Lessons learned for my Summer Capsule Wardrobe

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And just like this it is time to think about my Summer Capsule Wardrobe. Back in April, when I build my first Spring Capsule, I decided that I´d change it up four times a year and dedicate one to each of the seasons.

If I am completely honest, I could probably get away with only two different ones where I live: a warm weather capsule for spring and summer, and a cold weather capsule for autumn and winter. Temperatures rarely get extreme here in Southern Germany, and even in the height of summer a light cardigan and some long trousers might come in handy.

 

Lessons learned from having a Capsule Wardrobe
Lessons learned from having a Capsule Wardrobe

 

I was afraid I´d get bored though, and wanted an excuse to switch up my clothing more often, so four different capsules it was. And because I declared that my summer was going to start in June (no matter how the weather would behave, although, fingers crossed, we just had a lovely summery weekend), the big switch from Spring to Summer Capsule needed to happen.

Despite having the best intentions, I did not update you throughout the first months. The reasons are numerous, first of all I simply had no time to do the additional filming and planning, and secondly I am really, really bad at taking pictures of myself wearing clothes (as the ones below prove).

While I still haven´t figured out how to add more hours to my days, I have made a few technical investments – sounds more fancy than it is, I just purchased a smartphone adapter for my tripod and a bluetooth remote – that should allow me to practice taking my own pictures.

But until then, I will leave you with a video talking you through the items I did not get any wear out of, why that happened and what I finally added to my collection. And as that would be pretty boring in written form, you’ll find the five lessons I learned from my first three months of having a Spring Capsule Wardrobe underneath instead.

 

 

How many items did my Capsule Wardrobe include? Was it enough?

When I first designed my Capsule Wardrobe, I did not focus on a certain number of items, I wanted to be flexible and get a feel for how many pieces I´d need. So I ended up with 28. Shoes, active wear, lounge wear and under wear not included. Out of these 28, seven were jackets and/or coats, which may sound excessive, but in German Spring you certainly need a variety.

28 pieces, though it sounds very minimal to me, was more than enough. I had a few items I didn´t really wear that often, and a total of four that I did not wear at all. The ones I did not get any wear out of will go, while the ones I did not wear a lot because I didn´t enjoy them as much as I thought I would will over time be replaced.

Which brings me to the next lesson:

 

Thrift shopping is fun and sustainable. (And it will save you money in the end!)

When we grew up, a lot of my clothes were thrifted. With four constantly growing girls, everything else would have been a huge waste of money. And while my kids wear almost exclusively pre-loved pieces, I hadn´t thrifted for myself in a while.

My problem? I don´t really have a good thrift store nearby.

The solution? Online thrifting. With platforms like Mädchenflohmarkt and Kleiderkreisel, it is surprisingly easy, and very convenient with the possibility to filter for your sizes with one click. Of course there are items that don´t lend themselves to online thrifting, basically anything were fit is of utmost importance, but others like jackets, loose jumpers and even shoes are great to look for there.

I scored a utility jacket by Bershka marked down to 5 € that I absolutely love and currently have different striped jumpers on my watchlist to replace the one in my wardrobe.

 

Two items that are great on their own don´t necessarily make a good outfit

That might be obvious to everyone with the tiniest bit of fashion sense, but to me it was a lesson I needed to learn. Over and over again, I might add.

I love my red off the shoulder fitted jumper. I adore my dark blue skinny jeans. Each item individually highlights my curves in a very flattering way. Throw them on together and I look like I am wearing clothes two sizes too small. It is just too fitted!

 

Two items that combined together just don’t look as good as I thought they would.

 

Having your clothes tailored isn´t as expensive as I thought.

When you only have a limited choice of clothes to wear, it hurts when a few of them can´t really be worn because they are too long (or wide or somehow broken). I had two pants that needed to be hemmed and another one where the zipper was broken. That had been the case for longer than I care to admit (at least five months, maybe longer), but with these three being basically unwearable, I was suddenly lacking bottoms!

Having them fixed cost less than 35 € and added a lot of variety to my wardrobe – more than worth it!

 

You can easily survive three months without clothes shopping

Now I might not be the best person to talk about that, as I never was much of a shop-a-holic, but I still thought I would miss buying new clothes. Thing is: I didn´t. Not even a bit. On the contrary, it was kind of liberating that whenever I had the opportunity because I had some time to kill while waiting for someone, I could just straight go for the nearest café and read a bit instead of browsing the nearest store.

Also not feeling the need to keep up with the new releases on Zalando once a week saved me at least an hour and quite a bit of money.

 

Planning your purchases for the end of the capsule season isn´t the smartest choice

When I decided how I wanted to do my Capsule Wardrobe, I decided to see what I was missing for 6-8 weeks and then start shopping. The reason was that I figured it would help me to identify gaps in my wardrobe better and reduce unnecessary purchases. Which is probably true, but didn´t take into account that, if I start looking for new things 6-8 weeks into my Capsule season, it only left me with around 4 weeks to find and wear them.

I mean, I was lucky to quickly find a utility jacket I loved and I have worn it a ton already, but it is not the best choice for summer, so it will go into storage now after only four weeks of wear, and part of me thinks it would have been smarter to have bought it right at the start.

So I will change that approach slightly, identify the (assumed) gaps in my Summer Capsule Wardrobe right when putting it together and write everything else down to buy at the beginning of the next Capsule Season a year later.

For my Summer Capsule Wardrobe now that means: I already know that I am missing one or two shorter dresses or skirts, so I will look for those immediately. Should I realize half way through that I also need to replace a certain kind of tee or that my bikini won´t last another season, I will put it on the list for June 2020, to minimize the risk that the item I pick now won´t fit or suit me when it comes to actually wearing them.

 

Lessons learned from having a Capsule Wardrobe
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Here is what I added to my Spring Capsule Wardrobe

 

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