My style has always been an integral part in my life. Feeling down? Put on a cute outfit. Feeling bored? Go shopping for new items to add to my ever growing collection. Feeling stressed? Arrange my closet and storage spaces to fit all the clothing items I had. My style can be my comfort, my escape and how I express myself. But, I have come to realize that we have an unhealthy relationship.
My journey with fashion and my style came to be a bit confusing over the past few years. While I became passionate about the environment and began to fix some of my “unhealthy” habits, shopping unconsciously and excessively was still on my mind and one of my worst habits. While I have pretty much ruled out shopping at malls and mainly only shop second-hand there is still this mentality that I have that when I am bored, I should go shopping. When I cave in and start sifting around, I usually feel a pain of guilt because there could be so many other, productive things that I could be doing. I would also feel guilty because I should be saving my money on things that matter and that I love. While I do love expressing my style and feeling comfortable in my own skin, I know that I can do that without constantly adding clothes to my closet.
Another main motivation was that I wanted to live the way that I have always wanted to live: minimally, especially in terms of clothes because that is where I have always been excessive. I want to practice what I preach, especially since I am moving towards a career in environmental studies and it is the focus on my blog. I believe there is an important connection to be made with fashion and the environment and I am ready to find my balance between them both.
So, how did I do it?
Lucky for me, I have been obsessed with the blog Un-Fancy for some time now and with the help of her sharing her story, I discovered Be More With Less. The Project 333 caught my eye and I began to take the challenge.
First, I did my research. Both blogs I mentioned before helped me tremendously. I sifted through old posts, guides and resources to help me find my true style and which items I was going to use. If you are unfamiliar with Project 333, learn about it here.
First, I planned it all out. I used the Capsule Planner from Un-Fancy. At first it all seemed intimidating but surprisingly it was easy and liberating! It felt good to put away the clothes that I felt guilty for purchasing and never wearing. It felt great to see the clothes I wore the most had made it to the final round, knowing that I have the capability to accept this challenge.
If you are familiar with Project 333, they state specific rules about which 33 items you can use which include clothes, accessories, jewelry, outwear and shoes. It is important to be honest, and I could not commit to accessories or jewelry. Don’t be mad just yet, I (kind of) have good reasons.
I am still a college student and I work multiple jobs so refining my accessories (mainly my purses) would be extremely difficult because they change day by day depending on what activity I am doing. As for jewelry, I am extremely minimal in my jewelry as it is and all the items that I own are very personal to me so I did not feel the need to minimize that.
The interchanging holidays/seasons during August, September and November will absolutely be my biggest challenge. You can always rely on the weather in New Orleans to be unpredictable. While in my 33 items I did include warmer clothes, I may need to swap out a few items if Mother Nature calls and my wardrobe just ain’t cutting it. So, I will allow myself to swap out summer clothes for fall/winter clothes only if necessary. Since I am not allowing myself to go shopping for 3 months, I feel like this is a fair trade.
My last biggest challenge, which I will put yet another blame on New Orleans for is… Halloween. Halloween is basically our pre-Mardi Gras for costumes. I will allow myself to buy what is necessary for my costumes.
One of the great things that I have found is that you can be flexible and it is your journey. Do what it takes to make it work and don’t be afraid of messing up or changing things up a bit! What is also so great is that when you are accepting this challenge there are people all over the world taking this challenge with you and inspiration is readily available.
Wish me luck and I can’t wait to share with you all my journey!
What exceptions or personal rules have you made for yourself?
What are your favorite tips on having a capsule wardrobe?
What have been your biggest challenges?