How to build up an ethical capsule wardrobe?

Having a capsule wardrobe is more and more popular. The basic concept of a capsule wardrobe is that you own a small number of clothes. This has many advantages and I'm happy to share them with you! I would like to tell you how to build an ethical capsule wardrobe. 

The definition ethical capsule wardrobe: A small collection of ethical and useful clothing that you love to wear.

The advantages of an ethical capsule wardrobe

1. It saves time in the morning

Having a capsule wardrobe is very practical. Famous people like Obama and Mark Zuckerberg like to wear the same kind of clothes all the time. They have many other things to focus on and don't (waste) their energy thinking about what to wear. When you have fewer items to choose from in the morning, it saves you so much valuable time. Just pick something from your capsule wardrobe, everything looks good on you!

2. It saves even more time

When you stick to your capsule wardrobe there will not be a need to go into shops, "just to have a look". You know that you don't need something and that you don't want to add to your wardrobe. This also helps you not to buy unintentional items that you don't really like in the end. In general, you will spend less time shopping, so you will have more time to do the thing you like. 

3. It saves money

Having fewer clothes definitely saves money. In France, people spend on average 1,230 € a year on clothing. Once you have an ethical capsule wardrobe in place, you will only need to replace some items once in a while. You will save so much! 

4. It fits with a conscious lifestyle

When you care about the environment and about fair trade practices, then those might be the biggest reasons to start an ethical and sustainable capsule wardrobe. When you only by clothes of good quality, that have been ethically made of ecological materials you support the earth and the people working in the fashion industry.

How to start an ethical capsule wardrobe?

So many advantages! But where to start? Follow these steps to create an ethical capsule wardrobe.

1. Have a critic look at your wardrobe

Make "yes", "maybe” and "no", piles. What goes on the “yes” pile are clothes that you want to wear again the same week they come out of the washing machine. They make you feel good, they look good and they are in good condition. What goes on the "no" pile are clothes that stay in your closet and you don't wear, damaged clothes that can't be fixed or clothes that are impossible to combine. Do you have two items that are similar? Choose the best one! Are you in doubt? Put it on the “maybe” pile and put these clothes away in a plastic bag. Haven't you missed them after 2 months? Then they can go away too.

2. Give away unwanted clothes

This is a hard step, but once you've done it you'll see it feels good. All the clothes from the “no” pile need to get out of your closet straight away. Bring them to a second-hand shop, donate them to a charity or give them to someone else who will appreciate them. Same counts for the "maybe" pile when you haven't missed these clothes after two months. 

3. Wear your clothes

Oke, you have done the first big step. Your wardrobe is much emptier now. Well done! Doesn’t it feel good? A recommended amount of clothing in a capsule wardrobe is 30 to 50 items. It is up to you to be strict or a bit less strict. But above 50 the idea of a capsule wardrobe is gone. 

So to start off, before buying new items ( if you need some) it would be perfect if you have nog more than 40 items of clothing in your closet. Try only wearing them for a few weeks. You will quickly enjoy the profits of a capsule wardrobe. And when you take this time only wearing the items you already had you will have the time to realize what you still miss.

4. Make a wishlist

It's time for fun! Let's make the wishlist. Buying clothes for an ethical wardrobe can be a bit expensive, so don't panic that you can't buy everything you want straight away. This wishlist can last years. By taking your time you can make conscious choices and you can really buy clothes that fit you perfectly.

Everyone is different, everyone has a different style, so every capsule wardrobe is different too. The lists for capsule wardrobes are often based on a minimalist style. But if you have always loved flower dresses, and wear them daily, then you definitely need a few flower dresses in your wardrobe. Just make sure they all have their own speciality. One can be suitable for winter, one can be fancy and one very light for hot days. You don't NEED three flower dresses for the beach in different colours and styles. Get the idea? Think practical and want the least items as possible. 

Example of a capsule wardrobe list:

ethical capsule wardrobe

This is a total of 30 items! With this as a base, you will have all you need to wear all year round. You can adapt it to your style and need. Do you run 3 times a week for example? Then you’ll need more sports clothing. Do you work in an office? You will need more blazers but probably fewer jeans.

5. Go ethical shopping!

If you realize there is still something missing in your capsule wardrobe then it is time to go shopping. This time take your time to find something that you are a 100% satisfied with. Choose for good quality so the item will last you a long time and looks good too! 

6. It is an ongoing process

Don't worry, having a capsule wardrobe doesn't mean you can never buy anything again. And it also doesn't mean it has to be perfect straight away. It just means you have fewer clothes in your wardrobe and you use and love the clothes you have. Have you fallen out of love with a dress for example? Store it away for a few months and see if you miss it. You don't? Then give it away. Or do you start to miss an item of clothing once your capsule wardrobe is running for a few months? You can add it to your wish list. Do you really think you need it a month later? Then go look for it!

7. Keep on going

If you enjoy having a capsule wardrobe, you can continue with the minimalising and optimizing of other things you own, like lingerie, jewellery, shoes but also kitchen utensils, books etc. 

Our tips for an ethical wardrobe 

These items for sale at MaeSue.com work great in an ethical capsule wardrobe:

A black unisex t-shirt      A skirt with buttons      A light summer dress

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