Capsule Wardrobe Debut | Winter 2016

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December 1st marked the beginning of my second Winter season in this capsule wardrobe journey! When I compare this collection to the collection I had for last winter, I get excited about how this project has helped me define and improve “my style” AND about how many more high-quality pieces have taken up residence in my closet, that will be around for years instead of lasting only a season or so before getting tossed.

I’ve been realizing lately that a common misconception that people have about capsule wardrobe is that there is an extra-high turnover of wardrobe pieces. While in the first year or so that I was working on this project, I did in fact replace much of the clothing I owned, that is not necessarily the point of a pared-down, “minimalist,” if you will, capsule collection.

In fact, the exact opposite is what I consider the ultimate goal: a very low turnover rate. So far I have been purchasing at least a handful of new pieces for each season, but I aspire to one day limit that number to something very small: say, 2-4.

Since Fall and Winter are the two cooler seasons, the transition between the two is more subtle than between Summer and Fall. For that reason, you’ll notice that many more pieces are carried over this time from last season. I’ve decided to not list sources for each piece, since most of them were included in the Fall post, and you can find that here.

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My shopping list for this season consisted of the following:

  • cold-weather dresses (I had none)
  • shirts to wear with my many cardigans
  • red pants

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The dresses I found were from Downeast and Target (unfortunately though I searched high and low I was unable to find the green one online — I purchased it off the clearance rack in-store). The grey one should work well with my growing belly, and though the same can’t be said for the green one, I fell in love with its look and feel and its low price helped to justify that.

I found the red top pictured above at my local LOFT Outlet and the black suede fringe is from Target as well. I also picked up a basic long-sleeved tee in dark red, and pulled another long-sleeved tee from storage that I had purchased quite a while ago from the boutique where I work and decided to put away as a maternity top (the pink one). The blue fabulous pullover is another one that I snatched up from work, and the blue Dolman top with black stripes is from my last Stitch Fix. And one of my all-time favorites for this season, the one “trendy” piece I just couldn’t resist was this fringe poncho.

I was thrilled to find that American Eagle introduced my favorite pair of pants EVER in the exact shade of red I was looking for, so that was an easy one to check off the list! I have these in green as well and they are uber-soft and comfortable, don’t stretch out at all, and boast fun details that set them apart from boring old jeans.

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There were a couple more pieces I’d been saving for winter that I pulled from storage, and the green skirt I’ve got on loan from my sister-in-law as a “baby-belly-friendly” waistband for later on this season when my stuff barely fits anymore. Other than that, most of these pieces were carried over from Fall. So never fear, penny-pinchers…doing capsule wardrobe absolutely does NOT mean buying a whole new wardrobe 2 or 4 times a year! 🙂

My friend Rebekah of Rebekah Viola Photography spent a morning here with me last week, snapping photos of all my stuff. So, all credit to her for my best-looking capsule debut yet! It’s so fun to collaborate with fellow creatives.

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As always, follow me on Pinterest to keep tabs on my wardrobe additions and inspiration! And I’d love to hear, what’s been inspiring you in the fashion department lately?

Kristin’s Suitcase Capsule Tip

This post this last installment in the Show & Tell series of posts featuring TROG readers and the capsule wardrobe-inspired changes they’ve made to their wardrobes and lives. Read all the posts in this series here.

Kristin writes:

The concept of the Capsule Wardrobe is fascinating to me, especially when it applies to traveling. My husband travels a lot for business and I am often able to go along. I used to pack WAY too much and after a while, I got weary of having too much extra unnecessary stuff. We often just take carry-ons when we fly, so the fewer clothes you take, the better. The basic principle I adopted was to pick a color scheme for the trip, for example: navy blue, gray, black, and coral. It really helped pare down my travel wardrobe when I only chose pieces that mixed and matched. The bonus was, now all the shoes/jackets/accessories would match everything. No more carrying around shoes that only matched one outfit!


That’s such a smart strategy for packing, Kristin! I think I’ve chosen a color palette while packing like you described a time or two without trying, and it definitely simplified things–not to mention made the suitcase look pretty. 🙂 I’ll have to use that as a rule in the future. Thanks for the tip!

Go check out Kristin’s blog, Transparent Splashes of Color, and if you found this post helpful or inspiring, leave Kristin some love in the comments below!

Katie’s TROG-Inspired Capsule Collection

This post is part of a Show & Tell series of posts featuring TROG readers and the capsule wardrobe-inspired changes they’ve made to their wardrobes and lives. Read all the posts in this series here.

I was thrilled when my friend Katie of A Girl Named Katie contacted me asking if I’d help her go through her closet and put together a capsule wardrobe. We spent the better part of a day together back in August, and we both learned things from each other as we collaborated! Katie has written about her experience with capsule wardrobe on two different occasions so far, so head on over to her blog to read her insight on the process:



Everything you do is so inspiring, Katie! Thanks for sharing these links with all of us.

If you find Katie’s posts helpful and inspiring, leave her some love in the comments below! And after you’ve checked out her blog from the links above, be sure to follow her on Instagram for more ethical-fashion goodness!

Arie’s Toddler Capsule Wardrobe

This post is part of a Show & Tell series of posts featuring TROG readers and the capsule wardrobe-inspired changes they’ve made to their wardrobes and lives. Read all the posts in this series here.

