I dream about having the ultimate capsule wardrobe. The well-curated, perfect sized capsule wardrobe where everything works with everything else. I am working my way there, as you might remember. But, it takes a while to get there.
While I work on my capsule, I thought it could be helpful to map out what my ultimate capsule wardrobe might actually look like. I realized while creating this list, that I am probably closer to my goal than I thought. If we just disregard the handful or more items that still should be purged….ahem. But, you know. This is what my ultimate capsule wardrobe could possibly look like.
Let’s get on with it, starting with…
The Cotton T-Shirt
As far as I’m concerned, no wardrobe is anything to speak of without the classic cotton t-shirt. I used to be a print t-shirt kind of girl, but the last few years I’ve come to appreciate the plain cotton crew t-shirt. A handful of respectively black and white shirts, and I’m all set in the t-shirt department.
The Cotton Hipster
Well, underwear is probably a given. I make it easy, and mostly wear no fuss black cotton hipsters. I’m not one to bother with lots of patterns and laces and that kind of stuff. Less is more, right? Even in terms of underwear, I’d say.
I have mapped out that five kind of socks need to be included in my sock inventory. It sounds kind of excessive, but I have evaluated my sock collection repeatedly and it seems there’s no way around it: five it is. The five kinds include: normal dress socks, sneaker socks, steps, thick boot socks and wool socks. The wool socks might be split in two: normal boot wool socks for winter and cozy, knee-high socks for indoors. Nothing suggests ‘hygge’ more than soft, cozy knee-high wool socks on feet when cozying up in the sofa at night.
So, err…the less is more approach does not apply to socks, apparently?
When I decluttered and minimized my wardrobe, the pajamas was one area which needed some reorganizing. It used to consist of all kinds of random garments that had been given extended life as night wear, and it was no joy to wear either of them. So, I threw them all out and replaced them with two complete pajama sets. They are long sleeved and long legged, and thin enough for both summer and winter. I do keep a long night shirt for warm summer nights, just to be on the safe side.
Living in Scandinavia, winters are long and as such undergarments in wool are a necessity. At least for me, who am prone to freezing. My wardrobe thus need to include a handful of long sleeves in wool, to pop under my sweaters. And, preferably a couple of wool tights too, for extra cold days.
A classic like the cotton t-shirt, the black or blue jeans are a true staple in my wardrobe. I realize that I more often than not pull out my black jeans, though, so I might skip the blue all together or have a couple of black ones to boot. I used to be a Nudie Jeans-kind of girl, but my impression was that the never stop bleeding no matter how much I wash them. And, quite frankly, blue and grey hands are not really my jam. Weird, huh? Right now, I have a pair of black jeans from Tiger of Sweden, which I kind of bought on a whim to swap out my black and worn Nudie. They have a decent stretch and a good fit, no bleeding colors (yay!).
The Dressy Pants
In addition to the jeans, I prefer to have a couple of dressier pants. They come in handy when needing to dress more formal for business, or for festive occasions when you don’t want to wear a dress or skirt.
The Cozy Pants
My ultimate capsule wardrobe isn’t complete with out a casual, more laidback pair of pants. Preferably, this pair of pants should work both for Sunday walks outside and for relaxed evenings at home.
My preferred style is mostly casual, and the pull-over sweater works wonders over my cotton t-shirts together with my jeans. So, my perfect wardrobe should absolutely include a handful of cozy pull-over sweaters. For fall and winter, cozy knitted wool sweaters are my favorites. And for summer, a couple of thinner options might come in handy. Grey and black are my go-to-colors, but I like to have one or two color options to mix it up. Ok, so the mustard piece pictured isn’t really a sweater, but it was too cute not to put up there.
I have a hard time picking out good shirts, to be honest. I do have one casual black one from HM that I am happy with. And, I also have a more dressed option that I wear for more festive occasions. However, a couple of good quality shirts and blouses are items I consider staples. They make it easy to pull together a more dressed up outfit when the occasion calls for it.
My ultimate capsule wardrobe features one casual black shirt, one black and one grey blouse, one short sleeved blouse, and a patterned one just to spruce things up a bit.
I am not much of a dress person, to be honest. But, sometimes the occasion calls for dresses. This summer, my Tanzania trip introduced me to patterned maxi dresses, which is a good summer staple. I am, however, looking to find a couple of quality dresses that can easily be dressed up and down, such as these two wrap dresses.
A wool coat for winter is a must. Preferably with a good length. This way, I can be warm and stylish through the winter months. This year, I invested in a new coat, which I’ve already gotten much use from as the weather turns colder.
Here, I realize it’s hard to settle with just one. I think my jacket inventory currently feature a leather jacket, two wool jackets, and a very thin summer jacket. In theory, it should suffice with a leather jacket for cold summers, fall and spring, and a short wool jacket as an option for the coat. But, I have yet to work this out. Living in a Nordic country, I realize jackets are a staple item it can be worth having a variety of versions of. A long, warm coat, a shorter coat, a leather jacket, a summer jacket and a blazer, for example.
That reminds me, the perfect wardrobe should also have a proper mountain style winter jacket of sorts. I have one now, but I don’t love it. I tried to find a good one to include in this post, but well, I kind of failed. The winter parkas is my wardrobe nemesis.
My current shoe collection is a slight mess. But, I know that, for me, a perfect shoe selection would look like this: one pair of running shoes, one pair of casual wear shoes, one pair of flat, dressy shoes, one pair of ballet flats, and one pair of pumps. And sandals, because, you know, summer.
Right now, I have one pair of knee hight winter boots, one pair of jogger winter boots, one pair of laced boots (Dr. Martens), one pair of Chelsea boots (Dr. Martens), and one pair of heeled ankle boots. Which is kind of a decent boot wardrobe, to be honest. I might have liked to swap the jogger winter boots for a pair of sleeker, laced winter boots. Like the faux fur lined Dr. Martens in my above collage. And, just add the Dr. Martens oxfords and I’m all set.
Keyword: Nordic Winter. Gloves are a must accessory in an ultimate capsule wardrobe. I was lucky to receive a pair of sturdy leather gloves from my last employment. They are pretty enough to be worn with more formal wear, but since they are protection gloves, they are also sturdy enough to endure activities that calls for heavier duty gloves, such as carrying the Christmas tree home and hiking in the woods.
As the freezy person that I am, my ultimate capsule wardrobe needs to include scarves suited for every season. Thin scarves for summer, medium scarves for fall and spring, and thick scarves for winter. I don’t normally wear scarves all summer long, but you know. It’s good to have the option.
Like the rest of my wardrobe, I like my scarves neutral in blacks or grey. But, I’m thinking of adding a pop of color to y scarf collection, like this yellow one.
The Knitted Cap
Yes, the Nordic climate calls for the covering of ears and head for large parts of the year. The knitted caps are therefore a staple item in any nordic wardrobe (or, at least, should be). I find it hard to find the perfect one, but I came very close last winter when I bought a crocheted beanie on Etsy.
The beanie did run a bit large (or…maybe I just have a very small head?), so I have been thinking of putting in an elastic of some sort to make it more comfortable.
And that’s it, I guess. My ultimate capsule wardrobe. A bunch of classic staples and a splash of color here and there. This ultimate capsule wardrobe is more of a guideline, really. I realize that a wardrobe is more fleeting than such a capsule, and might feature a couple of extra items here and there. And that’s ok.
What do you think? Do you like the idea of capsule wardrobes, and what did you think of the one I imagined in this post?