Category: Year of Intention

How I Came Up With My Style Uniform {Adventures in Closet Cleaning}

Minimalism is one of those concepts that seems has a million different definitions. To me – minimalism is all about reducing the desire to want more and embracing the idea of being happy with less. While I do not consider myself a minimalist – Clay and I have definitely been dipping my toes into the simplicity pool over the past few years and we’re enjoying the temperature of the water. For example, we’ve learned that we prefer a dwelling no bigger than 2000 square feet. We are now much more appreciative of clear spaces. We now value experiences over tangible items. And we’re donating a lot more (thank you Marie Kondo) than we’re bringing back into our home.

An area of my life that just doesn’t really bring me much joy is my closet. Hi! My name is Karen and I am just meh about a lot of my wardrobe. There was a time when I filled an entire walk-in closet with clothes, shoes, and purses but over the past few years, I’ve managed to reduce my collection to half a closet and five drawers. And you know what? It is still too much because I don’t wear about 3/4 of what I own on a regular basis.

I’ve been intrigued with idea of a ‘uniform’ for a little while now. While I don’t see myself wearing the same exact outfit everyday (although it’d be cool to try!), I do love the concept of sticking to what makes me feel the best while being comfortable and looking great. I’m not one who enjoys shopping for clothes on a regular basis and I am much more inclined to jump on accessory trends rather than purchase the must-have wardrobe piece each season. So having a few staples that I rotate between very much appeals to me.

In order to figure out what I want my ‘uniform’ to look like, I first had to go through every single item in my closet and figure out what I really liked to wear and what was just collecting dust. I took everything out of my closet and put on almost everything. I only placed it back into my closet if I loved the way it made me feel. If I only liked the article of clothing on me, I set it aside in a separate pile. And of course, if I wasn’t feeling the piece at all, I put in another pile to donate.

I maximized Clay being TDY and accomplished this task last night after putting the kids to bed. I watched Hulu, sipped on sparkling water with fresh-squeezed lime, and had my own little fashion show in front of our 80s-era closet door mirrors.


womp womp

I rotate between four pairs pants on a regular basis – dark wash skinny jeans, light wash skinny jeans, black skinny jeans, and black leggings. I am happy with my pants game – although I could use a nice pair of black dress pants. The top half of my body? Not so much. I have a closet full of fall/winter tops that I don’t love and none of the above tops made the cut for what I am looking for in a daily uniform – a couple of them were placed in the ‘like’ pile though.

The donate pile.

The ‘like’ pile. I hung these up in the guest room closet. I’m not quite ready to part with these pieces but if I find myself not incorporating them into my regular everyday wardrobe over the next couple of months, I will gladly pass them along.

Okay – so by trying on every single piece of clothing in my closet, I was able to quickly determine the pieces that I love and make me feel the most like me. I learned that I much prefer a solid neutral top instead of a pattern. Honestly – there is nothing better than a white shirt in my current world. I love layering so it was no surprise that I much I prefer wearing two thinner pieces instead of one thicker top.

So if I had to choose a daily uniform for this time of year, I think it’d be skinny pants, a thin soft top (tank/short sleeves/long sleeves), and an open sweater/indoor jacket. I like more simple clothes and to experiment with bolder jewelry. Neutrals are my jam and and I don’t care if this makes me boring. I like what I like and I’m so happy that my slightly emptier closet now reflects my daily uniform instead of being full of pieces that I only wear out of obligation.

My wardrobe may not be the envy of fashionistas and the size of my closet may be appalling to some but I quite like it. My goal is to not buy any more clothes (with the exception of some more white shirts and a pair of black dress pants) for quite some time because I have more than enough. Wearing the same type of outfit over and over again may not be everyone’s cup of tea but I’m pretty sure it is going to be mine. Hi! My name is Karen and I love having a style uniform.

Have any of you experimented with a style uniform or a capsule wardrobe? Do you enjoy clothes shopping or do you find the entire process exhausting and sort of a self-esteem killer?

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Below are some blogs and articles that helped me conceptualize how I want to dress and change my outlook toward my wardrobe: