My Basic Minimum Wardrobe Goals

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I have too many clothes in my closet. I have TWO closets full of clothes. But what does a full wardrobe really require? I need to wrap my head around the basic things I really need to have, things that can be swapped out with each other so that it doesn’t look like I’m always wearing the same outfit. My minimum wardrobe does need to have some color, personally, because I do want to feel beautiful in what I’m wearing!

I don’t think it will be that difficult to put together a beautiful wardrobe that is minimalistic, basic, and still makes me feel feminine. Do you? Let’s try it….

minimalist wardrobe

Minimum Wardrobe

So, for a basic wardrobe I will need clothing to accommodate all of the following activities:

  • going to church (we’re pretty laid back, but nice things and Christian themed)
  • business attire (Tupperware parties and vendor shows)
  • every day casual wear, some cool weather and some very HOT weather
  • dirty work wear for gardening or deep cleaning at home
  • specialty clothing like workout clothes, swimwear, etc.
  • undergarments

I only need church clothing twice a week. Wednesday evenings I can usually wear the daily casual wear clothing, and would do so a little more often if it was Christian themed. Business attire I should need usually twice a week, but there’s not really much of a difference between my church clothing taste and my business clothing taste. They are pretty much interchangeable, so I could get away with only three sets.

Every day casual wear I need for, well, every day, 7 days a week. Our church doesn’t meet until 5pm, so I wear casual clothing all day until time for church. The same is true during the week; if I need to do a party or go to church, I’ll just change when it’s time. I need at least 7 sets for this.

Dirty work wear I probably only need once a week, maybe twice. The same is true for the specialty clothing. I have a workout class that I’m going to start attending and it’s twice a week, but it’s reasonable to wash the same outfit to wear again.

For undergarments, there are a variety of different styles that I use depending on the occasion. I need a good sports bra for working out, a very comfortable one for dirty work, and supportive but comfortable bras for every day wear. I don’t really need a different bra to wear to church or Tupperware parties, but I’ll pay attention to make sure that they can’t be seen through (or out from under) whatever I’m wearing. Socks, slips, hose, and a few other things fit this category as well.

Wardrobe Colors

I really only have to have black, white, and brown or tan. Those should all be interchangeable and easily worn together. But, I need a little more variety in my clothing, and I don’t want my friends to think I’ve joined some strange cult! I want to still look nice, not draw attention to the fact that I’m being careful about how many clothing items I own, and not appear to be advertising my economical status.

I often wear purple, in any shade. Deeper colors are more wearable in the fall, and lighter ones work in the spring. I don’t do pastel at all, though, so it’s more of a lavendar color. I wear a lot of blue as well, in most any shade. I’m a fan of the jewel tones mostly, and will wear almost anything that’s deep like that. I need and want to wear more bright/jewel pink for my business purposes. I call it Tupperware pink!

With the jewel tone theme and a few seasonal colors tossed in here and there for posterity, I’m sure that’s enough to create a small but beautiful wardrobe that I can wear year-round and will still fit all in one closet! So let’s get started, shall we?

Wardrobe Basics

For starters, just as a basic weekly rotation, my casual wear bottoms should include:

  • 4 pairs jeans
  • 4 pairs non-slacks, non-jean pants (black, white, brown, and colored)
  • 2 pairs denim capris
  • 2 black capris
  • 2 brown capris
  • 1 white capri
  • 1 black skirt
  • 1 brown skirt
  • 1 white skirt
  • 2 fun color skirts
  • 2 fun color capris

That’s 9 pairs of capris, 8 pairs of pants, and 5 skirts. That should cover me no matter the weather, in any season, even if I need to wear the same style every day for a week. Because I also tend to wear the bottoms of my outfits at least 2 or 3 times (unless they’re really dirty), even in a long season of the same weather, this rotation should last me 2 weeks if not more.

I don’t wear shorts right now. I feel too fat to be comfortable, and at least a few pairs of my capris actually only go to my knees. I’m not imitating the Duggars by any means, but I don’t feel comfortable with bottoms that rise any higher than an inch or two above my knee when I sit down. I’ve come a long way with my modesty!

Now for the tops:

  • 2 white short sleeved
  • 2 black short sleeved
  • 2 brown short sleeved
  • 3 purple short sleeved
  • 3 blue short sleeved
  • 2 fun colored short sleeved
  • 2 black long sleeved
  • 2 brown long sleeved
  • 3 purple long sleeved
  • 3 blue long sleeved
  • 2 fun colored long sleeved

For each type of weather, that’s 14 shirts. That should get me through 2 weeks, just like the bottoms of the outifts above. These shirts should be nice enough that if I end up not changing before church on Wednesday that I will still feel comfortable wearing them to church. Sometimes our church does activities with other churches on Friday night or Saturday, so I want to feel comfortable even with fellowships besides my own (who really don’t care WHAT we wear to church – really).

Together, these should get me through an entire year. I have clothing for cold weather, and clothing for hot weather, some of my favorite colors, and room for a few fun things that I just love.

downsizing wardrobe
downsizing wardrobe

Business Wardrobe

For my nicer clothing, I want to be able to wear the same thing to church or to a Tupperware party or meeting. There’s no need for these categories to be separate; my church going clothes are as nice as my business clothes, and vice-versa. It’s the same wardrobe! It doesn’t need to be large, but I don’t want to wear the same thing to church every week or wear the same couple of things to every Tupperware function I attend.

  • 3 black slacks
  • 3 brown or tan slacks
  • 1 white slacks
  • 2 black skirts
  • 2 brown or tan skirts
  • 1 white skirt
  • 2 fun colored skirts

That’s 7 pants and 7 skirts, depending on the weather and the venue. That’s plenty to get me through 2 or 3 business and church meetings a week, for a month, and not have to repeat hardly anything. Again, I usually wear bottoms at least 2 or 3 times before they are dirty; so I can wear something to church and then to a party or vice-versa and it will still be clean and no one the wiser!

For tops, I’ll need:

  • 2 long sleeved and black blouses
  • 2 long sleeved brown blouses
  • 2 long sleeved purple blouses
  • 2 long sleeved blue blouses
  • 2 long sleeved Tupperware Pink blouses
  • the same in short sleeves

That’s 10 tops per weather season. That should be enough to wear 2 or 3 of them per week and not need to repeat outfits to church or to a business function in any given month. The following month, I can flip-flop which function I wear what (except the PINK, of course), and by the time I get around to doubling outfits in the following month, no one will remember the outfit from two months ago!

Plus, most of my business functions won’t be with the same people. Parties sometimes overlap during a month or two with guests booking their own parties, but after that it’s a new group again. Trainings are the same people over and over, but at the most they are only once a month and I can rotate through stuff slowly to that particular training.

The Rest

For grunge work, I can usually wear jeans or denim capris and just a t-shirt. I’ll keep 2 to 4 t-shirts for this purpose. I have a bathing suit that fits, and this year I bought a workout outfit that should last me until I get closer to my goal weight.

Socks – I purchased some black and white ankle socks for work not long ago, so those plus the purple and blue ankle socks I like are plenty to get me through a month. Come winter, I’ll probably need a new package of thicker cuff socks; maybe one small package of white and one small package of colored socks.

Shoes I’ll save for a whole other post, but I think that’s all for now! Soon to implement a plan in getting rid of anything that doesn’t fit this outline. Wish me the best!

Am I forgetting anything? Do you think this is too much? What do you think of this plan?