The Infamous Capsule Wardrobe

Posted in Daily Outfits.

The idea of a capsule wardrobe has never appealed to me. Let’s be honest – the classic white shirt is boring, girls dream of a million pairs of shoes, not three, and there are only so many ways you can wear a shift dress. Yes, even if you do ‘cinch it at the waist’, Gok. When I see the words ‘invest in key basics’ and ‘ultimate capsule wardrobe’, I tune out and start planning my next impulse purchase (hello, leather shorts!).

But, I admit – clever Capsule Wardrobers do have a that effortlessly classic style sussed. So rather than rid my closet of all its excess, I decided to try a capsule outfit. Those ‘must-have basics’ the glossies are always banging on about, together in one look. In short – a fashion editor’s dream (albeit the high street version).

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  • The cream mac, ubiquitous with chic dressing, was Β£20 from Primark (and I’ve worn it to death)
  • The black skinny jeans, a smarter version of the traditional blue, were Β£30 from ASOS
  • The denim shirt, buttoned right to the top as is the look du jour, was Β£30 from Topshop
  • And the black Converse shoes, worn by everyone everywhere, were a lovely present from Schuh

So there you have it – a capsule outfit, made up of simple separates and design classics. And tomorrow I can go back to clashing prints, bawdy florals and at least four shoe changes before I’m happy.

If you had to create your own capsule outfit, what would you wear?

27 Comments

Janice

understated chic at its best πŸ™‚ One question.. are ASOS true to size when it comes to jeans? Am still afraid of buying certain items off the internet.. xxx

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G

Haha I love this post – I feel the same as you do about a capsule wardrobe, yet somehow still feel I should aim to be the sort of woman who has one!

Fantastic look (it’s now in my inspiration folder) but here’s to an overspilling wardrobe instead!

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Jolly Good

I agree that shopping for basics is no fun but seeing them put together it does make up a pretty effortlessly chic outfit. I don’t think I’d survive on a capsule wardrobe but maybe a few more “must have” basics wouldn’t go amiss. x

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jaljen

Oh, I LOVE your hair in this pic! Sod the clothes. I adore the hair and shades.

The clothes do look good though. You are right about black jeans. For some reason I want the Converse to be red. A cliche, I know…

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Meg

Sure capsule dressing is chic, but then where is the fun (and stress) of getting ready in the morning. My capsule outfit would definately, include my classic trench, my black trouser jeans, a shirt of flats. Although I think I only have 1 pair of ‘classic’ shoes and they hurt my feet!

Anyway, you look cute!

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Steph

Hi!

I thought exactly the same as you until about 6 months ago. I used to be a definite magpie when it came to shopping. Out of necessity, I came round to the idea of a capsule wardrobe.

I dont reckon that ‘basics’ need to be boring and neither does a capsule wardrobe. Ive been living on a shoe-string budget this year and got fed up of looking into my closet and finding that i had ‘nothing to wear’. I decided to create some rules to help me get the most out of my wardrobe and create a capsule wardrobe of sorts – Its the best thing i ever did! I feel like now i can finally see so many varying outfits from a few select pieces.

Basics neednt be boring or dull if you pick items that can really work for YOUR wardrobe. Maybe YOUR basics are full of contrasting prints! To be honest, leather shorts sound like the perfect beginning of a capsule wardrobe to me!

Key items in mine are denim cut off shorts, black suede skirt, breton stripes, a couple different coloured/printed pencil skirts and a few tops/shirts in some neutral colours (to my wardrobe, neutral is white, black or grey) and the rest is done with bright lipstick and statement vintage jewellry from Etsy.

Honestly, its the best thing i ever did for myself and ive never had to many compliments!

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Alyse

Dated or not, the outfit really works together! I think you’ve managed to make it interesting instead of dated with the coat and Converses.

