Monday, May 11, 2015

Lessons From My Closet (A Two Season Capsule Wardrobe)

Does it seem to anyone that God has me learning a lot of lessons lately?  Luckily for me, and hopefully you too, today's lessons are a lot less life altering than those I have talked about lately.

So, about a capsule wardrobe.  If you have not yet read about my daughter's success, you may want to start there!  Boy, has that post gotten the blog buzzing!  She references several sites that are much more knowledgeable than we are.  You will either be inspired or think we are all crazy.

After encouraging everyone to empty out their closets, clean, and start again I realized I had far too many clothes. Far too many. I used to be good at this thing called getting dressed but somewhere along the way I went back to some old bad habits (impulse shopping anyone?) and the clothes were taking over again.

So here is what I have been working on- A Two Season Capsule Wardrobe!

Again, Ashton's post explains the concepts behind it all and shows how it all works, so I would encourage you to read that if you haven't already.  No need to repeat what has been already said.  For now, let's talk about me and my experience.

  • Yes, I have a fear that my friends will think I am crazy or get tired of my same 'ole clothes.  First of all, they probably think I am crazy already.  For the record, I wear only black, white and grey with pink, purple, and occasionally turquoise for color.  Therefore, they may be tired of my clothes already. Plus, I can barely remember what I wore three days ago.  I am counting on them having faulty memories as well.
  • Will these clothes wear out?  Ashton addressed this last week, but two things as a reminder.  One, you are only wearing most of these things for only several months at a time.  Not all year.  Second, in theory, when you are buying less, you can afford to spend a little more money and buy better quality.
  • Will I get boring?  Let's face it, if clothes make us boring, we are already boring.
  • Why a Two Season Capsule?  For me it just makes more sense.  We live in a cold state.  I like winter but I do not like being cold, so you will often find me in a cardigan, inside especially.  Because of those cardigans the things I am presently wearing are good for spring, summer, and even early fall here.  Then it gets cold, and I quickly jump to a winter capsule.  So, yes, unlike Ashton's four seasons, I stick to two capsules.  Which means mine have slightly more things in them.  More on that in a moment.

  • Not many, really.  This is not about numbers for us.  It is about clearing out the excess, spending our money more wisely on timeless pieces that will last longer, and letting go of the stress of getting dressed each morning.
  • This is a five month trial.  Surely I can do this for five months, right?  So, for me, that includes May, June and July, August and September!  Depending on where you live and when you start your months, your length of capsule may be different.
  • Things that do not get worn and I do not miss will be donated.  No holding on to stuff "just in case."  Actually, most of the stuff already went out the door.  A few pieces I am holding back to see.  A very few.
  • For ME, church clothes and dressy clothes are separate things. Here is why. We attend church weekly and do tend to dress up a bit. I have however also gone through those clothes and made adjustments which we will talk more about next week  Also, because we are a military family and one that goes to the theater often, I do have a few dressy pieces for such occasions.  Again, we will address this later!
Things learned from my closet-
  • I tend to buy "cute" over "classy."  The bad news is, I look better in classy.  Maybe I am just too old for cute, but whatever the reason, I need to accept my fate and buy accordingly.
  • I love clothes.  Or maybe just shopping.  Or maybe both.  But either way, I can clear my house of just about anything else and not look back, but clothes- well, THAT is hard for me.
  • My girls are ruthless.  Want to try this capsule experiment?  Invite my girls over and you are guaranteed success.  You are not however guaranteed to like them when all is said and done.  Ask me how I know this.
  • I have an obsession with scarves.  Which is why we are not counting them as true capsule pieces.  Truth is, I cannot bear to see any go. I have agreed not to buy a new one for the next five months.  Yay me!
  • I know now why I like fall and winter better than spring and summer.  The clothes and the layers.  Seriously!  I use to think it was about the cool/cold weather.  Now I have decided that it may because of the clothes.  Pitiful for sure.  One, you can cover up a multitude of sins with winter clothes.  I like that.  Two, in my opinion, you can create A LOT more variations of outfits with layering.  When it is so hot that even a T-shirt makes you hot, that's all you've got- a tee shirt.  Not much variation there. And while some people look great in just a solid color tee shirt, I do not count myself as one of them.  Layers, people.  There are great possibilities in layers!
  • I love JJill and Ann Taylor Loft! I just always thought they were too expensive to buy on a regular basis.  But here is the thing...I can buy two or three $10.00 pieces on impulse while walking through Target or whereever and wear them, not loving them, for a few months, or I can save that money and once each capsule change over, invest in one or two new pieces from a company I LOVE on a piece I LOVE and will last longer.  This is also where ThredUp can rock your world if you are brand loyal and know what you are looking for and what size you wear.  Do NOT get on that site without a plan!
Remember, one of the reasons we embarked on our 34 Weeks of Clean Series was not to just clean and organize but to declutter.  We want to take the stuff out of our lives that creates chaos and only leave that which we love and brings us joy!  If you don't love or use it, and it doesn't bring you joy, move it out!

There are several other things that I learned from this little experiment of mine, but I will share those with you next week when I show you which clothes made the cut and the outfits we created with them.  Following Kathi Lipps model from Clutter Free, we will be asking-

-Do I love it
-Do I use it (wear it, in this case)
-Would I buy it again?

Here is what I came up with that we will be working with next week, remembering that these pieces will cover spring, summer, and fall.

Hang on to your hat, things are about to get crazy here.  Who's in for a little fun?

Linking up with friends-

My Joy-Filled Life

The Mommy Club Updated (2)

I Choose Joy!



  1. I am working on mine still today. I have my dresser drawers done and am doing my closet today. Wish me luck!!! I'm like you, I will probably have two capsules instead of four: Spring/Summer and Fall/Winter.

    1. Awesome! We would love for you to share what you do!

  2. I thought this was a really good idea when your daughter shared it. Around here I could easily get by with two seasons as long as my "winter" had a few warm weather things for our occasional 60+ days in the fall and winter. :-)

  3. I really want to try this. I will probably do a season at a time. I love chartreuse so that will be an interesting capsule.

  4. i'm trying this at moment to as a trial and have sort mine as fall winter that i'm in now as i'm in Australia and spring summer with formal dresses and work and house clothes and PJ's and layering clothing that i use all year round like tanks, tees, long sleeved tees, leggings and cardigans separate and like your daughter shoes, underwear, accessories sport and swim wear. I'm up to 134 for fall winter that's 67 per season and 130 for summer spring that's 65 per season and 41 for work and 7 for formal dresses and 185 for all my layering, swim , sport clothing and 164 for house and pj's this is a lot then most but i have autism and sensory processing disorder and ehlers danlos syndrome and i need more clothing as some days i can't stand to look at one item and the next its the only thing i can wear. and i have and ocd like ritual due to autism and needing routing that when i go out of the house i wear skirts Monday, Thursday pants Tuesday, Friday and dresses Wednesday and Saturday and on Sunday i have free choice !. so for me this works and this dose not include my jewelry , scarves , hats , gloves and shoes.

  5. "Yes, I have a fear that my friends will think I am crazy or get tired of my same 'ole clothes. First of all, they probably think I am crazy already. For the record, I wear only black, white and grey with pink, purple, and occasionally turquoise for color. Therefore, they may be tired of my clothes already. Plus, I can barely remember what I wore three days ago. I am counting on them having faulty memories as well."

    This made me laugh because it almost perfectly describes me. I wear black...with something. Although I have been trying to be a more diverse clothes shopper, it is difficult to not buy black! Or to look at other colors that may not go with black. And I really hope my co-workers don't remember from week to week exactly what I wear. Molly

    1. Right there with 'ya Molly! Bought a black sweater and grey shirt today for winter! ;)


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