EMBRACING MINIMALISM

June 22, 2018

One of the best things you can do for the environment is simply to buy and consume less. Our wardrobe is usually the most salient sign of our consumerist nature. On average, it’s been found that a typical Singaporean owns approximately 100 pieces of apparel. Yet, other studies have shown that we only wear 20% of our clothes regularly -- that makes about 20 pieces of apparel.

 

Now if we just trim down our wardrobe to just that 20% that we wear regularly and stick to it, imagine just how much waste could be avoided. Well, this blog post will help you do just that. Here are two simple ways to trim down your wardrobe and maintain a minimalist, yet still sophisticated closet that can get you through any occasion.

 

Project 333

 

Source: Grana

 

Essentially, Project 333 involves picking out 33 pieces of apparel that you will wear over the course of 3 months. It was first started by a woman named Courtney Carver who was looking for ways to simplify her life.

 

The 33 pieces of apparel includes clothing, accessories, jewelry, outerwear, and shoes. Meanwhile, items like wedding rings, undergarments, workout clothing, and in-home lounge wear were not included. Do note that workout clothing here refers to clothing that you only  wear when you work out. Courtney suggests that before the start of your three month challenge, you pick out the 33 items that you will be wearing and box up the rest.

 

This timeline allows for you to change up the things you wear every three months so remember to take note of your fashion choices even during the challenge! It’s likely that you’ll find yourself reaching for some clothes more than others even within the 33 items. This will make it easier for you to streamline your future wardrobe decisions.

 

If you’re buying some new clothes for this challenge, remember to shop consciously! Opt for sustainable materials, shop secondhand, or simply do a clothes swap if you want to spice up your closet.

 

Of course, this challenge can be adapted to suit your needs and there’s no need to follow it exactly! The duration of 3 months was introduced primarily so that it allows for a change in the 33 items every season. However, since Singapore isn’t a seasonal country, feel free to take out 33 items that you can wear for 6 months, or even a year.

 

Capsule Wardrobes

Source: Beige Renegade

 

Unlike Project 333, there are no set numbers for the creation for a capsule wardrobe. There are many different definitions on what exactly a capsule wardrobe entails, but all of them agree that a capsule wardrobe consists of a set of basic clothing that can be used to form outfits for all occasions.

 

This means that it gives you slightly more flexibility than Project 333 in terms of the number of clothes you can have in your wardrobe. If you simply can’t quell that hoarder in you, perhaps this is a good place to start. It would be good to also set a limit on the number of items you wish to keep in your capsule wardrobe, just to ensure some sort of discipline.

 

There are various ways to get started on creating a capsule wardrobe, but these are the two that we found works the best: Sort by colour, or sort by type.

 

Sorting by colour involves choosing one base colour (a more neutral shade) and finding other complementary colours that will match it. This allows you to create a wardrobe that is highly versatile in terms of styling options. It doesn’t have to be just black and white either! If your base colour is navy, for instance, feel free to explore complementary colours like maroon, orange or lime as well.

 

Sorting by type means that you first set categories of clothes that you regularly wear like T-shirts, shorts, blazers, and etc.. Next, you choose items to fit into each category. This method makes it easier for you to dress for occasions as you can easily include workwear or formal wear as one of the categories.


Ultimately, a capsule wardrobe is really yours to personalize! For more helpful tips, check out this guide by Courtney.

 

With either one of these methods, there’s no longer an excuse for you to buy more clothes simply because you don’t have anything to wear that suits the occasion! They account for any possibilities, be it formal or informal.

 

Here are some basic tips that we found useful to help you get started:

 

  1. Take out every clothing item in your wardrobe and go through them! Pick out the items that you find yourself reaching for the most and that makes you feel happy wearing them -- these will probably go into your selections for either projects! Set aside the rest.

  2. Pick colours that match easily and choose separate tops and bottoms over one-piece items like dresses or playsuits. This way, you can create way more outfits with the same number of items. 

  3. Don’t pick multiple variations of the same item. If you’ve a whole lot of sneakers, for example, pick the one that you wear the most or is most versatile when it comes to matching your outfits.

  4. Remember to consider your lifestyle habits! Choose enough items that will get you through every occasion. Don’t forget matching shoes!

  5. Be mindful of what you wear even when you’re dressing with less. Chances are, you’ll still find yourself reaching for a select few items even with your minimalist wardrobe. This will help you keep to the minimalist wardrobe in the long term.

 

Here’s a video guide on apparel you could choose to jumpstart your capsule wardrobe / Project 333. It is, however, for a lady’s wardrobe but we reckon it would be so much easier for a man’s. This would be the spark to a chain reaction: Less clothes - less laundry - less water - less detergent - less everything!

 

 

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