all of your items of clothing? If you don’t feel like ‘you’ in an item- chances are you bought it to fit in with the latest fashion, to please someone else or on whim and it no longer serves you. Examine each piece, which should get easier as you go along, and think about whether you feel yourself in it or not. If the current fashion doesn’t suit your body shape, you bought something because it was on sale not because it fitted you perfectly or someone bought you an item that has never looked right on you- it’s time to get rid and forget about those outside factors.
Write down what makes you feel your most authentic self and what doesn’t.
Does your wardrobe fit in with your lifestyle? What do you do for a living? If you work from home- do you need more than one smart outfit for interviews and meetings etc? What do you do in your spare time? If you love to read and write as hobbies- do you need a lot of active wear clothes? Pull out everything you wear in a typical week and separate them from the clothes you wear rarely. If they don’t get a lot of use- you could get rid of any duplicates.
Write down how you live your life on a typical week and what you need in your closet to wear in that week. This will help you to identify anything you have that doesn’t fit in with the way you live your life.
Do you need to set yourself a limit? Perhaps you want to set an upper limit of the total amount of things in your wardrobe. Some people have done this very successfully to help cap their spending and make better use of the items they have. You may want to work with 50 items total or 30 items- whatever number you think is realistic for you- stick to it. If you buy something new- know that you need to get rid of something to accommodate the fresh item if it takes you over your magic number.
Write down your chosen number.
Do you need a wish list? When sorting through your wardrobe- you might find things that you need to add to your collection or to replace something that has passed its best. Once you know exactly what you want in your closet, it’s much easier to decide what your next purchase will be. If you find an item that is too worn to fix- you might like to get a new one or if you find a gap in your capsule wardrobe- this could be added to the list too. This list stops you from buying on impulse and ensures you get only what fits in with your personal preferences.
Write down anything you might like to purchase in future.
Hope that helps and good luck with your new capsule wardrobe!
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