building your minimalist wardrobe

“Form follows function” is something that I apply to nearly all aspects of my life, especially my wardrobe. This hasn’t always been the case, but I’ve found that if I only purchase a few items that serve me well, it becomes much easier and more enjoyable to get dressed in the morning. In dating terms, my wardrobe and I are now in it for the long haul. Here are a few tips for you to build the minimalist wardrobe of your dreams!

Say farewell.  Take a hard look at your closet and pull items that you’ve hardly (or never) worn, that you’ve worn into the ground, or have too many variations of. I recommend separating these items into three piles: one for Salvation Army, one to give to a friend, and one to sell (Poshmark and Buffalo Exchange are my favorites). The pieces left in your closet should be ones that you LOVE and would wear right away. If not, do a second round of editing.

Figure out what you ACTUALLY wear. I did a huge edit today which allowed me to realize:

  • I regularly wear monochromatic pieces.
  • I have four pairs of black skinny jeans on rotation.
  • I won’t wear plaid, thin stripes, or any sort of print.
  • I have a penchant for trendy jackets that usually get donated after the season is over.

Do a similar assessment of your post-edit wardrobe so you’re aware of what to avoid when shopping.

Invest in quality staples.  I expect a lot of mileage out of my favorite items. Consider a black tee shirt from Zara and another from James Perse. The Zara tee cost me $8.90, but only lasted 4 wears and washes, bringing the cost-per-wear to $2.23. I wear my $65 James Perse tee at least once a week (it’s 16-months-old now), bringing it’s current cost-per-wear to $0.92. Quality garments will stand the test of time, which will save you time AND money in the long run. Of course my disposable income doesn’t allow me to buy $65 tee shirts and $200 jeans whenever I please, but I’ve found it becomes very rewarding to save up for and purchase replacements piece-by-piece over time.

Before you relish the fruits of your labor, remember that your wardrobe will always be a work in progress! Here are a few last thoughts before we part ways.

  • Own your style and don’t let short-lived trends sway you.
  • When re-selling clothes, you’ll maybe get 30-50% of what you originally paid for. To avoid this, wait at least two weeks before making a debatable purchase (yes, even for that $15 tank top that you just HAVE TO have).
  • Check care tags! Your wardrobe should be able to serve you for years to come and can only do so on tumble dry low.

unnamed.jpgHello, beauties! I’m Becca: an aspiring mobile developer, potter, and painter living in Brooklyn.

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