Creating a minimalist capsule wardrobe is a journey of discovery. Not only will you realise how much time you’ve been wasting trying out clothing combinations, tidying, folding and ironing clothing, but also you’ll discover what you truly love about yourself, what clothing brings out your best features and makes you feel awesome and confident.
You’ll develop a mindset of quality over quantity and start becoming mindful in your shopping habits.
Best of all, you’ll free up time to relax, spend time with people you love and do things that have real meaning.
If you’re in the process of creating a timeless capsule wardrobe, here are a few pitfalls you’ll want to avoid.
Before we go into more details, I wanted to let you now that I have created a capsule wardrobe planner that I used to simplify my life and become more mindful of my shopping habits. It’s in my free resource library with other minimalism printables. Feel free to download it at the bottom of this post.
Not Knowing Your Personal Style For Your Capsule Wardrobe
Knowing your personal style is at the foundation of creating a successful capsule wardrobe.
Without a proper understanding of the different elements of your personal style, you run the risk of
- falling for trends (that don’t stand the test of time)
- impulse buying cheap clothing that won’t last
- buying garments you can’t care for properly
- choosing statement items that look amazing in the store, but don’t go with anything else in your wardrobe and you end up never wearing
Before you even start building your capsule wardrobe (let alone heading to the store) spend time reflecting on these ideas:
Which items of clothing do you love to wear and why?
What fits your body type best?
Which clothing suits your lifestyle?
What makes you feel like you?
Armed with this knowledge, you’ll make wardrobe magic with a limited number of timeless, interchangeable items of clothing that make you feel incredible every day.
Not Having a Plan Before You Start
If you’ve tried grocery shopping with a list, you’ll know how it (usually) prevents you from impulse buying and ends up saving you time and money.
Try shopping for items for your capsule wardrobe with a vague idea of what you need and you’ll end up falling for items on sale, buying too many pieces, getting overwhelmed by choices and ultimately cluttering up your freshly decluttered wardrobe with regret.
My answer to this pitfall is to use a planner. I love capsule wardrobe planners so much that I created this free wardrobe planning tool that will help you decide what type of capsule will fit your personal taste and style. You’ll be guided in choosing pieces that flatter your body shape and type, and find items that suit your lifestyle and personality.
This planner then acts as your handy shopping guide! Now you’ll head to the store fully mindful (and reminded!) of exactly what you’re looking for. No more impulse buys or cheap trendy pieces that don’t suit your lifestyle or match any of your clothing favorites.
Not Knowing Your Measurements
It’s important for the items in your capsule wardrobe to make you feel and look amazing. An essential factor in getting this right is choosing pieces that fit properly.
Incredibly, many stores practice vanity sizing and label larger clothing with smaller size numbers. So, instead of shopping by clothing size, shop according to your measurements.
Important measurements to know are:
- Arm length
- Waist and Hips Circumference
- Bust size
- Neck Circumference
- Shoulder Width
Even armed with accurate body measurements, make it a practice to try on every item before you purchase.
If you’re buying online, these numbers will come in very handy. Use the size guides (not the label numbers!) that are available and order according to your measurements. Once you’ve figured out how a brand’s sizing works for you, you’ll be good to go for future purchases.
Buying in store has the advantage of being able to try clothing on. Make this a practice before you purchase anything.
And remember that none of us were made in a mold! If a higher quality piece you love doesn’t quite fit your unique body type, consider using an alteration service to tailor the garment. You’ll end up with a timeless piece that’s made for you!
Purchasing Garments You Can’t Care For Properly
Choosing and purchasing classic and timeless pieces is only the first step on your capsule wardrobe journey. Of course, no piece will last it’s true lifespan if it’s not cared for properly!
Garment care should be an important factor in whether or not you end up purchasing a piece. Ask if you’ll be able to do the necessary to keep it clean and looking beautiful. Do you know how to care for wool garments? Is regular dry cleaning within your budget? Do you have time to hand wash?
Developing some basic sewing skills will go a long way in maintaining your wardrobe for many years and keeping your favorite pieces looking neat.
Trying To Replicate A Generic Capsule Wardrobe
You’re unique and your wardrobe should be too! If you’ve done any amount of research, you’ll know many capsule wardrobe guides are centered around a specific number of pieces with timeless essentials such as a black blazer, a white t-shirt, or a little black dress.
But what if you don’t like blazers or don’t do dresses? What if white leaves you looking washed out? What if you need 25 clothing items, but the capsule wardrobe you’re replicating has only 15 pieces?
Your capsule wardrobe should suit your lifestyle and contain clothing you love to wear. Don’t be afraid to define essentials that make sense to you. A capsule wardrobe is not all about the aesthetic. Your wardrobe is about who you are. It’s about what you like, what works in your life, what makes you feel amazing.
Remember that you’re dressing for real life! Don’t feel pressured to fit into an accepted view of what a capsule wardrobe is supposed to look like.
Avoiding these common capsule wardrobe mistakes will set you well on your way to creating a wardrobe of clothes you love to wear. You’ll have quality items that last for years, suit your lifestyle, and don’t twist or cling in the wrong spots. Your newly mindful shopping habits will maintain your uncluttered, minimalist home goals for years to come.