Winter ’17 Capsule

As promised this is a (very late) post about my Winter 2017 capsule wardrobe.  I’ve explained how a fluid capsule wardrobe works in earlier posts, if you need a more in-depth explanation or you’re thinking about starting your own, check out my “How to” post here.

So the beginning of December marks three months since I started a capsule wardrobe, it also marks three months since I have purchased any new item of clothing.  If you know me you will know how much an achievement this is.  I had a little cheat moment in Morocco because I found a lovely second-hand t-shirt that I couldn’t resist.  I don’t feel too bad though as second-hand shopping is the most sustainable and environmentally friendly way to shop!

Three months mean new season therefore new seasonal capsule, yay!  The main difference between my Autumn capsule and my Winter capsule is the addition of some extra knit wear and some proper winter coats.  Oh and hats, lots of wooly hats.  I’m starting to realise I have a small obsession with outer wear.  I probably have way too many coats but I think they have the ability to really make or break an outfit.

“Bright, offensively bright, neon, pink.”

 

I really enjoyed using my seasonal pieces to add some colour to my wardrobe during Autumn so this month I’m taking the opportunity to do the same.  Traditionally, my winter clothing has been quite dull and muted, saving brighter more vibrant shades for the summer months.  Not this year!  Thanks to a pre capsule fast fashion piece I stored away earlier this year, this season is all about pink.  In your face, offensively bright, neon, pink.

 

Pintrest has been great for seeking some additional inspiration, more specifically helping me incorporate such a bright colour into a fairly monochrome capsule whilst retaining some of the Autumn colour palette.  I’ve also been using Polyvore to create my own capsule wardrobe mood board.  This site is really helpful and quite addictive.  Its been great for testing outfit ideas without taking all my clothing out and making a mess!

 

Give me all the coats.

My dad found this coat in an old shed on the farm a good few years back.  He assumed it was mine and held on to it while I was away at uni.  The pockets were filled with straw and it smelled like a cow shed.  A really old dusty cow shed.  When I arrived back home he gave it to me and as you can imagine I was less than thrilled, but then I tried it on.  It was too big by standard measures but there was just something about it.  I love the way it hangs, the pockets are huge and I can really pile on the layers underneath without looking too bulky.  I love this coat because it’s so damn versatile.  As its wax-coated its waterproof, meaning I can chuck it on and run around in the mud with the dogs or I can pair it with a sequin top and some heels to brave a cold winters night on the town.  It gives my outfits that understated look I really like.  You’ll be pleased to hear the dusty old cow shed smell has gone.

 

Knitwear.

I know pink isn’t the first colour you think of when you think about Winter but it works so well paired with some of my neutral pieces from my basic capsule and my camel scarf from last season.  This jumper is from Zara so I’m certainly not advocating you go out and buy it but I don’t believe in throwing it just because it no longer fits in with my ideas relating to ethical fashion.  After all this is about sustainability, for me appreciating what you already own is a priority.  Most fast fashion pieces will survive well past their perceived validity so I’m going to try to make this piece work for me for as long as possible.  Did I mention it was pink?

The trusty olive-green jumper is staying put this season too.  I’m not convinced it fits with the colour palette 100% but I’m reluctant to store it as I’m running low on knitwear that is warm enough for the UK climate.  It goes nicely with my camel scarf and the rest of my basic capsule so I’ve told myself if I keep it this year I get to purchase a beautiful ethically made alternative next year.

Additional basics.

“Am I fooling myself that this works?”

Ok I lied.  I bought a hat.  A very small, very ethical and very lovely wooly hat.  It’s from a lovely ethical fashion brand called People Tree.  They’re actually a very well-known brand and in my mind the pioneers of ethical and sustainable fashion.  Their eco credentials are outstanding and the quality of their pieces is undeniable.  Their website gives you loads of information about where and how each individual piece was made.  My hat was made by KTS, an educational and vocational training centre based in Kathmandu, Nepal. KTS employs over 2,000 artisans, mostly women who work part-time so they are able to look after their children.

Please, if you’re in the market for a new item for your wardrobe take a look at these guys before hitting the high street.

To keep up the pink theme I’ve added a neon pink cami for extra layering.  Again, it’s a fast fashion piece but works nicely under some of my basic pieces.  I’ve also added this Whistles berry bretton stripe and this handmade berry silk t-shirt.  What do you think of the neon pink/berry colour combo?  Am I fooling myself that this works?

Footwear.

Beige boots and Dr. Martins stay.  I’ve stored my leopard print ballet pumps and white converse away until the spring.  I haven’t used the ballet pumps as much as I would have liked.  I think mainly because they’re just not comfortable, proving that no matter how pretty something is, comfort is King.  Well for me anyway.

I’d love to see your Winter 2017 capsule wardrobe ideas, and your thoughts on my slightly bizarre Winter colour pallete!  Link me up in the comments below.

Peace.

Why I started a Capsule Wardrobe

Ok, if you don’t really give a crap about the why’s and where for’s of my capsule wardrobe journey and would rather just find out how to start your own I suggest clicking here.  But if you’re still having some doubts, please stick around.

Continue reading Why I started a Capsule Wardrobe

Capsule Wardrobe: What?

The “capsule wardrobe” is not a new a concept.  The phrase was first fashioned (pun intended) in 1970’s London where boutique owner Susie Faux suggested that women should base their entire wardrobe around a small number of classic, essential items that NEVER go out of fashion.  She encouraged her customers to find their style using these key pieces and then augment these items using key seasonal pieces.

In the late 80’s Dona Karen was the first designer to take the idea to the runway where she famously dressed 8 models in nothing but black body suits and black tights, who took to the run way and began dressing themselves in various combinations of items from the 7 piece collection.

