A Step Toward Simplicity: the Minimalist Wardrobe

Poshmark Minimalist Wardrobe

I like to travel, for the most part. When I was younger I loved packing for a trip. I would have my suitcase open in my bedroom a week prior as if to prolong the vacation experience. I would pack and unpack and carefully arrange things while daydreaming of the fun that was about to happen. Now, packing is the worst part- yet I have it down to a science. I have come to the conclusion that I could pretty much survive any trip with 2 shirts, denim, and a cardigan. So I start with that and go from there. This ability and desire to wear just a couple of my favorite pieces when I go out of town really makes me think that I could benefit from a minimalist wardrobe.

For as long as I can remember, I have desired to only own my favorite things. I want to open my closet and instead of choosing the shirt, dress, sweater that I hate the least that day, be overwhelmed because I want to wear everything right now!

I’m also the person who won’t wear my most favorite shirt because I don’t want to ruin it.

Streamlining my wardrobe has always been a dream, but making it a reality is something I have been putting off. I have read the magical decluttering books and believe me, they have helped. Also, selling clothes online with apps like Poshmark has been a huge motivator. But I think the time has come to REALLY do this.

 

In case you are wondering what my point is in doing this… here’s what I want to see happen…

Minimalist Wardrobe Goals

  • Own only my favorite pieces. Like I said, I want everything to be something I want to wear immediately, just like the day I bought it.
  • Keep only what fits well and is flattering. There is NO POINT in wearing something that is too big/small or fits odd. I don’t have room for that in my life or in my closet.
  • Quality pieces. If I have fewer things they should be good materials that are comfortable and that are washable. I hate falling in love with a top and once washed it is no longer the same shape or material texture.
  • Fill all gaps in my wardrobe. The other day I realized that I didn’t have a simple black cardigan. I don’t know how this happened. Once I get to the basics of what I wear I can see what I still need or what needs to be replaced.
  • 80% pre-owned. This is a huge goal. I love to shop pre-owned and believe in the principles behind it. I am not saying 100% because sometimes you just have to buy some items new.

The list about may resonate with some of you while others cannot fathom scaling back. I do have some specific reasons…

Reasons I want a Minimalist Wardrobe
  • I get easily overwhelmed with clutter. Large crowds can be overwhelming, too much noise, too much STUFF. My closet overwhelms me. Even the picture of the full clothing rack at the top of this post stresses me out.
  • I have limited space. I share a closet so I only get half and its FULL.
  • Essentially there is money hanging in my closet. If you are an online clothing seller- you get this.

To get the ball rolling I am going to do a huge closet purge. You know what that means- listing more on Poshmark! This doesn’t mean that going forward I will no longer shop, far from it. But I will be able to replace things that I like with things that I love and continue rotating pieces.

The next steps are what I am unsure of… I know there are popular “challenges” out there to test the waters before actually getting rid of clothes. I don’t see myself imposing a limit to the number of items I can keep, or maybe that’s the only way to effectively do this. What do you think?

Have you attempted or been successful with a minimalist wardrobe?

XOXO

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14 thoughts on “A Step Toward Simplicity: the Minimalist Wardrobe

  1. Hey Elle! I resonate with so much of what you are saying/doing. I’ve been minimalizing my closet, too. The beginning is the hardest, because I look at the mess, get so overwhelmed, and I don’t even want to start. But I’m slowly getting there! I can’t wait until I’m done working at the end of Sept. (I’m due early Oct. with baby #3 and will be a SAHM) Then, I can get rid of my work clothes and switch to jeans and regular white and pink tees. Of course I’ll need some other essentials as well. I, too, want to own mainly pre-owned clothing. My reasoning is mainly financial though. And the materials! Yes, I’m just discovering that this makes a big deal. I bought some genuine leather flats, and what a difference!! Also, I want to stick to 100% cotton whenever I can. I’m ok with rayon, too. Polyester anything can have the boot! I will be following your journey on this. Can’t wait to see how it turns out for you.

