We all know the struggle of keeping our closets uncluttered. It’s not as easy as it sounds, especially if you’re like me and your internet’s history is flooded with shopping websites and you literally spend your free time writing blog posts about clothing. A few months back, I wrote a post about the capsule wardrobe system and why it’s the best thing I’ve ever done for my closet. If you’re not familiar with the capsule system, it’s a way of purging your unwanted or unused clothing and keeping your favorite pieces in a rotating capsule that changes every season. Since the season is finally changing from warmer summer months to cold weather, I wanted to provide an update on how my capsule wardrobe worked out (hint: it didn’t).
The easiest part of the capsule system for me, surprisingly, was downsizing my overloaded closet. I had previously always thought of myself as somewhat of a packrat. I used to hate letting go of clothing, no matter how obscure, out of style, or poorly fitting it was. I mean, what if I get rid of my old Jonas Brothers T-shirt that no longer fits me, and the next day I get invited to a Jonas Brothers-themed party and have nothing to wear?
But I started the capsule system with the mindset that I was going to throw away clothes no matter what, and that seemed to make it easier to deliberate what should stay and what should go. My real problem was that I didn’t have enough clothes already in my wardrobe that I really loved and wanted to keep. When I was finished sorting, tossing, and donating, I had a lot of missing pieces that I still needed to fill in. This is perfectly natural, as most people do have to do a bit of shopping when they first start the capsule system because it turns out they don’t actually need most of their clothes. However, I felt a bit overwhelmed by the amount of shopping I needed to do; I still needed several dresses and skirts, pairs of shorts, black skinny jeans that actually fit, basic tops, and more. And since I knew I would be wearing every piece more than usual because I wouldn’t have as many options, I wanted to invest in quality clothes—AKA, more expensive pieces. I ended up never really completing my shopping list before I gave up.
The other issue I had with the capsule was that I started it in the middle of a big move. I moved to Los Angeles a few months ago and, while relocating, my clothes were all thrown together and mixed up. When I started unpacking, I realized I’d have to sort through everything and figure out what pieces were in my capsule and what would have to go into storage. While I was at it, I’d have to store all of my off-season clothes in a place that was not my closet, which wasn’t really an option in my new apartment. So after all of the preparation I did to switch to the capsule system, I finally decided that it just wasn’t going to work for me.
This is not to say that the capsule wardrobe system doesn’t work in general. If you feel that you can really commit to it and make it work for you, then it’s a great way to stay organized and save money. You just have to remain focused on what you’re doing and why. Minimizing your closet can inspire you to streamline other areas of your life as well, and it just might be the perfect place to start. But it is definitely a huge change. Sure, I initially thought I was going to have no problem staying organized and stop shopping, but after a while I found myself pulling out-of-season pieces out of their hiding places or buying clothes I technically didn’t need anyway. My hectic schedule these past few months combined with a lack of options stunted my progress and I eventually knew it wasn’t going to work for the way I live my life. What works for me is knowing that I feel comfortable in all of my clothes, not limiting myself to a specific quantity, style, or season. Besides, no wardrobe change is ever going to make me give up my Jonas Brothers T-shirt.