This season–especially during my fall 10×10 challenge–I’ve started realizing that I have a lot of clothes. An overwhelming amount. While my focus has been on building a long-term high-quality wardrobe over the past few years, I’ve been less attentive to practicing restraint. While I haven’t been bringing home “hauls” of fast fashion since I started capsule-ing, the few items I’ve purchased each season have really added up. I went back and looked at what I purchased during my first year of capsule wardrobes–a whopping 26 items, and the killer is that most of those didn’t survive in my closet beyond a year. My choices got better in following capsules, but I managed to form a (structured) habit of purchasing things each season, despite my original intention to just fill gaps. Black Friday weekend, full of tempting sales, felt really overwhelming as well, as if I “should” have been more prepared and organized for shopping. Panicked thoughts of “what do I need?” ran through my head, even though the answer was probably “nothing.”
I’ll admit, I’ve started to look ahead to a winter capsule already…and I don’t really see any gaps in my closet. Sure, I’d like a new pair of black jeans and some sexy boots, but do I need anything? Not really. I’m thinking it might be time to take a step back and enjoy all the pieces that I’ve amassed over the years–to take a retail recess.
Now, I’m already aware of the pitfalls awaiting me. It seems whenever I make a restriction on myself, it immediately backfires, and I learned from Laura that when something isn’t working, it’s worth dropping. And Alicia‘s notes on her shopping ban are also enlightening in a foreboding kind of way. So I’m going to take this shopping break as a loose guideline–as I do with my shopping “rules.” I’m still open to letting my closet breathe, and I expect I may add some holiday gifts to my wardrobe, but I’m not actively seeking out new pieces to add, whereas normally around this time I’d be strategizing away for the next season.
Instead, I’ll be directing my energy to these things:
- Making inspiration boards
Mood boards always make me excited for what to wear, usually because I can find a color theme or style vibe. It’s also a good way get styling ideas for pieces I already have.
- Mending, cleaning, and maintaining my closet
I’m going to allocate a bit of my budget to getting some pieces to the tailor or dry-cleaner. I’m also overdue on washing my sneakers, and treating my Birks. I’m hoping these worthy little projects will reignite some love for my clothes.
- Compiling a visual list of my entire wardrobe
I’m hoping to create a Total Capsule layout of everything I own, so I can really assess how much I have. Making visual round-ups has always been super helpful to me, and I think this will drive home exactly how much clothing I have. I’m also hoping to do a good organizing session with my physical closet, so I’m able to better see and reach what I have on a daily basis.
- Selling and donating things I don’t need
I’m also going to continue to edit and get rid of things that I don’t wear. I like to keep my closet clutter-free, and I’ll give any pieces that are still in good shape a chance at a better home on eBay.
- Practice some beauty stuff
This is a real “we’ll see” endeavor, because I am so bad at makeup. But I will try using some new products, and I always love indulging in a face mask–been enjoying this weird one lately. I figure this might be a nice self-care type of distraction.
I’m hoping that by taking a shopping break, I can: exercise my styling skills as I would in a 10×10 challenge (but in a broader way), cultivate a sense of contentment with all the curating work I’ve already done, and better assess any real needs moving forward.