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Sirens and Bells

What are ASOS like for jeans? I want to buy some from there, but I don’t know what the fit is like…
I have no idea what I’d wear for my capsule wardrobe outfit, probably my grey blazer, navy jeans, brown brogues, no idea what top though! xx

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Jess

Wow i totally love you in this look! It’s just really simple and fresh, and reminiscent of the lovely Jessica Quirk πŸ™‚
I know you’ve been having hair issues lately but i think it looks ace in this shot. And love those sunnies, are they your new Jigsaw ones?
Bravo, jen! xx

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Ali

I’m Ali and I’m a Capsule Wardrobe failure. *hangs head*

Are jean shirts (as we old ladies used to call denim shirts) back in? Funny how fashion keeps repeating itself.

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Stacey

Love the look, i think mine would have to be dark blue skinny jeans/jeggings a pair of brogues, an oversized white t-shirt and a trench, sometimes you just want to get up and go!

Stacey xx

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Allie (Wardrobe Oxygen)

I’m a capsule wardrobe fan; for someone who doesn’t have time, or someone who doesn’t yet know her personal style it can be a Godsend. The thing is adding pieces to the collection to make it your own and unique.

I love this look, it isn’t boring because it has YOUR spin on it! The Converse are adorable on you!

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fritha louise

As someone who has been living off a “capsule” wardrobe (actually a suitcase wardrobe but never mind) for the past nine months, I can safely say that the whole concept is very overrated! I can’t wait to get home to my bursting-at-the-seams wardrobe. I’m all for making well considered purchases, but I won’t be voluntarily cutting down my wardobe to a few basics ever!

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Hannah

These 4 items would also be in my capsule item. can’t live without my burberry trench, copious amounts of denim shirts, converse and black skinny jeans which are perfect for nearly all occasions. also would include BIG sunglasses, LBD, black blazer etc etc which is why I don’t have a capsule wardrobe haha


Bow Dream Nation xx

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Cat

I have quite a lot of fairly dull “basics” (Breton striped tops, black peg-leg trousers, navy and black skinny jeans, crew-neck cardis, tan mac and navy leather jacket, brogues, and grey tulip skirt) but my main love is dresses which tend to be things that stand alone. (Or with a cardi here in freezing Scotland!)

(Your hair’s looking good here. I’m beginning the crop grow-out just now – wish me luck!)

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Harriet

Totally agree – classics are *boring* – most of the time anyway! I love what you’ve done with them, but I agree for one day only! None of this ‘French Women own a handful of clothes and always look chic’ business – give me a mad english woman in clashing prints any day!

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em

you live so close to my old house, its super strange seeing my old neighbourhood on your pics!

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Alex

That’s such a funky take on the capsule wardrobe though Jen! I always associate capsule with boring, classic pieces and I don’t think I own a single one of them. My eyes are drawn to prints and colours and interesting stuff. I can’t remember the last time I looked at black trousers or a white shirt or sensible pumps and thought “ooh, must have that!”

I suppose my absolute must have items are DP short length indigo skinny jeans, some jumpers, a selection of ribbed vest tops and some impractical IC heels.

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Fiona

I think you’ve got the right idea – rather than go for a standard capsule wardrobe get a few basics that work for your own style that you can then work round.

And I’ll admit that I cringe every time I see one of Gok’s capsule wardrobes with a waist belt on top of everything.

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Sherin

I can’t do capsule wardrobes either. Shopping and impulse buying is more fun.
Love your capsule outfit. Black skinny jeans, sneakers and shirt is such a classic look.

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Jen

For everyone asking about the fit of ASOS jeans – I went for my normal size (12) and they’re fine. Not the best, but definitely passable! The leg length is quite long though, I roll mine up.

Hope that helps!

Jen

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Rochelle Approved

I know what you mean about being sick of hearing “invest in the classics” because most of those classics that I’ve gotten (for not much money) don’t get worn that often. They simply aren’t my go-to look. I love your take on it and I think I’d have to go with a cardigan, jeans and ballet flats if I had to do “just classics”.

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Raz

I think capsule is really good for workwear (i.e. not just suits but a few lovely shirts and bits that can go) but for casual stuff I’m an impulse buyer too!

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