What is a capsule wardrobe & how to build one
by Sam Maas on Mar 25, 2022
The fast fashion industry has a colossal impact on the environment. Valued at over 3 trillion USD, the production of clothing has seen a significant rise in popularity, which comes with numerous consequences. It makes up for at least 10% of humanity's carbon emissions. Furthermore, it impacts our water resources, stimulating agricultural runoff from cotton fields to cause algal blooms. Dying and washing clothes also release toxic chemicals (microplastics) into our oceans. Sadly, more than 70% of all textiles worldwide will end up dumped within the next few years, if not months.
The need for a shift to sustainable fashion is indisputable. More and more brands are starting to be mindful of the impact of their production on the environment.
There are numerous ways to help reduce this unrelenting industry's impact on our planet. Today we will be covering how building a capsule wardrobe and being mindful about what you buy will do just that.
What is a capsule wardrobe
It is quite stressful and overwhelming, trying to find something you would love to wear every single day. A capsule wardrobe helps you do just that while reducing your ecological footprint.
A capsule wardrobe consists of a selected collection of timeless essentials that don't go out of style and that you would love to wear daily. A 30 to 50-piece collection of clothes, accessories, and shoes will probably be sufficient.
A capsule wardrobe should last up to a full year. However, you could make the case to build one for every season, lasting around three to four months. It all depends on how much you want to test and challenge yourself. Let's go over some benefits of building a capsule wardrobe.
The benefits of a capsule wardrobe
A capsule wardrobe saves you money
Gone are the days of impulse buying cheap, random clothes that go out of style at the end of the season. One of the foundations of building a capsule wardrobe is to go for quality instead of quantity.
These pieces may be a little more expensive. However, by being able to wear them for longer periods of time and being more conscious about what clothes you buy, your savings will eventually start to show.
A capsule wardrobe causes less stress on what to wear
By buying pieces that never go out of style and that go specifically well together, you will always have an outfit ready to wear. A capsule wardrobe makes it much easier to dress up and go out for the day, rather than spending hours trying to find something you love.
A capsule wardrobe is better for the environment
Buying less but more sustainable clothes lessens your wardrobe's impact on the environment. You're slowing down the fashion industry by looking for more quality rather than quantity. Clothing manufacturers will be forced to shift to creating better quality clothing rather than focusing on the latest trends and clinching onto short-term gains.
How to build a capsule wardrobe
Determine which style suits you best
The first step in building a capsule wardrobe is finding out your style and how it could fit yourself and your daily lifestyle. By compiling a mood board of outfits that you would love to wear daily, you should be able to tell whether an outfit or a piece of clothing could fit into your life or not. Ask yourself some questions:
- How does my day-to-day life look?
- What do I like to do in my free time?
- What types of clothing do I love to wear?
These questions will help you become more conscious of your buying habits and preferences when dressing up.
Take a close look at your closet
Now that you know what you like and dislike, it is time to clean out your closet. Ask yourself these questions:
- Do I still wear this item?
- Does it fit me and my lifestyle?
- Does it go well with my other clothes?
- Don't I already have enough t-shirts or hoodies?
After you've painted a picture of your style, you should be able to determine whether the items you currently have are a match or not. The ones that aren't should be headed to the next step.
Sell, trade, give away or donate
As stated in the introduction, more than 70% of all textiles worldwide end up dumped within a few years, if not months, which leaves a massive impact on our planet.
One way of avoiding this mistake is to sell your old clothes. With platforms like Vinted and Dpop, it is easy to make extra cash within a few clicks. Another way is to trade your clothes or give them away to charities.
These alternatives keep the clothes from reaching the trash, which means they won't pollute our waters or the planet. Also, it creates less demand for new clothing, which means textile companies will have to reduce their production rate, thus reducing their overall carbon emissions.
Check out which essential pieces you're still missing
You've found out what you like, you've cleaned out your closet, you've done your part for the planet, now it is time to look at what's missing. What do you still need to fulfill your capsule wardrobe? What pieces will you need to go through in the next three to four months?
It is time to go out there and get yourself some sustainable, high-quality clothing to complete your capsule wardrobe. You could choose to go all-in and buy everything you need in one go, or you could build it up piece by piece. Determine how many items you need for every category and fill in where you're lacking.
Haze&Finn capsule wardrobe essentials
We recommend including around 33 pieces of clothing and shoes in your (seasonal) capsule wardrobe. Things you should definitely include are some neutral t-shirts or polo's, a pair of (black) pants, one or two pairs of jeans, knits or sweaters for layering, and a few shirts for a more dressed-up look.
So now that you have the basics of a capsule wardrobe down, it's time to fill up your very own capsule wardrobe. Let's take a look at the different categories of clothing you should certainly include.
Everybody needs a few neutral t-shirts in their wardrobe, whether it's a capsule wardrobe or not. They are great for layering and a great staple piece for your casual summer look. We recommend keeping the t-shirts as neutral as possible. By doing so, you will be able to easily mix and match them with several other pieces of your capsule wardrobe.
Our signature Haze&Finn polo’s are also a staple you simply can’t skip while piecing together your capsule wardrobe. They give you an elevated look and can easily be dressed up for a more formal look or dressed down for a more sportive look.
We recommend adding one or two neat button-up shirts to your capsule wardrobe for a more dressed-up look. They immediately give you a clean and more formal appearance. The Haze&Finn collection gives you a variety of prints and colours to choose from, so you'll always find one that matches your unique style.
Knits are the perfect staples for layering throughout the year. They will readily give you a clean and more dressed-up look while keeping you warm. You'll find some timeless colours in the Haze&Finn collection to cater to your capsule wardrobe.
A good sweater, hoodie, or crewneck is an essential staple for your capsule wardrobe. They're also perfect for layering but give you a more sportive look.
Everybody should own good jeans to get around daily. So it speaks for itself; you should include one or two pairs in your capsule wardrobe. The Haze&Finn jeans collection makes sure to provide you with sustainable jeans to lessen your impact on the environment while rocking great-fitting jeans.
Pants and shorts
According to the season, you should add some shorts for the warmer days and pants to get around on those colder or rainy days. The Haze&Finn collection will provide you with a comfortable fit and a variety of models to choose from to cater to your needs.
Of course, your capsule wardrobe can't lack a good pair of track pants and a (matching) sweater. Some joggings to hit the gym or a more relaxed look at home are indispensable.
Building a capsule wardrobe has multiple benefits, not only for yourself but also for our planet. Often, we strive for a very lavish lifestyle, not considering its effects on our ecological footprint.
Going for sustainable fashion and thinking about your buying habits are the foundations of building a stress-free lifestyle and feeling better about ourselves without wasting way too much money on clothes that you barely wear.