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A slow fashion stylist explains how to build a capsule wardrobe

“Essentially, you’re building a collection of items that you love to wear and feel good in.”

It is widely believed that Albert Einstein wore the same outfit every day to avoid wasting brainpower deciding what to wear. Whether or not that’s true is up for debate, but that hasn’t stopped thinkers and leaders — including Barrack Obama and Steve Jobs — from following in his (alleged) footsteps.

Although there are many reasons to adopt a capsule wardrobe, such as combating mass consumption and the harmful effects of the trend cyclethe idea of ​​simplifying the everyday question of what to wear sounds enticing.


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A capsule wardrobe is a limited collection of clothing items that are timeless and work well together, the idea being that you can mix and match a small selection of pieces rather than constantly buying new items.

But where to start ? What parts do you need? And how many times can you browse through the same clothes before running out of new combinations? We asked slow fashion stylist Jenna Flood, aka the ironic minimalistto point us in the right direction.

“I would start by working with what you own,” says Jenna. “Find out what clothes you wear the most by documenting them. A quick wink or writing it down works best”.

“From there, see what pairs best with your favorite things. Maybe you have pants that you like to wear…what else can you pair with that makes you feel good? Build those outfits , then test them out to make sure you’re comfortable with them throughout the day.

Although this process can take some time, it’s a great way to test out your capsule wardrobe and will help you get a feel for creating looks that incorporate specific pieces.

“Essentially, you create a collection of items that you love to wear and feel good in,” says Jenna. “As you build this collection, notice what is missing. Could this outfit be completed with a great jacket? Or do you need more basic pieces to tie your looks together? »

The internet is full of “must-have” lists that detail capsule wardrobe essentials, but fashion is personal and there is no one-size-fits-all approach. So why should a capsule wardrobe be any different?

“I find that working with what you already have [is] a better option,” says Jenna. “It’s not sustainable to throw away what you already own and work from a list of clothes you might not like. I don’t like skirts, so they’re not in my wardrobe.

“For me, the essential includes white t-shirts, linen pants, oversized shirts and a nice coat – all in basic colors like beige, white and black. I find it works well for me. However, not everyone likes to wear only basics or likes the look of an oversized shirt. It’s about finding what you’re looking for day after day…they become essentials in your capsule wardrobe.

However, if you need a little guidance in compiling some basic items for your capsule wardrobe, Jenna recommends basic t-shirts, well fitting jeansclassic cut sweaters and a high quality trench coat.

Capsule wardrobes typically consist of a neutral color palette for easy mixing and matching, although Jenna says prints and colors can still be part of your collection, “just be smart about this subject”.

“Always look for patterns that have crossed the trend cycle a few times. Things like stripes, floral prints, and sometimes even leopard prints can add more interest to your capsule wardrobe.

There’s also no hard and fast rule as to how many clothes can make up your capsule wardrobe, although the idea is to keep it to a minimum.

“While a lot of people say a capsule wardrobe should be around 30-50 items, I don’t think that’s a hard and fast rule. You might find that you work better with less or more. But I think with over 60 items, it’s not really a capsule wardrobe anymore,” says Jenna.

But don’t get rid of all the pieces that aren’t part of your capsule wardrobe just yet. “I find it’s best to put the pieces that don’t work in your capsule wardrobe in a box for a month or two before looking to get rid of them. Just to make sure you don’t have any really need,” says Jenna. “If you haven’t thought of them in that amount of time, consider letting them go.”

And if you decide that parting with certain pieces is the best thing to do, think about how you can let them go in a way that extends their life, like selling them on eBay, Depopor via a consignment store (such as mutual muse, where Jenna also works). You can also offer them to a friend or give them to an op store.

While downsizing your wardrobe may seem restrictive, Jenna attests to the contrary, saying working with less has inspired her to explore her style and approach outfit creation in a whole new way.

“I believe bringing a wardrobe back to its basics allows us to be more creative. While I don’t mind repeating a good outfit (or ten), I know some people can get bored. I think ‘trying out new combinations can be the key to unleashing creativity in a capsule wardrobe,’ she says.

“Inspiration is all around us and when we start looking, we can create many new outfit combinations. What Pinterest Looks can you create with what you own? Make it a personal challenge to wear seven different looks during the week. Accessories, makeup, and hair can also dramatically change the look of an outfit. So what about special occasions or when you just need to spice things up a bit?

“Another option is to rent or borrow items to refresh your style. Maybe your best friend has a cool pair of shoes you can lend, or maybe a rental company has a cool top to explore your style with. Fashion changes and our wardrobes don’t have to be completely stagnant. You may find that your initial capsule wardrobe doesn’t work for you now, but you still love the concept.

“Renting can allow you to explore new options before you buy. Remember to make wise decisions, buy the best quality you can afford, and take care of what you own.

To learn more about building a capsule wardrobe, head over to here.