Starting a Capsule Wardrobe

If you are into fashion and style, chances are you’ve heard of a capsule wardrobe. The concept of a capsule wardrobe is to create an essential collection of clothing pieces that can be worn for a long period of time. The capsule normally has a consistant theme based around color(s) and style adding a cohesive sense to the clothing as a whole.  In contract, for most of us, when we look in our closet there is not a lot of rhyme or reason, just a bunch of stuff.

The idea of a capsule wardrobe excites me because it is extremely visually appealing. I take a lot of pleasure in being able to invision perfect little moments in my home, whether it be an editted array of cosmetics on my vanity or my (now) color-coordinated book collection. Boutique shops often give you this feel, and it is highly attainable in your own closet, just by creating a capsule wardrobe.

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Capsule wardrobes can also be beneficial if you love to live simply. Pairing down your closet gives you more free time (less time picking out and cleaning clothing) and more money (less spent on clothing because you have “nothing to wear”). Even if you like living extravagantly, you should consider this concept because who DOESN’T want more time and money. I’ve been experimenting with a capsule wardrobe since last fall, but this summer was the first time I fully committed to the concept. To start, I devised a strategy for creating and maintaining my summer capsule wardrobe:


striped tee – J.Crew (similiar) | flamingo shirt – Target | chambray shirt – Old Navy (similiar) | white tank – J.Crew (similiar) | coral tank – AEO (similiar) | white embellished top – Banana Republic | white skinny jeans – Banana Republic | navy shorts – J.Crew, print shorts – Lilly Pulitzer (similiar) | light blue shorts – J.Crew (similiar) | white shorts – J.Crew | white skirt – J.Crew

(1) Selecting everything from my wardrobe that I would consider wearing in the next three months. This allowed me to get a good idea of my personal style – what colors, brands, types of clothing I prefer.


white embroidered dress – Lilly Pulitzer | hot pink jumpsuit – Lilly Pulitzer (similiar)

(2) Determining what activities and climate I will need clothing for. I spend about 90% of my waking hours at home with the babies and the other 10% running errands and exploring our new city. Comfortable clothing that works well in 90 degree, sunny weather is a necessity.


pink maxi dress – Old Navy | navy striped maxi dress – Old Navy (similiar)

(3) Selecting items from my initial clothing picks based on my daily activities. Because even though I LOVE wedges and pretty dresses, I only need so many of these in my day to day. This helped me create the foundation for my summer capsule, and it lead me into the next step.

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(4) Setting my personal style. Cotton maxi dresses, tailored shorts, and loose tanks all in white, coral, turquiose, and navy were consistant in my capsule. This, plus a nautical, beachy theme (duh, summer!) made it pretty apparent what look I was going for.


coral shorts – Old Navy | navy print shorts – Old Navy | navy striped shorts – J.Crew (similiar) | white linen blazer – Old Navy | white tank – Old Navy | navy top – Old Navy | coral sleevless shirt – Ann Taylor Loft

(5) Determining where there are gaps in clothing, outerwear, and shoes, specifically. Or which items need to be removed if I had too much in my capsule. I aimed for the ability to create 10-14 outfits. This didn’t mean I needed 14 tops and 14 bottoms; I wanted to be able to mix and match pieces. I had 6 tops, 5 bottoms, 4 dresses, and 4 pairs of shoes. I decided I needed 3 more tops, 3 more bottoms, and a lightweight sweater or jacket for places that pump in the A/C. I revisited my initially rejected clothing just to make sure it couldn’t be added to the capsule before I started shopping.


coral belt – Target | gold belt – Target | charm necklace – Dogeared | gold bracelet – Lucky Brand | pineapple ring – Old Navy | turquiose charm necklace – Lucky Brand | shell necklace – Lilly Pulitzer | watch – Apple

(6) Selecting accessories and jewelry. Once I had all the clothing needed for my capsule, I went back to my jewelry collection to see what would make the cut. Sticking with my tried and true jewelry worked best for me. I decided on 2 belts, 3 necklaces, 1 ring, 1 bracelet, and my Apple Watch Sport.


I bought this J.Crew skirt from a consignment shop about 8 years ago. I absolutely love it, but it’s way too loose now. I’m considered getting shorts sewn in so it’s easier to wear while playing with the babies.

(7) Altering and/or cleaning items. I knew I was not going to wear a skirt that was too loose. Cleaning and altering items at the start of the season is a necessity.


This jewelry came IN; the J.Crew striped tee (perfect for my fall capsule!), Target flamingo shirt (donate), and J.Crew white skirt (storage until next summer capsule) went OUT.

starfish earrings – Fornash | turquiose tassel earrings – Lisi Lerch | tassel bracelets – Baublebar

Maintenance – My goal was to not buy ANYTHING else for my summer capsule to allow myself to fully experience the process. BUT if I did happen to purchase something, it meant I had to remove an item from the capsule. 1 in, 1 out.


wedges – Miss Trish for Target | tennis shoes – Keds | brown sandals – Reef | gold sandals – Jack Rogers

I am over a month and a half into this capsule wardrobe, and I have learned so much more about my style and preferences than I thought I would. I am LOVING the simplicity and creativity that comes with having a small selection of clothing to choose from every day. But the summer is not over yet! I know I’m going to learn even more once the 3 months with this capsule have ended.


water bottle – Target | baseball hat (gift) | tote bag – Skip Hop

I look forward to sharing my experience with my summer capsule, but, even more so, I would love love LOVE to hear about your experiences with a capsule wardrobe. Honestly, mid-season is a great time to start a capsule because you already recognize which items of clothing are getting a lot of wear this season. This weekend is the perfect opportunity to KonMari your closet and create a summer capsule wardrobe!


One thought on “Starting a Capsule Wardrobe

  1. Pingback: What I Learned From My Summer Capsule Wardrobe | Lauren, Etc.

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