I’ve been trying to develop the perfect capsule wardrobe on a budget for a while now. And by a while, I mean over a year. Yikes. What can I say – I’m a walking, talking, fashion emergency over here, people. 🙂
In case you’re unfamiliar with it, a capsule wardrobe is where you have a few essential items of clothing in your wardrobe that are super easy to mix and match – and that don’t go out of style every season.
Fewer clothing options = fewer choices every day = a simple, peaceful start to the morning = a happy Jen.
I’ve encountered two problems during my capsule wardrobe building process:
- I am on a very limited budget and can’t afford to just go out and buy a bunch of brand new clothes, and
- Pulling together a cute, functional wardrobe is NOT my strength.
So if you’re like me, and want to look and feel good but have NO IDEA how to go about creating a budget-friendly capsule wardrobe that works for you, read on!
(In case it’s not obvious yet, this post is not for those of you who are fashionistas. 😉 )
Why a Capsule Wardrobe?
Once upon a time, I had a closet FULL of clothes and I only ever wore a handful of them. So I said to myself, “Self, this is nonsense. Get rid of this stuff! Get some threads that you big puffy heart love. Ain’t nobody got time for sorting through all this stuff you never wear.”
So I purged a TON. I got rid of some old favorites that had seen better days. I got rid of a lot of trendy pieces that just weren’t me. I got rid of lots of clothes that were pretty pricey because I just didn’t really love wearing them.
I weeded it down and then I weeded it down some more. If an item of clothing didn’t thrill me, I got rid of it. And I decided what I needed in my life was a capsule wardrobe.
What I was seeking was a seamless wardrobe, pieces that were easy to mix and match without having to put a lot of thought or effort into it.
I wanted fewer options. The fewer decisions I have to make every morning, the better. #canigetanamen
The key to a successful capsule wardrobe is choosing wisely when it comes to the pieces you include. Unfortunately for me, I didn’t choose wisely in my first attempt. Hence my year long capsule wardrobe quest. 😉
The Solution To My Fashion Problem
A few months into stubbornly and unsuccessfully trying to make my pitiful wardrobe work, I struck capsule wardrobe gold. Quite by accident, I stumbled across the Get Your Pretty On website. Have you heard of this? It is changing my life. I do not make this claim lightly, my friends.
What is GYPO?
GYPO is a capsule wardrobe wearer’s dream. Here’s the gist. You can sign up to get a free 20 piece capsule wardrobe shopping list emailed to you. SHE TELLS YOU EXACTLY WHAT TO BUY FOR A CUTE CAPSULE WARDROBE. The shirts. The pants. The accessories. The shoes. How perfect is that?!
GYPO also offers style challenges. Now, there is a cost for these. But the thing that makes these worth purchasing (in my opinion) is that it not only tells me what pieces to buy for all four seasons, it also tells me exactly where I can buy them (no more hunting for the perfect piece of clothing!!!), and the best part: she gives you pictures of daily outfits to wear. From the shoes, the purse, the sweater…everything.
ALL THE PRAISE HANDS! It’s a fashion backwards mom’s dream come true.
I purchased the Closet Staples Casual Capsule Wardrobe. Since I’m home with the kids all the time, I don’t need or want dressy clothes…I’m super casual. This wardrobe fits my needs PERFECTLY. And it covers all four seasons! LOVE. The pieces have a comfy, cozy, cute vibe and that fits my life perfectly. I look presentable and pulled together without feeling like I’m dressed up.
I feel like I should say that this is not the type of thing I usually spend money on. I will plunk down money for books without a second thought. Clothing/fashion tips? NEVER. But something about this concept just clicked with me, so I made an exception and gave myself permission to purchase the GYPO Capsule wardrobe course and it has been amazing.
It’s totally pulling my capsule wardrobe together, shaping it into what I wanted it to be when I didn’t know how to do it. Now it’s totally doable.
And I’m making it happen on a budget. Woot woot!
Capsule Wardrobe Building on a Budget
Now that I know exactly what staples to buy for my capsule wardrobe, I’m rocking and rolling. I have changed a few of the items on the GYPO list based on my taste – because I am not going to be buying a pair of leopard print shoes. AHEM.
But for the most part, I’m going with the GYPO suggestions because, well, I love them.
And I’m doing it on a very limited budget by mostly shopping secondhand.
I know. Shopping secondhand is hard, because you have to really hunt. I don’t mind this, but it’s not for everyone.
If you’re searching for bargain clothing deals online, don’t forget about websites like Poshmark to find cute used clothing at really decent prices.
Here are some of the wardrobe staples I’ve found secondhand since purchasing GYPO:
Price breakdown (all of the above items were purchased either at Goodwill or Goodwill Outlet):
- Sweaters/shirts: $3.95 each
- Jeans: $4.95 blue jeans, $1.95 grey jeans (Goodwill Outlet)
- Boots: $1.49 (Goodwill Outlet)
- Toms: $.99 (Goodwill Outlet)
Just keep your eyes peeled and ALWAYS keep your shopping list handy. Once you know exactly what pieces you’re looking for, it’s way easier to shop thrift stores and clearance racks. Not as overwhelming, you know?
After searching for a black and white striped t-shirt for a LONG time, I ran into our local Dollar General for ibuprofen and found one on their clearance rack for $2!!! I am not above shopping the clearance rack at Dollar General. 😉 Get.in.my.closet!
So overall, I’ve found that having a specific list and patience pays off.
Pics of a few of my favorite outfits, all compiled with pieces from the GYPO capsule wardrobe builder:
I LOVE how easy it is to change the whole look of an outfit by simply changing the layering piece on top. Super simple.
The Bottom Line
So here’s the gist. It really is pretty simple. Buy a few tops. Buy a few sweaters. Buy a few bottoms. Invest in an online course to help you out, if you’re clueless like me. Hit the thrift stores/clearance racks. Voila! Capsule wardrobe on a budget.