Ah the humble capsule wardrobe. Coined by the minimalists, taken up by the fahsionistas and abandoned by April.
If you don’t know what a capsule wardrobe is – like, are you living under a rock? Anyway, it’s a small collection of usually quite basic staple pieces of clothing that can be mixed and matched and create a capsule collection of clothing.
So I like to think of myself as a minimalist. I don’t really hold attachment to many things so I do a good ol’ clearout quite often. I imagine a load of people will be like ‘April, you go shopping every week, you can’t be a minimalist’ and in some way I agree, I like what I like, and collect things like clothes, makeup and photography equiptment, but in the rest of my life, I do tend to hold the minimal amount of objects.
So I think this is where I became a bit unstuck. About a year ago, autumn winter, I was sick of my wardrobe and just wanted to look effortlessly chic all the time. I was frantically pinning every bit of scandi style I could find and thought that this would be a great time to start a capsule wardrobe. If you want to see what was in it, I filmed a whole week worth of videos on my youtube channel documenting it.
I bought a bunch of key basic pieces, and laced my neutral wardrobe with some statement red pieces and I was ready to go!
Spoiler, it didn’t last! Within about a month I was hating it. The main reason I wanted t have a capsule wardrobe was so I could look effortlessly chic all the time, but what I found was, by filling my wardobe with basics, I looked just that. BASIC.
I so desperately wanted everything to match that I didn’t realise I had taken the personality out of my wardrobe. I wanted to dress easily and effortlessly but I ended up looking like I had put absolutely no thought into my dress sense what so ever.
That was the main reason I had to stop. I just didn’t feel like my clothing was really me. I also didn’t look nearly as stylish as the scandi girls I had been pinning on my board over the months prior.
I also really enjoy clothes shopping, I like how easy it is to express yourself through fashion, and although I am not really that fashionable, I still feel like I have a definitive personal style and trying to box that into a 26 piece capsule wardrobe was all to difficult.
I didn’t limit myself by saying I couldn’t go shopping, but wanted to make sure that whatever I bought would fit into the capsule wardrobe I had created. This completely took the joy out of shopping, I would find a lovely statement piece that I loved, and would end up leaving it at the shop because it was navy blue and didn’t fit into my neutral plus red wardrobe.
So here I am, a year on, warning you of the perils of a capsule wardrobe. Although they still appeal to me greatly, I just find them super limiting and not for me.