Capsule wardrobe and how to make it?

Capsule wardrobes are in vogue as people want to save nature, time, and storage space.

Less can be more, and a shrunken wardrobe doesn't mean you'll dress boringly. A capsule wardrobe can also accommodate colors, patterns, and interesting outfit combinations when needed.

Discover the basics of a capsule wardrobe and find inspiration to try and build your own.

You might just find yourself with a more enjoyable way to dress - and lighten your mornings and your household chores in the process.

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What is capsule wardrobe?

The 'capsule wardrobe', born in the 70s, is one way to make dressing easier and more ecological.

Fifty years on, capsule wardrobes are increasingly being talked about because, in the age of eco-conscious dressing, there is a desire to 1) manage and reduce the amount of clothing and 2) increase the efficiency and frequency of clothing use.

Traditionally, the capsule wardrobe has been considered to include a classic set of clothes, such as black trousers, jeans, multi-purpose jackets, blouses, knitwear, and t-shirts.

However, you are also allowed to build a capsule without a blazer, blue jeans, and trench coat if you don't feel you need those. The idea of a modern capsule is to serve the individual wearer.

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For whom is the capsule?

Do you feel like you have a lot of clothes but nothing to wear? Is your wardrobe cluttered and full?

If you are unhappy with your clothes, a capsule can be a practical way to find a new working relationship with your clothes.

Maybe you can't find your style? It could be because you're making purchases without thinking or remembering what you already have - or how you want to dress in general.

A capsule wardrobe is also perfect for the busy person, as it eliminates the need to search and dig for clothes in the closet, laundry room, attic, or basement.

The capsule is also a frequent traveler’s best friend. Packing is easy and the compact range of clothes makes it easy to get away quickly and do the laundry.

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Why choose the capsule?

A capsule wardrobe can not only be an eco-friendly act, but also common sense in many ways. You save money, reduce impulse shopping, and get more active use out of your clothes when you know what you own. 

Almost all of us have clothes forgotten in the back of the wardrobe that might find a natural use if only the garment could remind us of its existence.

In the worst case, there are sale products living in the closet, with tags left in place from one summer after another. 

The capsule will also help you buy exactly what you need at any given time and what you genuinely lack.

A capsule can also make life a little easier. It's great to have clothes that are just right for the season. You can pick them out at one glance and it's easy to choose and mix and match.

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First choose a style

For example, if you prefer a sporty style and have an active lifestyle, go ahead, and fill your capsule with sporty clothes.

When building a capsule wardrobe, don't think of buying or adding pieces "just in case." To start with, take a hard look at what you know you will absolutely use and need.

If you know you'll spend summer evenings, parties and festivals in shorts and trousers anyway, don't buy floral dresses just because "they're fashionable" or "you might need them on holiday in Spain".

If your job requires you to dress smartly for work, go for it. Stock your capsule with stylish and mix-and-match workwear so that you can easily dress up in your favorite stylish outfits every day.

If you're bohemian and colors are your thing - or you love designer clothes - pick your capsule with your own personal style in mind.

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Are two or four seasons right for you?

A capsule wardrobe is typically assembled around a longer-lasting base of four seasons. For each season, the clothes appropriate for the season are selected and set up neatly and easily accessible. The mix and match of seasonal clothing are thought through in advance.

One possible way is to choose two seasons. If three months is a quick flash in your life, two annual capsules will reduce the work and thought involved in changing the capsule.

You can simply make an efficient base frame that converts with minor tweaks into a capsule for the cool winter season and a warm summer season. The seasons are already mixing for climate reasons.

It is not necessary to change every piece of clothing according to the season, as a white t-shirt and a pair of jeans, for example, are needed in all seasons. 

We, therefore, talk about a "basic capsule" or the "body" of a capsule, which remains the same from one season to the next. Only some of the clothes need to be updated as the season changes.

For example, if you notice that a garment has been little or never worn when you change your capsule for the season, you may want to sell or donate it to a new user. 

It is not ideal to keep unsuitable garments in the capsule wardrobe that will not be used. 

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Do you need 20, 30, or 40 garments?

The traditional recommendation for a capsule wardrobe is around 30 garments, but if your capsule is rotated by four and changed every three months, then fewer clothes may be enough.

If you enjoy variety and versatility, then your capsule may be more generous than tweaked minimalism. However, aim for manageability, and keep the maximum to around 40 outfits.

Significant accessories such as bags and shoes often count towards the capsule. Socks, jewelry, workout clothes, and underwear do not. 

Example of a woman's capsule wardrobe

A typical example of a woman's basic capsule wardrobe includes a classic European wardrobe that is timeless and suitable for any occasion.

You can take a cue from the traditional capsule, modify it as you wish - or build a completely different one to suit your own preferences. 

You can replace, let’s say, the trench coat with a parka, and swap the dress for a jumpsuit.

 

  1. Trench coat - beige, navy, or black trench coats are always in fashion, transforming from casual to formal as needed. The belted version is the most classic.

  1. Jeans - Skinny or straight-leg regulars are the safest choice, but you can go for a bolder choice and choose trendy super wide ones.

  1. A blazer - fitted and black. Right now, the most fashionable blazer is a colorful design that's decidedly looser than the classic.

  1. White blouse - suitable to wear on its own or paired with a blazer, knitwear, or sweater.

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  1. Tops - for example, 2-3 camisole tops in matching colors to the rest of the capsule wardrobe.

  1. T-shirts - often black and white will do. If you enjoy colors, add a bright color or a trendy pastel to your capsule to suit your style.

  1. Better trousers - often black culottes or even more tailored trousers to wear when you need a cleaner, more formal look.

  1. A better shirt - a power shirt that can be easily paired with a variety of bottoms for important moments.

  1. Skirt - a businesswoman will choose a pencil skirt to go with the blazer, another a longer and more casual one. Black or other muted colors will work with most outfits, but a patterned one will freshen things up.

  1. Party dress - for important dinner parties and family gatherings.

  1. The more casual dress - for alternative and everyday wear.

  1. Knit or cardigan - a short design in a matching shade to the rest of the capsule. Choose stylish and easy to care for authentic materials such as cashmere or merino wool.

  1. Knit or cardigan - long design in a shade to match the rest of the capsule. Choose stylish and easy to maintain genuine materials such as cashmere or merino wool.

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  1. Ballerinas or other "flats" - for inside shoes for work and warm-season shoes for outside.

  1. Leather boots or anklets - your favorite shoes for every occasion.

  1. Tote bag - a multi-purpose shoulder bag that can hold a computer, spare clothes, and a water bottle.

  1. Clutch Bag or other evening/little bag - for parties, restaurants, and out on the town.

  1. Tennis shoes/sneakers - for casual wear.

  1. High heels - from Christmas parties to birthdays.

  1. Sweater or hoodie - for home, casual days at work, and leisure.

  1. Long-sleeved shirt - under knitwear, for active days and leisure.

  1. Lounge pants - for breakfast, the garden, and the sofa.

  1. Scarf - silk or wool.

  1. Sunglasses - for vision and/or style.

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You can also get inspiration from our summer capsule! We've put together a selection of 24 outfits and accessories for effortless summer days

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