everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit
everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit
everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit
everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit
everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit
everlane poplin shirt dress minimal outfit

Everlane cotton poplin shirt dress, 3.1 by Phillip Lim mini ‘pashli’ bag, Isabel Marant heels (these are a cute option and I also love these), Paul Hewitt watch

A balanced wardrobe is always founded on the basics, those essential workhorses which never really go out of style. So, whenever I’m looking at making a new wardrobe addition, there’s a few questions that typically come to mind; is this a classic piece? will this work with the rest of my wardrobe? can it do double duty for work and for play? and will I get my cost-per-wear from this purchase?

One of my most recent additions – which definitely fit the aforementioned criteria – is this crisp white shirt dress from Everlane. I’ve fallen head over heels for its simple cut, oversized silhouette, and the mandarin style collar, and it’s the kind of piece that I can easily see myself dressing up or down. My list of must-have wardrobe essentials has definitely grown over the last couple of years, with the shirt dress being the latest to make the cut. So.. why should you bother investing in one for your wardrobe?

it’s a layering piece
Worn on its own, or over a pair of leather leggings as a tunic, layered under a thigh length sweater, or finished off with a thick wool coat, it is the perfect transitional layering piece. I also love that you can wear it as a shirt, tucked into a pair of skirt or pair of trousers, or alternatively, as a cute skirt when worn with a chunky knit sweater belted at the waist. We’re right in the midst of one of Sydney’s famous heat waves, but as soon as it starts to cool down I’ll be wearing mine with a simple low heeled black pump and an oversized cardigan.

it can do double duty
I try to keep my wardrobe as tightly edited as possible, so anything that works for the office, and for the weekend is a winner in my books. A classic shirt dress definitely has double duty vibes, pairing nicely for the office with some simple court shoes and a blazer, or dressed down for the weekend with a pair of sneakers. I also think it makes the perfect outfit for a night out, worn with a strappy pair of heels (like I’ve got on, above – I personally love these).

it’s timeless
Depending on how modern the cut is, a shirt dress is the kind of thing that will see you continuing to reach for it over the years. It’s been so true of all my wardrobe staples (my Helmut Lang blazer being a prime example) and longevity is something I typically look for when investing a little extra on a new wardrobe addition.

I’ve rounded up a few of my current favourites that are available online – I’m currently eyeing up the cotton twill shirt dress from Everlane in black, which would be perfect in winter worn with some tights and a black skivvy layered underneath!

life changing magic

‘Beautiful paths can’t be discovered without getting lost’.

In many ways, much of our lives these last few years have changed. We’ve moved country, started new jobs, gotten engaged, suffered the enormity of losing someone very dear to me, moved house, brought two wonderful animals into our lives, travelled overseas, gotten married, and most recently, celebrated the start of a new year. It’s fair to say that it’s been a journey – and not always an easy one.

Which I think is why I look at the new year, 2017, as an opportunity to look forward; life is what you make of it, and the fresh year holds so much promise.

Currently, I’m treasuring the small joys in life. Like a new habit I took up late last year to start reading every night, rather than just ‘plugging in’, or the dinner that Luke and I are planning to go out for tomorrow night, to kick off our weekend. And, I’m finding joy in the few things we have coming up, like a new addition to our fur family (can’t help but count down!), and the short trip back to Wellington that we’ve booked to celebrate the marriage of two of our friends.

Sometimes, you just need to take a breath, and get lost in the moment.

declutter wardrobe rehab cull minimalist minimal closet

Over the weekend, I set aside my Sunday afternoon to tackle my wardrobe and give it a much needed clearout. Feeling once again inspired by Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and a recent documentary Luke and I watched on minimalism, I spent a few hours sorting through the clothing rack in my study and the contents of (my half of) the closet in our bedroom, to whittle my wardrobe down to the pieces I always reach for; those wardrobe workhorses that are not only practical, but that also give me joy.

Aside from the odd piece which was a little more colourful than the rest of my wardrobe, I mostly found myself wanting to part with things that I’d bought with only the best of intentions; pieces that I’d anticipated would quickly become wardrobe staples. This included things like breton striped tees (apparently you can have too many), black leather ankle boots, and a couple of coats which I’d been storing at home, that just won’t get the wear they should during Sydney’s mild winters.

Perhaps one of the things that has struck me most over these last few weeks is that as much as I love colour and vibrant prints on other people, when it comes to my own wardrobe, I am and always will be a neutrals girl at heart. There’s still the odd smattering of print in my wardrobe, and some colour beyond a simple palette of white, grey and black, but wardrobe classics are without a doubt the bread and butter of my closet.

After giving my closet a good declutter (and listing a huge chunk of it for sale via my Tictail Store, here), I also took some time to identify a few gaps in my wardrobe, which I’ll be hoping to track down in the coming months.

pale blue cotton shirt // It’s been a good couple of years since I parted with the asymmetrical hemmed cornflower blue shirt I used to own from Swedish label Hope. I found the hemline a little bit awkward (to say the least) and as much as I loved that shirt, something with a more traditional cut will definitely be a much more loved workhorse, particularly once it starts to cool down during the autumn and winter months.

black leather skirt // There once was this period where I was literally obsessed with buying vintage everything on eBay, and a black leather skirt was probably one of my more practical buys. Unfortunately the first apartment we moved into in Sydney would get quite damp in the summertime from the high levels of humidity, and this skirt suffered the brunt of it. I’ve been on the lookout for a leather skirt ever since, in a highwaisted pencil or a-line silhouette.

