The Shopping Pause

Capsule Wardrobes, Debt, Minimalist Shopping, Second-Hand, Second-Hand Shopping, Simplicity, Thrift Shopping

The Shopping Pause is something that I have had to practice and learn over time in my simplifying journey. I like to think of it as smart, intentional, frugal, and fun. I have always been an impulse decision maker – and my shopping habits reflected that. It resulted in over-crowed closets, unhappiness in my wardrobe, buyers remorse, and debt.

Now, I shop for discounted items and second-hand.

This type of shopping took a while to get the hang of, but is perfect for my new lifestyle.

Today, I was on the hunt for a new pair of blue jeans. My current pair had a button that broke off and was not fixable. I wear blue jeans all the time and knew this was something that I needed back in my wardrobe.

So, I shopped online at Target and found a pair of blue jeans on clearance! Yay! It was only $10.00 so I thought, no harm done. Well, then Target required a $25 checkout for free shipping. So I spent over an hour trying to find enough things I ‘need’ to make up for the shipping cost.

My cart was upped to $28 just so I could get enough ‘stuff’ for my true mission which was originally one pair of discounted jeans.

I decided to use the Shopping Pause before checking out and getting the carted items. I let my account just sit until my lunchbreak without buying.

Then, I went up the road to a local thrift store. I told myself, that if I didn’t find a pair of jeans there, I would checkout my Target order when I got back.

On the way to the thrift shop, I realized just how pissed I am at Target anyway. I am currently trying to pay off my credit card and they charged me an interest fee of $25 just this past month. TWENTY-FIVE DOLLARS out of the $30 I paid went to interest.

Fuming about that, but also excited to hunt down a new pair of jeans at the thrift store, I searched through the rack. In all of about 5 minutes I found a new pair of Silver Jeans for $7.99.

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I tried them on and they fit perfectly and had zero flaws. These bad-boys are $85 brand new at Buckle.

Needless to say, I checked out very happy and even more happy that I paused before rushing my order and getting items that I truly didn’t need.

Shopping second-hand is the number one way that I am paying off debt quickly and also fulfilling my capsule wardrobe. I like my stuff smart, simple, stylish, and nice – and I intend to keep it that way!

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Shop Second-Hand: Free People Twill Coat

Capsule Wardrobes, Minimalism, Second-Hand, Thrifting

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I’ve been on a roll second-hand shopping lately.

Since I decided to begin with a fresh slate with my capsule wardrobe, I have only included second-hand items in my recreation.

All the clothing that no longer serves me or fits properly is gone. I am treading that fine line between saving money, but also creating a capsule that suits my every day life and style.

Last week, I found a Marc Jacobs leather purse second-hand, and this week:

A new-with-the-tags Free People twill jacket!

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I’m obsessed with Free People clothing, except I can not afford it, nor will I pay out-of-pocket full price for new. That’s why I am super stoked to score this brand new soft, twill coat for winter. It fits like a glove, looks adorable, and is really warm.

Some poor soul paid $168ish, and I scored it for $19.99.

That’s a win in my book – great price, perfect fit, and suitable as my capsule winter coat.

Multi-Season Capsule Wardrobe: A Clean Slate

Capsule Wardrobes, Gentle Change, Letting Go, Minimalism, Minimalist, Simple Life, Simplicity

Sometimes along our journey we have what I like to call a good problem to have. Those are the best types of problems even though they require a little finagling to work around.

You see, I’ve been living with less since the beginning of the year. Slowly but surely, I am weeding out the unnecessary so that I may enjoy the best of the best.  Three of my simplifying focuses have collided and require attention:

  • Weight Loss
  • Capsule Wardrobe
  • Spending less

The good news is that I have lost 40 pounds! The bad is that all of my clothing in my current summer capsule no longer fit. I’ve been donating my clothing throughout this last year: got down to the bare bones, created a capsule and now, I have worn them as long as I can. In an effort to spend less, I have been enjoying my clothes and wearing them as long as possible. But it got to the point where I was overall frumpy. My capsule wasn’t cohesive enough to be practical, and my clothes were swallowing me whole.

