As a capsule wardrobe newb, I've been taking mental notes on which parts of my process are working and which are making sticking to my chosen pieces harder than it should be. I figure I can't be the only rookie at this, so why not share my observations? Maybe (hopefully) it'll help someone when they choose to make the leap into a capsule wardrobe.
I picked out my capsule wardrobe items right as laundry day approached. Don't mistake that to mean I have a set day of the week that I do laundry...oh no. I do laundry on an "as needed" basis. Learn from me and make sure all if not most of your chosen pieces are freshly cleaned. It will make the first week of dressing much more enjoyable.
put your other clothes away
Another semi-obvious idea, but this has by far been the biggest challenge for me. It's been less than a month and I've had a particularly difficult time not wearing a yellow sweater that's not part of my capsule but just keeps staring at me from my sweater pile. I know the reason I want to wear it is because I see it all the time and because I love the color – I mean, that is why I bought it – but it would be much less tempting if I just put it away. Out of sight, out of mind.
a word on storage
A secondary part of this advice is to make sure you have enough storage for your off-season clothing. I've been living with one measly bin to store everything I'm not wearing and honestly, it's never been enough storage, even before I opted in to the capsule wardrobe lyfe. I had high hopes that I'd donate enough from my many closet cleanses that I'd only need one bin, but it turned out that even after purging a lot of my old clothing, I still didn't have enough space to store my things. My long-term hope and goal is to only reach the one storage bin level, but in the meantime, I'll be realistic and make the trip to Target to pick up another one.
capsule wardrobes are fun
It may have sounded like I was setting up to whine through this entire post, but in reality, those setbacks haven't taken away from the fun i've had creating interesting and unique outfits with my limited number of pieces. I've even taken to keeping a list of possible future outfits as well as new favorite combinations on my phone. The cool thing is the list serves two purposes; it's great for those mornings where I don't feel like being creative and it helps me out when I get around to shooting my outfits (in my dream world, I'd have enough time/daylight to shoot the outfits in realtime, but this girl's got a commute and a desk job so for now, I've gotta take advantage of Saturdays).
I'll be sharing more thoughts on the capsule wardrobe learning curve at the end of January so be on the lookout for that!