The RV Wannabes
Minimalist Lifestyle,  Minimize Your Home Series,  RV Living

How to keep a minimalist wardrobe | Minimize Your Home

Downsize the closet

I have nothing to wear.

I’ve said it, you’ve said it, we’ve all said it.

Even though we know its not really true.

The truth is, we have plenty to wear. More than enough, really. When we say we have nothing to wear, what we mean is:

  • I have nothing that fits
  • I have nothing I like
  • I can’t find what I want to wear
  • I don’t have something I feel good in

In fact, we can be looking a closet (or multiple closets) full of clothing and for those reasons feel like we have absolutely nothing to wear. There are a few key reasons for this problem.

Photo by Annie Spratt 

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Why you have a full closet and nothing to wear

You buy clothes you don’t like. It’s true! Think about it. You go to the store and see a killer sale on jeans. You try the jeans on and they don’t fit just right, but they fit “good enough.” You buy them because they are such a good deal, not because you like them or even need them.

You keep clothes that don’t fit.  As a mom of three, my body has gone through so many changes in the last 6 years that I am very guilty of this one. I keep thinking that those jeans will fit again soon, but by the time they do, I don’t like the style anymore.

You don’t have a good sense of your own personal style. Forget fashion trends, this is about knowing and owning YOUR style. Stop buying and hanging on to clothes that you think you “should” have and start investing in clothes that you truly love and that fit your lifestyle.

Why keep a minimalist wardrobe?

A minimalist wardrobe doesn’t mean throwing out all of your clothing and keeping only one of each item (though that would certainly be minimalist!). It doesn’t even mean keeping only a certain number of items, or certain kinds of items.

What it does mean is removing excess from your wardrobe. You do not need to get rid of anything that you love or that brings you joy.

The benefits of a minimalist wardrobe include:

  • spend less time choosing your outfit
  • reduce clutter and increase space
  • less money wasted on clothes you don’t wear
  • feel good in your clothes every day.

Minimizing your wardrobe

The solution to these problems lie in doing the opposite. Seems obvious, but it is harder than you think. Follow these three steps to downsize your existing closet and maintain a minimalist wardrobe.

  1. Downsize your existing wardrobe. This one actually comes with a lot of smaller steps, but do what works for you. I recently used the Kon-Mari method (outlined in The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo) to minimize our clothing, but there are other ways as well.
    • Insider tip: completely empty your closets and drawers and only put back what you intend to keep.
    • Don’t hang on to clothes that you don’t like, don’t wear or that don’t fit. Give them a new home.
  2. Determine your personal style. I found the book The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees to be helpful for me in this respect. This book has step-by-step instructions and creative exercises to help you identify your personal style.
  3. Just say NO to cheap clothing. I’m not saying that cheap clothing is bad, in and of itself. But to keep a minimalist wardrobe, you need to make every clothing purchase with intention.
    • When you purchase a new item, imagine when and where you will wear it. Imagine how you will feel wearing it and what activities you will be doing in it. If it makes sense, then buy it.
    • In this way, it makes sense to invest in items that you love, even if they cost more. Spend more on fewer items instead of spending less on more items.
pretty minimalist wardrobe
Photo by Micheile Henderson 

A truly minimalist wardrobe

Maintaining a truly minimalist wardrobe is an ongoing process. When you find that you aren’t wearing an item, no matter the reason, it’s time to give it a new home.

In the same way, when you realize that you have a need for a new item, say a dress or even a sweatshirt, be intentional. Take the time to look for an item that you love.

Do these things to keep a minimalist wardrobe, and you just might find that your days of “nothing to wear” are truly over.

Be sure to check out part 1 of our Minimize Your Home series:  Getting your kids EXCITED to minimize their toys.

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