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4 Capsule Wardrobe Strategies To Make Styling Simple For Home Or Travel

Kuel Life Featured Images December 2022

Signature Styling Thought Leader: Debra Schwartz

Are you home for the Holidays?

Traveling to a vacation spot, or to family far away? Working with a capsule wardrobe of interchangeable pieces will give you the flexibility to go from couch-casual to cocktail-chic. It’ll reduce your what-to-wear stress and increase your “I look fabulous, let’s go mingle” factor by creating a group of interchangeable choices that play well with each other in outfits.

Less Is More:

Think: Less is more. When you have fewer pieces, you will get more creative. Too many choices lead to sensory overload. That’s why we open an overflowing closet and claim we have nothing to wear! And that leads to reaching for the outfit “formulas” that are tired even if they are tried and true.

Remember: What you see in the store, on a website, in a catalog are merely suggestions for styling a look. Think of them as starting points to style.

Here, in my video, I deconstruct a brocade suit at Banana Republic (it was featured all over as a set) and show you how you can create a capsule wardrobe from a suit, or two matching pieces.

Capsule Wardrobe Strategy #1: SEPARATE THE SUIT:

The sum of the parts is greater than the whole (outfit).

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE a great suit with an excellent fit. It is an easy solution for a solid confident look when your creativity isn’t soaring. A black pants suit featuring a single-breasted jacket is versatile and can be so chic.

Changing up your accessories will take it from corporate to (relatively) casual. Good, but, you’ll get greater wardrobe mileage with much more creative looks when you deconstruct a suit into separates. The jacket and pants should be considered as the base pieces by themselves. Create the outfit around ONE of them, not both together.

Capsule Wardrobe Strategy #2: CHOOSE YOUR COLORS:

Capsule wardrobes call for a limited color palette.

This is simple. Start with neutrals, like black, beige, navy, white for the main pieces like pants, jeans, skirts, jackets, coats. Add in the pop of one or two brights or accent colors that make you smile! Bring these in as accessories and tops.

And to simplify even further, a monochromatic look is always a chic go-to formula.

Capsule Wardrobe Strategy #3: EMBRACE THE HIGH/LOW LOOK:

Expand your outfit possibilities but mixing designer with discount.

French women have done this for decades, but Jenna Lyons, former creative director of JCrew, cemented this lasting trend. Mixing a more expensive, finer piece with an everyday, low-key one. For example, the designer jacket mixed with the Target tee.

Mixing luxe fabrics and accessories with everyday denim and tees gives us the best of both worlds: the ZING of the bling with the comfort of cotton…or other things easy/cozy. AND you are guaranteed to have looks that are uniquely your own. And throw the rules out—anything goes!

The added bonus of this trend is its super-smart (wear less, more frequently) and super-easy when you are creating a capsule (read: reduced pieces) wardrobe. I swear by this way of packing for travel. Follow this way of dressing, along with my favorite compression packing cubes (contact me for details!), and you’ll never check luggage again!

Capsule Wardrobe Strategy #4: PLAN FROM THE GROUND UP:

Think of your footwear needs for the day (or trip).

Shoes can make or break an outfit. And so many women I know like to build an outfit around their shoes. Fine, if you take into consideration THE WEATHER (gear up for it, rain, snow, salt will wreck your favorite boots in no time).

Your ACTIVITY LEVEL (Will you be walking around or sitting at a desk? Some shoes, what I call “restaurant shoes” are good for in and out of the car, and that’s pretty much it!), and your WEAR-TIME (How long will you be wearing the pair? As the day goes on, our feet expand, so plan ahead).

And, again, for packing purposes, save the wear-with-one-outfit pair for home. Capsule-ing means limiting choices for maximum wearability. And, less stress getting dressed!

Reach out to me at https://calendly.com/crush_style/stylediscovery to book a gratis-style discovery call!

Wishing you and your family a holiday filled with HEALTH, LOVE, LAUGHTER and STYLE!

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About the Author:

Debra Schwartz, of CRUSH.STYLE, is a stylist and designer with more than three decades in fashion, cosmetics, corporate design, branding, and digital media.

As a Confidence-Creator, an Amplifier of Self-Image, and an Architect of Empowerment for women her goal is to have you show up with confidence and style in chapters two, three, (or four!) of life. “My passion and mission is to bring elevation and joy to women through signature style… and reclaim your fabulousness”.  

Find Debra on Instagram @crushstylenow. Visit http://www.crush.style to learn more about Debra and how her signature style services can elevate you to the next level.