Tired of having a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear? Fashion blogger Leanne Blackmon of Classy Yet Trendy was too until she came up with her capsule wardrobe — a closet organizing system that builds out seasonally from a core of essential pieces. According to Blackmon, creating a capsule wardrobe has a wide host of benefits, including a clutter-free, logically organized closet that leads to far less time spent getting dressed in the morning. She has also saved hundreds of dollars each year and gotten out of debt as she now purchases only what she needs (impulsive fashion girls with poor credit take note). Last, but not least, being able to organize your wardrobe and look great every day is a huge confidence booster! Look great, feel great, right ladies?
So, what is a capsule wardrobe exactly? The first component we are all familiar with: basic essential pieces. That is classic, timeless staple pieces that outlast trends and act as an anchor or the glue for an outfit. These include classic denim pieces, silk blouses and dress shirts, neutral pencil skirts and trousers, white T-shirts, black cardigans, camisoles, leather jackets, turtlenecks, trenches, cashmere sweaters, black and nude pumps, white sneakers, A-line skirts, blazers, wrap dresses — you get the idea.
The second component involves mixable pieces that are strategically plotted to work collectively toward dozens of outfit combinations so that your wardrobe always seems fresh and interesting while reusing the same pieces over and over again. Blackmon suggests 20 mixable pieces consisting of 7 tops, 5 bottoms, 5 layers and 3 pairs of shoes. The key to picking these items is to ensure they are high-quality investment pieces that won’t need to be renewed every season or even yearly. They also need to have great versatility and be able to combine into at least three different outfit combinations. This usually means keeping a mostly neutral palette with a few accent pieces. The more solid-colored items you have, the easier outfit coordination will be.
Step 1: The first step in creating a capsule wardrobe is cleaning out your closet and removing everything until it is barren as the Sahara desert. Your closet will no longer be a storage space for high school nostalgia. You can put all that excess clothing in a storage container under your bed.
Step 2: Hang anything you already own that fits your plotted capsule wardrobe list back in that closet and start shopping for the rest. Print your checklist and head to the local mall because you are a woman on a mission!
Step 3: Organize and segment your clothes by garment type. Tops go with other tops, pants with pants — you get the picture. You want to make sure your clothes are all right in front of you, displayed for an easy visual and retrieval.
Step 4: Get creative and come up with 100 outfit combos — no, really. Blackmon came up with 100 outfit combinations with her 20 pieces. You can either snap a picture of each look or jot them down on a list. You’ll want that kept in or near your wardrobe for quick selection.
Step 5: Repeat as necessary each season! Pieces can, of course, be used throughout the year, especially if you live in a consistent climate. The whole point of the capsule wardrobe is to have an extensive selection of outfits while still keeping a budget. You don’t want to find yourself aimlessly wandering into a store and depleting your bank account.
Ready to give capsule wardrobes a try? Here are a few pieces to get you started.