I recently stumbled across the blog Un-Fancy, and from there into the world of minimalist wardrobe blogging. Which is, apparently, very much a thing. I’ve linked to the 333 Project before, but I never really did anything about it.
The basic concept of 333 is that you assemble a capsule wardrobe of thirty-three items, then wear only that for three months. After three months (theoretically this is a season change, but I live in California so it doesn’t really apply..) you make another capsule and then wear that for three months. Etc. The idea is that many items roll over after three months, but some things get rotated in or out.
Anyway. This time, I was due for a closet clean-out. Majorly. I’ve been a lot of different sizes over the past three years (pregnancy, breastfeeding, weight gain) and had to deal with different life circumstances. Stuff piles up.
I made a list of what I thought I needed in a wardrobe (note that this excludes accessories, workout gear, pajamas, underwear, bras, camis and leggings that I wear under things):
(This is an approximation from Polyvore. Actual list below.)
- 3 black tops
- 3 colored tops
- 3 striped tops
- 3 button downs
- 3 pullovers
- 3 cardigans
- 5 dresses
- 3 skirts
- 2 flared jeans
- 3 skinny jeans
- 3 jackets
- 3 boots
- 1 sandals
- 3 non-boots
- 2 fancy shoes
This is actually more than forty things…but whatever. I also realized that my lifestyle right now pretty much requires that most everything I wear be playground compatible. There’s no real distinction between work clothes and kid-chasing clothes.
I sorted through my closet and pulled out everything that didn’t seem to fit into this. Some went to charity, but mostly I just packed things away to consider later. Special occasion clothes and costume stuff got stashed in the closet in our den. I went from running out of space to hang things to having more than half of the closet free.
THIS IS IMMENSELY FREEING, YOU GUYS. Getting dressed is so easy now.
I have learned a few things:
- I don’t actually own everything on this list. My “but I have nothing to wear” feelings are kind of vindicated here. And now I know what I need to make or buy.
- Some of the things I’m lacking (or where I didn’t like the things I already owned) are because of fit. I have forward shoulders, so woven shirts and dresses always constrain my movement and I don’t own any. Sewing to the rescue!
- The representation of me-made clothes is only okay. My briar t-shirt is in there, and my drapey cardigan. And some Alabama Chanin dresses. But not a whole lot else, which I suspect is due to fitting issues.
- Three cardigans is not nearly enough cardigans.
- I forgot about graphic t-shirts. I LOVE graphic t-shirts.
- As a parent of a very messy little kid, I will never be quite as minimalist as some people. My clothes actually get dirty. Frequently.
- That said, this is actually a lot of clothing. PLENTY of clothing. I do not need more clothing than this in rotation at once.
I’m planning to wear this for a while (filling in the gaps as I go) and re-evaluate at the end of April.
So that’s my plan. Anyone else tried something like this?