How I Simplified My Wardrobe

I’ve been referencing my wardrobe simplification for a couple months and I’m excited to finally share how I approached the whole process! While I’m still not 100% there yet – I’ve made huge changes and am proud of myself for getting rid of so much JUNK. It all started when I found the blog Into Mind – written by Anuschka. The blog is centered around a minimalist approach to personal style and wardrobe building. I dove in head first but formed my own plan based off hers! Below I’ve outlined the steps that I took:

Step 1: Define Your Approach To Personal Style

My personal style is very simple. I don’t wear a lot of jewelry. I almost always wear pants. I don’t tend to layer. I prefer neutral colors. I like to be comfortable. I don’t like to be too cold or too hot for the sake of fashion. Most days I don’t see many people so there isn’t a need to dress up, do my hair or apply makeup.

Step 2: Analyze Your Lifestyle

This step almost gives you permission (and accountability) when choosing items for your new wardrobe. I realized that my time consists of: meetings with clients (about 35% of my time), working at home or at a coffee shop (about 45% of my time), working out or casually hanging out with friends. I never go out partying and I rarely eat at a fancy restaurant. I realize that I need pieces that are professional but comfortable. I don’t need to invest in suits, dresses or many heels because my clients don’t expect that.

Step 3: Find Inspiration

This is the fun part! Since I have a Pinterest account, I was able to see what styles I’ve obviously been drawn toward over the years. I created the following board:


Step 5: Build a Capsule Wardrobe

This is essentially what I’ve spent the past two months creating. A capsule wardrobe is created around a few simple, quality pieces so that you can add or switch things around easily to create an outfit.  You have a uniform but many of the pieces can change depending on the color or combinations. I’m not going to go into as much detail as Into Mind but I’ll briefly describe what my uniform looks like: slim fitting jeans, a top and flats.


Your capsule wardrobe is created around that uniform and should contain about 30 pieces total once you’re done. Keep in mind that this is your capsule wardrobe. While I plan on keeping the amount of clothes that I own to a minimum – you can have more than 30 pieces of clothing. This is just your base.


Step 4: Wardrobe Detox

I did this a little while ago. To begin the process – I cleaned our room and the closet. If it didn’t fit into one of the categories listed above, I put it in the “Give Away/Sell” or “Trash” pile (if it was stained or torn). It is very easy to make a choice once your uniform and wardrobe are established. After that process, I sold everything that I could via an Instagram sale! I sold almost everything and made about $300 after Paypal fees + shipping.

Step 5: Make Additions and Fill Holes

With $300 in my pocket (hello, Nordstrom Rack), credits with Everlane/Pickwick & Weller and credit at a local boutique (the best kind of payment when working with local businesses) – I was able to make the additions that I needed to build my capsule wardrobe! Below you’ll see what pieces I currently own and what I still need (boxed by a purple rectangle):




I plan on continuing this method throughout winter and into the other seasons keeping in mind that I’ll have more maintenance between spring and summer/fall and winter.

I plan, over time, to purchase a pair of wedge booties, another sweater, a tweed blazer and two more pairs of pants. Laying this all out is a great way to visually create outfits in your head. Now when I walk into a store, I’m a bit more focused. I can shop but each piece should fit into my wardrobe seamlessly. Almost ever piece that I have can be paired together in any combination. For anything trendier, I plan on supplementing with cheaper pieces from Forever21 or H&M.

Since it is a process, I still found that I had items that just aren’t working with my uniform. I’ve added a handful of other pieces (shoes, too) to my Shop My Closet Instagram account. The pieces all start at $5 (with $5 shipping) and the bidding ends Friday at 5pm EST! I will ship everything on Monday morning.

How to you approach your wardrobe? Is it out of control like mine was a couple months ago? Do you find yourself keeping items that you NEVER wear? Let me know if you try out my interpretation of Into Mind’s 10 Step Process

October 22, 2013