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Buy Less, Wear More: Guide to a Closet Overhaul and Capsule Wardrobe

ByHattie Cochrane

Have you found yourself with a closet full of clothes yet still nothing to wear? Fashion pieces overrunning your bedroom? Like most women I expect you do, but don’t worry you are not alone. With clothing and fashion stores everywhere you turn it is very easy to find your closet, and yourself, overwhelmed by clothes. But we are here to solve your fashion problems, with a simple solution. Purging your closet, creating a consistent look for your wardrobe and buying key pieces to fit this, thus creating a capsule wardrobe.

This can be a confusing process so to do this we have narrowed it down into 6 simple steps:

Schedule some time

Be realistic with the time you think it will take you, if you have dozens of pieces to get rid of you know this isn’t going to happen in an hour. A great tip to make the time go by quicker is to make it a social occasion – your unwanted jeans may be your friend’s goldmine. Grab some drinks, music, snacks and you’ve got yourself a classic Sex and The City esque girls night in, purely organizing your closet!



Sorting your Closet

Once you (and possibly your friends) have organised a time for your wardrobe overhaul. Gather in your closet and start by taking everything out and sorting into three piles: keep, donate/sell or maybe. Friends can be very helpful in giving a second opinion but make sure they aren’t telling you to donate something just because they want it themselves! If you are struggling to decide on an item ask yourself two questions. When did you last wear this? Does it hold significant sentimental value? If the answer is more than a year ago and/or no, then it looks like it’s time to go.

Taking Action

You’ve done the easy part but now comes the tough one, actually taking your unwanted clothes to donate or sell. For some extra cash to invest into your revised look, sell clothes via sites such as Tradesy or eBay. Another way to get rid of clothes is to donate to charity and help those less fortunate than yourself. If you’ve decided to make it a social occasion make sure to let friends have first dibs on clothes, having everyone trying on each piece is sure to create more than a few laughs.

The best way I have ever found to decide yes or no on those ‘maybe’ pieces is to set yourself a limit to wear it, my favorite is 6 months –  just enough time to cover both seasons. To track this, start by hanging all your ‘maybes’ the wrong way in your wardrobe, with the hook facing outwards. As you wear and wash your clothes replace them into your wardrobe the normal way. At the end of your allocated time you can easily see the garments you haven’t touched and sell or donate them.



Discover your personal style

This is not going to happen in a day, but by taking a look at the pieces you’ve kept and those that are your favorite you can start to understand what makes you tick in a garment. Maybe it’s bright reds and boho inspired pieces or dark and ambiguous, whatever your style try shopping for this and for the colors that you like. Whilst there are certainly different personas people dress to, such as preppy, monochrome and boho style, most people are a combination of these.

By only buying to your personal style and color palette you are making sure that all the clothes you purchase go well with each other and are interchangeable.




A Capsule Wardrobe Your Way

Now you’ve got a rough idea of your style and color scheme it’s time time to figure out what you are missing and add in some key pieces. Here is a great list of 10 things every woman needs in her capsule wardrobe. However, we recommend you take this with a pinch of salt and use it as more of a rough guide as lists like these don’t take personal style into account. For example, for a woman who loves boho style she might replace the blazer with a fun beaded jacket or a poncho. After you have figured out what clothing gaps you have in your wardrobe it’s time to purchase these and move on to the funnest part of a wardrobe overhaul: accessorizing with new jewelry.

Mix Outfits up with Jewelry

Accessorize your newly with organised closet with jewelry to freshen your look each season. We recommend buying some key pieces such as a timeless ring or necklace to wear year after year. Once you have these you can choose some more statement pieces to add to your jewelry collection and spice up your outfits.

We hope you’ve enjoyed these tips and you are feeling inspired to organize your closet, get to know your personal style and create your own capsule wardrobe.

Hattie Cochrane

Fashion writer from West London now living in New Zealand with her two pugs. She spends her days working her way through Auckland's cafes or taking her dogs for walks along the beach. Outside of work, she runs her own fashion blog and has a huge passion for fitness and running - something the pugs do not!

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