Although spring fills me with joy, it creates havoc in my mind when it comes to building my spring capsule wardrobe. Unlike autumn and winter when the weather in the UK is almost guaranteed – cold and wet with a slight chance of snow – spring is an enigma. So far, we’re off to a great start – warm, sunshiny bliss – but already we’re being threatened with talk of a cold blast supposedly coming our way by the end of the week. So, how’s a girl meant to plan a wardrobe that covers all of these conditions?
After a fourth and final attempt to streamline my wardrobe in a bid to maintain the current number of 30 items, I admitted defeat and have decided to increase my capsule wardrobe number to 34. At first, I felt discouraged, it felt weirdly excessive (my aim was to reduce my wardrobe each season, not expand it), but then I reasoned with myself: this is a process I’m supposed to enjoy and something intended to simplify my life. By stressing over just four extra items, I’m going against everything I wanted to accomplish. So 34 items it is; 34 items that will (hopefully) cover all aspects of the typically unpredictable season of spring in the UK.
Along with the slight increase in items, there’s new direction I plan on taking. An area I’ve been keen to explore is ethical fashion. When I originally started my capsule wardrobe journey, my goal was simply to test myself to see if I really could live (and cope) with less. And to my surprise, I could and did (without any tears). Over the last two years, my personal goals have continuously changed and each time I’ve discovered something new about living with a minimal wardrobe. I wanted to reduce my number from 40 to 30, and in autumn I did exactly that. I wanted to help others start their own capsule wardrobe journey, which I did (you can download the ecourse here). But then, just as I was beginning to get smug, believing that I’d finally reached a place where capsule wardrobe living was etched into my bones, I started to Google ethical fashion.
About a year ago, after hearing many horror stories about Primark and the way it manufactures its products, I swore I would never buy from there again. I foolishly thought that this would solve the problem – just don’t buy from Primark guys and you’ll be ok. Erm, well, not exactly. When I set off to research on Google, I started to use an Ethical Consumer website to see how each brand scores when it comes to being sustainable, eco-friendly and ethical. As I thought, Primark scored low, 3 out of 20. Phew, I was right to wave goodbye to them. Out of curiosity, I started to use this website to find the scores of brands that I buy from regularly, starting with Levi – a store I spent £200 in buying a pair of jeans and some dungarees for my winter wardrobe, believing I was doing the right thing by putting my hand deeper in my pocket. They scored 9 out of 20, just 6 points more than Primark. Hang on a minute, I spent about £180 more than I would have if I’d shopped in Primark but only gained six more points?! And then the penny dropped; spending more money on your clothes doesn’t always mean that you’re buying ethically, or eco-friendly. Mind blown. Over the last few weeks, I’ve been researching (i.e. Googling) the topic as much as I can, and I’m slowly gaining a wider knowledge of the world of ethical fashion – it’s fascinating, worrying, and confusing all rolled into one big ball of say-what-now? But, I’m going to keep at it, meaning my new goal for my spring capsule wardrobe, and any future wardrobes is to make them as sustainable as possible. I’m half way there with my spending habits, but now I need to focus on the other half, what I’m buying when I do.
My spring capsule wardrobe is far from ‘there’ – I love every piece I’ve included; however, my Levi’s are still hanging there, taunting me – so I’m happy to now also include brands such as People Tree, Everlane, and Gather and See (which make me feel a whole heap better about myself). Once I’ve gained more confidence and knowledge about this issue myself, I would love to share more about it with you, too. I won’t be getting a self-righteous, I’m doing good so why don’t you attitude, but I find it so interesting that I hope you do too.
Anyway, the entire contents of my spring capsule wardrobe are listed below.
- Glitter Spot Top – Boden
- Black Long Sleeved Top – H&M
- Blah Blah Blah T-Shirt – People Tree*
- Navy T-shirt – Marks and Spencers (similar)
- Plumetis Blouse – Zara (similar here)
- Hello Stripe Top – Sugarhill Boutique*
- Grey T-Shirt – Zara
- Super Jumper – Sirens and Pirates*
- Grey Long Cardigan – & Other Stories
- Sweatshirt Jumper – Cos*
- Catherine Dress – Gather and See*
- Gingham Dress – Nobody’s Child*
- Polka Dot Dungarees – Sugarhill Boutique*
- Dungarees – Levi‘s
- Red Stripe Dress – Sugarhill Boutique*
- Rib Tank Dress – Everlane*
- Check Slip Dress – Zara (similar here)
- Alana Jumpsuit – People Tree*
- Mixed Check Dress – People Tree*
- Grey Jumpsuit – Nobody’s Child*
- Luxe Drape Dress – Everlane*
- Smock Dress – Son De Flor*
- Pinstripe Blazer – Urban Outfitters (similar here)
- Trench Coat – Jigsaw*
- Black Skinny High-Waisted Jeans – Levi’s
- Black Leggings – H&M
- 501 Skinny Jeans – Levi’s
- Stepped Hem Denim Jeans – Zara (similar here)
- Susie Wide-Leg Trousers – People Tree*
- Next Slip Ons – Next
- Leopard Print Flats – c/o Boden
- Mila Court Shoe – Jigsaw*
- Tie Up Sandals – Urban Outfitters (similar here)
- Adidas – Adidas
*items have kindly been gifted by the brand.