After I had my fourth baby a year ago, I quickly realized that I had a closet full of nothing to wear. I had outfits that suited me in my twenties, but I had physically changed and those clothes no longer fit nor complimented me at my age. I owned an eclectic assortment of clothing some bohemian, some trendy, some classic, some…who knows…. Putting a decent outfit together with what I had in my closet was a constant challenge. I had a closet bursting with clothes and nothing to wear. I felt it was time for change. I needed to adopt a style that would keep me looking classy the rest of my life.
So I began reading. The classic French women struck me. French women effortlessly keep up with fashion yet, always looks timeless. Through my reading on French culture, I came across an amazing concept from the book, Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Parisby Jennifer L.Scott. Jennifer discussed the idea of a wardrobe that consisted of about ten items. Her idea was that a wardrobe does not need to have a lot of clothes to serve its purpose. She proposed that the items in a wardrobe be as high quality as a person’s budget allows. Also, each of those items in the wardrobe should fit well and flatter the wearer. I also read up on popular capsule wardrobe. I combined Jennifer’s ten item concept, with my version of capsule wardrobe so all my items work together. And I am completely thrilled with the outcome.
I have four basic tops, two pair of jeans-white and navy, a short classic khaki skirt, and four dresses in neutral solids and one floral dress. To layer my clothes, I have two sweaters and a light poplin blazer. Everything in my closet is my favorite. The colors in my wardrobe are neutral, mostly revolving around navy. The color navy is a tip I latched onto from Parisian Chic by Ines de la Fressange. Ines felt that navy was just as classy a color as black. But navy is more friendly and less stoic than black. I believe she is correct, and also capitalize on navy, but also include bits of red and white, and other neutral shades like khaki, grey, and black. My color pops are my accessories like shoes, my handbag, and multicolored scarves. This fall, I will rotate out my current items for warm weather to my warmer set of items for colder months.
I have noticed, my perspective on shopping has changed. I don’t just pick up any item. Every piece of clothing has to go with what I already own. The item has to be good quality. And every garment has to fit my body perfectly, or at least be something I can alter. I do not go shopping unless I need something, and even then it is to the internet for used items. I generally buy my clothing used, not new. I can afford better quality if I purchase items second-hand.
After a year of adopting my mini wardrobe, I have discovered that it works very well for me. I never stand in front of my closet in the morning wondering what to wear. I don’t get dressed, look in the mirror and change my mind because my outfit looks bad. I can combine my classic items into amazing outfits easily because all the items work together. I save time tending to clothes. I don’t waste money on bad purchases. My morning is far better spent with other things besides deciding what to wear. I have yet to miss having a wardrobe full of clothes. I delight in putting on anything in my closet. I enjoy creating outfits from the items I own. I LOVE my mini wardrobe.
Perspective: It is easy to get caught up in trends of our day. Minimalism is certainly popular. So it is important to consider the motivation behind something that seems as novel as a small wardrobe. For me, it came down to money and time. I try to use both wisley. The mini wardrobe is simply prudent for my life right now.