white blazer // If you haven’t already figured it out by now, I’m really big on wearing white and cream hues during the warmer months. A white blazer has been near the top of my wishlist for years, as I feel like it would be the perfect complement, however finding the right cut and fabrication is the only thing that’s been holding me back.

blue denim ripped boyfriend jeans // After getting a pair of boyfriend denim jeans from Grana late last year, I’ve been hooked to the boyfriend jean, and when I think about my lifestyle, it just makes sense to have a pair for those lazy weekends at home with the pets. I’m currently eying up a pair from H&M which look like they might be right up my alley.

ballet flats // If you take a peek through my archives you’ll quickly find that I have a bit of a soft spot for ballet flats. My go to is definitely Porselli, and I’m thinking about nabbing a new pair as a little bit of a birthday present to myself.

classic black tote bag // My Everlane Twill Zipper Tote has been holding up really well since I bought it back in June, but I’d really love something more sleek and structured for everyday. There are a few options that I’ve been looking into, and it’s currently a toss up between the Seville Tote from Lo & Sons, or the Petra Magazine Tote from Everlane.

Shop my wardrobe HERE

minimal outfit monochrome collar top denim shorts australia
minimal outfit monochrome collar top denim shorts australia
minimal outfit monochrome collar top denim shorts australia
minimal outfit monochrome collar top denim shorts australia

Atmos & Here collar top (similar), Vintage denim shorts (I love these!), Nicholas Kirkwood sandals (in black), Paul Hewitt watch, Proenza Schouler PS11 satchel (also available here)

While I don’t really do resolutions, every year, I resolve to try and add more colour into my wardrobe, even though I unabashedly gravitate to all things neutral. As much as I love stepping out of my comfort zone, this year, I’d rather stay true to myself, and watch my style grow with – rather than against – me. I’ve spoken about this often, but in my early twenties my wardrobe was a kaleidoscope of colour, prints and patterns, yet as bold and playful as my closet was, I almost always felt like I had nothing to wear. And honestly, as much fun as it’s been injecting a bit of frivolity to my wardrobe these past few months – a nod to my early twenties, I suppose – I feel right at home wearing my neutrals, my ride-or-die wardrobe essentials that have been the backbone of my closet these past few years. So I thought it was apt to begin the year as I intend to continue, primarily in black and white starting with this low cut black number from Atmos & Here with my favourite white denim shorts. New year, old me.

minimal wardrobe declutter your closet

image source; noa noir

A new year is like a fresh start in so many ways, and as much as I try to avoid making resolutions, it’s a great opportunity to give your wardrobe a declutter, and begin the year with a clean slate. I try to focus on only adding those things to my wardrobe which truly give me joy, and that I’m going to want to reach for day in, and day out, but I’m not afraid to admit that I don’t always get it right; occasionally a new wardrobe addition doesn’t work out the way I’d anticipated, and sometimes I find that what was once a wardrobe staple is now starting to feel a little tired.

I also find it as a chance to tidy up my wardrobe, fold everything away nicely, and reorganise my hangers to make getting dressed in the morning just that little bit easier. Plus, it frees up a bit of that prime wardrobe real estate for any new additions that you’re planning to make throughout the year (and January is always a good time for making lists….).

cull your wardrobe
As I’ve gotten into the pattern of adding less to my wardrobe (and making better purchasing descisions!), I’ve found there to be less of a need for a seasonal cull, and instead opt to give my closet a once-over every six months or so, and the new year calls for just that. I’ve written about culling my wardrobe plenty of times in the past, but typically I tend to pull out anything that is either starting to show its age, hasn’t been worn for a good 6-12 months, or that doesn’t give me joy. I have my fair share of sentimental items that I can’t bear to part with (my mum’s coats included), but usually if I’m not getting any use out of something, or if I’m ready to pass an item on, I don’t tend to let it linger in my closet.

store, donate, sell or trash
This goes hand in hand with culling your wardrobe, but once you’ve identified the items that you absolutely love, and those that you can live without, I find it helpful to split up everything that hasn’t made its way make into your closet into four categories; store, donate, sell or trash. Pretty self explanatory, but for those without ample wardrobe space, store anything that is out of season; sell or donate anything that is in good condition; and trash any items that are stained, have holes, or that are falling to pieces. I typically head down the eBay route when selling anything (it’s just easy) but there are plenty other options, like market stalls, consignment stores, or other resale sites.

find an organisational system that works for you
Growing up, everything in our house had a ‘home’, and this is something that I’ve definitely tried to keep up, since moving in with Luke five years ago. The same tends to apply to my wardrobe; everything on hangers is organised by colour (and then my item type) from light to dark, which makes it easier to pinpoint what I want to wear that day and simplifies the tidying up process. Alternatively, storing like with like items might work best for you, but I find that not only is this aesthetically pleasing, but it’s grounded in practicality and it stops our bedroom from turning into a floordrobe.

adopt a one-in-one-out policy
If keeping your wardrobe completely clutter free year round is your goal, then you might like to consider adopting a one-in-one-out policy. This is exactly what it sounds like; everytime you buy something new for your wardrobe, something you already own has to go. I did this years ago when I was still living in Wellington and I found that it helped me to really start to think about what I was adding to my wardrobe, and was the start of my journey towards shopping more consciously and with purpose.

reverse your hangers
While there’s the odd thing in my closet that might get worn only every once in a while, I make an effort throughout the year to try and wear everything in my wardrobe at least once. I like my wardrobe to earn its keep, and in addition to encouraging me to branch out and make the most of what I have, it’s also a great way to weed out the pieces which are no longer working for me. A really great way to keep track of what you are – and aren’t – wearing, is to reverse all your hangers at the start of the year, turning them back the right way each time you wear an item.