Capsule wardrobes. The phenomenon that has hijacked my Pinterest feed. If you are unfamiliar with the concept, a capsule wardrobe is a wardrobe that has fewer elements, however they all are interchangeable, and therefore offer just as many - and often more - outfit options than the average wardrobe. Capsule wardrobes take more planning, and purposeful purchasing. They are also seasonal. Back-to-school is a great time to start a capsule wardrobe, as many parents buy their children a larger amount of clothes, and you want them to last as long as possible and keep the outfits as interesting as possible. Another characteristic of capsule wardrobes is that there aren't many "trendy" pieces, or pieces with motifs. With kids and their interests, that can be a little harder, but I think it's doable. With kids growing as fast as they are, I think capsule wardrobes are a great way to go for people who want their kids to get the most out of their clothes, without spending a fortune.
Here are some basic tips when choosing pieces:
- Stick with only a handful of colors. Neutrals and blues go with an array of colors. So for Aidan's wardrobe we went with gray, blue, white, black, dark red/burgundy and mustard yellow.
- For non-neutral colors, choose ones that go with the season - we chose the dark red/burgundy and yellow mainly because they also work for Thanksgiving and the Christmas season.
- For accent colors, if you like the "color of the season" (this year it's totally yellow, other years it's been purple, guava, etc.), go with that one, because it's easier to find complimenting colors in different stores.
- If your family tends to dress in certain colors, choose colors that go with what you already have. We wear a lot of grays and blues, so most things we choose naturally fall into that category.
- I don't love graphic tees, or clothes with cartoon characters on them. However, I also understand how much kids LOVE these. So, I try to find pieces that are either subtle, or maybe look a little vintage. Hence the hoodie with dinosaurs on it, and the admittedly very cool Batman shirt.
- Layers. Layers offer more options, and they're perfect for Fall/Winter.
Here are the main pieces of Aidan's capsule wardrobe:
- 3 pairs of trousers/jeans (a dark denim, a light denim, and a seasonal color. We went with mustard yellow.)
- 2 pairs of sweatpants (dark blue and gray)
- 2 dress shirts
- 3-4 long-sleeve T-shirts
- 3 sweatshirts
- 1-2 sweaters (I suggest one light weight and a thicker one)
- 5-6 T-shirts (don't go crazy on patterns)
- 2 pairs of long-johns
- 2 pairs of shoes (maybe one more dress pair, depending on your needs. But honestly nice, clean chucks can be great for dressing up - they're kids, after all.)
Now, I'm not gonna lie, we do have a few "outlying" shirts, and a couple more pairs of pants, but honestly, this is what Aidan wears week after week. The long-johns not only are of course great for keeping warm; since we've had Jocelyn (5 weeks), we've been having Aidan change out of his school clothes, and into a pair of (super soft and comfy) long-johns, and a cotton T-shirt. Score!
Here are a couple of pictures showing how you can mix and match the clothes shown above:
There are many many more options, but that's just to give you an idea.
Reasons I love Aidan's capsule wardrobe:
- I don't have to think too hard about what to put him in - it all pretty much goes.
- It's nice for anytime we take a picture, because he always looks pulled-together.
- Even when I ask Aidan to get his own clothes, there's a pretty good chance it'll look nice, lol!
- It's really easy to see if he needs anything, and then whenever I buy him something new, I'm not just buying stuff to buy stuff. I have a pretty clear picture of what to get.
Here are the stores we bought Aidan's clothes at:
H&M - it's my go-to for the basics (t-shirts, underwear, long-johns - oftentimes in awesome packs). The quality can be lacking, but you can't beat the price.
Okaidi - is a new store I found this year, it's where I got the mustard pants and dress shirts. I really like the quality, and they have good sales.
Gap - I like Gap's version of graphic tees, and it's where we found the Batman shirt.
Name It - This brand is a little more expensive, but there's a store here that has good sales on it, and we really love the sweatshirt and sweatpants set we bought. Really comfy and well-made!
Capsule wardrobes can be a great way to organize, even downsize and stay minimalistic. I hope this helps. Happy shopping!