You know me, I love a challenge, and when that challenge involves a styling a capsule wardrobe, i’m even more excited!
Have you heard about this 10×10 DAY CHALLENGE on instagram? It’s where you:
> select a 10 piece capsule
> create 10 outfits
> post it to your grid
Thousands of people around the world are trying it so you can get some real life outfit inspiration, and to me that’s the very best kind – EVERYDAY OUTFIT INSPIRATION.
Mine is an everyday summer capsule wardrobe for Australian weather (although this sporadic Sydney rain has been throwing a spanner in the works!)
If you need some more casual summer outfit inspiration then click on my pinterest board.
So, I took to my closet with my little helper (my 5 year old daughter)
and put my wardrobe stylist skills to the test!
Here’s some of my 10 outfits (well, 11 actually) complete with style hacks to offer simple fashion tips when building your looks, as well as my final 11 outfits I created. And now i’m FINALLY on insta-stories, you can get loads more behind-the-scenes video action!!
13 Things I Learnt From My 10×10
I can honestly say I’ve thoroughly enjoyed planning my outfits for a 10 day period and here’s why:
1. Great to have a choice every morning, but a limited choice
2. Reduces decision making, feeling overwhelmed or stressed
3. Saves time
4. Encourages me to create new outfit combinations I might not have thought of
5. Encourages more ways to style a garment ie. knotting my t-shirt rather than tucking it in
6. Forces me to try accessorising & layering to add outfit interest
7. Makes me accountable for the versatility & comfort of my purchases as these are the attributes of frequently worn product
8. Makes me value my second hand pieces even more because they’re more unusual and it sparks joy when putting them on
9. Surprised that such an inexpensive capsule created 10 (actually 11) outfits, therefore I value them more
10. As a professional wardrobe consultant, I know I don’t need rails and rails of clothes, yet this process still made re-evaluate the quantity & quality of what I have in my closet
11. Helps define your personal style – more on that below
12. I’m actually excited about wearing some other items from my wardrobe now I’ve given them a ‘rest’ and not looked at them for 10 days.
Do Your Clothes Need A Rest?
Resting your clothes relates back to my previous blog where I was chatting about how to organize your wardrobe. Often there are pieces we can remove immediately from our closet to ‘rest’ but then there’s others, those that you wear occasionally and think you should keep in your wardrobe but don’t bring you joy so you’re not sure why to keep them?
That’s what this 10×10 challenge forces you to do, to look at the rest of your closet and ask
‘do I like you enough to be part of my next 10×10 challenge?’
If the answer is ‘no’ then maybe you’ve identified these other items you need ‘rest’ and pack away for a few months?
This is exactly the process I workshop with clients. I create a capsule of their favorite pieces, generally around 25/30 pieces, show them how to wear them in loads of different ways, breath new life in to them and then ask my client how they then feel about their less favored pieces.
This is generally the response I get:
Thank you so much for all your tips and follow up resources – they are truly wonderful! I even did a further wardrobe edit after you left – I noticed there were still a number of items I was holding onto that just weren’t right (style/colour etc.)
Zoe McLaughlin, 24
Clients are happier to let go of pieces once they’ve been shown that they have enough choice, versatility and fun from their 30 piece capsule I’ve created!
So let’s discuss personality styles because, for a lot of clients, it’s an area they want to focus on during our session.
For this 10×10 challenge, you have to select just 10 key pieces from your belongings, but by further selecting what pieces to wear most often during those 10 days, you really get to understand your unique personal style, ie, do you:
> do you gravitate towards ‘basics’ or trend led pieces
> do you embrace colour or neutrals
> do you feel most comfortable when covering or accentuating a particular body part?
Be honest with yourself, learn what you naturally gravitate towards and let that guide you when making future purchases.
It’s easy to dress the version of us we imagine in a parallel life – a ‘celebrity version’ if you like – one that could wear higher heels, swan about on a yacht dressed in colourful silk resort wear, dress head-to-toe in white all day everyday….or is that just me..?
This links back to the reason I touched on earlier about why this 10x10challenge is so useful, because when you search the hashtag is offers REAL OUTFIT IDEAS! Not the ‘celebrity version’ like a lot of what’s on the gram.
What Shocked Me Most
So I said I’d learnt 13 lessons, yet I haven’t shared number 13 with you. You know the best part of this process that was an unexpected bi-product? The fact that it’s made my daughter think about the number of shoes she has and the number of times she wears them as well as engaging her in conversations about excess and sustainability.
Usually her shoes are half hidden at the bottom of her wardrobe and it’s only when getting them all out lined up next to each other, that we can fully appreciate how many there are!
Thinking more about the amount of clothes we have versus the amount we actually wear is quite shocking. This process proves you don’t need many items to create exciting outfits and that we can push the combinations we co-ordinate a lot more when we have to. It forces you to give yourself a StyleSense WARDROBE MAKEOVER!
I’m a mindful stylist who supports the slow fashion movement in trying to reduce mindless consumerism which my generation are particularly guilty of, so reeducating the next generation is what it’s all about.
We need our purchases to be more considered, think about how we will wear it, have we already got similar in our wardrobe and to encourage people to ‘shop in their own wardrobe’ before heading out to the shops as there’s always something we’ve forgotten about hiding at the back to rediscover!!
Challenge Your Fashion Style
After work-shopping with clients, I LOVE to challenge some of them by requesting they:
- buy nothing new for 1 year
- buy no floral prints or black clothes for 1 year
- wear a certain skirt or jacket fortnightly for 3 months
SO MY CHALLENGE TO YOU IS TO TRY THIS 10×10 CHALLENGE
What’s the worst than could happen if you plan your outfits, you only create 9 outfits? You need to swap a piece? Who cares? It’s not just about the goal but the process and how that changes your habits and outlook.
Wardrobe Planner Advice
So, I can’t let you go without offering some fashion tips before joining the 10×10 fashion movement in curating a capsule closet:
> STICK TO A COLOUR PALETTE – this doesn’t mean it has to be just black, white & grey but more that it needs a simple colour palette ie. navy blue, white, bright blue & orange. All these shades work together as well as in 2’s and 3’s
> RATIO OF TOPS TO BOTTOMS – you need more tops than bottoms, considering we generally launder tops more frequently
> CONSIDER VERSATILITY – this doesn’t mean items have to be boring, but just consider how easily they will outfit with other pieces in terms of colour, shape & pattern, particularly because the 10×10 challenge capsule closet is about mixing separates, not dresses
> ACCESSORIZE SMARTLY – choose a versatile shoe & bag as there’s really only room for 1 each of these and this might highlight an a gap in your wardrobe …all part of the learning curve!
> CHECK THE WEATHER REPORT – first and foremost our clothes must protect us! Therefore, my last point is to make sure you pick climate appropriate pieces!!
Learn more about WARDROBE PLANNING here
So here’s my #summer10x10 capsule. Jump across to my instagram for a closer look and I look forward to seeing your capsule soon!