Today capsule wardrobes exist in many different forms.  Some Creators have divised strict rules where followers must adhere to owning only a fixed number of items, only 3 t-shirts, 2 pairs of shoes etc.  And I think for some people this method really does work.  A great example of this is Project-333

Capsule wardrobes have been made popular again recently by the minimalist movement.  I was first introduced to this way of living by my beloved Netflix.  Is it me or does Netflix have some of the best documentaries ever?  I don’t know what it is but I feel like everytime I watch a Netflix documentary I end up on another life changing journey.  Maybe if I was smarter I’d just stop watching Netflix documentaries?  If you want to know more about minimalist living I suggest you take a look, or you can check them out here.

There are now many people all over the world practicing Minimalism to varying degrees, and a capsule wardrobe kinda comes with the territory.

So yeah, as usual I’m pretty bloody late to the party when it comes to owning a capsule wardrobe but, as they say, better late than never.

I don’t know if I need to tell you again the infinite great reasons why you should think about adopting this way of dressing yourself but I’m going to anyway.  Well I’m going to tell you the reasons why I made the change.

1.  The economy

Mostly MY personal economy but also the economy of the world (which we will get to in a separate post).  As a lover of fashion and shopping, I have spent ALOT of money on clothes.  Like, ALOT.  And so, as you can imagine, it was highly frustrating to realise (on an almost daily basis) that despite major investments in my wardrobe I had a. Nothing to wear b. No sense of what my true style actually was and c. An obscenely full and messy wardrobe and d.  A very pathetic looking bank account.

All in all a pretty ridiculous state of affairs.  And sadly I don’t think I’m alone.  How many of you out there regularly stare blankly into the abise that is your wardrobe with the words “I have nothing to wear” buzzing around your head?  Thought so.

2.  The planet

Yes I hate to break it to you but while we all go around mindlessly trying to fufill our addiction to clothes and shopping we are actually creating huge quantities of waste and pollution.  And we’re also feeding into a system where people are

 

 

 

Better late than never.

 

There are lots of reasons you should start a capsule wardrobe.  For me it was a bit of a light bulb moment.  I’m a person who questions EVERYTHING.  Even choosing an outfit is difficult when you play devils advocate with yourself.  And honestly I dont even think this is my fault.  Life is full of so much choice these days, how can we be expected to make a decision on anything?  So to me it made sense to take some of the choice out of the equation.  Choosing is actually fun now I know that every option I have is a GREAT option.

I think everyone on the planet has had a wardrobe clear out.  Usually in the Spring or Autumn.  You tip the entire contents of your wardrobe out onto the floor, sift through the items questioning and scrutinising every item.  “Is this even nice?”, “Do I need this?”, “Will I wear this?”, the questioning is endless and we are so scared of the possibility of losing that we dont actually have much of a clear out at all.  We basically just take it all out and put it all back in again but in a slightly more orderly fashion.

There are some guides out there that will offer you advice on how to to find your personal style and then create your capsule wardrobe.  This is certainly helpful, and I guess I kinda opted this method.  But I’m also a firm believer that over time a capsule wardrobe will help you develop and discover what your true personal style really is.  The more you delve into it and the more you really scrutinise each item, the clearer and more defined your style will become.  This why I really like fluid capsule idea.  Its less rigid so you can swap pieces in and out as your style develops and you really get a sense of the kind of wardrobe you really want.  If you want more help on how to find your true personal style, Signe from Use Less has produced a great video, watch it here.

 

My Autumn Capsule

I’ve always viewed a capsule wardrobe as restrictive.  I’m someone who gets bored fairly quickly and I like to get creative with my style.  I thought that limiting the amount of options in my wardrobe would leave me feeling bored and out dated.  But guess what…

I was wrong!

I know, it came as a shock to me too.

By following the fluid capsule wardrobe method I keep a basic capsule that remains static all year round and (the great news) every 3 months you can add some new items to give your wardrobe something extra for the season ahead.  I find this method particularly useful if your climate is more temperate (I think that this word is actually code for “indecisive and crap”) like ours in the UK.  It’s also great if you like to keep up with the current trends, you can add one or two pieces that will upgrade your wardrobe without completely confusing your style and emptying your wallet.

If you’re in the UK September marks the start of Autumn.  In my opinion the best of all the seasons when it comes to fashion, you get to crack out those chunky knits, your trusty boots and start piling on those layers.

Plus all those lovely leaves changing colour makes the light just glorious.

autumncapsule4

I’m fairly new to the whole capsule wardrobe game and I’m not a huge follower of the latest trends so this season I’ve decided to keep it simple, stay away from the shops and stick with items I already own.  I have some pieces stored away that I always turn to when the weather changes and the air gets just a little bit chilly.  They are great for adding layers to my existing outfits and they spice things up by adding a pop of colour.

 

My trusty olive-green jumper has probably seen better days but do you know what I love it.  It’s a real wardrobe work horse!  I might look to replacing it next year but for now it’s perfect.

I bought these black culottes from Zara pre capsule wardrobe.  I’ve had a fair bit of wear out of them through the summer months so I thought I’d keep them out and try out a few new looks.  They actually look pretty great with a chunky knit tucked in to the high waist, but I usually keep it simple and pair them with a basic tee and my wool coat, I think they make an outfit look a bit more put together than jeans.

So far I’m loving the fluid capsule idea.  I have less clothes but more choice.  Deciding what to wear is actually fun for the first time in my life.  And its good for the planet.

All in all it’s a win win situation!

If you want more info on how to create your own fluid capsule wardrobe I’d highly recommend heading over to Signe’s blog Uselesswardrobe.  She’s created an easy how-to guide to get you started.

What’s in your autumn capsule?  Let me know in the comments below!