my minimalist wardrobe [winter]

I’ve had this concept of a ‘minimalist wardrobe‘ in my mind for a couple years, but couldn’t quite nail it down.  Early in my pregnancy with Colin, I transitioned into a job where I worked from home full-time.  The suits & business professional clothes slowly migrated to the back of my closet and began collecting dust.  Then, when it was time for a maternity wardrobe, I realized I didn’t actually NEED all that many pieces.  It seemed silly to dump a bunch of money into clothing that would only be worn for a few months.  Especially when I was working from home… mostly in yoga pants.  I learned that I actually preferred a smaller selection & said “I have nothing to wear” a lot less, which is totally counter-intuitive, but pretty great.

After Colin arrived and I was able to fit into my pre-pregnancy clothes again [THAT certainly didn’t happen overnight], I found I wasn’t excited about them at all, with the exception of a select few pieces.  I asked myself ‘why do I even own these clothes if I don’t want to wear them?‘  And in anticipation of our move to Seattle where John & I would be sharing a teeeeny closet, I purged well over half of my wardrobe.  When the movers were bringing everything into our home, one of them commented that it was the first time he’d seen the MAN with more clothing boxes than the WOMAN.  It was funny, but in all honesty, John doesn’t have an excess of clothes… my wardrobe was just SUPER lean after ‘the purge.’  And I was surviving just fine.

I could go into more detail, but basically I went through another pregnancy and at this point, I’m either completely-sick-of or can’t-fit-into 90% of my wardrobe [not a pretty scene].  So when I heard all the buzz about ‘capsule wardrobes’ and read this post, I knew it was time to re-energize my closet.  While keeping my emphasis on minimalist.

I basically followed the guidelines of that post:

  • Lounge/workout/undergarments/sleeping clothes & accessories don’t count.  [long live my yoga pants!]  I also took the liberty of adding outerwear & rain boots to my ‘don’t count’ list.
  • I donated clothes that didn’t fit or I knew I wouldn’t wear again.
  • I moved out everything that’s not in season.
  • With the goal of 37 total pieces, I curated a wardrobe of my favorites & then very intentionally shopped for new pieces to fill in the gaps.
  • Then, I pushed some dressy favorites to the back of my closet [special occasions are rare these days].  And I moved any remaining clothes into storage.
  • Instead of four ‘capsule wardrobes’, I’m shooting for only two: winter & summer.  The weather doesn’t fluctuate that drastically in Seattle so I think I’ll be ok.

I came up with 35 total pieces:  20 tops, 2 dresses, 6 pairs of pants, 1 skirt & 6 pairs of shoes [5 of which are Toms… comfortable & casual is my jam.]  I had a couple ideas for the remaining two pieces, but I’m going to hold out until I lose the baby weight and see what strikes me.

my minimalist wardrobe [winter]

[my apologies for poor photo quality & some heavily wrinkled pieces, but I think you’ll still get the idea…]

great idea:  a minimalist wardrobe of only 35 pieces!

TOPS:   white tee  I  white lace shirt [similar] I  striped tee  I  striped long tee [but I stitched shut the side slits because… huh?]  I  teal tee  I  black tee  I  gray sweater  I  gray striped hoodie sweater  I  white cable knit sweater  I  green cowl neck sweater [similar]  I  gray cowl neck sweater [similar] I  navy cocoon sweater  I  basic white button up  I  chambray shirt  I  navy polka dot button up [similar]  I  black blouse [similar]  I  wine ruffle tank [similar]  I  pink silk blouse  I  patterned short dress [similar]  I  jean jacket [similar]

great idea:  a minimalist wardrobe of only 35 pieces!

DRESSES/BOTTOMS/SHOES:  patterned dress [similar] I  patterned dress  I  black leggings  I  dark skinny jeans  I  black skinny jeans  I  dark bootcut jeans  I  purple cropped pants [similar] I  navy pencil skirt  I  khakis  I  brown boots  I  gold wedge bootie  I  black suede bootie  I  gray slip ons  I  navy slip ons  I  black wool slip ons

During this process, I had a life altering discovery:  HOW DID I NOT KNOW MOST STORES SELL TALL SIZED SHIRTS ONLINE?  Please tell me this is a recent thing and that I haven’t unnecessarily been flashing my backside for years.  That small change alone makes me a million times happier with my new wardrobe.

Hot tip:  I downloaded a FREE app called Pureple where I upload my wardrobe pieces & then pull together outfits [total flashback to the movie Clueless, right?].  It can even suggest outfits for me!  It’s totally upped my game.  Even with only 35 pieces.

Have you tried a minimalist wardrobe?  I’d love to hear about it!


Disclaimer:  This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase a product through an affiliate link, you will pay the same price, but I receive a small commission.  Obviously I only share products I love from companies I trust.

  • Emily

    I love this idea!! I’ve seen it elsewhere but have been too daunted to try it. You have hopefully inspired me!ReplyCancel

  • Emily,
    I’m so glad you posted on the TBB port. I absolutely loved this post. It reminds me that LESS is MORE all over again. And, I’m going to get that app. 🙂


  • I love the way you displayed these for the pictures!! I have never tried this before, but it seems intriguing! 🙂ReplyCancel

  • I would love to give a minimalist wardrobe a try but I’m not sure I could. But I admit I do reach for certain pieces of clothing more than others so maybe I could one day try to be a minimalist with my clothing. So glad that you don’t count outerwear, I’m obsessed with coats. 🙂 Your pictures are great. Have a great weekend!ReplyCancel

  • O my gosh! This is the journey I am currently on. I too have a long mid-body and just recently found I can buy tall versions online! This is going to change everything for me. I am in the process now of purging still. I recently did my jewelry & did a post of that so come by & look for it. Thank you for sharing this with us. I am getting ideas for my capsule wardrobe! I will be blogging about it soon!ReplyCancel

  • Nicely done! I need to purge much of my wardrobe (including my workout clothes as I have a bit of a running attire addiction…) I should probably start from scratch for the pants, but that would require shopping…ReplyCancel

  • […] working on my summer capsule/minimalist wardrobe. […]ReplyCancel

  • […] experimented with my first ‘minimalist wardrobe’ this winter and LOVED IT.  Since then, I’ve seen the ‘capsule wardrobe’ concept showing up […]ReplyCancel

  • Sandra

    I’ve been keeping a minimalist wardrobe for many years now. The most important thing I learned to do was to keep out similar items.

    Meaning that I might have two identical pair of the same black skinny pants, if the style flattered me, but I wouldn’t keep another pair of black pants in a different style, I’d choose a different color. I also wouldn’t have two short sleeved white tops–I might have one short sleeved and one long sleeved. One turtleneck styled top would be enough, or just a regular v-neck sweater or tee shirt, with the use of a scarf if the weather warranted that. I’d have one ankle boot, one heel, one flat, one sandal, and one sneaker pair, and not duplicate thse styles. When your wardrobe is limited, by design, versatility is important.ReplyCancel

    • Hi Sandra! Yes, now that I’m on year two of a minimalist closet, I’m finding success with similar things! Adding more variety in styles, while still making colors coordinate has helped me feel like I have more options. Glad to hear it’s been working for you for many years!ReplyCancel

  • Thanks for sharing!ReplyCancel

Blog Categories

family yearbooks
photo editing
photo tips

use your photos tips
what to wear


Subscribers receive the latest news, discounts and FREEBIES!

Miss Freddy is a Professional Photo Organizer, serving clients worldwide. Learn more about my services.