Capsule Wardrobe – Part 2

Capsule Wardrobe – Part 2

Simplicity is the keynote of all true elegance.”   –Coco Chanel

Lynnelle here.

Love, Love, Love Chanel but, yes; even I question the simplicity of 6 strands of pearls. However, simplicity is the goal I seek with this closet cleaning project. I wonder if Coco had a capsule wardrobe. hmmmm. No matter.

Who can honestly say your closet is not only neat and organized, but your wardrobe is balanced for your lifestyle? I may have had an organized, well-balanced closet a few, brief moments in my lifetime, but they were fleeting. What’s on sale or a “good buy” was more of a motivator than “I need that” (or not).

Side Note: Barb, the sailor, doesn’t curse in her blog posts. I do. A real contradiction, heh?  Anyway, you’ve been warned.

This sorting and culling my clothes is really emotional. It is causing me all kinds of angst.  Why the hell is it so emotional? Not, sobbing-sad emotional, but I’m sweating and my heart is racing. It is damn stressful. I sat down the other day to think about simplifying my life; downsizing my “stuff”, not just clothes, and why it is such a ‘thing’ for me. Three 3 reasons surfaced.

The ‘Thing’ is a thing.

1)  I paid a lot for the thing and I’ll not have the money to purchase another thing like it in the future should I change my mind.

2)  In another era of my life I had one of these things, got rid of the thing because of a previous relationship or situation that resulted from a previous relationship – was able to rebuild and repurchase the same or a similar thing later – and I don’t ever, EVER want to be in that position again… or

3)  The thing is a memory. Every time I see the thing I have a good memory. The memory may go away if the thing goes away.

Am I freakin’ crazy?

Even clothes have memories, and yes, I’ve sold my purses and jackets and shoes to make money to cover a debt. Not my debt, mind you. This  project today is NOT a financial project, but a lifestyle project. My Monkey brain and Lizard brain need to calm down and let my Sage brain run the show on this one. So, without further ado, Part 2.  (To review part 1)

Capsule Wardrobe – Pants

(blue jeans not included)

Before – 26After – 18

9 Office-Office Casual

7 Casual: 2-Black Capri leggings, 1-Navy Capri legging and 1 tacky white, cotton Capri pant but I keep it because it is lay-around comfortable; 1 elastic-waist, sheer, beach-y pants and 2 Black jeans

2 Black Calf-length split-skirts (we would have called them Midi-Culottes back in the day)

Capsule Wardrobe – Sweaters

First of all, as I’m writing this on 1 November in Austin, Texas it is 74 degrees and the forecasted high temp is 86.  Who seriously need ONE sweater in Austin, Texas?  But, it does get to be sweater weather for a couple of hours here and there, so…

Before – 19

After – 11

4 Blk Wool/Cashmere (2 Turtlenecks, 1 Cowl neck, 1 Boat neck)

1 Blk Casual Cotton

2 Gray Wool

1 Ivory Wool, mid-thigh length for leggings

1 Blk, Red Cotton-blend, casual patterned

2 long Cashmere cardigans

Clearly living in Austin I DO NOT 9 wool sweaters. But I’m not ready to let them go yet. Besides, I will need a few of them for the Divas Paris trip next year.

Capsule Wardrobe – Summary (to-date)

Tops:   Before – 76   After – 36   (down 53%)

Pants:  Before – 26   After – 18  (down 31%)

Sweaters:  Before – 19   After – 11  (down 42%) 

Total Items: Before – 121   After – 65  (down 46%).  


1.  I will need a 2nd culling session for everything.

2.  I don’t need as many items as I’ve kept. Let the emotion die down and try again.

3.  I’ll likely not get down to 30 items.  Or, 40. But, I’ll get as close as HUMANLY possible.

Some of the things I kept aren’t my favorites, but they fit. Some of the things I moved to the “no” pile ARE my favorites, but they don’t fit. I know, I know, I know “after I lose 10 pounds” wasn’t part of the final criteria – but… it is now. Except, I’ve changed the 10 pounds to “ if it fits well” and be honest with myself.

Hey, Hey!  Yes, I will.

The 2nd culling session is scheduled for 1 Dec.

Capsule Wardrobe – Part 3 coming next week.  Jackets and Outerwear.  If you need me in the meantime, I’ll be at the bar.

Barb here.

Lynnelle asked me if I were really going to participate in this process. I’m certainly starting with fewer things, but I do have to pare down. Mostly though, I’m participating so that I can actually develop a capsule wardrobe that will allow me to feel attractive and comfortable in our unusual lifestyle.

First, My Capsule Wardrobe Caveats:

  • From the start of this blog we agreed (as we do in life) to celebrate our differences and not ridicule each other. (Still, I can’t wait until she gets to the shoes! I’m only human.)
  • Yes, I swear too much IRL and barely none on the blog or social media. I’ve been known to write the phrase “H.E. Double Hockey Sticks” a number of times. I’m sort of trying to stop the swearing in public but not doing well so far.
  • Even when I lived in a house with a good closet, I never had the number of clothes Lynnelle has. The reasons probably include lifestyle, finances, lack of interest, and an inability to know when something was truly flattering. I’d say the last one carries more weight than the others. I stink at shopping. Everything else is just an excuse.

Capsule Wardrobe—My (Far Fewer) Pants

As for me and pants. I have the following: flower child linen striped drawstring, one cream colored dress pant one very lightweight wool grey/black dress pant, one pair of “Not Your Mother’s” black jeans from 2006, and one khaki cropped pant. (Plus two pairs of sweatpants. Workout clothes don’t count here, and yes, we need sweatpants in Northeast Florida for about 60 days a year.) I will get rid of the cream dress pant as I don’t like them much (they are a tad too short). Everything else is staying—for now. Also note, most of these won’t work when we set sail again.

So, let’s see. I started with 5 and will get rid of 1 pair —a 20% reduction

Lynnelle started with 26 and has 8 in the “no” pile—a potential reduction of 30.7%.

Still, those 18 pairs of pants equal more than half of a 30 unit capsule wardrobe.

Hey! I didn’t make the rules here!


(Capsule Wardrobe – Part 1)

(Capsule Wardrobe – Part 3)​

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