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The Time I Fell Out With My Entire Wardrobe

Author: Lauren Coleman

My house is a tip. Well it was a tip. It’s surprising how you think your house is pretty tidy and clutter free and little-by-little small piles seem to creep in to disrupt the peace. One area that was looking truly hideous was our spare room/dressing room.

James and I both store our clothes in here using a combo of simple Ikea Hemnes drawers and an open wardrobe. It’s not very Pinterestable and is no way near as cute as my old walk-in closet in our previous cottage. However it works really well for us and the rails stay tidy thanks to velcro hangers and a bit of dedication. Gradually over the last few months, in the transition out of winter clothes to summer the room began to resemble a teenager’s bedroom – there were discarded clothes everywhere, and I mean everywhere! Getting dressed had become a chore. No joy was sparked whatsoever, in fact, I would have liked to have blown the whole place up.
I hardly bought anything for my winter wardrobe; a combination of saving for an IVF cycle, feeling utterly bloated from medication and generally feeling a bit sorry for myself. The minimalism suited me to be honest as I’d built up a decent capsule winter wardrobe over the years and only had a few gaps. Spring & summer? Well, that’s a different story.

Last year I wrote about how I had begun to cheat a bit on my capsule. Well if that was cheating then it looked like I was starting to have a full-blown affair. Very slowly, without me realising boxes were beginning to get filled under beds with discarded threads and I had heaps and heaps of online shopping to return. So how did I fall back in love with my wardrobe and the capsule concept?

Remind Yourself Why You Capsule

As reader Siobhan commented last year, it’s a good idea to remind yourself of why you capsule. My reasons are below though yours may be very different.

  • Stop buying items purely because they were on sale
  • Plan purchases to fill wardrobe gaps rather than buy a whim
  • Make morning routines easier and simpler
  • Stop reaching for clothes that didn’t fit, were past their best or didn’t suit me (by charity shop donation or giving away)
  • Limit the feeling of overwhelm due to excess

Make An Effort

One reason everything had gone to pot was that I really couldn’t be arsed. Doesn’t it takes a whole heap of effort and energy to sort your clothes out?!
In the end though I forced myself to try I on every single piece of summer clothing I owned and get myself back in the zone. This took bloody ages and I had to do it in short bursts over several evenings interspersed with bathroom trips thanks to my continued vomiting! I put this off for weeks but until I’d done this I knew I wasn’t going to get anywhere.
Then the piles began. My changing shape has meant I did allow myself an extra collection which was a hoard of clothes that no longer fitted (maybe I’m ambitious but I hope to be back in some of them next summer). I bought some vacuum storage bags from Amazon to store in the loft and little by little more piles emerged of charity shop donations and winter wear. I have now removed every single thing that won’t see me through the summer and it feels so flipping liberating. If you can find the time to do the same I strongly recommend it.

Revising My Old Tactics

I went back to my original principles of having a Pinterest board of styles I wanted to wear this summer and found similar items that I know I’ll wear again and again.(I can share all my new maternity garb as a Monday or Wednesday afternoon family post if anyone is interested?) I haven’t spent a fortune but knowing the pieces I reach for over and over, I looked for similar bump friendly replacements.
Yes, I’ve got considerably more than 37 items in my wardrobe now, but you know what, every bit of it fits (for now) and it’s all seasonal. Suddenly I feel I’ve got so many outfit combos, instead of gazing at a pile of tight winter frocks I can no longer wear.

So for anyone else who has fallen out with the capsule approach, all is not lost but you do have to put a bit of effort in. I’d suggest reminding yourself why you fancied the approach in the first place and putting some time aside to have a good old try-on and clear-out session. It took me far too long to do mine but it’s been so worth it.

Anyone else at the end of their tether with their clothes? Who else fell out and back in love with some of the capsule wardrobe principles? A few archive posts you might fancy taking a gander at if you’re yet to jump on the capsule bandwagon; Pros and cons of capule wardrobing and my original approach to a more minimal wardrobe.

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Lauren likes Paris, Prosecco and Paint Charts
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12 thoughts on “The Time I Fell Out With My Entire Wardrobe

  1. I do clear out my wardrobe a couple of times a year, but I still have quite a few dresses that I know I’ll never wear again/will never fit me again and I’ve been hanging on to them, some for up to 10 years. I did try selling them on eBay last year but the ones that didn’t sell are still hanging about. I need to bite the bullet don’t I. I was going to got for a walk today but it’s raining so perhaps I’ll do that instead.

    1. I think this is another thing that puts me off doing a bit clear-out Claire – the rigmarole of dealing with all the aftermath!
      Sorry it’s raining where you are today. Hope the sun shines soon.

  2. I have been trying to capsule wardrobe for years and it has never worked until getting pregnant! At the end of winter I went through my wardrobe and put into two large storage boxes all the clothes that were not going to fit through pregnancy (and a bit beyond) and sent loads of stuff to the charity shop. I now have a perfect capsule wardrobe, not brimming full, with a small selection of clothes and it feels LIBERATING! So much easier to know what bits you need to fill gaps and it’s so much clearer to see which bits you are no longer wearing and need to go in the bin/given away as you can see the wood through the trees! Being on mat leave soon I wont be able to be as frivolous with my spending so I am definitely going to keep the capsule wardrobe going!! X

    1. Do you reckon keeping things that don’t fit at the moment has made the process a bit easier? I’ve always struggled with the ‘getting rid’ piles but found it easier this time as there were things I needed to hang on to for post-pregnancy. This time a lot more went into storage than before!

  3. My wardrobe is a mess. At the moment the clothes I regularly wear seem to end up being stored in my ironing basket and rarely make it back on the rails. I need an overhaul, but currently have very little money/time to spend updating my wardrobe. First on the list will be my work clothes though, being in a corporate job, the same black and grey skirts have been worn for years!

    Although, the lovely Oasis khaki military jacket from last week’s post is now hanging in my wardrobe!

  4. DO A PREGNANCY WARDROBE POST. I’m 29 weeks with my second and seem such a different shape to first time around (how?). No idea how to dress a different body shape – hello boobs – and feel like the whole world is twirling around on instagram in cute floral dresses and straw baskets and I’m hobbling along in dungarees and another bl**dy stripy top. Gah. Help.

    1. I’m envious of your dungarees Bex! I missed out on the H&M ones. Will see what I can do. You should get yourself a straw basket though 😉

  5. I’m trying desperately to cull items from my closet but there are still bits and pieces knocking about that I bought on a whim that I’ll probably never wear but also never get around to EBay-ing them either! Must get it sorted…

    I’d love a piece on maternity wear – I’m 19 weeks pregnant and bump is just starting to show but could still easily be mistaken for me indulging in too much cheese… I’m mid thirties and a lot of the pieces I’ve seen so far just don’t feel like me.

    1. Congrats on the bump Sue. I’m just ahead of you but definitely not just starting to show. I was told yesterday I was ‘huge!’
      Will start to put together a maternity post x

      1. Why do people think it’s ok to comment on the size of a pregnant lady? There really isn’t a time in any girls life past the age of 10 when the phrase “wow, aren’t you big” will be met with delight.
        I’ve just had my second child and cannot wait to sell/donate my maternity clothing. Now goal – the “can I breastfeed in this?” Capsule wardrobe.

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