How I’m Organising My Capsule Wardrobe for 2020

…and my manifesto for the next 12 months.

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Hello, yes it’s me again banging on about capsule wardrobes almost five years after my first attempt at making one went horribly wrong. We’re coming up to almost having lived in our flat for five years and it’s making me realise that there are now a fair amount of things that we’ve been doing for a long ol’ while;  five years of some incredible travel as before that we were saving up all our pennies for the flat, three years of Reformer Pilates, two and a half years of seriously cutting down on our meat intake and at least a year of trying to make our neighbour’s cat love me (SPOILER: The cat is having none of it).

Even though my first attempt at a capsule wardrobe didn’t work out so well – not enough clothing and not enough hours in the day to clean it all – it’s a concept that’s hung around due to necessity rather than anything else, as space for clothing in our bedroom is ‘edited‘ shall we say? But storage issues aside it’s a concept that ultimately keeps me in check when it comes to clothing. It’s an idea that’s morphed and changed over the years, but these days it means the following things to me.

Four quarterly wardrobe re-jigs throughout the year at the beginning of each season. Putting in season clothing in my wardrobe and removing out of season items and putting them into storage. 

Using this re-jig as a chance to assess my wardrobe my wardrobe and note down any holes that could do with filling. 

Mending and fixing worn pieces where possible and taking the best care of everything that I own. 

When I do make purchases making an effort to buy items that add to my wardrobe, instead of purchasing *another* black shirt when I already have four. 

Ultimately being mindful of purchases that I make; attempting to buy from sustainable brands more often than not, or making second-hand or vintage purchases. 

Some of the above I do avidly now and have done for years, but some of these mantras need a *little* more work. It’s a work in progress, but I feel like 2020 is the year where I can finally solidify them all in place. Here’s what else I’m aiming for with my capsule wardrobe over the next 12 months…

An Open Book…

This year I want to share with you E-V-E-R-Y-T-H-I-N-G that enters my capsule wardrobe. That’s items that I’ve purchased myself, sale bits that I pick up occasionally, gifted items, clothing pieces that get added in through jobs that I’ve done, the lot. That’s not to say that I haven’t shown these things in past, but I really want to get down to the nitty gritty of my wardrobe and ultimately cut down on the number of things that get added and cycled through my closet. A great idea that someone shared in my comments was the idea of conducting an audit and noting down what items I wear everyday, ultimately compiling a list of my most-worn pieces which is a brilliant idea. I’ve decided against it as if I’m honest with myself I wear loungewear/old t-shirts about 75% of the time, but I am giving another spreadsheet a go (see below), and I thought I’d share it here incase you want to try it out and you actually wear proper clothing unlike me.

Be Real About Budget…

Hello my name is Anna and I spend way too much money on clothing. It’s a tricky one as the contents of my wardrobe is partly related to my job and ultimately my income, but I know that for the past few years I’ve spent a disproportionate amount of my earnings on clothing and that’s something that I really want to put an end to this year (LOLZ – the irony of this sentence after a semi-ridiculous and rather expensive winter capsule wardrobe haul is not lost on me, promise). It’s something that I really want to track this year and give an exact figure and breakdown of at the end of the year of exactly how much I’ve spent, how many items were gifted, the percentage of those purchases that were from sustainable brands or not – the whole caboodle. I’ve started a spreadsheet and will share the end result at the end of the year, but ultimately I’m hoping that keeping a closer track on my spending when it comes to clothing specifically, might be able to help me curb it somewhat.

More Second-Hand Clothing…

This one does what it says on the tin. I hope that my hauls over the year contain more vintage and second-hand items than ever before. I’m ashamed to say that I really haven’t tasted much of the Brighton vintage scene which is WILD because there are so many brilliant spots down here, so exploring that is long overdue. I also hope that I continue to scout out more second-hand finds whenever we travel too. In my eyes a second-hand purchase is fair game as long as it’s something that you can see yourself wearing often in your wardrobe – I don’t feel like they as stringently need to fit in my ‘Do I *need* this?’ perimeters. Here’s hoping that by the end of the year there might be a 100% vintage/second-hand/sustainable clothing sourced haul. That’s the aim here.

My 2020 Capsule Wardrobe Manifesto

So there you have it – my plans for my capsule wardrobe in 2020; more openness, more mindfulness and hopefully a bit less buying than before. Want some ideas for your own clothing outlook this year? Feel free to borrow from my manifesto…

I will… share all new items I’ve added to my wardrobe over the next 12 months in quarterly YouTube videos.

I will… keep track of all new incoming items and costs in a spreadsheet and share the end results at the end of the year.

I will… aim to buy more clothing from sustainable brands, and make more vintage and second-hand purchases.

More accountability, less purchases (hopefully!) and making the contents of our wardrobes work harder than ever before. Let’s do this!


Photos by Mark Newton