Monday, September 30, 2013

Closet Minimalism: Summer Me Up!

Last January, I closed my closet doors after taking you on a tour of the minimalist wardrobe I'd settled on for the dead of winter. I was so nervous to introduce minimalism to my closet that I waited til the very end of the season to whittle things down. By then, I knew what I'd enjoyed wearing and what I could let go. Since this is my first time through with my summer clothes, I used the same strategy and now that summer's all wrapped up, it's time. If you'd like to give a minimalist closet a try, go this route with me. The idea is to "pack for your life," choosing your favorite outfits for a given amount of time. I shot for ten, which I think is still weeny by minimalist standards, but it's a start. And a stress-free one, which means a lot to me. If you are oober hesitant, put the rejected outfits in a spare closet or box. This way, if one needs to be retrieved, there's no panicking. 

Today I'll show you four of my winners for the hot summertime. This is not a six month wardrobe (like spring/summer). It's meant for just three months. This makes choosing much simpler. Obviously, you can keep a pair of jeans handy for that 80 degree day, but most of the time, you're gonna want shorts and skirts. Here's what I've decided I'll be keeping around for next year. The others are getting the boot. 


Are you ready for this?

I know. You're so impressed. Fashion bloggers everywhere, beware. 

But I had to be honest. When it's hot, hot, hot and I'm running a garage sale, this is how I roll. The running shorts are a fun bright color and super cheap at Wal-Mart. The Nebraska t-shirt is pretty standard uniform in these parts and the squooshiest, smooshiest, almost-as-much-arch-support-as-sneakers flip-flops? They are Rocket Dogs, people. Get some. 

Also, atop my head are my Gap sunglasses. (pictured below) 

Now I love aviators, but the nose pieces get caught in my hair or smashed into my head when I misjudge distances, so, "Hello, plastic frames!" Another plus is they're dark enough to shade some sunlight out. Seems like a standard feature, but as I looked for lighter color frames to go with my lighter color hair these days, I was noticing some pretty wimpy lenses. 

Outfit number two is born of the same criteria as the first. Hence the same brand of running shorts (which is Danskin) and a matching running tank. This tank is the most comfortable top I own, which is why I have two more I wear to yoga. It's ribbed, which makes it flattering. (you'll have to take my word for it, since this photo's not making my case) AND it stays put. Something about the ribbing keeps it from falling when I'm upside down in yoga, but it's not as tight as the sports bra/shirts that creep up when you run. Unacceptable. And these are either 4.96 or 5.96. I can't remember.

Meet my summer bag. It has four outside pockets (most important feature for me) and a shoulder strap. It's neutral, but the zebra stripes keep it from being boring. The zebra part is a canvas material and it's got the slightest sparkle to it. Very subtle, but fun.

Here you see my favorite cropped pants in the universe. They're called Broken-in Straight by Gap. I love their slouchy, boyish cut and now own two pairs. The first one I paid more for, but these I held out for til the end of the season. By the time I got them, they were only 16.99. And tomato red...I'm still stoked.

The stripey sweater is the handy neutral if you like to calm your bright colored pieces down. Gray is the best mixer I know for blending mis-matchy pieces too. If you have two colors you want to wear together, but they seem random, throw in a gray scarf, tights or belt, and it all starts to make sense. I don't understand it; it just is. Try it and see if you agree!

I'm alright with my flip-flops here, but the one item on my summer shopping list that didn't happen was some gray or silvery shoes. Maybe some gladiator sandals or Toms? The spot they'll fill becomes more evident in the next outfit... 

p.s. And that head turn? Well, that's just me trying to show off My Peace Earrings. Again. I can't help myself...

Here's the shirt I bought to wear at Disneyland! Is it not a happy, Disney kind of shirt? I thought so - especially with its mesh back where the breeze blows through so nicely. It's from Francesca's, the shorts are white denim from J. Crew, the bracelet is Target clearance special and the necklace I made! You can make it any color you find craft paint in, so be thinking of a smashing combo. Then you'll be ready when I show you how to make it!

Total pieces: 17 

Still to come...the other six outfits and my dressy clothes. Thanks for reading!


  1. You must be my wardrobe twin! Love your outfits. Comfy and cute. I have winnowed my wardrobe down to a small selection that goes through all the seasons. I layer my tank tops and t-shirts with long sleeve base shirts or with hoodies and cardigan sweaters. I haven't counted my pieces, as I have this small collection of tops and a 2-3 pairs of jeans and 2-3 pairs of shorts. This isn't counting my workout clothes.

    I love your Rocket Dog flip flops. I really need a pair of sandals with more arch support. Where do you get them? A friend recently told me about Fit Flops which are supposed to really support your arches and ankles. Will be getting something new next spring.

    1. Your winnowing sound far superior to mine! I got the Rocket Dogs at Famous Footwear, but I've seen them at gordmans in the past. :)

    2. Good to know! We have a Famous Footwear! BTW, I lied. I do have a couple of dresses and skirts, but I don't wear them often. Phew! Glad I got that off my chest!