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Building a Capsule Wardrobe with Fashion Designer Rebecca Rowe

Over the past year, we've made a number of mindful decisions at Tuula Collective to become a more eco-conscious small business. From switching to biodegradable shipping materials to using more natural fibres, we are continually taking positive steps at "greening" our business practices. And the journey is only beginning!

But a huge part of sustainable fashion is also creating pieces that customers will love, wear and enjoy for a long time. Slow fashion means timeless, not trendy, so in the development of our collections, we put a lot of thought into making items that will become capsule pieces in any wardrobe. Our Anastasia Shawl is a great example of one item that can be worn many ways. This piece looks equally amazing as a shawl, scarf or beach wrap!

So.....what is a capsule wardrobe? We hear a lot of people talking about it, but what does it actually mean? Well, we decided to reach out to fashion designer Rebecca Rowe to help walk us through practical steps on how to get started.

Over to you, Rebecca!

What’s a capsule wardrobe? Throwing away all my clothes sounds terrifying.

Easy answer? A capsule wardrobe is a closet of between eighteen (gasp) and thirty-three curated pieces. That’s what the internet says at least. What I consider a capsule wardrobe is this: A versatile and curated collection of clothing.

Meaning, if you’re sitting there looking up at your closet of over 200 pieces, bringing that down to 100 would be a good start of your capsule and make this process seem more manageable.

Most Canadian capsule wardrobes are organized into two seasons, spring/summer and fall/winter, with each season bringing in specific pieces to meet our changing weather needs. 

I’m not saying, run to your closets and start tossing your clothes. However, I am going to ask if you’ve ever heard of the Pareto Principle? Or the 80/20 Principle?

If you just said yes, then power to you! Up until recently I thought this was a new diet trend. 

The Pareto Principle is pretty straight forward. It’s the idea that you wear 20% of your wardrobe 80% of the time. Mind blown, right? Some of you might be shaking your head, thinking I wear everything in my closet. Maybe? Maybe you’re the exception! Nothing wrong with that, but I kind of doubt it.

It’s this 80/20 rule that relates right back into building a capsule wardrobe. By shrinking down your closet so all that’s left is pure genius.

*Not including athletics or undergarments. (Although, I know my Athletes may have a few dozen leggings they could afford to donate.) You will be able to simplify your life, give yourself more time and save money.

To start building your capsule ask yourself these questions:

1. Does this FIT my lifestyle?
2. Does this FIT my personality?
3. Does this FIT my body?

If the answer is NO to any of the above, donate it.

Think about your real life, not the life you wish you had. The day-to-day, brush your teeth, take your kids to daycare, stay up till four in the morning doing homework, kinda life. Also, think about where you want to be. Does your current wardrobe help you get there?

Now start having fun going through your closet! We feel like there are two ways of doing this:

Way One:
Pull everything out and I mean EVERYTHING, put it on the bed, blast some music and get er’ done. Pick up each piece and ask yourself the questions above.

Way Two:
If pulling out your entire wardrobe is a little daunting, simply turn your hangers the opposite way in your closet after you’ve worn that piece. For folded clothes, after you’ve worn the piece put it back in a separate drawer or box. At the end of the month you’ll be able to visually see which pieces you’ve worn and which pieces you haven’t.

Thanks Rebecca for sharing such practical tips! To learn more about building a capsule wardrobe for your persona, visit Rebecca’s website.

Is building a capsule wardrobe something that is important to you? Have you taken any steps to start this process? We would love to hear your feedback, so share your tips/journey in the comments below!

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