A Capsule Wardrobe……… How on earth did I reach this point of clarity?
I’m a self confessed shopaholic. The joys of a bit of shopping. I believe it is good for the soul, along with a slice of cake and a good cup of Tea. A blissful glass of wine after a long day simultaneoulsy swiping on the iPad at the pages of Madewell’s new arrivals (multi tasking at its greatest!) The joys of swinging my bag of new goodies as I stroll along with a fab mate on a girls escape day out. The anticipation as I carefully open the delivery box and unfold the pristine tissue paper. I absolutely bloody love it!!! LOVE IT!!!!
I don’t think there is anything too deep or meaningful here. I have always said “they don’t call it retail therapy for nothing”. But when I look at my lovely friends and family, we all do it to a greater or lesser extent. We all love something new. Something sparkly and something we’re excited to wear. For me, I love fashion and style. I love fabric and textiles. The colours and hues. The cut and shapes. The fabric that drapes and the fabric that forms.
However, we live in a world that now at last is beginning to form a consciousness approach to fashion and clothing. We are beginning to understand that a cheap and cheerful top may do the trick for a night out from a high street bargain Mecca, but was made by someone who is working all hours God sends and surviving in an environment that most of us will never ever relate to. Jeepers Creepers. We don’t know how lucky we are. This awareness along with the crazy consumer debt that goes hand in hand with the disposable wardrobe, means we are beginning to end old chapters and begin new ones.
For me this journey started by hitting me right between the eyes with my little boys’ ‘Footie’ soccer kits. I have an 8 year old Diego Costa fan and a 6 year old Wayne Rooney fan (I know, I know…. their choice not mine. I’m personally thinking more along the lines of David Beckham). They are soccer mad. The 8 year old lives and breathes it. He also alternates wearing his beloved Chelsea FC kits with his goalkeeper attire. He happily skipped off to the shops with us yesterday in full Goalkeeping kit including shin pads and gloves!! The 6 year old has an ever revolving wardrobe of soccer kits. We’re talking at least 3x outfit/kit changes daily. It is like having Elton John on tour in the house. Everytime you turn around there is a new kit on show.
However, this little world of theirs made me look at mine in a very different way. Their soccer wardrobe is EASY!! Easy and simple.
They pick a kit of choice on what they fancy that day. They have a choice of 10 kits. They all wash and wear. They are happy as clams because they are wearing what they love. Their kits are an expression of their passion and what they believe in. This got me thinking. It really got me thinking (and not just about David Beckham…. Well maybe a little!).
I wonder if I could ever create a wardrobe of pieces I love and wear. A wardrobe of clothing that makes me skip and hop and means something to me. A wardrobe that rarely leaves me with a huge pile of clothes on the bed (a familiar site to my husband in the morning). Do you know those tried and tested items that aside from leaving you with exhaustion are always; too bloody small (damn the croissants), dry clean only (why oh why did I buy?), look odd on me but looked great on the stunning dolly on the Website? Can this magic capsule wardrobe ever be a reality?? It made me think of my past holiday vacation wardrobes. The suitcase full of pieces that are easy and co-ordinated and you feel fabulous in. The pieces that made me smile in the morning. But then again, why do I always have at least three items I didn’t wear?!?!
Time for a bit of research……. hello Wikipedia! What defines a capsule wardrobe? “Capsule wardrobe is a term coined by Susie Faux, the owner of a London boutique called “wardrobe” in the 1970’s. According to Faux, a capsule wardrobe is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that will not go out of fashion. This idea was popularized by American designer Donna Karan, who in 1985, released an influencial capsule collection of seven interchangable work-wear pieces.”
I think of what defines a capsule wardrobe to me personally? I tend to imagine it’s a suitcase full of clothing that you take with you on a desert island. The items that fit, feel good, look good, are practical for the situation required and have that essence of chic just in case David Beckham were to land ashore too. “Will you sign an autograph here for me please, David”, Wink wink!!!
I believe those clever chic French dollies have nailed this to perfection. Whenever I have wandered around the streets of Paris, I was in awe of their style. Such good Street Style. They looked stunning. Bloody stunning. For a start the French women are the size of my right thigh?!? Not sure how as they make the most delicious pastries!! They always wore such simple classics with an amazing hint of cool. I’m thinking of the French Vogue editors. Those fabulous style queens, Emmanuelle Alt and Geraldine Saglio. The great almighty Isabel Marant and anything that has been penned and produced from her design notebook. Not forgetting the sweet girls, Melanie Laurent & Clemence Poesy. Messy hair (check), simple accessories (check), tomboy chic (check), slender pins in ‘lived in’ denim (sort of check), an air of “I don’t give a monkeys” or whatever the french translation would be (sort of check), glass of red wine and the ability to hide croissant crumbs on my chin (check)…..oh actually, maybe I can be the only one to take credit for the latter. A talent still, I’m sure you’ll agree.
Thank you Pinterest for the lovely images above and for enticing me to pin frantically for the past hour instead of loading up my dishwasher!
But that magic combo of simple, chic and cool is one I want to master. This is what I want to base my new wardrobe on. You didn’t really think I was going out to purchase ten soccer kits did you??!! Lol
So, the starting pistols are fired. I’m on a mission. Out goes the wardrobe mass that fit the bill of;
1) Haven’t worn it in ages
2) Too small … Don’t go there
3) Too big…… I loved it from my maternity wardrobe and thought it could be boyfriend shabby chic but more like boyfriend shabby shite
4) Never worn it but it was 70% off with an extra 20% off your online order…….. Justified?!? Wtf! I’m ridiculous
5) Too fancy…… Dry clean only
6) Too trashy…… You’re not a hooker
7) Too mumsy…..borderline ‘Little house on the Prairie’
8) Too sporty ……when was I a planning on running a 10k?
9) I love it and get a glow when I put it on (this naturally covers the majority of denim & stripes in the wardrobe)
It’s going to be tricky.
It’s going to be very tricky.
I dare you.
Get the black garbage bin bags out.
Phone the charity shop and warn them. They will need to get extra staff in on Wednesday morning.
eBay is about to get busy
Oh dear……. Feeling a bit hot and bothered now.
What I’m wearing today……….
Today is a bowler hat day! Isn’t it fabulous?! I love it. Hunted it down (been secretly after an authentic English bowler hat for a while!) and now have this little beauty. It’s a Jaxon bowler hat. They are a little company in the UK. You can check out their hats at www.jaxonhats.com
Zara stripe organic cotton tee
Jaxon bowler hat
Will keep you posted.
Toodle pip xx
P.S. Warning: the Brits have some odd sayings, very odd sayings! It’s only when you leave the UK that you realize that what you are saying makes very little sense but holds very dear to you. ‘Toodle Pip’ is just the start, but don’t ask what it means, we just say it. Just like we make a cup of tea during every monumental disaster, we just do!