My Minimalist Wardrobe (vlog)

My husband shot this quick video of me last night giving you a little peek at my minimalist wardrobe, since I’ve received so many questions about my six mix and match outfits. If you’re a fashionista or you like variety, you’ll might be a little horrified (or very horrified!), but it’s what works for me and it saves me so much time and effort to keep it simple!

I was going to include a detailed explanation of how this works and my criteria for choosing clothing and keeping my closet pared down. Instead, I’m going to just post up the video and then if you have questions, I’ll either answer them in the comments or in a follow-up post.

{My apologies that the video is so skinny. I totally forgot that we needed to turn the phone the other way to shoot this. We’re still learning and will eventually get the hang of video blogging… maybe!}

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Comments

  1. Cathy says

    That’s wonderful! While pregnant, my wardrobe selection was very similar, and it was SO easy to choose what to wear and look nice. You’ve inspired me to strive for that with all my clothing, or at least once I’ve lost this baby weight and get some new clothes that fit.

  2. says

    I’m going to clean out my closet tonight! ;) I actually have only a few outfits that I wear but have more that don’t fit. Good motivation to find a thrift shop that gives credit or cash this week for adult clothes. I’m the queen of clothing my kids for free but myself, well, I have really let that one go by the way side. It’s probably been about the beginning of the year since I got anything for myself.

    Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. Emily says

    Wow, I am so inspired. I went to my basement and put at least 20 things in a pile to go to Goodwill. I think you previously living in a smaller apartment really helps with this. If you don’t have anywhere to put it, you certainly won’t buy it. I unfortunately have a basement I keep piling stuff up in. I need to get control of that. I’m sure it also helps to stay on top of your weight control so that you fit into what you have!!

    I also feel prodded by your “minimalistness” to be more content. I feel I’m always looking for new things because I just don’t like what I have or feel that what I have is not flattering/in style/comfortable/etc. Thanks for your encouragement. I’m certainly going to work on some things I know I should.

  4. Louise says

    Yup, that’s the way I like to dress! I have what I call my “Mommy uniforms,” which consists of 6 pairs of cream, black, or grey pants, plus 6 shirts in cream, mauve, or blue. I have one nice dress for going out, and sweats for gardening or stay-in weekends. Everything goes together; one less thing to worry about in the mornings!

  5. says

    This video speaks to me and inspires me almost like a good sermon. It motivates me in many ways beyond my wardrobe – but it doesn’t motivate by guilt. It reminds me to be deliberate about focusing on what is really important to me. Thank you, Crystal.

    • says

      Thanks so much for your kind words. That is so what I want — to encourage and inspire, but not put people on a guilt trip! Because we’re all in unique and different situations.

  6. Cris says

    WOW! 2 pairs of black shoes + tennis shoes! I have a very hard time getting rid of clothes/ shoes ( I always think I’ll have somewhere to where it at even if not used in years…) so you would hate my closet! I decided after reading this to go count my BLACK shoes and I have 9 pairs of them not counting flip flops! No need to think I’m not frugal, the oldest one I wore to my high school prom almost 14 years ago!!!! So I am not always buying, just keeping stuff for too long! The newest I bought over 2 years ago brand new on clearance for $2.5 and the box was marked originally 79.99… My mom also buys me at least 2 pairs of shoes and sends to me before my birthday since she says she never knows what to buy me ( I tell her all the time I don’t need any more but she won’t listen). As for the high school shoes – they still fit me and I really don’t know if I can get rid of them just yet!!! Help Crystal!!

  7. Jennifer Kaiser says

    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do more Vlogs! They are SO fun to watch! You are so inspiring!

  8. Tracey Sandmeyer says

    I am so inspired and amazed with you. You are such a blessing to our lives. Thank you for your bold work for the glory of what really matters, His kingdom!

  9. says

    A charming vlog. I would have loved to see the child talking in the background. (I am an empty-armed grandma!) My problem with clothing is most of it has been given to me, I have made some of the things over, really haven’t bought anything for myself for a few years (but today I bought a cute tshirt on sale at KMart for $2. I am a senior citizen on a strict budget, fixed income, and I always think I am going to lose weight, hence the smaller sizes in my closet. But I think the minimalist idea is great and a good antidote to “packratism” (a disease that I and a lot of us older folks seem to have.” Great job on this site. I have only been subbed for a week or so, but I love it!

