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Making A Capsule Wardrobe

December 24, 2018

On one of my late night Pinterest searches, I came across what is called a capsule wardrobe.

The idea here is to create a wardrobe containing basic pieces that can be mixed and matched together to create outfits that capture your style.

Upon further investigation, I found a subcategory of capsule wardrobes called the French Minimalist Capsule wardrobe. This style of closet is based on finding quality basics with neutral colors and then buying a maximum of five seasonal pieces each season.

In France, it is hard to find flats with a lot of closet space, so French women often wear classic pieces and don’t have a huge selection. However, this is not only ideal for saving space, but for saving time. Studies show that women only wear about 20% of what is in their closet at any given time. By condensing what you own, and having a selection of clothes that can be thrown together and still look chic will also save you time getting dressed in the morning.

Challenge Rules:

Here are the general rules to the French Minimalist Challenge that I will follow when creating my wardrobe:

  1. Underwear and bras do not count
  2. Accessories do not count
  3. You may buy up to 5 seasonal pieces to add to your basics

 Here is a list of basics that I will be using to guide my wardrobe: (basics seem to vary from closet to closet, so these are the ones I think will complement my style best)

SO since I literally travel and move back and forth internationally so often, having a condensed closet with options is seriously important to me. Last time I moved, I paid to take 3 suitcases of clothes with me, and I didn’t even wear most of it.

General Goals:

My goals with creating a French Minimalist Capsule Wardrobe are:

  • Have a closet with pieces I love and would wear anytime
  • Condense what I own, but still feel like I look chic and have options
  • Get rid of clothes that I am hording with no good reason to (this one is going to be particularly hard for me)
  • Have a closet full of clothes that I feel confident in


It is going to be very hard for me to keep to the basics list and stay within the allotted amount of items. I am a serious shopahollic and I love getting new pieces. So restricting myself to these pieces is going to be my main challenge.

My other challenge is going to be in the cleaning stage. I get very attached to my clothing, even if I haven’t worn it in years. So I will need to adopt a cut throat attitude towards my closet. I just need to be reminded that purging, while maybe painful, will help me to reduce my closet and will make moving easier.

My Plan:

I have set a budget to rebuild by wardrobe at 1000 dollars. And I have built a colour palate to guide my wardrobe:

What is your biggest challenge in your closet?

Join 440 other subscribers

The 30 piece french minimalist wardrobe challenge. Join me while I venture on a quest to narrow my wardrobe to a maximum of 30 pieces and still look chic.
Look chic with minimal effort! Create a capsule wardrobe with a few pieces that can be thrown together easily!
  • Reply
    December 27, 2018 at 1:54 pm

    I love this concept but I think it would be hard to pull off! I live in the midwest and the weather is so all over the board!

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:27 pm

      Yes! I live in Denver now so the weather is unpredictable. I have been trying to layer more though and I am finding that to be pretty helpful! Especially since we can have all four seasons within one afternoon here 😂

  • Reply
    December 27, 2018 at 2:25 pm

    This is something I am still learning about and trying to make work.

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:28 pm

      It’s definitely a challenge, especially the purging part!

  • Reply
    Jasmine - LoveLifeLaughMotherhood
    December 28, 2018 at 4:13 am

    i love the concept but havent made the jump to doing this myself

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:28 pm

      It’s something I have wanted to do for a long time, it’s never really been a good time to jump into it until now. Definitely something that requires planning and time

  • Reply
    Jalisa Harris
    December 28, 2018 at 3:56 pm

    One of my goals this year is to create a wardrobe capsule

  • Reply
    Amy @ Orison Orchards
    December 28, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    I love the idea of capsule wardrobes! How easy would that make it to stay organized and efficient?! I do a modified form as we travel quite frequently, but I think I need to work on making it permanent. Thanks for this fantastic guide!

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:31 pm

      Thank you! So far, it’s challenging, but I am only part way through the challenge. It has (thus far) made my life way more efficient

  • Reply
    December 28, 2018 at 9:07 pm

    The creation of a wardrobe capsule is a good idea and I like the suggestions for the capsule However, I recognize that one has to first clear out one’s closet. That is where the challenge lies.

  • Reply
    December 29, 2018 at 8:00 pm

    Oh man, this is the dream. haha – I have TOO many clothes! But getting rid of clothes is a struggle for me, what if I want to wear it again! Having basic pieces of mix and match would be ideal but I’m honestly not sure where to even begin. I always have an idea in my head of the clothes I want but can never find them! Either way, good luck with your goals – can’t wait to see your finished wardrobe!

