a capsule-ish wardrobe

I’m not even sure when the shift happened. Somewhere between the conversations with my dear Rachel friend about capsule wardrobes, realizing that there were many hangers in my closet holding articles of clothing that were never pulled off said hanger, and the recognition that my heart needed a check as to the “why” that sat behind many of my purchases. Somewhere in there, I decided to make a change.

I was making rash decisions on purchases. I was buying things because that was what was put forward at whatever store or because that was the seasons “must have!”. I was spending money on things that didn’t fit with the rest of my closet, that didn’t make sense for my lifestyle at this time, or that I didn’t feel at all comfortable in. I was all over the place with my style and never taking the time to ask myself what my actual style was.

I always admired those who did a capsule wardrobe. I especially admired how they sought to purchase every single thing that went into their closet with intentionality. That was sorely lacking in my case, and it was just the shift I needed. I needed to quit with the hodgepodge and take the time and put forth the effort to purge my closet, name my style, and consider what my next purchases really needed to be.

So, I decided this was the path that was needed, the purge happened, and I’ve been slowly settling into a closet of less, and loving it.

The timeliness of my choosing to take part in the Contentment Challenge was quite perfect, too, because it began right after my thorough purge. The Lord has been working some deep things in my heart regarding contentment/comparison/gratitude through this set-apart time of not shopping and applying this to my need for a closet change has been a sweet added bit of learning. I truly mean sweet, too! I love the pause He’s taught me to take with any purchase but specifically with anything that finds its home in my closet. I love the more open eyes He’s given me to recognize HIs abundant provision to us and see that closet full of clothes with a renewed gratitude and enjoyment for what it is. I love the creativity He’s helping me to have and that He’s helping me to not worry about if someone would think “wow, she wears that one sweater a lot” because, those thoughts don’t even need to have a place. I love that He’s helping me be rid of comparison so that I purchase wear things that are my style, that I’m comfortable in, whether or not they sit on the trendy lists.

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Okay, a couple of final notes:

  1. Now, my closet isn’t ever going to be the capsule wardrobe with only 10-20 pieces total (hence the title of this post), but the intention that sits behind the idea of a capsule wardrobe is what I want to be reflected in my closet and dresser.

  2. Please don’t ever hear me say that this is what every person needs to choose for their closet or that this is the better thing to choose for your closet! Simply, this is what I felt compelled to do and what was needed, not just for me to get a better handle on my wardrobe, but for me to get a better handle on my heart.

    3. I’ve been slowly putting together a mental list of my next items of purchase, seeking to put in way more thought than I used to before I set a piece in my shopping back. Thinking ahead to springtime my list, at this point looks something like:

    • A white button-down

    • 2-3 spring dresses — 1-2 more casual, 1 more dressy

    • A pair of distressed denim shorts

    • A jean jacket

      I am in debate over a jumpsuit making the list and I also need to think through my spring & summer shoe needs. Truly, I have found it to be so fun to figure out what’s next and what’s best! It’s like my own private closet scavenger hunt!

    Any suggestions on things that are must-have items in your closet?? The wardrobes and fashion minds of my friends are always giving me a helpful springboard into what might be the next new piece.

    4. My friend Rachel and I have had such good conversations about our closet and our shopping tendencies, etc, as we’ve both embraced more of the capsule mindset. And my little sister texted me the other day saying she wants to move to more of this type of closet for herself, too. It really is so enjoyable to share even smaller pieces of life like this with your girls!

    So, now tell me, what is your favorite item(s) in your closet? What are your go-to shops? Are you an online or a in-store shopper? Tell me all the things!

    Happy Wardrobing, lovelies!

the contentment challenge

I think every single day that week I had made a comment about our carpet; and not the “oops, there’s some crumbs I need to vacuum up there” type of comment, but the “oh my gosh, I hate our carpet” type of comment, accompanied by extra-loud sighs or eye rolls for good measure. All of this pleasantry was followed by the thought, “Gosh, I can’t wait until we can get new flooring……it’s going to be forever, though.”

Now, it is true that the first time we walked into our now home we both thought, “yikes, cream carpet.” Not our first pick of flooring and we were moving in with a dog and a kid and, well….me, who is known for the greater amount of spills in our home. We knew this carpet was going to quickly gain the look of well-worn. Yes, it’s been impossible to keep fully clean. Yes, we can’t wait to change it one day. Yes, there’s nothing wrong with excitement in that plan.

This attitude, though. This attitude was springing from a much deeper place in my heart. A place where I wasn’t satisfied. A place where gratitude was not even a fleeting thought. A place where I told myself that changing our flooring was a key to contentment in our home.

A few days later I was scrolling instagram and came across a post by Nancy Ray which began, “Well friend, here we go again. It’s been over 5 years since God put the Contentment Challenge on my heart for the first time…….on January 1st, I’m doing it again!” This caught my eye, for obvious and humbling reasons. I clicked a bit more to get to the post on her blog and discovered the definition of her Contentment Challenge:

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This portion:

“More than just a bad habit, it’s an underlying spiritual issue. I’m lacking in self discipline. I’m finding my joy in material things, not in the Lord. I’m straight up distracted from the precious souls in front of me, and I’m tired of it.”

This portion brought the tears to my eyes because I saw it’s truth ringing loudly in my own heart. I saw all those moments of complaint about our carpet, the moments of comparison to those around me, the moments of making more of a material thing than the ones who the Lord has gifted me to live my days with, the moments of making much more of the undeserved graces He’s provided for me than of Him, the One who has given me my very life.

I needed this heart check. I needed this accountability. I needed this purposeful set-aside time to not just have a spending fast of sorts, but to plumb those heart depths a bit and consider what sat under those discontented thoughts, those moments of annoyance, that reasoning of why I needed to purchase that particular thing.

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So here I am, 17 days in, and loving it. It has been so freeing, friends! More than I imagined it could be. Freeing because I’m just not thinking about purchasing new things, but freeing because I’m seeing the Lord purge those sinful pieces of me and redeem them into what is better. It’s freeing because I’m learning to slow down and consider every single purchase. It’s freeing because I’m excited about staying within those budgets set up. It’s freeing because I’m learning how much is actually needed and how much is purely just for want. It’s freeing because I’m learning all the more to find beauty in simplicity. It’s freeing because I’m learning more of what is lasting joy, of WHO is lasting joy.

This has been the best way to start my year.

There have absolutely been moments of struggle. I will share more of those soon. But it has been far better than it has been hard, and the timing of it is so beautiful, in that way that only the Lord can do. I’ll also share on that, too.

I’m grateful. Grateful for Nancy and her vulnerability in this, her stepping out in this way, her welcoming others in it with her. I’m grateful for what I’m learning, for the stretching and redeeming that’s happening, for the joy I’m finding, for the sweetness that’s marking this season, and for how I know I’ll move into the next season with such a refreshed and renewed heart

It’s a marker in my life.