When you think “capsule wardrobe,” what images come to mind? A sparse closet of monochrome neutrals? Or maybe plain, repetitive looks?
If that doesn’t excite you, we get it. Search “capsule wardrobe” and you’ll find countless videos highlighting nearly identical closets of neutral basics, their creators encouraging you to only choose minimalist pieces that are easy to style. “Stick to the classics,” they cheer, showing images of white tank tops, black trousers, and beige trench coats.
We love a good capsule wardrobe, especially the positive environmental impacts of buying less and re-wearing what you own. But just because the minimalist capsule wardrobe trend is popular doesn’t mean it will work for you and your tastes. And that’s ok – fashion should be exciting. Besides, we could all use a bit more whimsy in our lives this year.
If you dream of getting dressed in the morning with ease while staying true to your passion for colour, interesting combinations, or creative designs, read on. Here are our best tips on what to include in a fun (and definitely not boring) capsule wardrobe.
- Identify what you already love to wear
Maybe it’s a shiny sequined mini skirt you found at a vintage shop or an emerald-green sweater from your favourite brand. Whatever you find yourself reaching for time and time again, make a note of what those pieces are and what they have in common.
Use these similarities to try to identify your personal style. Even if it feels like your style is all over the place (who needs labels, anyway?), you might discover you gravitate towards a certain silhouette, brand, fabric, or colour.
Once you have an idea of your personal style in mind, you can use it to help guide your future purchases.
- Upgrade your idea of basics
Capsule wardrobes tend to work well because they revolve around wardrobe “building blocks” — timeless styles that mix and match effortlessly with other pieces. But just because something is considered a basic doesn’t mean it has to be boring. Breathe life into classic staples by opting for unconventional textures, bright colours, or surprising features.
Instead of plain trousers, why not experiment with a bold, thigh-high split hem? (#shamelessplug for our Arya Pant).
- Define your colour palette
Whether your dream closet is as bright as a rainbow or you prefer a more subtle use of colour, choosing a colour palette for your wardrobe will simplify the process of getting dressed and help you avoid buyer’s remorse. Pick a few core colours to make up the majority of your pieces, and a couple accent colours to complement them.
Your core colours can be as unconventional or bold as you like, but sticking to a few that you love and ignoring passing trends will help your wardrobe stand the test of time.
- Try the “30 wears” test
You know the feeling. You stop mid-scroll to see a piece that’s on sale and looks gorgeous online, so you make the purchase without a second thought – but it ends up sitting in your closet, only worn once or twice. We’ve been there.
That’s where the “30 wears” test comes in. Before adding a new item to your closet, simply ask yourself whether you can see yourself wearing it at least 30 times before giving it away (or hiding it in the back of your closet). Whether it’s zebra print pants or an open-back blouse, if it passes the test, you can be more confident that you’re making a purchase you’ll love. You’ll be doing the environment a favour, too, by extending the life of your pieces.
- Invest in high-quality garments
It goes without saying that well-made clothing not only tends to last longer, but looks and fits better too. If it’s in your budget, invest in pieces you love from sustainable brands that prioritize good design, fit, and construction. They’ll last longer in your closet, and you’ll be less likely to regret purchasing them. But high-quality doesn’t just mean new – you can also find gorgeous secondhand and vintage pieces that were made to last.
Here are a few ways to spot quality, long-lasting garments:
- Look for thick, sturdy fabric. If it’s thin or you can see through it, it could tear.
- Check the seams. Do the patterns line up or are there obvious imperfections?
- Look for neat, straight, and strong stitching. No loose threads!
- Check if it’s made of natural materials, which are usually more durable.
Now go, and build the whimsical capsule wardrobe of your dreams.
Looking for unique wardrobe staples that are made to last? You’ll love the creative designs and effortless wearability of our Signature Collection.