Since my solution is not to gain the weight back, I had to dip into my ‘spending less’ focus.

This is a good problem and I handled it the best way possible by getting rid of the majority of my current too-big frumpy clothes, starting over, and most of all:

buying second-hand.

This has allowed me to stay in line with all that I am trying to accomplish.

I spent $80.00 total and now have a complete, cohesive, workable, multi-season capsule wardrobe.

I present to you my new multi-season capsule wardrobe! I plan on this carrying over into fall by adding a few pieces here and there to battle the cooler weather in the near future.

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I am really excited about this capsule. It shows my personality along with a palette that is a neutral, with just enough detail and color to not be so monotone and boring. It is also easily functional throughout most of the seasons; only needing to add warmer pieces when needed.

Last night I felt so free letting go of the old me. I was able to rid myself of the clothing that no longer served me with absolutely no hesitation. I kept a few pieces that I love and added new second-hand pieces giving those thrifted items a new and fabulous second life!

Minimalism isn’t about deprivation and rules. It is about functionality and loving what you have. It’s also about spending wisely and being your best self. It’s OK to edit your life – clothing, relationships, hobbies, careers – as a matter of fact, it’s imperative because human beings are ever-changing.

What’s important is knowing that it’s OK to let go to the past. You have no obligation to keep everything you have ever acquired.

Welcome a clean slate.

You have permission to start over however many times you wish so that you may fully live, enjoy, and love all that was meant for pure joy.

I’m Wearing Black Because it Makes Sense

Capsule Wardrobes, Gentle Change, Minimalism, Minimalist, Simple Life, Simplicity

There’s a lot of talk among aspiring minimalists and oodles of Pinterest examples of the Capsule Wardrobe. I’ve read up on it and have been inspired for a really long time to make my own capsules and ditch the excess.

It’s been a really positive experience so far, and even when I think I have my capsule perfect, something else sparks my interest and that’s OK, too.

Earlier this week, I got super excited and inspired by a post called Why I Wear the Same Thing Every Day and it’s like everything just clicked in my mind as far as my wardrobe goes.

It’s true, most of our well-known famous world-changers wear the same thing every day. They have their ‘signature look’ and keep their look simple and streamlined so that they can focus on important stuff, instead of wasting energy on the not-so-important daily decisions such as what they will be wearing that day.

In the grand scheme of things, I think it’s safe to say that our clothes is not all that important, huh?

If you had of asked me last year if I would have felt this way this year I would have looked at you like you had 6 heads.

I’m a girl that has always kept up with fashion, and have been proud that I dress a little different or outside the lines a bit. I don’t know why, really but I have a hunch that society and highschool may have planted some type of seed that our clothes are more important than anything.

So, many years and much debt and unhappiness in shopping and wasting money on clothing later:

I’ve adopted a capsule and a self-imposed work uniform.

Drumroll please….

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Yep, that’s a dark pair of jeans and a black shirt.

I showed how I broke up my capsule into work and weekend the other day.

It just so happens that I had (3) black shirts in my capsule/closet anyway so it makes sense to me that I’ll be wearing black mostly with my one pair of jeans. What? One pair? Yes.

And I have a few other shirts that I might rotate in. But then again, maybe not because just a simple black shirt seems pretty dang flawless to me. Black and dark colors are slimming and it’s classic. They don’t show dirt and smudges or nasty pit stains. It’s solid so there’s no question does this print go with that print. I mean, can this even be messed up or go wrong? I can’t imagine so.

Also, I figured I would have a work uniform hair do’ too, because why not? It’s just pinned back with bobby pins so I no longer will have to use heated products to style or fight humidity in this hellish Alabama summer heat.

This hairstyle is pretty much the easiest thing ever.

