September 11, 2014

My First Capsule Wardrobe: Item Selection

This week I'm talking about capsule wardrobe creation. I'm sharing my wardrobe from this summer and the tips and tricks I learned along the way! Be sure to check out the previous posts if you missed them: Introduction, Creating A Palette, & Lifestyle Needs.

We've finally reached the down-to-business portion of the capsule wardrobe process. Enough planning and prepping: it's time to pick your players!

Having decided on a color palette and determined your stylistic needs, you should have a pretty clear idea what pieces will function best for you. What's left to determine is how many of each item you need. As always, breaking things down into additional categories will simplify the process.

For a 37 piece wardrobe, Un-Fancy suggests 9 shoes, 9 bottoms, and 15 tops. I think her "Rule of Three" is absolutely brilliant, but in the end I found my lifestyle ratios to be more informative. For me, it's easier to think in terms of clothing types (i.e. tanks, jeans, sandals) than styles of dress. For instance, I know I'd gladly sacrifice a casual (basic) hoodie for an additional interesting (statement) jacket, because (a) I have a quirky vintage coat problem obsession, and (b) I'm only ever inclined to pair hoodies with yoga pants and pajamas.

Ergo...

-9 shoes became:
  • 3 sandals
  • 3 flats
  • 1 heel
  • 1 boot
  • 1 platform
-9 bottoms became:
  • 4 pants
  • 2 skirts
  • 2 shorts 
  • 1 capri
-15 tops became:
  • 3 tanks  
  • 2 dresses
  • 2 jackets
  • 3 blouses 
  • 2 tees
  • 1 cardigan
  • 1 sweater
  • 1 blazer 
      +4 extra:  1 cardigan , 1 blouse , 1 dress, 1 sweater

Okay, hold the phone: Four extra tops?? Yes, pumpkins, it's true. I went over the 37-item limit. Had I realized this earlier, I would've fessed up! At the time of my original list construction, I was trying to decide between a few different shirt options, so I put duplicates down temporarily. I meant to narrow my list back down to 15, but I guess I conveniently forgot to do so. C'est la vie! This is a prime example of adapting to suit your own needs. That, or it's straight-up cheating. Take your pick.

For those of you interested in a more minimal approach, I'll share which items I could've done without in tomorrow's "lessons learned" section. For the purposes of honesty in the upcoming photos, just know I'm working with a 41-item wardrobe: 19 tops, 9 bottoms, 9 shoes.

Here's an alternative representation of my Summer '14 selections, for my fellow color junkies: 

-9 shoes:
  • * * * sandals
  • * * * flats
  • * heel
  • * boot
  • * platform
-9 bottoms:
  • * * * * pants
  • * * skirts
  • * * shorts 
  • * capri
-15 tops:
  • * * */* tanks  
  • * * * dresses
  • * * jackets
  • * * * */* blouses 
  • * * *  tees
  • * * cardigan
  • * sweater
  • * blazer 

And here's the palette again, for reference:



What would you add or take away from this list? Share your thoughts, findings, and questions in the comment section!

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