At the end of September, prior to attending Courtney Carver’s “Tiny Wardrobe Tour,” I decided to put together a hypothetical Project 333 summer capsule. I wrote a blog post about this and concluded that it would be useful to try out that capsule during October, as warm weather where I live usually continues until at least early November and sometimes longer (our cool weather started just a week ago!).
I reasoned that if nothing else, I’d learn some useful things about myself and my wardrobe through doing a short version of Project 333 (even if not the full three months that it’s intended to be). In today’s post, I share my thoughts on that experience, as well as about how I’m revisiting the “Love it, Wear it” Challenge (LIWI) that I did during the full year of 2015.
Have you ever done a capsule wardrobe challenge?
Last night, my husband and I attended Courtney Carver’s “Tiny Wardrobe Tour.” It was wonderful to finally meet Courtney (after having known her online for over four years) and to hear her speak and answer questions about fashion challenge Project 333. Those who have been following my journey since the beginning may remember that Courtney challenged me to do Project 333 back in 2013. Despite my fear and trepidation, I accepted her dare, blogged weekly about my experiences (beginning here, but you can read all of my Project 333 posts HERE), and reaped many benefits from taking on dressing with less for three months (I later took on the challenge a second time).
It was wonderful to finally meet Courtney Carver, the creator of Project 333.
I will share some thoughts about and follow-on actions from Courtney’s talk in a future post, but today I want to focus on what I did prior to attending the presentation. Anticipating what she would be talking about – “the hows and whys of starting Project 333 to bring more simplicity, love, and joy into your life,” I got to thinking about my experiences with the challenge back in 2013 and 2014 and how easy or difficult it might be for me to dress with just 33 items today. On a whim, I decided to draft a hypothetical Project 333 list for the summer season that will be drawing to a close soon (where I live, we experience hot weather through at least October). In today’s post, I highlight which items I selected and some insights I gained through doing the exercise.
The following is a guest post from Sybil, a longtime reader of this blog. After retiring at 60, Sybil transitioned to a self-employed consulting role, no longer going into an office every day. That change opened her up to addressing her problem of over-shopping and she embarked on a Project 333 challenge – and she learned a lot!
If you would like to be profiled in an upcoming installment of the “Stories of Recovery” series (you can be anonymous if desired), please connect with me to share your thoughts.
Early in 2016, I decided to challenge myself with a modified Project 333 exercise – selecting 33 items of clothing and wearing only those pieces (accessories not included in count) for three months. Those who know me well laughed at my plan. I’m not exactly known for setting limits on myself. But, remarkably, not only did I succeed, I reached a turning point in managing my wardrobe. And, most surprising, the emotional payoff was significant.
This was Sybil’s Project 333 capsule wardrobe earlier this year.
Capsule wardrobes have been a big topic of discussion on many blogs recently. In addition, the fall season of minimalist fashion challenge Project 333 kicks off on October 1st. So I thought this might be a good time to share some useful links on this timely and popular subject.
Have you ever dressed with a capsule wardrobe? This was my first one.
If you are contemplating taking on a capsule wardrobe challenge or if you already dress in capsules and want to improve your process, you might find the articles below interesting and useful. Even if you aren’t ready to do Project 333 or a similar challenge – or have no desire to do so, you’ll likely still receive benefit from reading a few of these blog posts. There are some great nuggets of wisdom therein on dressing with less and making the most of our wardrobes.
Way back in the fall of 2013, I wrote a post about lessons from closet favorites, using my summer wardrobe from that year as an example. In that post, I shared photos of my favorite items from that season and looked for common threads among them that could inform my future shopping. Today I’d like to do the same with my cool weather wardrobe (the cool weather season spans from December through June where I live – we don’t really get true winters here).
Do you know what your closet favorites have in common?
For most people in the northern hemisphere, summer has officially begun even if there are a few days left of spring on the calendar. This is a good time to take stock of last season’s wardrobe and how it did or didn’t meet our needs. If you’re reading this from Down Under or similar parts of the world, you may want to take a look instead at your fall (autumn) clothing for the purposes of this exercise, since that season is coming to a close for you.
The following is a guest post from Chau Le, a globetrotter (14+ countries) and avid Krav Maga addict (she’s training to become an instructor). Chau lived abroad in Taiwan and Spain during her college years, picking up languages and a love for exotic, foreign foods. She relocated to sunny California after graduating from Portland State University and is currently pursuing a career in Communications and PR. She loves cookies and considers her move to go to graduate school in Belgium (and quitting after 10 days) to be one of the hardest and best decisions of her life.
Chau Le enjoying her European journey.
We’ve entered a new year, and can put Black Friday, Christmas sales, and crowded January returning sessions behind us. So I thought it would be a good time to write about how Project 333 instilled a zen-like calmness in me that helped prevent me from rushing to Macy’s at 5 a.m., possibly saving me from actual bodily harm from fighting the crazed masses trying to get the cheapest deals at the door.
I first took on minimalist fashion challenge Project 333 in April 2013. It took me literally days to select my capsule wardrobe and I was riddled with intense anxiety as to whether I could actually dress with only 33 items for three whole months. I even modified the rules of the challenge to make it easier for me, only counting clothing pieces and allowing myself carte blanche to wear as many shoes and accessories as I desired. That helped somewhat, but I still made a number of swaps along the way and felt both emotionally and sartorially challenged by the process of dressing with less.
Aiming for simplicity, I first took on Project 333 in April 2013.
While Project 333 wasn’t even close to being easy for me, it did force me to grow. I learned a great deal about myself and my wardrobe through the process, including the valuable lesson that I don’t need nearly as many clothes as I always believed were necessary. I managed to pare down my wardrobe by close to 100 pieces during my first stint of Project 333 and I liked far more of my outfits than in the months leading up to the challenge. Continue reading