I won’t lie and say my previous two capsules were perfect. Many, many mistakes were made while putting together last years capsule. But it went well enough to carry me through to winter, and I liked having a capsule so much, I started all over again for spring / summer. And here we are! A brand new fall capsule before us.
I’m sharing some tips and tricks on how to create a Capsule Wardrobe, the process I used, what not to do (I already lived that lesson for you!), and how to pick out new pieces of clothing that’ll flow smoothly with one another.
HOW TO CURATE A CAPSULE WARDROBE
Full disclosure. I already f*cked it up before it even got started. DC had some chilly days in September, so I broke the #1 rule of a capsule: NO MINDLESS SHOPPING. I had too much downtime between work and evening drinks, passed by a Loft — which advertised alluring 60% off everything signs, and I ended up buying too much, with too little planning. What was I thinking? I already have two of the tops I purchased that day listed on Poshmark. Sigh. I know.
ANYWAY. Maybe there’s an easier way to do this, but here’s the method of madness I worked with when deciding on my items:
- For starters, I completely emptied out my closet. Like dumped everything out onto the bed and floor.
- I set aside items that won’t make the cut from summer to fall. You’d actually be surprised how many items can carry through when you have a mostly neutral color pallet and take laying into consideration.
- I spent a bit of time evaluating my summer items, and placed them into the following four categories:
- Keep! Wash, pack, and store for spring / summer 2018
- Sell $$$. My first choice is to sell clothes I know I won’t wear again. You can roll over the profits (regardless of how tiny) into your upcoming seasons budget. You know, for items that you’ll need to / want to purchase fresh. For me, it’s ALWAYS new shoes. I drive mine into the ground from so much wear and tear (I blame my FitBit), that I’ve barely been able to keep a pair of flats, or ankle booties alive for longer than two seasons. OK, I digress. So I’m a huge fan of selling items on Poshmark and eBay. ThreadUp is OK, but their payout is super small and it takes forever to get your money.
- Donate – If you’re a kinder person than me, maybe you’ll skip the ‘sell’ pile all together and donate ALL items you know you won’t wear in 2018. Then by all means, drive that bag over to Goodwill or a charity drop box like Planetaid!
- Toss! If items have stains, holes, rips, and tears beyond repair, just toss it. No one wants that trash. Hopefully you won’t have too many in the toss pile…
- Pull out fall / winter clothing from storage. Wash them, and sort them into the same categories as above. Hopefully you aren’t horrified by some of the sweaters you thought were so cute last season. I know there were at least a few in my fall / winter box that I was like, WTF was I thinking?!
- Inventory time! BUT before you begin inventorying, make sure the pieces that are still remaining are pieces that YOU TRULY AND FULL HEARTILY LOVE AND ADORE. Because these are the 36 items that you’ll be seeing A LOT of for the next three – six months. Guys, really. Make sure you love them. I opened up a word doc and wrote out the items in the following categories:
- After writing out the current inventory, I spent hours and hours online. I spent time researching what’s currently in-style that’ll likely stick around for a bit (so I don’t have the same reaction next year), the popular color pallet for the season, and writing out the staple pieces a wardrobe must have.
- I then compared my Fall / Winter inventory list to my research. How many items am I missing? Which items need to be replaced (for me, 100% it’s a new pair of flats)? Which items need to be purchased?
The typical rule of thumb is about 36 pieces. I broke it down into the following. This is a rough number, feel free to tinker with it:
- TOPS — including tees, long-sleeve, and outwear = 20 pieces
- BOTTOMS — including all types of pants and skirts = 8 pieces
- SHOES = 8 pieces
As for closet organization, I can’t recommend hanging up pants on a tiered skirt hanger. It saves SO much room in the closet. And as for hangers, I finally invested in non-slip velvet hangers which not only looks way more clean and organized, but it’s also a life saver for dainty and slippery pieces.
Since I share a child-size closet with my husband, maximizing space is crucial. I’m only showing you my half of the closet (right-side), but I think it’s pretty nicely laid out (my husbands side of the closet is another story…)! Inside the tall skinny dresser holds the following:
- Sports bras / barre tops
- Regular bras
- Yoga pants / running shorts