Rosina, my sister-in-law, creator of Tortoise & The Hare, and the one who first told me about this “capsule wardrobe thing” she had read about online, writes:

The image is terrible because it’s as dark as it gets in our house today, but here’s an image of my 2-year-old daughter’s wardrobe (minus about 5 dresses and her pajamas). I wish I would’ve known how to do a newborn wardrobe like this when she was born, but unfortunately or fortunately found out about this concept after she was born.


I barely spend any time shopping for her. It’s just so easy. Tops and sweaters are all neutral or her statement color, as are her tights. The only pieces I purchase or make that have patterns or more adventurous colors are her skirts and bottoms. Hair accessories are all neutral as are her hats. Just so easy.

I think Rosina’s all-neutral-except-bottoms idea is a BRILLIANT strategy for an infant’s or child’s wardrobe. I can’t wait to implement something similar with our own wee one’s wardrobe!

If you found this post helpful or inspiring, leave Rosina some love in the comments below. And check out her Instagram, chock-full of delightful images of her beautiful heirloom-quality handmade children’s clothing line.

Sadie’s Closet Clean-Out

This post is part of a Show & Tell series of posts featuring TROG readers and the capsule wardrobe-inspired changes they’ve made to their wardrobes and lives. Read all the posts in this series here.

Sadie writes:

I do not have my wardrobe down to 37 items, unfortunately, but I am working in that direction. I get sentimental about clothing and keep stuff WAY too long.

Not only that, but you know those sales for t-shirts, like 2 for $10? They get me every time. I’m working on it, though. It’s better for me to buy a shirt I REALLY like, instead of two, that I’m mostly just buying because they’re cheap.

Closet favorites that I’m keeping. (There are other clothes that I’m still going through.)


My four favorite pieces: teal shirt from LOFT, black skirt from LOFT, white sweater from Gap, gray skirt from Gap. (It was hard to narrow it down…I have more favorites I could share, but those are the main ones.)


The husband is quality over quantity, so needless to say, I learned a lot when I married him. 🙂 I’d much rather shop with him, than without. He knows me and what I like and helps me make great decisions.

Sounds like you are making great progress and headed in a fabulous direction, Sadie! Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your journey!

You can connect with Sadie on Instagram here, and if you found this post helpful or inspiring, leave her some love in the comments below!

Sarah’s Strategic Capsule Curation

This post is part of a Show & Tell series of posts featuring TROG readers and the capsule wardrobe-inspired changes they’ve made to their wardrobes and lives. Read all the posts in this series here.

Sarah writes:

My closet has always been small, at least compared to that of most of my friends. I love minimalism and tend to purge on a regular basis. However, before I found out about the Capsule Wardrobe concept, I would often stand in front of my closet feeling as though I had nothing to wear.

During this time I got pregnant with our first child, and while I did purchase a few maternity pieces, for the most part I simply wore my regular clothes, making them work by layering a long cami underneath my shirts and wearing a belly band when needed with my jeans. This was all well and good until our precious little boy was born and my body shrunk back to its pre-pregnancy shape, leaving my clothes looking quite baggy and stretched out! Now not only did I feel like my options were limited, but I was left with a closet full of worn out old favorites.

In the weeks after Carson was born, I discovered and immediately knew this was a route I wanted to take. On her blog, Caroline Rector shared her 37 piece wardrobe, which she updated season by season as needed. I chose to create an all seasons wardrobe, where I would have more than 37 pieces, and instead of changing things out every three months, I would wear the clothes year round. I live in upstate New York, where winter seems to last forever and a jacket still might be needed on a July summer night, so this seemed more practical.

As I replaced worn out items and added a few new pieces to my wardrobe as well, I made a Pinterest style board, where I pinned outfits I liked. Browsing through it, I was able to see specific styles I was drawn to again and again, along with new outfit combinations from pieces I already had in my closet but wouldn’t have nessecarily thought to pair together before. This made shopping —which is a chore for me— a bit easier. I was finally feeling a bit more put-together, my mornings weren’t wasted wondering what to wear… and then I got pregnant again.

I just entered the second trimester, and things aren’t fitting quite as well as they once had. This time around, instead of trying to make things work, I am going to be more intentional and invest in a few key maternity pieces that I plan to dress up with accessories like jewelry, hats, scarves and vests. I chose a simple color palette that will mix and match well, giving me many outfit combinations. I still have a few more pieces I would like to add, but I plan to do it slowly, giving me time to grow and fill out the items I already have. 🙂 I can already tell that I will feel a bit more polished and put-together this pregnancy, thanks to Un-fancy and the valuable lessons I learned from that blog!

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Fun fact: 9 of the 15 items pictured here were thrifted, and 2 were gifted (the rest I purchased new). I know a lot of people think that a capsule wardrobe is expensive, because in their mind everything is bought new at the beginning of the season, but it really doesn’t have to be that way!

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You’re an old pro at this, Sarah! Thanks for showing us your gorgeous wardrobe and telling us about your journey!

Check out Sarah’s blog, Come What May and find her on Instagram here. And if you found this post helpful or inspiring, leave her some love in the comments below!