The Minimalist Closet

Woman thinking what to wear

Spring cleaning can inspire you to take a close look at the items you own and think about whether or not you really want / need them. If you’re dreading rotating your closet from winter to spring because of the sheer volume of clothing, it’s time to consider building a minimalist closet. The idea behind a minimalist closet is simple: your wardrobe contains only pieces that fit and flatter you and that are practical for your lifestyle. Keep reading to learn how to put together a minimalist closet that makes sense for you and that keeps your clutter to a minimum.

Know What you Have and What you Want
The first thing you want to do in crafting a minimalist closet is to take a good look at everything that you already have. After you’ve taken inventory, make a list of things that you really like about your wardrobe and things that you aren’t so thrilled with. Next, consider what you really want out of a minimalist closet. Are you looking to make your look more professional? Do you want to reduce your dry cleaning bill? If you’re super busy, do you want clothes that can transition seamlessly from day to night? Thinking about what your closet goals are will help you determine what you should be getting rid of and what you should be keeping.

Define Your Personal Style
Part of the reason it seems overwhelming for many women to pare down a closet into a minimalist one is that they own tons of clothing because they haven’t pinpointed a style that suits them. The problem with this is that your clothes don’t give you options so much as a huge source of stress over what to wear. If you don’t already have a clear sense of what you want your personal style to be, start a Pinterest board and name it Style Inspiration. Spend a few weeks pinning things that really attract you and then go back and look at all of the common threads. Is it a casual board or does it look like boardroom attire? Are there feminine, frilly components or do you gravitate towards more edgy selections? Whatever these common threads are, they will help you to know what you want to have in your wardrobe when you reduce its size.

Woman decluttering her wardrobe

Clear the Clutter
This is perhaps the hardest part of creating a minimalist closet, particularly if you already own an insane amount of clothing. Carve out some time where you will be uninterrupted and divide your clothing among three separate piles: Keep, Donate and Needs Repair. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit or flatter you or that is obviously out of place with the style you’re trying to cultivate. If you can’t bear the thought of parting with some of your clothes, place them in a suitcase or a box for a month or two. If you miss them terribly, put them back into your closet, but if you get along fine without them, it’s time to say goodbye.

Build Your Closet
You don’t need to run out and replace everything you tossed; in fact doing so is the exact opposite of what your minimalist closet is all about. Instead, focus on quality items in coordinating colors so that the clothes you do choose to keep can be as versatile as possible. A classic capsule wardrobe contains three to four pairs of shoes, two pairs of well-fitting denim, two pairs of trousers, two blazers, two skirts, two dresses, three to four t-shirts, three sweaters (bonus if one is cashmere!) and two coats (one winter, one spring). See how these pieces work for you and reassess your closet in a few months to make sure that you really love and wear every piece you’ve chosen.

A minimalist closet isn’t about building the most expensive wardrobe, it’s about creating a closet full of items that you wear and that you feel good in. Keeping your clothing to a minimum takes a lot of stress out of getting ready in the morning, after all, if everything coordinates nicely you can’t really go wrong. Another bonus about your minimalist closet? It makes next year’s spring cleaning so much easier!


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