Saturday, April 16, 2016

My Capsule Wardrobe SUCCESS Story, and Why People Care

Ooops, I have accidentally, yet happily, become a wardrobe minimalist - a capsule wardrobe devotee, in modern lingo.  Wanna know how?  Of course you do.  Here’s how.
  1. I ran out almost all suitable clothes all at once.  This can happen when you finally stop changing shape after years of pregnancies and breastfeedings and associated weight losses and gains.
  2. So, I went shopping for T-shirts.  I found one I like, so I bought two in different colours.  Then, I liked them so much that I went back and bought another two in more colours.
  3. Then, I went shopping for trousers.  I bought 3 pairs of dark blue jeans and had 2 cut down to 3/4 length.  I also bought one black pair of pants and one long cotton light tan pair for keeping mozzies away on very hot days.
  4. I have about 5 “nice” shirts in the cupboard for special occasions - all match my black pants.  I got one T-shirt at a conference and a good friend left me a T-shirt when she went back to her home country; both go with all my jeans and the tan pants.
This is a typical day in my capsule life: I put on the jeans and one of the T-shirts.  

This is a hot day in my capsule life: I put on the tan pants and one of the T-shirts.  

This is a special occasion in my capsule life: I put on the black pants and one of the nice shirts.

There are no cold days in the tropics, but I have one jacket just in case.

Now then, do you care?  Should you care?  Well, people care.  Why do they care?  I’ll tell you why it (kind of) matters (a little bit) (to me) (when I think about it).
  1. I have stopped bowing to a weird unspoken cultural rule that you shouldn’t wear the same thing so often that people notice you are wearing the same thing so often.  You know, it’s always nice to stop bowing to unspoken rules like this. 

    However, if it really does upset you to see me wearing jeans and a T-shirt (again), please feel free to leave a comment to that effect, and I will duly fret over it a while before moving on with my life.

  2. I have stopped buying clothes.  I enjoy this immensely, partly because I don’t enjoy really clothes shopping, partly because I can use the money for more noble purposes, partly because the environment breathes a sigh of relief when we stop purchasing things, and partly because, in this one small area, I have stepped out of the role of “consumer” which many people are desperate to keep me in for their own financial advantage.
I know lists should have more than 2 items on them, but I’m struggling to come up with a third.

So, do you care?  Should you care?  I can't see much reason why you would.

But I feel you deserve something more, now you’ve come this far, dear reader, only to be told you needn’t have.  So I bestow upon you my 3-step Plan to Material Happiness.
  1. Buy waaaay too much stuff and really enjoy it.
  2. Then get tired of it, and get rid of everything you never needed anyway.
  3. …et voila! - you see your empty wardrobe, your empty cupboards and your empty garage, and you are deeply happy.

(An impatient person might just wish to skip straight to step 3, without going through the necessary over-purchasing, but be warned, there is no evidence that this abbreviated “step to happiness” will succeed.)

Postscript:  A few months later I got SO SICK of all the items in my capsule wardrobe that I went out a bought a heap of the most crazy clothes I could. And I wore them. And I felt happy again.

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