Lately, I’ve been exploring how the way I eat aligns with other parts of my life – including the way I dress.
In this post, for instance, I looked at what having a “capsule wardrobe,” or “lean closet,” has to do with choices, ease, and what’s on my plate.
For me, living a simple, abundant life just makes sense.
It’s a perfect fit.
This in mind, I recently completed a “10×10” challenge, the rules of which went thusly:
- Wear just 10 clothing items for 10 days (ideally styling them into 10 different outfits).
- Shoes are included in the 10 items.
- Workout clothes, sleeping clothes, underclothes and accessories are not included (mine are minimal anyway).
I knew, for me, the challenge was going to be wearing MORE items than usual.
I already have a minimalist wardrobe and tend to pull things on repeat – shying away from pieces that feel unfamiliar.
Here’s my list of 10 – plus accessories – over 10 days:
- Black pants (Madewell)
- Black pants (Lulu Lemon)
- Dark blue leggings (very old…no idea what brand)
- Black men’s sweater (FairPlay)
- Grey sleeveless sweater (Madewell)
- Super-soft black t-shirt (Tart)
- Black tank (Bella Lux)
- Relatively new, still unworn wrap in shades of speckled grey (Bishop + Young)
- Relatively new, still unworn black sneakers (PF Flyers)
- Brown boots (Palladium)
- Two infinity scarves (one black, one grey)
- Small silver hoop earrings, a nose ring and a navel ring (never take them off)
- Silver “Aum” necklace (purchased from a tiny shop in China on long ago travels; again, never take it off)
- Black leather school bag (purchased locally; imported by a beautiful soul and yoga teacher)
How’d it go?
Pretty easy, actually. And fun!
Though, I have to admit, I’m slightly embarrassed about the early morning bathroom selfies (taken after a 6:30am lake swim and before bulletproof coffee).
Thanks to this 10×10, a couple items that’d been sitting around unworn are now among my favorites.
I “discovered” the coziest blanket wrap ever and my pair of PF Flyers.
Already loved these…yet felt shy taking them for a spin, instead sticking with safe standbys.
As predicted, using 10 items meant wearing MORE than usual. The *new* additions felt playful, fun and unbelievably comfortable.
The challenge also helped me see what I have plenty of: black and grey tanks, tees and sweaters.
Sure don’t need more of those! (Way-back-when, my dad always joked about my “grey t-shirt collection.”)
And it helped me create a thoughtful wish list based on what I most want to “complete” my capsule:
- A warm winter coat (essential in Nelson, BC – and very much missing as the temperature drops)
- A simple black dress (not so essential…but would be nice)
- A “toque” (er, winter hat, for those of you down south – used to wear mine from October through April, but lost track of it along the way)
- 2-3 scarves that may be neutral…but with some patterning (I wear scarves daily and alternate between black and grey – same colors as most of my shirts and pants. Patterned options would add interest and variety.)
- A black umbrella (My ratty blue one clashes with everything and is barely functional. Sounds silly, but totally affects how I feel about the day’s outfit – and would be a simple fix.)
In making wish list purchases, I’m going to enjoy going slow…spreading them out…searching for pieces that feel *just right*.
I’ll also choose items of excellent quality – buying less but expecting it to last longer. Ideally, I’ll pick ethically produced ones too.
During this thoughtful acquisition, I’ll draw on another key takeaway from my 10×10: getting clearer on what makes clothing feel like “me.”
This is a work in progress, but one I’m enjoying. I already considered myself a “neutral-wearing minimalist” – wanting everything as comfortable and grey-black as possible.
Now I’m fine-tuning that, playing with phrases like: androgynous yet subtly femme, comfortable yet thoughtful, classic with a subtle edge.
Why explore all this?
Well, first, I find it fun in a way that feeds me.
Second, it’s part of living a simple yet abundant life in various, interconnected ways.
What about you? Ever try a 10×10 or otherwise edit your closet? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!