This post is a combination of things I’ve learnt about minimalism that have helped me and things I’m still trying to adapt to my own life. Before 2016 I never really considering minimalism. It didn’t seem to fit with my own layered, bulky, messy, weird style. But I’ve found that isn’t so. And actually minimalism is something I’d suggest for anyone who has trouble getting dressed in the morning.
Minimalism is a mantra: remove all of the clutter that is not adding anything to your life or wardrobe, and replace that clutter with things that fit easily with who you are and help you live the life you want. Simple, right?
So, here are the three rules of minimalism that help me keep my wardrobe in check!
One concept of minimalism that helped me the most is the uniform. For most of my life I was bitter and frustrated with my wardrobe. I would spend hours in front of it planning outfits for the week and stressing out about not wearing the same thing every day. It was terrible. I literally wanted to weep when I got dressed. That was before I decided to give in and wear the clothes I wanted to – even if that meant wearing the same silhouette every day.
A uniform doesn’t have to be wearing the same thing every day. It’s a basic structure that you enjoy and that looks good on you, that you can pull out in a hurry or when you’re feeling uninspired.
Of course that doesn’t work if you’re always putting stress on yourself to be perfect and “fresh” every day of your life. Remember it’s a wardrobe, you will repeat outfits eventually. It’s a fact of life and everyone does it.
My uniform is denim shorts, t-shirt, flannel, thigh-highs and boots. It’s suitably grungy, layered and interesting without being too demanding or constricting. Oh, and it can work in any kind of weather, just throw on a leather jacket or top, or a cropped cardigan underneath, and I can tie the flannel around my waist if I’m overheating. Perf. Fits my temperamental schedule any day.
The Wardrobe Cleanse
My next tip is to cleanse your wardrobe often. If you find that your favourite pieces are getting lost in your closet you know it’s time to get rid of all of the bulk. If an item isn’t pulling it’s weight get rid of it. Even if it’s your only cardigan, or your only pair of jeans. You deserve better! You deserve a pair of jeans that make you feel great and fit your everyday style perfectly.
It may make you feel like you aren’t making any progress. Especially if you keep buying, for example, jeans that never make the cut. That just means you haven’t found the right pair yet! This is a perfect opportunity to keep an eye out for a different style that you absolutely love.
The key to wardrobe cleansing is to separate, rather than rid yourself of the bulk. It’ll make you feel so much better to get those piece that are just taking up space out of the way and put them in the attic or the boot of your car. You’ll start to realise you don’t even miss them!
The Shopping Mindset + Tips
For me the mindset is all about the way I shop. I have terrible shopping habits. I can’t just buy one thing I really like, I have to stuff my cart with things that are so-so to get free shipping or to make the purchase worthwhile.
But minimalism is all about making less be more. When you shop think about quality – is it sturdy enough to be worn almost every day, usefulness – does it look good with my entire wardrobe or does it have to be worn with specific pieces to look good, and style – am I buying this because it fits with my interests/style or am I buying this because it’s trendy?
Although, I’m all for buying the occasional trendy piece and the occasional cheap item, because you never really know what you’ll get tons of use from. Who knew a cheap faux fur coat would be my favourite coat of all time?
Another random tip, if you fall into the trap of trying to meet minimum shipping costs and so forth, is to head straight for your wardrobe staples. When trying to get free shipping I jump straight to a store’s sock section to see if they have any thigh-high socks. I wear them literally everyday so I feel it’s a worthwhile purchase.
Yes, I’m setting homework because this stuff took me far to long to learn. I spent too many years feeling terrible about myself and the clothes in my closet. I don’t want you to make this same mistake.
Quarantine the problem – separate all of the clothes you don’t wear often enough. Put them into the attic or the boot of your car. You’ll start to realise that you don’t miss them at all.
Don’t be ashamed to wear the same outfit everyday. Honestly, no one will notice!
Be mindful of what you buy! I’m a firm believer in buying clothes that are similar to what you already have. I own six pairs of denim shorts because I wear them almost every single day.
Well, that’s my tips done. What about you? Are you a fan of minimalism? If not, I hope that this post gave you a run down of some of minimalism’s manifesto that you can assimilate into your own wardrobe. I’m certainly not a minimalist (can you be a Goth and a minimalist, that’s the real question?), but I’ve found these tips really help me center my thoughts. Especially since I tend to get caught up in so many styles all at once. That’s the problem with alternative style, there’s so much history and so much inspiration around every corner!