I love order and organization as much as anyone else. And I love efficient shopping even more. The worst experience of getting ready is the feeling of looking into your closet with a desparate thought ‘nothing to wear’. Well, it’s not like when we feel that way we actually don’t have any physicaly clothes to put on – we simply don’t feel good about putting them on. Capsule wardrobe felt like it would be an awesome idea for me to address all these issues – but then it wasn’t. As always, I’ll tell you why in form of a coherent short list!
If I remember correctly, capsule wardrobe was all the rage around 5-6 years ago. It’s definitely not a new concept and it’s been very effective for many because it can help:
- save money because you’ve already got all you need
- stop worrying what to wear because everything (ideally) matches into outfits
For me these were the major concerns why I decided to dig into this topic more. As I’ve discovered afterwards, capsule wardrobe wasn’t a good idea for me due to these 10 reasons:
- It’s difficult to decide how many things you actually need. There are hundreds of Polyvore pictures demonstrating perfectly neat collections of capsule wardrobes. At the same time, what if you have more than 3-4 occasions and, respectively, types of outfits you regularly need? With capsule wardrobe, life can catch you unprepared and you’ll find yourself running to the store once again.
- Capsule wardrobe can limit your self-expression and creativity. If you’re one of those people who like spicing things up once in a while, then capsule wardrobe will become your box. For me, clothes are the method of self-expression and I love experimenting. While doing the capsule wardrobe thing, I once found myself in stores thinking over an item that would truly help me express myself, but didn’t match with most of the items in my wardrobe. That was the first and last time I tried capsule wardrobe – it felt like a limitation rather than the freedom I hoped it’d give me.
- The items in your capsule wardrobe will show wear pretty quickly. If you think that having a capsule wardrobe will solve the issue of shopping for months and months, you might be mistaken. As a rule, the items in capsule wardrobes are basic (with occasional statement pieces) because it’s an effective shortcut to making them work well with one another. However, as you wear them often (and wash them, which is what mainly ruins clothes) they’ll lose their shape and color no matter how expensive they were or how great the quality is. Replacing items will become your routine.
- If you lose or gain weight, your whole wardrobe will become uncomfortable/unwearable. This may be true with any wardrobe, but we all have the things for when we gain a bit or lose a bit. I have one pair of jeans for when I gain weight and then another pair for when I’m in my usual weight – both are importan pieces. If your weight tends to fluctuate often, then capsule wardrobe has to be selected keeping that in mind.
- If you live in a place with seasons, you’ll need a rubber wardrobe. I live in a place with varying climate and I wear many items (like t-shirts) almost all the time. I’ve seen a lot of recommendations for capsules for each season, but truly this seems like a huge waste to me, because many items can be worn in many different occasions. At the same time, having an ‘all year’ capsule also won’t work because you’d have to match almost summer things with winter things.
- If you aren’t sure about your style and would like to develop it, capsule wardrobe will only stall your progress. If you want to develop your personal style, the best time to start is now. Capsule wardrobe will be just a pile of clothes that won’t make you any happier about it. For me, Kibbe’s system worked the best in helping me develop my own style, but I’d recommend to learn about it from David Kibbe himself (either through the Facebook group or book (even though it’s outdated).
- You feel bad about items that you already own because they don’t fit in your capsule wardrobe. I have a closet full of perfectly good clothes. All of them are great items that work well into outfits, but rare pieces work with everything. Very universal pieces are usually simpe, and I wasn’t ready to swap my unique creative statement pieces for a selection of regular pieces that work well together.
- You’re not a person of one style. Capsule wardrobe usually represents one particular style (well, maybe with some fluctuations here and there, but mostly it’s one). If you feel like going smart casual today and complete girly romantic style the next day, then capsule wardrobe isn’t your cup of tea. Just enjoy your eclectic styles!
- It’s actually difficlt and expensive – buying a lot of matching things that feel and look great on you. Even if you apply all the tips to look expensive on a budget, you’ll still find yourself having to purchase a lot of things and buying them at H&M or Zara won’t mean saving. That’s not to mention the utter torture of looking for a wide range of matching things that fit you. I have to order my jeans from Turkey because everything I find in stores is too loose in the waist! Good thing they work with like 30% of my tops at least.
- It can be stressful as hell. Each time going to the store turns into the ‘does it match?’ game. To me, this approach doesn’t bring any joy. Paradoxically, creating a minimal wardrobe can maximize your stress, which is what made it not worth it for me.
How about you? Have you tried building a capsule wardrobe? I’d love to know about your experience with it!
See you in my next post,
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