Abby came in this weekend as I was getting my summer P333 capsule finalized and asked if I was tired of having a limited wardrobe yet.
That made me laugh. I actually LOVE my little wardrobe — much more than I ever loved my overflowing one. THAT just made me cranky.
It seems counterintuitive that less clothing would give you more to wear (and also less laundry — no one ever believes that), but that’s been my experience. I used to have a wardrobe filled with things I never wore but thought I liked (hello, button-down blouses. I had 10 of those things), so I was always searching for something new that would magically “fix” my wardrobe and make it perfect.
Yeah, like that ever happened.
I’ve found that because I love my wardrobe so much (all those button-downs have been replaced with shirts that pull over my head — turns out I like those better), I’m not tempted to go clothes shopping. Sometimes I have to because items wear out, but unless I have an actual need, I stay out of the stores. We’ll call that the zero waste aspect of this ordeal, since no shopping means no bags, tags or anything to get rid of later.
I’m going on four years of participating in P333, and at this point, I feel like I’ve learned the lessons and it’s not so much about the challenge as it is just coming up with a wardrobe that works for me. Which is challenging enough in Oregon because of the weather alone (are we 90º today or 55º?), but I also work in an office and have, like, a life that’s not very formal outside of that. (Actually, my work wardrobe isn’t that formal either. This is the west coast. Apparently we’re super relaxed out here.)
I’ve gone about choosing my items in a variety of ways, but what works best for me is simply emptying out my entire closet onto my bed, hangers and all, and immediately putting back my favorite items, then filling in the holes from there. The whole process takes me about a half-hour.
I didn’t count items this time until the very end and was surprised that I ended up with only 29 — one of which is a bag. I’m cool with that. Who knows, next season I might have 39.
Items in my wardrobe are as follows:
Pants/capris — 4
Skirts — 4
Cardigans and jackets — 6
Shirts and tank tops — 12
Shoes — 2
Bag — 1
I tend to gravitate towards navy, so I have the most of that (“Oh, we know,” said a coworker about my love of navy the other day), but I also have a few items in gray, beige and black, a couple of pretty orangey things, and one that’s teal. I’ve branched out in my old age and have a few patterns in there too — for a long time, I just wore solids.
And P.S., you don’t have to count underwear, activewear, or clothing that you only wear at home. So I have running shoes (I’m a Walker, so I’ll let you figure out what my preferred exercise is) that are not on the list, as well as a couple of tank tops I count as underwear since I only ever wear them under something else. Some people count jewelry, but I don’t, since I just have two bracelets, my wedding ring and a necklace I never take off. They’re a part of my body at this point.
I’m interested to hear who else is participating and if we have any first-timers out there. I only started doing this because I thought it was impossible — and my first go, I ended up going through my items every month to switch them out because I had picked all the wrong things. So then I had to try again and it snowballed from there.
A sad little announcement: The photo above makes me cry because it’s the last one I took of Skilly. On the Fourth of July, he went from being perfectly fine to having something very wrong going on, and when we took him to the vet on the fifth, we learned he was in kidney failure. That’s the short version and I don’t have it in me to go into the long version. Our furry baby was almost seven, and I thought we had plenty of time left with him. He was such a little sweetie, and a huge part of our family — the hole he’s left is just echoing. I just can’t believe this is real.
Anyway, we have an assisted living center in town who allows the residents to have cats, so my plan is to call and see if they will take his food. But that day is not today.
Next up: No idea, actually. But I’m hoping for something cheerful.