    1. Hey Hannah! I am RIGHT THERE with you! I too have narrowed it down to cotton and rayon- we must have the same texture preference! I really cannot handle polyester and I do not own a ton of shoes so I make sure they are leather. My feet can “breathe” better and they are more comfy for sure. Congrats on baby 3!! Xoxo

  2. Hey thank you so much for this post! I really relate and have been thinking along these lines recently, like if items are just sitting in my closet and I “like” them but they are either unflattering/ uncomfortable/ or have nothing to match it with, then what is the point of it sitting there? My goal is definitely to get realistic with what I will actually pick up and wear happily, and also I’ve been thinking more about quality, how sometimes it is worth spending more on a beloved piece that will last and will be a happy go-to. So thanks again, I will definitely refer back to this post!

  3. Elle,

    You read my mind! I am moving next week, and am downsizing all that doesn’t fit, that I’d wear “when I lose weight; ha ha, etc”. In fact, this is exactly how I started selling on Posh; by downsizing, and I love it. Another tip from my dearly departed “fashionista/minimalist” Mom: Always have some really cool accessories. They ensure, and take up way less space than clothes. πŸ™‚

    Love, Toni
    @twinkletoestoni (On Posh)

  4. Elle,
    That should say “ENDURE” above, and how can I re-blog this for you on my blog? With credit to you, of course. And I add a link to your closet. πŸ˜‰ Thanks Doll!

    Toni

  5. Downsizing to fantastic basic essentials is freeing to the spirit. You want to look gorgeous regardless of what you choose to put on your back.
    I love beautiful fabric. Quality cotton and rayon are basic comfort clothing choices, but please don’t forget to choose some of the most beautiful and comfortable fabrics in the world; silk and fine linen,

  6. Oh my goodness, I totally relate to this post. I have so many clothes, I could go over a month without wearing anything twice (maybe longer) and yet I feel like I have “nothing to wear”. I too have read all types of decluttering books and articles and would like to do the same. Elle, I would love to have you continue this thread in future writings to see what works and how you feel. I read about one woman who kept only 25 articles of clothing (that included belts and scarves) and she was a high powered stock broker with an expectation of a beautiful wardrobe. When she minimized, she said NOBODY noticed. I crave that, but I haven’t had the courage, the time, the motivation?

    1. Thank you Ellen! If I write about it then I will be forced to do it! So I definitely should. I’m glad to hear that there are others who would are in the same situation and would want to follow along.

  7. Elle,
    I am so glad you blogged about this topic. A few months ago, my life was changed when late one night I was going through documentaries on Netflix and “Minimalism a documentary about the important things” caught my eye. I could seriously go on and on about how much value it has brought me, but to stay on point, I have been cleaning out our closets. Lots of stuff has gone to donation and I have been listing stuff that has sat in my closet. To help clear everything as quick as possible, I have been accepting almost all offers. The piece of clothing was not purchased with the intent to re-sell, so if it’s a reasonable offer, I accept. The alternative is it will clutter my home or I will end up giving it away. Sometimes it is a struggle, but I just remind myself this is sitting unworn and adding to the number of “things” I have let consume my life.

    Personally, I wouldn’t do any challenge, but I am an impulsive person. If it doesn’t fit right or hasn’t been worn then it’s gone!! I haven’t missed anything and after shipping, I feel a little bit of weight lifted off my shoulders. Less truly is more.

    Thank you for writing about such an important topic!

    Lindsey
    @lls516

  8. I struggle with ideas like this because I grew up with minimalism. I was always jealous of friends’ new clothes. My obsession with clothes was always there, but it was able to flourish and be met when I started making my own money. If I want it, I buy it. I’m not married nor have kids, so there’s no guilt involved of “putting it to better use”. I think I find security and happiness with these purchases. Plus, being tall, I NEVER had clothes that fit me properly. I had to wear men’s jeans for them to be long enough! I think one of those Kon Mari books are something I need to truly embrace at this point. This post was inspiring, as were all the comments! Thanks Elle xo

  9. Elle, thank you so much for this post, and congratulations on setting out on your minimalist journey! You are going to love how freeing it is – your time, your money, your space, and your peace of mind!
    I actually got started on posh because I wanted to transition to minimalism. I’m still working towards it (and Posh has helped me get rid of so many things that just made me feel bad because I didn’t look good/fit into them, or because I spent money that essentially was wasted) proud to say I’ve found new homes for so many items, but still many to go. My tip for you is to focus on whether something serves you – whether you love it, feel good in it, and it has a place permanently in your space, versus focusing on the number of items. The argument against counting the # of items one has is that ultimately, one is still focusing on things.
    Can’t wait to keep reading more about this journey!!!

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