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After 3 days of wearing a black shirt and the same pair of dark jeans not one person in my sphere has commented. That tells me that even the closest of loved ones could care less about what I’m wearing.

They say to dress for the job you want, not for the job you have.

Well, my friends:

A Bachelor’s Degree in Business and 10 years of career hunting and climbing ladders and layoffs and playing office politics later, I can say without question that dressing for the job you want is paramount.

Which is why I am dressing simply and in jeans. Because if my job requires me to use my clothing as my leverage in life, then that’s no job I want at all.

That’s playing games and I don’t have time for that.

I’ve been there done that and thank God out of those situations.

My current job is a good one and I can dress like this if I want to.

And I do.

Why I Wear The Same Thing Every Day

Capsule Wardrobes, Clarity, De-Cluttering, Gentle Change, Minimalism, Minimalist

I open my WordPress Reader and got a dose of inspiration this morning while sipping my coffee at the office. I love when this happens!

The post was:

Why I Wear The Same Thing Every Day.

In essence, it explains how a lot of super-successful people wear a work uniform for simplicity so they can focus on their work and passions without worrying about clothing.

I’ve been obsessed with my capsule this summer, so much so that I post about it a good bit.

But, after thinking: hey, I should just have a work uniform from my capsule for consistency and then a weekend capsule for the weekends.

So, since I already had pictures from my current capsule, all I had to do was split it up into two categories:

1. Work

2. Weekend

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And I’m pretty pleased with the split. By the looks of the capsules, I may can actually narrow down what I have currently in my closet to match this exactly.

That would be perfect.

Have you ever thought about a work uniform, too? I’m excited to split up the capsule and see how it goes over the next week.

Take a Chance, Make a Change

Capsule Wardrobes, Clarity, De-Cluttering, Debt, Free Spirit, Gentle Change, Hippie Life, Hippy Life, Letting Go, Meditation, Minimalism, Minimalist, Money, Simple Life, Simplicity, Yoga

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We have a chance to make numerous choices every, single day. There comes a point though, when maybe our auto-pilot life becomes comfortable. Boring, stagnant, and comfortable. We realize beneath it all something is lacking. Our joy has been squelched due to the day-to-day demands that we dictate to ourselves. We measure our worth based on checking off the to-do-list and then beating ourselves up when we simply can’t accomplish it all.

That’s a rut. It’s a tough one to admit to, and a stickler to dig out of.

That’s where I was just a few short months ago. I started running – not walking – in the opposite direction.

It was time to take a risk: I have to change and take some risks, here. 

This realization and admittance that I am in fact, not Super Woman was a little hard to come to grips with, but there was truth beneath the surface.

I don’t want to be Super Woman.

I don’t want to be living in chaos. I don’t want to feel overwhelmed and full of anxiety. I want peace and joy.

The contrast between the two are pretty drastic.

That means I have to open my mind and try different solutions to my struggle.

Day by day, my slow changes are really easing my anxiety and happiness is finally creeping in. I do things a little differently now by:

  1. Getting rid of excess and clutter for clarity and less wasted time on organizing and picking up.
  2. Removing social media from my life so I can focus on myself and what’s important.
  3. Thinking positively by meditating and appreciating what I have and where I’m going.
  4. Letting go of other people’s behavior and my past.
  5. Changing daily chores: I hang clothes to dry, use less dishes and hand-wash when done, put things back where they belong, and let it go when I want to do something else.
  6. Eating well helps me feel energized and lose excess pounds.
  7. Paying off debt by getting my finances in order and stop useless spending.
  8. Daily Yoga helps my body stretch and tone as well as a great way to integrate balance in my life.
  9. Being conscious of my beauty routine where less is definitely more.
  10. Creating a capsule wardrobe so my style is consistent and less stressful when getting ready and wasting money filling the gaps for sake of fashion.

These 10 changes have taken time. I began slowly and deliberately and have really tried to understand myself and my past along the way. It’s been my saving grace in the stickabilty to a major life change like this one.

