thoughts and reflections on 20 days of capsule wardrobing
For the last 20 days of January I took part in the Instagram challenge #itsfrommycloset20x20. I wrote a piece about it when I started that covered why I was doing it, and how it I put it all together, so take a look here if you need a recap. In a nutshell the challenge was selecting 20 items of clothing and wearing only those items for 20 days straight.
And I am very proud to say that I made it to the end wearing only the 20 items I originally selected. Except for one black turtle neck I included for layering purposes, I wore everything I chose at least once, and never felt like I was running out of combinations. As with any capsule wardrobe the key for everything is in how you style, layer, and accessorise.
Of the three wild card options I chose, only the dress felt like a dud. I only wore it once, and it was definitely one of my least favourite outfits of the challenge. I think the dress might be better as a summer option with bare legs and a denim jacket, but if it doesn’t work then I’m gonna be cutting ties with it. I want to continue to hone and perfect my wardrobe this year, so if something isn’t working, it’s going.
My key takeaway from the challenge is that I really do have a wardrobe full of potential. I talk a lot about making the most out of the wardrobe you have, and ensuring every item acquired is adding to the whole. But sometimes even I need to be reminded of how to make the philosophy work in the real world.
I rely a lot on the extras when it comes to styling, and often let my “third pieces” do a lot of the heavy lifting. Which is fine, there is nothing wrong with having a strong core and then playing around with your shoes, coats, and other accessories. But I realised I want to have more fun with the actual styling of the outfit. Playing with layers and changing how things can be tucked or folded. Like I said, the potential is there, I just need to take advantage of it.
I have come a long way with my wardrobe. From feeling really miserable about it nearly all the time 2 years ago, to actually getting it to a place where I feel it is really representative of who I am. The progress has come not from acquiring more, but rather narrowing down what I wanted and what kind of clothes I wanted to have. Building a capsule and using it as a total unit helped me realise how I could improve my styling with what I already have, and I was able to identify gaps that I can now look for the perfect pieces to fill.
The 20×20 challenge was a great way to kick off a new year; a sort of wardrobe reset without actually having to throw anything out and start fresh. I feel excited about the sartorial year ahead of me, and ready to do more work towards creating my ideal closet. It doesn’t have to be giant, but it cant have any weak spots. My whole closet is going to need to work as hard a limited capsule.
Now I know that I can absolutely work with what have, so I’m gonna take it slow and only bring in the pieces that I am 100% sure about it. And I have a pretty good idea about how to start!