I’d love to say that I had this big epiphany while shopping at the mall. Or that I experienced a major breakdown while getting dressed. I mean that’s what makes for a good movie or compelling book, right? But to be honest, it was nothing like that.
I love clothes, probably more than the average girl. No, definitely more than the average girl. Shopping was never a hassle for me and as a former fashion blogger it was actually something I rather enjoyed.
About a month ago, I began working as the CMO at one of the leading online personal style sites for men. I noticed something right away. My co-workers were on a mission to help others view clothes in a whole new light and to start a real conversation around the over consumption currently driving the fast fashion industry. Similar to how the McDonald’s and Burger King’s of the world are great at providing fast food but terrible at making it from quality ingredients. The H&M’s and Forever 21’s of the world are great a making fast, cheap fashion but also fall short in making quality clothes or upholding ethical standards for the people who create them. There was one simple yet practical suggestion that was being thrown around the office. The idea that you could… choose to buy less. Hearing this caused a bit of inner panic… What do you mean buy less? I like to shop. Isn’t this ‘merica?
See the thing is, I had no idea where my clothes were coming from. Nor had I ever really thought about the people who made them. It never once occurred to me as to why they were so darn cheap. Yet, the more I thought about these questions, the more uneasy I became… and the less I could ignore the problem.
I knew that I was ready to make a change, but if I didn’t have a way to keep myself from buying less I would easily slip back into the very same habits I always had. If I learned anything from trying every trendy diet ever, it was just that. To make this stick it wasn’t good enough to just put my closet on a diet. Instead, it would be about changing my lifestyle.
So the first thing on my to do list was to address my own shopping habits. So like any self-respecting marketer, I cleared my calendar Saturday evening to try out our new product Capsules, and by clear I mean it was wide open.
To state the obvious, creating a capsule wardrobe was not a new idea, but for me it was the one solution that I had never fully embraced until now. After all, I had accumulated so much and still found myself on most mornings staring endlessly into my closet muttering the same 5 words, “I have nothing to wear.”
Plus, everyone else in the office seemed to have this Buddha-esque peace about their wardrobe, something I seriously wanted in on. Who doesn’t want to feel like a Buddha on a regular basis, give or take a few pounds?
To be honest, I was skeptical. Could changing my closet make me feel any different? I had no idea where to start so using the Capsules tool was a simple way for me to stay on track. Everything was in one easy accessible place where I could watch videos and follow along step by step. It wasn’t until I completed my first capsule that I finally realized the reason why I felt like I had “nothing to wear.”
Having less clothing didn't limit my outfit possibilities but actually expanded them - because I now love each item I own. And with Outfits by Cladwell - an iOS app that recommends daily outfit suggestions based on what you own, what you wear, and what the weather is like - I can see all the possibilities my capsule wardrobe has! And it's so freeing.
We are all encouraged on a regular basis to buy this, buy that, buy this for that cheap price. Whether we consciously know it or not, this increasingly fast sales cycle has an impact us. It creates an element of discontent around what we have in our lives today. The idea of regaining control of when, why, and how I shopped was exciting. Knowing that whatever I picked out of my closet I would love to wear was freeing.