Knowing you need to make a change and then taking the plunge can be scary. But there is nothing to fear. You can always go back to the way things were before. I mean, what’s there to lose?

Capsule Wardrobe: End of Month Re-Cap

Capsule Wardrobes, Minimalism, Minimalist

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I put together my summer capsule wardrobe a few weeks ago and I must say that it has really revolutionized the way I view my spending habits and closet.

I never counted up my items because I’m not a numbers girl and that wasn’t my focus when I created it. My focus was to de-clutter and get rid of clothes that I never wear and only leave my favorites.

But, I decided I wanted to count yesterday just cause I was curious.

I have 40 items in my capsule. I’ve included in mine:

  1. Daywear
  2. Pajamas
  3. Workout Gear
  4. Shoes

So, pretty much everything item-wise except undies.

What’s weird is that sometimes I still think it’s too much. I know that there are a few items in my closet I haven’t even worn once and I’m at the end of the month. Then, there are some items that I’ve repeated a good bit just cause I love them so much.

Perhaps, it’s time for the unused to be taken out of the capsule since it’s been 30 days and it hasn’t graced my body?

I considered moving it to another seasonal capsule, but would I even wear it then if I don’t wear it now? Probably not.

The key to a capsule: It can always be tweaked. There is no right or wrong way to do it. It’s yours and yours alone. You can have however many pieces you want and ‘count’ whatever items you want. It’s your thing, and no one else’s.

I am sure not to compare my capsule with others because that’s not my point at all. I just want to love my stuff and get rid of the excess, that’s all.

Although, I do love me some inspiration for others and love looking at their capsules as well! The concept is perfect and is a positive experience to help keep ourselves in check so as we aren’t so wasteful with our resources.

Thoughts on my Summer Capsule Wardrobe

Capsule Wardrobes, De-Cluttering, Letting Go, Minimalism, Minimalist

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The capsule wardrobe has intrigued me for years. I’ve attempted to make one a few times in the past and would just become unmotivated because I never knew where to start.

It’s one of the first things accomplished since I have drastically changed my life this year.

My capsule wardrobe was free: meaning, I didn’t buy any new pieces after I decided to make it. I simply used what was there.

It’s been a few weeks since I began wearing my capsule, and it is so much easier. Everything in my closet is my favorite pieces, my closet is not over-packed, and it all fits well.

When we get rid of the unnecessary and excess, it frees up room to enjoy our best. Whether it be our clothing, trinkets, emotional baggage, waste; the excess weighs us down.

It’s not as scary as it sounds to de-clutter our lives. It takes a lot of work and heart if you are going to do it right. It’s important to understand why you got where you are today and how you want to change.

Since there are a bazillion websites on capsule wardrobes, I will not bore you with another how-to. Just search it on pinterest or google and you are sure to find a plethora. Or, check out Courtney’s site for Project 333 to get started.

Some thoughts:

1. It’s a lot of work: But worth it. This task will go a lot faster if you are pretty ruthless. Anything that is too big or small needs to go, anything ratty, your ex-boyfriend’s t-shirt – you got the idea, right? Let go.

2. Match your lifestyle: You don’t need a whole closet full of prom dresses if you shovel shit for a living. Dress for who you are now. Keep items that you absolutely love and match your personality.

3. Don’t spend money: If you are like me, you probably have more than you could ever imagine. Try to make your capsule out of the items you have now. This way you won’t make the mistake of getting back into your old habits of spending money for no good reason.

4. You will love your closet: After everything is purged and it’s all roomy and neat sit back and enjoy the view and freedom.

5. It’s OK: It can be hard because you aren’t used to having a roomy closet. If you just can’t let go immediately, store your unsure items away for a few months. If after your set timeframe you don’t remember what’s in the box – donate.

So, I’m digging my capsule. I’ve already set a few things aside to incorporate for fall so I can mix it up a bit.

Do you have a capsule? If so, I’d love to see if you want to share. Post a pic or link in the comments!