I have a love hate relationship with clothing. I know that's probably a terrible thing to say as a model, but it's true. I love clothes, and how there are so many different styles allowing a person to recreate themselves each day or add personality with individual pieces...however...I hate the feeling of being overwhelmed with too many options on the days when I don't know what I want to wear, or just feel off. Not to mention the fact that the ever-changing-size in women's clothing, even in the same store, can really get to a girl's head. But one of the biggest aspects of the love/hate is seeing something in the store (be it retail or the thrift store), and finding it fits perfectly - you now have yet another article of clothing that may make you feel great for the first month you have it, but that also means there is an article in your wardrobe which you will stop wearing as much, replaced by the new piece, without anything leaving your closet.
I've tried to stay on top of this by having a "one in, one out" mentality. The problem I (personally) find with this is if it's summer, and I see a sundress that I really like, I'll get rid of whatever I've worn least in the last month or two...but come Winter, I'll regret getting rid of that sweater for the sundress which will do no good keeping me warm.
I was poking around various minimal fashion sites to get some ideas and found one that I decided to try out. So, back in January, I built my "Winter Capsule Wardrobe" following the general idea of Project 333.
Essentially, the project consists of your wearing only 33 items total for 3 months. What I like about this is it's not having you get rid of all of your clothes at once, but merely putting away the ones you aren't going to wear for those 3 months (not including undergarments, pajamas, and work out clothing) - out of site, out of mind. When the next season comes, you can go through that box of clothes and pick out some of your seasonal favorites, allowing you that feeling of getting something new when you really just haven't worn it recently. It also helps show you what you actually wear, and gives you the time to realize there are certain things you won't miss that you thought you would.
For example, I know that in the Winter (and living in New England), I really only wear one pair of shoes on a daily basis (winter boots), and keep a pair of heels around for special events. But come warmer weather, when there isn't the possibility for 3 feet of snow and ice on the ground at any given moment, I like to change it up between ballet flats, boots, high heels, and sneakers. Putting these shoes away for the times when I know I can't wear them anyways means I don't have to get rid of them (at least not until I'm ready) just to try and keep my closet more organized.
This is also important to me for the modeling aspect of my life. I love having a variety of items to choose from for the all the different photo shoot ideas I have, but I feel like I would need a separate closet for just my modeling wardrobe - something I don't have access to at the moment. At least if I have the box in the back of my closet, when I needed for the random photo shoot, I can get into it and won't have to worry about running to the nearest store and searching for various clothing that fits the theme.
I've been wearing only the items I selected for this project since January, and so far I've noticed something interesting:
Even though I significantly cut back on what was in my closet, I found myself only wearing certain things on a daily basis, even with less options. If nothing else, this project helped me realize I definitely have favorite articles (my red sweater/black jeans is one of my favorite go-to looks), and certain things make me feel better about myself (white sleeveless top, black bolero, black high-waisted pencil skirt, and tights with a pair of heels make me feel like a boss).
I also find it easier to get ready now with not as many clothes to pick from. I can easily put a few outfits together for the rest of the week and know that I'll actually wear them (especially when you only have items that you love in your closet).
Come the end of March (and if winter actually ends), it will be time to create a Spring Capsule Wardrobe. I'm looking forward to seeing how the second round goes since the first round has been going so well.
Meanwhile, here is a list of the items from my "Winter Capsule":
My wardrobe consists of:
- 2 tank tops
- 2 sleeveless tops
- 2 t-shirts
- 1 short sleeve shirt
- 2 boleros
- 2 short sleeve sweaters
- 2 button-up shirts
- 2 pull-over sweaters
- 3 long-sleeve tops
- 1 turtle-neck
- 1 cable knit toggle sweater
- 3 dresses
- 2 skirts
- 1 pair of shorts
- 3 pairs of pants
You may wonder why leggings aren't included on this list (seeing as I'm wearing a pair in the picture above). Personally, I don't wear them as pants, only as a layer under shorts, skirts, or dresses, so I categorize them with my undergarments (since they reside in the same drawer anyways).
I only have 29 photos of clothing here because I did not include images of my winter boots, winter coat, scarf, or the light sweater I keep at work, but including those, my general winter wardrobe items do add up to 33.
One thing I did opt out of including was jewelry. While I do have certain items I wear daily (band ring, gauges, cartilage hoop, and nose ring), and you don't have to count those, I like to keep my options open to play around with accessories. At some point in the future I will likely go through my jewelry box next and try to apply the rules of the project to it, but for now, I'm not overwhelmed by my options and only grab something different on occasion.
Have you ever tried a project like this? What did you like most/least?