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My “Rules” For a Minimalist Wardrobe

ruls for a minimalist wardrobe

Guest post from Carly of Happy The Home

Like me, I’m sure many of you would love a $1,000 shopping spree to your favorite clothing store. Truth be told, some of us would be happy to spend $50 or $100! But for most of us, we can’t spend a lot of money on a whole new wardrobe at the drop of a hat.

A few months ago, I began trying to simplify things in my life and home in an effort to spend more time doing things that are important to me. I wanted more time for Bible study, so I get up earlier. I wanted less laundry, so I minimized my kid’s clothes. Now it was my closet’s turn. But OH MY! It was not going to be easy.

I looked for ideas and found good blogs and articles for help with what to keep and what to get rid of. The What I Wore blog, and How to Build a Capsule Wardrobe were very helpful. Additionally, I texted my sister for her advice, as she always looks cute and we tend to like the same things! I also made some rules of my own.

My 6 “Rules” for a Minimalist Wardrobe

1. I won’t keep something if it’s uncomfortable or doesn’t fit me well.

2. I won’t buy anything new (at least not for a while).

3. I won’t feel bad keeping some of my favorite t shirts and gym clothes, but I will sort through them.

4. I won’t consider any “dry clean only” items except coats.

5. I won’t hang on to gifted clothing simply due to nostalgia.

6. I won’t keep anything because it “might fit if I lost a few pounds”.

With those rules in mind I also looked through my clothes by pulling EVERYTHING out of my closet and dresser. I decided to keep the following:

  • 6 pants
  • 8 blouses
  • 8 sweaters/cardigans
  • 4 skirts
  • 4 dresses
  • 3 vests
  • 5 scarves
  • 4 pair of shoes
  • 2 belts
  • 2 tights

I don’t think there’s a magic number to how many items of clothing one should have… and the pictures I took are merely to show how many things you can create with a few of these items.

What you see in the pictures are: 3 pants + 5 shirts + 2 jackets + 1 dress + 1 scarf + 3 pair of shoes

minimalist wardrobe

By no means have I exhausted the possibilities, but it’s exciting to think that I can do more with less. I want to simplify to make things easier and I don’t want my life to be characterized by “excess” and “disorganization”.

You might decide to keep way less than I did. But this is a start for me. Hope you enjoy watching a fashionably-impaired person enjoy a day of dress up!

Carly is a stay-at-home mother to four boys. She blogs at Happy The Home about faith, family, homemaking and all that lies between!

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10 Comments

  • I have some of these very same rules. The hardest part of having a minimalist wardrobe for me is pregnancy and postpartum fluctuations in weight. I gain about 50 pounds every time I’m pregnant (even though I eat well and exercise) so I have a lot of clothes. I try only to keep what I love!

    • Colleen says:

      So true! What I did for each of my kiddos is put away the things I knew won’t fit until months after I had the baby. I stored them away, so they weren’t in the way. Then after we said no more babies, I got rid of all the in between clothes and maternity items:)

  • I really love that white sweater. Can you tell me where you got it. So cute!

    • carly says:

      It was actually given to me by my sister (same sister who is very fashionable) but it’s from banana republic. Not sure on the cost, though! Thanks for reading 🙂

  • I really love that white sweater. Can you tell me where you got it? So cute!

  • I follow similar rules, although I do buy some dry-clean-only clothing. I need my wool pants and sweaters for the winter! 🙂 However, I won’t buy anything that’s handwash only. I know that it’ll sit in a pile somewhere for weeks before I finally get around to washing it.

  • Hannah Beth Reid says:

    This is great advice…thanks for sharing!

  • Meagan says:

    This is great inspiration for me! I have started switching out my clothes for the change in season and am making a concerted effort to part ways with the clothes I don’t like or wear.

  • Cara says:

    I love your rules for your wardrobe, (especially the last about not keeping anything that doesn’t fit). I wrote down rules when I had to build a new wardrobe after having a baby and having to go back to work, except I had to start from the ground up with only clothes that I could afford from thrift stores. Stick with it, it is a wonderful accomplishment to downsize to a minimalist wardrobe after having a large one.

    • carly says:

      Thanks for the encouragement! It was hard to get rid of things that I’d been hanging onto since high school!😳 But it has been totally worth it. I would also say, I totally understand how it’s hard to know what size you may be after having kids. I’ve had 4 in 5 years and I, too, had lots of variation in sizes. I put maternity clothes in the attic but focused on the size I am now that my youngest is weaned and I feel good at my current size. I’m sure even if you kept a selection of sizes, there are still things hanging in your closet that you don’t really like or fit you comfortably and flatteringly. I do hope you all have been helped, all of your comments have greatly encouraged me!

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