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:33 pm

      Thank you! And I did a ton of research on Pinterest to try and get an idea of where to start with basics. I am
      Still struggling to narrow down the pieces in my wardrobe. So far though, it’s been kind of fun to rediscover my style

  • Reply
    December 30, 2018 at 3:56 pm

    I keep saying I’m going to do this and haven’t yet. I’m tired of going I to my closet saying I don’t have anything to wear.

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 8, 2019 at 5:34 pm

      It’s actually so surprising that I feel like I have more options for outfits with less pieces. I definitely recommend starting to at least do a closet purge, you’ll notice a huge difference!

  • Reply
    Nicole Kauffman
    January 1, 2019 at 6:24 pm

    Never heard of this, but it is a great idea!!

  • Reply
    January 10, 2019 at 3:47 pm

    I’ve been on a weight loss journey, but as soon as I reach my goal I’m going to build a capsule wardrobe. Can’t wait!!

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 10, 2019 at 4:31 pm

      What a good goal to strive for! Good luck with your weight loss journey!

  • Reply
    January 10, 2019 at 9:24 pm

    I have used the capsule wardrobe a couple of times and really enjoyed how freeing it was. Then, I gain weight and feel miserable in my clothes and blow it off. I’m going to try to get back to it. This is a great way to start.

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 15, 2019 at 3:42 pm

      my weight fluctuates a lot, so I totally get that, I have been focusing on pieces that look good on me and accentuate my curves. This has helped when I have lost weight and gained weight because either way I feel BOSS in these clothes. I wish you luck on your capsule wardrobe <3

  • Reply
    Lauren Becker
    January 10, 2019 at 11:55 pm

    I’ve heard of capsule wardrobes but not the French minimalist style. I like that you have a color wheel of sorts for your pieces.


    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 15, 2019 at 3:43 pm

      Thank you! and the French minimalist style is all about being chic without a lot of options, so I am really trying to channel that idea! It has been challenging narrowing down my closet though.

  • Reply
    Sara Ross
    January 11, 2019 at 1:59 am

    I love this concept! I am not sure how well I would do at putting it into practice. I don’t have a ton of clothes but I do have more than what is mentioned in this capsule wardrobe. However, I tend to wear the same things over and over again while other pieces rarely get warn. So it might be feasible. Now you got me planning on how I can create my own capsule wardrobe.

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 15, 2019 at 3:44 pm

      I am glad! I am a clothes addict, and I think this is one way to help me control that a bit. If I can narrow it down, you certainly could! It always surprises me how much of my clothes I don’t actually wear, even when I don’t have a ton of options.

  • Reply
    Jasmine - LoveLifeLaughMotherhood
    January 12, 2019 at 12:57 am

    I love the idea of capsule wardrobes, but I think I like clothes too much

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      January 15, 2019 at 3:47 pm

      Same! I literally converted one of my bedroom walls into a closet. My entire wall was FULL of clothing! When I purged, I realized I only wear about one section. It was crazy. While this cutting down on my wardrobe thing is freeing, it is definitely challenging for me not to go and buy things outside this idea.

  • Reply
    January 12, 2019 at 4:42 pm

    I’m really hoping to embrace this in the new year! Thank you for the clear guidelines.

  • Reply
    April 3, 2019 at 4:29 am

    Really cool, can’t wait to see the update photo!

  • Reply
    May 18, 2019 at 2:49 pm

    Nice checklist there! I’m going to work on creating a capsule wardrobe too! My biggest challenge is sourcing clothes made of natural fiber with a small budget.
    Quick question, what would you do with a dress you love and wear often but is getting worn out? 🙂

    • Reply
      Blue DeBell
      June 6, 2019 at 3:07 pm

      Thank you! If I have an article of clothing I want to preserve, I look at what the issue is and normally do some research on how to spruce it up. For instance, I have a sweater dress I LOVE but sometimes it gets the little fabric pills on it, so I have a wee contraption that depills it, which helps it look newer. I would recommend going on pintrest to see if they have any ideas more specific to the wear and tear 🙂

      • Julie
        June 6, 2019 at 5:53 pm

        I see! I didn’t know I can get ideas from Pinterest. I have a couple of wool tops that get pills on them too. I should find out how to depill then too. 🙂 thanks for replying!

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