The Minimalist Wardrobe


The minimalist wardrobe

That image above is not my actual wardrobe, as I don’t have a bedroom or a clothing rack to hang items – nor do I keep a black-and-white wardrobe, although I have been thinking, ever since I went blonde, how it may be fun to be someone that only wears white (not black, despite its popularity). However, my wardrobe is similar in its numbers. It is a minimalist wardrobe.

I keep:

  • 7 dresses
  • a couple pairs of leggings
  • socks and a panties
  • an enviable 10+ pairs of shoes, mostly because I’ve recently stocked up on 4 pairs of lightly, or never worn Nike Air sneakers that I found for a steal at Buffalo Exchange.
  • two pairs black jeans
  • 2 gray hoodies
  • a couple jackets

Much of this paring down came from when I made the decision to live in a van for a vegan outreach tour. I could only take what I could fit in a couple of school bags.  The rest of my clothing went into storage in the basement of my Hoboken condo, and I’ve since learned that it is all clothing that I no longer need. It’s just a matter of finding the time to go to my storage unit, dig out this clothing, and either sell or donate it, as it’s no longer a part of my life.

However, before all of this came about, I had the ambitions of most normal folk…

The Dream: Walk-in Closet

The wardrobe many women dream of.

The wardrobe many women dream of. Just look at all of that neat storage, made possible by volume of options of places to store items

My Life Before I Became a Minimalist

My old bedroom with its floor to ceiling cabinets

My old bedroom with its floor to ceiling cabinets

A long time ago, when I lived in my condo in Hoboken, I had floor to ceiling built in closets that filled a full wall of my bedroom. There were about 25 dresses, 10 skirts, 30 sweaters/sweatshirts/jackets, 35 t-shirts and tank tops, and so many shoes that they filled the shoe rack by the door and piled onto one of the closet shelves.

It was bananas to hold on to so much clothing that I rarely wore. Often I would force myself to wear clothing I didn’t like much, in order to justify its space in my closet.

Don't even get me started with how much storage... and stuff.. I had in my kitchen

Don’t even get me started with how much storage… and stuff.. I had in my kitchen

Why did I own so much clothing?

I’m sure many of you attribute your owning of so many items to the fact that you don’t want to get rid of something that you either spent a decent dollar on, or that you imagine will be reworn in some hypothetical, future situation. I surely did that with the two navy blazers that I owned, but didn’t find snuggly, or with the beige, shapeless shift dress that I had not worn in 4 years because I now hated how undefined it looked on my body.

The Evolution of One’s Fashion Sense Contributes to a Superfluous Wardrobe

Simply a lot of items were those that had been replaced with better items as my fashion taste became more refined and my budget allowed for items, first from affordable, but they H&M, and then Zara and Urban Outfitters, and then

My clothing fits into a few of these gray cubes.

My clothing fits into a few of these gray cubes.

Now – My Clothing Fits into a Couple Tight Little Cubes 

Living with whatever I can fit on me as I bike between petsits, without a home to keep my items, I have to live minimally. It’s rare now, after the initial stock up of office appropriate attire when I returned from my West Coast trip, that I look to shop for clothing. At that time I spent a whopping $300 on a M-F set of outfits and shoes that I could wear to an office, or casually, if I landed such a job – although I’m proud to say were all secondhand. I know this is about what some of my clients spend on a jacket or shoes, but to me, I needed to justify the spending with the commitment to wear these items regularly, as there is very limited space to store my clothing at my husband’s office, when they are not with me at petsits.

However, all this early heat – and just two tank tops and two sports bras to run in, had me thinking that it was time to pick up one more of each.

Looking to Create Your Own Minimalist Wardrobe?

Ladies, consider following this infographic from Lifehacker

Gentleman, consider following this infographic from Lifestyle by PS

The Future of Clothing

If we pay attention to the minimalist, practical uniforms of the future that are displayed in space-age movies, such as Alien: Covenant (which I enjoyed watching last night), we can see that minimalism is the way it will one day be.

The future of clothing, as told by Ridley Scott

The future of clothing, as told by Ridley Scott

As resources become scarce on Earth, as we learn to be more utilitarian, we will adhere to items that are slick, simple, and less individual.  It will be more practical to generate just one or a few clothing items that the population at large wears.

While we may be less different in appearance, maybe this will unite us all in a way that a diversity of clothing sets us all apart.