  10. Clarissa says

    INSPIRATION!!!! I love fashion. Most people think I spend thousands of dollars in clothes but I buy a few good pieces and pair them with extremely inexpensive accessories or shirts. Still I do not come close to you. I will never complaint and say “I do not have anything to wear”!! I will NOT let my husband watch your video ; )

  11. Courtney S says

    Stains…I would love to have a minimalist wardrobe, but I am constantly getting food/spit up on my clothes. Laundering sometimes works and sometimes not.

  12. Jeni says

    Crystal, I am requesting a blog post about HOW to cut down my closet. It’s bad, really bad (my drawers are breaking because they’re overly stuffed). I own a tank top in every shade of color because they mix and match well under so many tops. I also tend to keep all my old clothes for years. I have things I wear from 7 years ago, and don’t feel the need to throw it out. *sigh* How to downsize??

  13. Julia says

    Wow, it is so courageous of you to vlog about this. I must say the P90X is working (I want to read posts on it!). We recently moved and I purged a lot, and then more when we moved into our current place. I still have plenty though… it is amazing how much we acquire if we allow ourselves to. Great post, and I thouroughly enjoy reading the comments on interesting blog posts – but only on your blog! And I have to say my son has way too many clothes (hand me-downs). I just sent a case with my husband to a co-worker of his, and my son still has two boxes and a large drawerful. Oy.

  14. Dylan says

    I buy second hand clothing that looks like new and hit a bag sale at church flea markets. It’s recycling for me to be able to use clothing others don’t want and I donate my clothing I no longer want to them for others as well and it helps out the church. I do less laundry and bigger loads so it saves energy for my family to have more clothing that I find so cheap!

  15. KChili says

    Simplicity is it’s own reward. Frugal may be the new “it” lifestyle, but it’s always been a choice. Celebrate your choices! For inspiration, try reading Frugal Luxuries and Frugal Luxuries by the Seasons by Tracey McBride.

  16. Heidi says

    Thanks for the cute video! I really like the way you keep things simple… yet cute and in style. Timeless classics… that’s my style too. I love reading your blog and I find you to be an inspiration.

    (I love your little guy toddling around in the background too… isn’t he too cute??)

  17. says

    I tried to scan through all the comments and see if anyone else had asked this (forgive me if I missed it), but do you ever receive clothes as gifts? Maybe a big bag of hand-me downs for you? How does that play into your wardrobe?

    My Mama or sister or even husband will occassionally buy me a new sweater or shirt for my birthday or Christmas, or maybe a t-shirt from their vacation. Or a lady from church will hand me a big bag of hand-me down clothes for “me”? I think I’d feel bad if I didn’t keep/wear some of those things. Is that ever an issue?

    • Laura says

      I would refer to Flylady. If you don’t love it, get rid of it! Don’t let someone else’s stuff cause you stress. After many years, I have finally started getting ruthless with this. I ask my mom/husband for receipts and return things. I only keep the very best of the hand-me-downs I’ve been blessed with. It is wonderful you have so many generous people in your life. You have to control what stays or you will be overrun. I say that because I know! : ) Blessings to you, my sister!

  18. Danielle says

    Maybe someone already asked this, but my big dilemma is between, cooking, cleaning and taking care of the kids, my clothes are always stained. I would love to have a minimilist, streamlined wardrobe, but my stuff is always getting ruined.

    • Becky in KY says

      @Danielle, I’ve dealt with some of that, too, and my solution currently is to take a tip from past generations and wear an apron. I’ve begun wearing one more often when I cook and am thinking I will begin wearing them during messy times of day as well. I only have two very utilitarian aprons right now, but there are some cute ones out there — as well as some easy patterns for those who can sew.

  19. says

    Haha, the comments here are so funny!!!! I’m trying to get a group of women together that can share with each other inexpensive ways to have an nice wardrobe! I’m a minimalist and fashionista…so I am SUPER excited about this. If you want to check it out come on over to http://clothedwithlilies.blogspot.com and plus I’m doing a OLD NAVY gift card giveaway right now(super low entries)!

    • Laura says

      You would probably love having a “clothing swap” with your friends. Instead of giving all your extra clothes/accessories to the Goodwill, you save the nicest to swap with your friends. Everyone gets a chance to clean out their closets & fill them up with some new clothes at the same time. It is fun, fashionable & free!

      • says

        @Laura, That’s such a wonderful idea, if I had any friends, I would TOTALLY do that…but I don’t right now…:( Just moved to a new city, having trouble in the area of finding friends…but great idea, none the less!!!

  20. Laura says

    I am so thankful you posted this. I have to admit I was feeling very frustrated when you said you had only 6 items of clothing. At the time I was packing for a 8-day trip and had many more than 6 items laid out. And my closets were still stuffed! I couldn’t imagine how you live with only 6 things, but now seeing it, I understand. Like you, I am not big into fashion and think I could minimize my wardrobe. I probably couldn’t get down to 6 items, but 20 would be a great goal. After watching your vlog I am motivated to count my pieces and simplify!

    PS Flylady.net has a good tutorial on simplifying your wardrobe. She, too, lives on a basic wardrobe. What a great way to save time, stress & money!

  21. Shellie says

    First.. you are adorable! So tiny and i bet anything you put on looks great on you! But..for those of us not blessed with such a beautiful, small figure/frame..it is much harder to just have a few items to mix and match. I, by far, do not have a lavish wardrobe believe me! :) I so wish I could do this too!!!!!!

  22. Ann says

    Well done! I pretty much live like this too except I wear blacks and greys
    So of course I now need to ask-what kind of earrings do you wear?

  23. Rhoda says

    After reading a few of the comments, I’m reminded to pull out my apron for cooking to cut down on at least those stains and keep my smaller wardrobe in nice condition. For the baby/kid-caused stains…gotta pre-treat as soon as they hit, or the clothes are a loss. Got an outfit from lunch today that’s being treated as I type.

  24. rcc says

    while i love the colors of your wardrobe and your minimalist approach, i’m concerned how you stay warm when it is cold out? i have several hooded sweatshirt jackets and sweaters b/c i’m always freezing cold even when it is in the seventies. i am always layering shirts and jackets to be warm

  25. says

    Inspiring video- I have been thinking along those lines recently. The only problem is- I love a variety of colors, and a variety of tops with designs, embroidery, etc! And it’s hard to get rid of anything, because there always is the hope that someday I may need it desperately!
    THankfully, I don’t usually spend more than $2 on a single item of clothing! Thanks for the ideas!

  26. Danielle says

    I am pregnant now for the 4th time in 4 years! We feel very blessed to have a growing family, but I am having a hard time knowing what to get rid of when I’m constantly changing sizes! I’ve made some progress in letting go of some things, but now I’m inspired to take it further. I do tend toward certain colors, so that is helpful. And I already have a very minimalist shoe wardrobe. Perhaps I should just stick to loose, roomy tops all year round. But it’s oh-so-hard to get rid of those cute outfits that you just “might” fit back into someday!

  27. says

    I’ve been trying to minimize my closet so I really appreciate this post. I’ve struggled a little bit b/c I’m still “in between” sizes after having my second baby. But thanks for sharing! However, I have a few questions:
    1. What about exercising? Do you have additional clothes for that and if so, how many?
    2. Is this just for one season or is that all you have all together?
    3. What’s your take on shoes & socks? I’ve ben trying to cut down my shoes by sticking to one color scheme so that some day I could get rid of all my shoes that don’t fit with that color but I just haven’t quiet been ready to get rid of the “other” colored stuff yet.

    Also, I just thought I’d throw out a reminder to other readers that we are all in different situations and to be careful not to be too legalistic and think that everyone should have some magic number of clothing items. Especially since our “outside the home” activities can vary.

    • Amy says

      @Ashlee,
      That’s a great reminder. As I was watching this, I realized that I have a lot of other clothes that are for specific occasions. I am a Cub Scout leader so I have a shirt for that. I also help at AWANA and have a shirt for that. I do run and I like to run outside – when you live in the Midwest that means a lot of different layers. So besides my clothes that I wear on a “normal” basis, I have others too. (I don’t have to swap seasons because everything that I own does fit into my alloted space!)

      We don’t all have to choose to do exactly what she says! Take some inspiration but not a rule!

  28. Anne Stogner says

    Hello!
    I read through all the comments the other day, so I’m hoping not to repeat anybody’s question. Will you post what kind of items (shoes included) you have for your fall and winter wardrobe? I know you mentioned having boots, but are they full calf length or ankle? I love the idea of boots, but seem to be clueless on how to pull them off. :) I read and watched this vlog around the same time as reading Randy Alcorn’s book, The Treasure Principle: Discovering the Secret of Joyful Giving, and I have been never more challenged to change my greedy ways.
    Thank you!

