How To Pick Clothes For Your Capsule Wardrobe

I’m Anna.
Newly wed, pup mom to Ozzy, living off the coast of NC. Sharing capsule wardrobe tips, renter safe home projects, recipes & more! Here to share the alternatives for living simply and sustainably
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So you’re ready to create your capsule wardrobe but now you’re wondering “what should I put in my capsule?” This takes the question “what should I wear?” and makes it feel 10 times harder. But have no fear, I’m here to help you figure out everything you need in your minimal closet and coach you through the momentary panic you may be experiencing as you consider downsizing. In other words: I GOTCHU BOO! Here are my top tips for How To Pick Clothes For Your Capsule Wardrobe!

How to pick clothes for your capsule wardrobe

Your “unofficial capsule”

The reality is, the majority of us already keep a capsule wardrobe without even knowing it. We all have a small selection on pieces in our closets that we just really love. The articles of clothing you reach for over and over; the clothes you feel the most comfortable in or the most like yourself in, this is your unofficial capsule. When you go to create a formal capsule wardrobe all you are doing is gathering those few pieces and putting a label on it. Start by setting out those “top fav” items and let’s move on to the next step.

Finding inspiration

Your capsule wardrobe is whatever you make it, whatever style, & whatever color palette you wish. Old school “pinterest perfect” capsules from 2015 are RETIRED. No one says your capsule has to be black, white, and beige business casual (unless you love neutrals and work in an office). My point is, you can put whatever you like in your capsule wardrobe. Green heels? keep ’em. Poka-dot skirt? love it. Old grannie sweater you thrifted? need it. Pick the clothes you love and pin point your “style” to curate a capsule wardrobe that fits that niche but have fun with it! I created a Pinterest board for each season to help me visualize my style with the pieces I currently had on hand. Here’s an example Fall Capsule Wardrobe Board. If you’re struggling to define what your style is, I’ll be writing more about this in the coming weeks *wink.*

Shop your closet

Throwing it back to 2015 again, when capsule wardrobes first began trending there was this large misconception that your capsule had to be made up of the finest quality items and what society deemed as “timeless” pieces. Which made people think they had to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe which totally defeats the purpose of downsizing your closet. Now, I do think once you start a capsule wardrobe you’ll soon realize how great it is to invest in well made, sustainable, and ethically made clothing. The theme of “quality over quantity” really reigns true, however, you do not and frankly should not go out and buy a whole new wardrobe to start a capsule. Instead, start by “shopping your closet” which essentially means, pull everything out and look over what you currently own. You’ll be surprised at what’s hiding in the back of your closet or at the bottom of your drawer.

Shop second hand

Okay but what happens if there’s just a few things you “need” to complete your dream capsule? Shop second hand, for two reasons: 1.) Because it’s usually more affordable. A nice blouse, brand new, ranges from $35-$75 these days when you could thrift something similar for $5-$10. 2.) If this is your first time building a capsule wardrobe you don’t know what you’re going to love wearing the most, what you need more of, etc. So see this as a trial run and if you really love that thrifted piece you can upgrade later to the newer, nicer version if you like.

Also shopping second hand is a huge way to minimize over consumption and ending the fast fashion cycle.

Audit Your Capsule

Once you have picked clothes to put in your capsule and you’ve committed to your 30 day-60 day challenge etc. Start to audit your capsule as you go. What did you wear the first two weeks? What have you worn the least? Is there anything you wish you could wear more or have in another color? It’s absolutely okay to switch things around as you first begin to establish your capsule wardrobe. Something I remember the first month of my capsule; I had added my favorite sweatshirts and hoodies to my capsule and loved wearing elevated lounge wear but it was in the middle of summer and so so hot outside. I realized real quick my thick sweat sets were not practical for that time of year in my capsule so I swapped my sweatpants for sweat shorts and hoodies for oversized tees.

Lastly, Organize Your Closet

Sounds basic but I’m telling you an organized closet will help minimize overwhelm and anxiety drastically when it comes to getting dressed in the morning. Place your capsule pieces thoughtfully in your closet so it’s easy to get dressed and see your options. Get hangers that match to make it all look cohesive and if you like color coordinating, have at it!

Hopefully you feel empowered and inspired after reading through this with a better idea on how to pick clothes for your capsule wardrobe! If you need a little more practical tips read my How To Start A Capsule Wardrobe blog and feel free to download my FREE capsule wardrobe checklist here:


Capsule wardrobe checklist

I’ll see you in my next blog!



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