I have mentioned this a few times in the past few months on social media and been promising a post forever, so here goes. Last year, I started reading up more on capsule wardrobes. There is tons of information online about creating capsule wardrobes for each season, for the entire year, etc. but I've included a link above to help get you started. After having a child, and slowly getting used to my new post-baby body (totally a thing!), I was craving simplicity in my daily routine and a wardrobe that made me feel good. Keith and I talked about it quite a bit and decided that it made sense to slowly invest in my clothing (and beauty care) so I felt just as good about everything on my body as I did about everything we put on Adeline.
In my research, I stumbled upon Cladwell. It's a website that specifically helps you create a capsule wardrobe step-by-step. Not only do they have you think through your style and fit preferences, but they also provide a process for cleaning out your current closet, and then help you really narrow down your purchases to things you actually need and can wear all year long. Lastly, and the thing I really loved about them the most, is they are very big on supporting locally-made, and/or humanely-made clothing companies. There is a fee to be part of the site, but I found it hugely helpful for the first part of my cleansing, rethinking, redesigning myself process. Plus, I found several new clothing companies that I love (listed at bottom of post). I didn't want to be wasteful in this process, so when getting rid of any clothes, shoes or accessories, I was very selective on where I donated them. And when buying new clothes, shoes or accessories, I really thought of them as an investment and bought pieces from companies I felt good supporting and I knew were pieces that would last a long time.
This process definitely may not be for everyone, especially if you love tons of variety in your closet, but for me, simplifying has been so helpful and stress-relieving. Imagine liking everything in your closet and drawers and everything fitting perfectly. Six months into this process (aside from maybe a few pairs of shoes), that is where my closet is finally at. For the first time ever in my life, I enjoy getting dressed every day. Anyone else know what I'm talking about here (as in the opposite feeling)? I do want to be sure toclarify that I did not replace my entire wardrobe, I did not spend thousands of dollars doing this, and I definitely have a good mix of investment, high-quality, humanely-made items and less expensive pieces I got on sale at Gap (I have this crewneck in white, gray, indigo, and black) or bought through Stitch Fix. I don't think this is even quite as extreme as some capsule wardrobe suggestions, hence this post's title and my referencing it in quotation marks. Also, I capsuled winter separately, which is still a work in progress. For ease of explanation, I grouped spring through fall together and hope it's pretty obvious that the light sweaters are more spring and fall and the shorts and sleeveless tanks are more summer. Also, please note that my athletic gear is all bulked into #11, because it's kind of a lot. BUT to be fair, I am a fitness instructor so please excuse that portion.
So, here is what my New York City, spring through fall, "capsule wardrobe" includes:
1) 5 crewneck tee shirts in white, gray, indigo and black
2) 3 sleeveless tanks in white patterned, orange and light blue
3) 4 long-sleeved tee shirts in white, light blue, dark blue and black
4) 6 "dressy" (mix of sleeveless, short-sleeved, flutter-sleeve and long-sleeve) tops in white, blue, navy, gray and black
5) 4 light sweaters in red (cardigan), maroon (off-the-shoulder), dark blue and black (wool-blend crewneck, high-low style)
6) 3 patterned short skirts
7) 5 dresses (1 strapless maxi, 2 cocktail (1 blue, 1 black), 1 blue summer dress, 1 black and white long-sleeved striped dress))
8) 2 pairs of shorts in white and navy
9) 3 pairs of jeans (black skinny, bootcut dark wash, boyfriend style destructed)
10) 1 pair of skinny olive ankle pants (if you follow me on Instagram, you've definitely seen these)
11) Athletic gear - 2 pairs of stretchy black running pants (1 calf-length, 1 ankle-length), 2 pairs of stretchy yoga/athletic capris, 1 pair of black shorts, 2 sleeveless open-backed tops in salmon and blue, 1 yellow short-sleeved jersey top, 4 Fit4Mom tanks in pink, teal, gray and aqua, 2 Fit4Mom tees in teal and purple, 2 running sports bras (1 green, 1 pink), 2 regular sports bras (1 black, 1 purple)
12) Layering - 1 white cami and 1 white tank top
Phew! That feels like a lot all written out. Okay, please go count your items of clothing now and tell me how I'm doing. :) And now I'm exhausted, so I'll leave you here and save shoes, accessories and my winter capsule progress for another day. Oh, and coats. Because I kind of love coats a lot, and now that I live in New York, at least I have an excuse.
Huge (non-sponsored) Shout Out to: Cladwell for Women (capsule wardrobe source site), Everlane Clothing, Patagonia (my new workout attire), People Tree, Wear Pact, Prana (my favorite yoga pants ever!), Thought (I want all their skirts), UGG (for their transparency), and Stitch Fix - who completely changed my life and wardrobe and I might name a 2nd child after them.