Autumn ’17 Wardrobe

autumn minimal wardrobe
autumn minimal wardrobe

The weather has finally started to cool down a little, and I’ve been making full use of every excuse I can find to pull out some of my denim, and cosy winter knits. My current everyday staples have fallen into that easy – minimalist – colour palette of white, grey, and black; something which has made dressing so easy (if not somewhat formulaic).

Cashmere, silk, cotton and wool are my textiles of choice, and I’m currently loving the option to throw a blazer or a trench coat on over my outfit – nothing like back-to-back heatwaves to have you craving what you can’t actually wear.

Below is a little peek into some of the pieces I’ve been reaching for recently; my core autumn wardrobe, if you will!

Some Summer Wardrobe Favourites

summer wardrobe minimal style favourites
summer wardrobe minimal style favourites

We’re facing yet another one of Sydney’s heat waves (hands up if you can’t wait for autumn!), and while all I really want to wear is a scoop neck cotton tank and my comfiest high waisted denim shorts, I’m not quite sure how well that would go down in the office…

So, I thought I’d share with you a few of my current favourite summer time outfits, which I’ve been reaching for a lot lately. There’s all the usual suspects – think black and white hues, any everything in between – as well as a couple pops of much needed colour. Some of the things I’ve been loving include anything off the shoulder (because if you can’t in summer, when can you?), feminine frills and ruffles, my button up denim skirt from Grana which I’ve been reaching for on a weekly basis and easy breezy shirt dresses.

One of the things that I have to admit that I’ve been struggling a lot with this summer, is finding my signature summer style – it’s hard wanting to wear anything even remotely chic when the temperatures are pushing 40 degrees, especially when you know you have 45 minutes of walking ahead of you, as soon as you leave the door. I never thought I’d say this, but autumn couldn’t come soon enough…

Shop my favourite looks below:

Five Tips to Shop more Mindfully

tips for shopping mindfully minimal wardrobe

I think we’ve – almost – all been there; that moment when you realise that your shopping has gotten a little out of control, and somehow in the last month you’ve come home with more things that you could realistically hope to wear for the next season, or two. This has been so true of my own story, and it wasn’t until I realised just how swept up in this vortex of continuously shopping, yet still never having anything to wear, that I started to make a change to how I shopped. I’m still always going to be the girl who loves the buzz of bringing home a new pair of shoes, and while I won’t let myself feel guilty over splurging on a dress I’ve had my eye on for two months, I try to follow a few simple steps to make sure that what I’m adding to my wardrobe will still be a strong staple six months later.

There’s nothing quite like the threat of having to get rid of something you already own and love, to make you think twice about a new wardrobe addition. Aside from the fact that this helps to keep your wardrobe free from clutter, this is also a great way to keep your closet streamlined and filled only with the things that you love, plus it adds a little layer to the shopping process which can be a real dealbreaker, particularly if you’re buying something just because it’s on sale.

Something that I still do, even to this day, is keep an itemised shopping journal which lists each new addition to my closet, and just how much I spent on it. This takes a little bit of additional effort, but it helps me to stay accountable and also identify when I’m starting to add a few too many new things to my wardrobe. The most important point here is to be honest, and include everything, even if it’s just a $0.99 pair of vintage denim shorts from eBay.

There’s that old saying, ‘good things come to those who wait’, and as cliche as it is, I typically like to wait at least two weeks before pulling the trigger on a purchase. There’s always the odd exception, but giving yourself the time to really think about a possible new purchase speaks volumes as to whether a new piece is going to be a keeper, or something that will be relegated to the back of your wardrobe within a few month’s time. A lot of the time, I’ll come to the conclusion that as shiny and pretty and new as it is, it’s not something that I really need, or something that I foresee myself getting a lot of use out of.

I figure that there’s no point buying something if it doesn’t go with the rest of your wardrobe, and you have to buy something else for it to go with. While there’s always the odd exception, like a fancy cocktail dress, I use the rule of thumb that any new addition needs to work with at least three other items in my already existing closet. Versatility is absolutely key, and if it can do double duty for the office and for play, that’s even better.

I was first drawn to the capsule wardrobe movement in large part due to my desire to shop smarter, and really take hold of my wardrobe’s destiny (as corny as that sounds). I’ve since moved on after three years of capsule wardrobes, but I took away so much from the learning experience and have found that I hit the shops a lot less frequently than I used to, and when I do, I’m much more measured when it comes to ringing up a new purchase at the shop till. If you’re new to this concept, or are thinking about dipping your toe into the capsule wardrobe pool, then I’d recommend checking out some of my previous posts on how to build a capsule wardrobe and whether a capsule wardrobe is right for you, as I think they’re both pretty good starting points.

A couple of the other things that I’ve found have really helped me, when it comes to shopping smarter, and shopping more mindfully, is to keep a full list of all the items you have in your current wardrobe on you at all times, as well as a concrete shopping list of things that you’re looking for. I find that these two ‘mini-steps’ work in unison together, functioning as a reminder of what you already own (and don’t need multiples of…), allow you to identify in one glance whether a piece would work with your existing wardrobe, and also allow you to pin point just what your wardrobe is missing.

Overall, my general approach to shopping is quality over quantity, so when I do invest in a new item, I want it to be something that trascends trends, and will last the test of time. There’s nothing more satisfying that adding something to your wardrobe that you still love six years later (my Helmut Lang blazer and Proenza Schouler PS11 are proof of that in action!), and sometimes saving up and spending a little more, or waiting for the perfect piece within your budget to roll around, is much more rewarding than an easy pick-me-up.

Do you have any tips for shopping more mindfully?

Wardrobe Rehab

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

Five ways to declutter your wardrobe

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.