Building My 33: Why a Capsule Wardrobe Works

project 33 math on the move

My wardrobe has been a hot mess since I am still living out of suitcases (courtesy of a major delay in Ikea delivery) and all of my clothes are scattered throughout our new apartment. Getting dressed is like finding Easter eggs; you have to know where to looks for socks, pants, etc. We simply hop around to each suitcase until our outfit is complete. Using Project 333 helps me stay organized, even if I am without a real closet at the moment.

How (and Why) a Minimalist Wardrobe Works

I’ve mentioned it in previous posts, but here’s a quick rundown of how it works: with this system, you have 33 items of clothes that you wear for 3 months. Pajamas, underwear, and athletic clothes don’t count toward your 33 items (if you use them for their intended purpose). Accesssories like jewelry, scarves, shoes, and outerwear do count. Some people think this might be really difficult to manage when you live in a varied climate, but I have been using this system since I lived in Colorado and found it very simple. Here’s what I have learned so far:

  1. I can layer like a pro.
  2. I take better care of my clothes.
  3. My clothes last longer (remember my trusty J.Crew shirt? Still here).
  4. No one notices that I am wearing the same items over and over.
  5. I no longer have a desire to buy clothes.

math on the move minimalism

Preparing for a New Season

Since a new season of Project 333 begins on October 1, I decided it was time to stop living out of my suitcases and start living off of the floor. I mean, at least until our furniture arrives in a couple weeks. I spent a half hour traveling around the flat picking out items for my 33 and getting them organized for the next 3 months. The rest of the clothes will get stored away (probably in a suitcase) until next season.

I decided to use a majority of my 33 on leggings and scarves, as those are a major fashion staple here in Germany. Because the weather will vary in these next months going from fall to winter, I had to include things that can easily be layered. This is especially important because in the span of 5 minutes you can be freezing outside in the wind and then be on a boiling lava hot stuffed-to-the-brim Stadtbahn.

capsule wardrobe math on the move project 333

It’s OK to Cheat

I must confess that I cheat on my 33. If I have an event or need a special item, I will trade for it in my closet. It’s more of a compromise than anything, right? Sometimes, you really need a nice dress, but you don’t want to fill up your closet for three months of it. It’s how I make this system work for me.  Plus, if I had to only wear one pair of glasses I think I would die.

Most people find getting started to be the most difficult aspect of Project 333. If you’re interested in trying it, I highly suggest you read Courtney Carver’s blog posts about it, and test it out.

Have you converted your wardrobe to a smaller selection? What’s keeping you from doing it? Leave a comment below!


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