  29. says

    Your wardrobe freaks me out! I spend little to nothing on groceries so that I can buy Betsey Johnson. Wheee! And I shall not apologize. :-) (I will think fondly of you this afternoon as I switch out my summer closet for my winter one though, lugging it all up and down the stairs.)

  30. Wendy says

    I would like to know if this is really your only clothes or just the ones you wear outside your home? Do you clean in these clothes? With just one dress I assume your church is casual?

    I am inspired to get rid of some things but I don’t think I will be going that far. The color coordination is a great idea – do you ever get board?

    Do your children’s closets look like this too?

    • says

      That’s it for Summer, aside from pjs and workout clothes. I usually wear skirts to church and mostly wear something very similar each week. :) And yes, I clean in these clothes — just whip on an apron and you’re good to go.

      I usually replace three shirts per season, so I don’t get bored.

      If you read through some of the comments above, I talk a little more on my children’s clothes.

  31. says

    Okay, I misread that last part and thought that you were apologizing that YOU were skinny, not the video. It must be because all through the video I was thinking, “Oh, wow. I didn’t know she was so tiny!”

    Maybe it’s time for me to look into P90X. :)

  32. Michelle says

    I just wanted to tell you that I think you are just TOO cute!! I liked seeing you, it makes your blogs come alive – makes you more of a “real person” and not just a blog. I enjoyed it. Also, I think your wardrobe is great!

  33. Susanne says

    That’s awesome! Was that your winter or summer wardrobe? Also, what do you wear for stockings? Tights? I find that nylons last one wear when I’m around my little ones…

  34. Karissa says

    What about winter clothes? Do you have sweaters? hoodies? sweat pants?
    I like the idea of the minimalist wardrobe….

  35. says

    I think this is awesome. I want to go clean out my closet right now. I am not sure I am ready to go this minimalistic, but I do think I have so many things hanging in my closet and in my drawers that I don’t need or even like. Thanks for all that you do and share.

  36. Stephanie says

    Wow, that was extremely inspiring. I have often thought about doing that, but seeing someone else do it gives me more courage to do it. Thanks so much.

  37. says

    I LOVE it! For years, I have been sporting a minimalist wardrobe! :) I am ecstatic to see that I am not the only woman who likes to look pretty but without all of the fuss! Thank you for sharing!

  38. Amanda Hagler says

    Crystal, I know this is a little off point, but I just wanted to say what a blessing it is to see someone so beautiful inside AND out! I am ashamed to admit that when I read your blog and see the way you live your life through your words, it’s easy for me to be like ‘well, that’s easy for HER’. Somehow it makes it easier to not do it myself by imagining that when you say you only have about six mix and match outfits that you dress in ill fitted frumpy clothing (because for some reason that’s the stereotype that comes to mind when I think of ‘second hand’!) that wouldn’t work for me… but then I see you in these video blogs and you are so well put together and your clothing and look is in no way ‘frumpy’ and I feel immediately humbled for allowing myself to make excuses for not disciplining myself and using the ‘I’m too young, I’ll get eventually’ excuse… because you’re young too! I think I sometimes forget that, because your words and practices seem so mature compared to other people our age. Thank you for being such an inspiration to so many of us!

  39. Jessica says

    I want to thank you for inspiring me once again! You gave me the motivation I needed to pare down my wardrobe so that I only have clothes in my closet that I love to wear. It makes getting dressed so much easier and gives me more time to spend with my little ones and hubby. Thank you, thank you!

  40. says

    Your Vlog totally inspired a major closet clean out!! It was highly liberating! I have a lot of great clothes to donate:) I didn’t get it down to six; but I did get it down to the amount that I needed to make me happy…and got rid of all the regrets of past purchases and too small/ too big clothing that I was waiting to get into or hoping not to need to wear again!! This was a great reminder that true beauty comes from within…not from that which adorns us! That’s true 1 Peter 3 and Proverbs 31 inspiration!! Thank you

  41. Jessica says

    I just had to leave another comment because I finally realized why it is that I’m continually inspired by your minimalist lifestyle – it calls me to live out the Gospel message, free myself from material things, and store up my treasures in heaven. Thank you!