I’ve been testing Project 333–a capsule wardrobe of 33 pieces for three months. I haven’t been able to test it the full quarter, but I wanted to get the post written in case you decide to try it for March, April and May. This article will highlight the reasons why it could work for you. The steps I went through are numbered. Reasons are listed A B C and are capitalized if you prefer to skim.
Putting this into practice was really helpful. I was pretty sure before starting that I didn’t want to continue on a regular basis. I’m standing by that. I like my smaller closet and the way it’s organized. It totally works for me. That being said. Here is what I did, what I learned, and several reasons it could be a solution for you.
A. IF YOU HAVE A LARGE CLOSET OR HAVE CLOTHES IN SEVERAL CLOSETS, PROJECT 333 WILL HELP YOU FOCUS ON YOUR CHOSEN CAPSULE “FORCING” YOU TO WEAR THE PIECES IN VARIOUS WAYS.
- I created a section in my closet that would hold the 33 pieces (I probably picked close to 40) The spot I chose was one that was easily accessible (I call this prime “real estate” in a closet)
- The closet was custom designed for MY clothes– taking into account the space I needed to hang longer pieces (dresses, 3/4 length jackets and sweaters, pants etc)
- I made do with my pants hanging outside of the space knowing it was temporary. You could also get rolling rack to place somewhere in your room. Next, after the space was designated, I had to choose my clothes. This is where I see many women getting tripped up and not being decisive. I make good decision typically, and I found myself going back and forth. For the sake of the experiment, I powered through.
a. I put all my wool sweaters in the capsule because we are in the months I’m going to wear those for sure. I chose well because it’s been a chilly six weeks here.
b. I chose black pants, mostly denim, a dressier black legging, a pant with a slight pattern, several button down blouses to go under crew neck sweaters, layering novelty tops both printed and solid, 2 dressier tops, 2 jackets. In my past life I would have put most of my jackets in the capsule because I needed a 3rd piece for a dress code. Now, I wear jackets mostly in fall and spring without a coat so it didn’t seem to be a good choice right now.
c. Right off the bat, I could tell that knowing what my pieces were going to be for the next 3 months would help me to focus on THOSE.CLOTHES.ONLY.
TIP: CHOOSE THE CLOTHES THAT YOU LOVE, FIT WELL AND DON’T GET CAUGHT UP IN LOOKING AT PINTEREST AND BLOGS SHOWING WHAT YOU NEED. CHOOSE FROM THE CLOTHES YOU HAVE- NOT WHAT SOMEONE ELSE RECOMMENDS.
****I think ideas you see showing what others have done can be a guideline, but I caution you to not to follow it to the letter. I did try to think ahead to any special activities I might have on the calendar (Valentine’s Day) and choose something accordingly. But weather and lifestyle dictated most of my choices.
4. Wear your clothes! Yes, it’s that simple. I knew that once my capsule was chosen and I had focus, I was going to wear the heck out of those clothes. And that I did. Did I tire of any outfits? Not really. But again, I only did this for 6 weeks.
Going into March boredom may have been a problem, but I anticipated this when I chose my pieces knowing I might want more color, lighter weight sweaters and transition pieces. Likely I will continue with this capsule into March.
I’ve always tended to repeat an outfit I chose on Sunday and wear it again Monday because I’m in completely different settings. I practiced this same habit and once repeated 3 times in a week. I didn’t want to do that a lot because I knew it would increase a tendency to tire of a particular sweater quickly. I half expected my husband to ask why I was wearing that outfit again, but he didn’t.
B. A CAPSULE WILL CUT DOWN YOUR DECISION TIME WHEN GETTING DRESSED. YOUR CHOICES ARE SIMPLIFIED. WHEN YOUR PARED DOWN CLOSET IS HANGING TOGETHER IN A SMALLER SPACE, I BELIEVE YOU WILL CREATE MORE UNIQUE COMBINATIONS.
What did I do about shoes and jewelry? I decided to pick 3-4 pairs of boots and wore those exclusively. I worked with a few necklaces I had not been wearing as much and focused there.
All in all I enjoyed doing this and felt like I had a much better grasp of how it worked. My biggest takeaway:
C. WITHIN A 2-3 WEEKS: REALITY SETS IN–YOU DON’T NEED AS MANY CLOTHES AS YOU THOUGHT YOU DID. IF YOU ARE ONE WITH A LIMITED WARDROBE AND ARE USING THIS CONCEPT I’M SURE YOU’VE DISCOVERED THIS.
I had determined this before I started, but nothing I’ve done thus far makes it more obvious than going through these steps.
Did I “cheat” and choose from the rest of my wardrobe a couple of times. Yes, I did. Last week I decided I should be wearing some of my skirts to my networking groups and some of my higher heels.
In summary: I’m still happy with my closet and organization and all my things organized by category –then color. It’s a small space which helps me find things and choose quickly. I also prefer the idea of planning 5-7 outfits for the week on Sunday. This saves a great deal of time in the morning. That makes more sense for me personally than a 33 piece capsule.
A. Jackets B: Casual workout clothes/skirts C. My temporary capsule area D. miscellaneous tops and sweaters not in the capsule. Soon I’ll turn Section C back into sweaters and long sleeved blouses D will be all tops
Let me know if you’re ready to try. Send me a message and I’ll contact you again the end of May and see what you thought.