blogtober, blogtober, Minimalism, Minimalism

My Fall Capsule Wardrobe

What is a capsule wardrobe exactly? Minimalists like to define it as a set number of clothing items to reduce the troubles of decision fatigue & allows us to understand the benefits behind owning less. Courtney Carver, the writer behind the book, Project 333 goes a step further & challenges those to have 33 items of clothing for 3 months. I attempted project 333 for myself during the pandemic & I did take note of the benefits. But overall, I don’t necessarily like to limit myself to a set number of clothing pieces. I simply ask myself how often I wear something? Does it fit the person I wish to be? And is it practical? Otherwise, I let it go. And over the course of the summer, I’ve downsized my wardrobe extremely to the point where 95% of my clothing is gone! As the new season approaches, I look forward to revamping my style & curating a capsule wardrobe that allows me to create classic outfits.

As I’ve decluttered over 10 bags of clothing in the past few months, I’ve also made a few replacements along the way. I’ve been in a style rut & wanted to enter my fall season with a bit more style. Summer tends to put myself in a style rut [ especially when it’s hot ] because all I wear are athletic shorts & basic tanks or tees. Fall fashion is elite. And I’m so excited to share the pieces I’ve bought & put together.

Denim Denim Denim

A classic pair of jeans is a staple in any wardrobe. As a millennial, I still find skinny jeans to be the most flattering at times, but I have been wanting to branch out to different styles. I purchased a pair of the viral 90’s straight leg relaxed fit jeans from Abrocrombie. And I totally understand the hype! I can’t wait to rock these with some sneakers & basic tees all fall season.

Business Beige

To jazz up your dressier occasions, why not swap or add a pair of beige slacks to your wardrobe along with the typical grey or black. I personally love incorporating lighter shades to my fall wardrobe to showcase a brighter look. No white after Labor Day, who? I also love adding knits to make your look a bit more casual.

Stick To The Basics

The majority of my closet is filled with basic tees & tanks. Lately – I’ve added a few fitted crop tops to my wardrobe. I love pairing tighter tops with baggier pants to create a bit of definition. I love layering these with flannels, cardigans or jackets to stay warm. I recommend you have a basic white, black & grey t-shirt & tank & then go from there. Stick to shades that are the most flattering to you. There’s no need to own the entire rainbow.

Sneakers

I’m trying to get away from just living in Uggs until March (although if you are from the East Coast, it’s pretty much inevitable). Last fall, I purchased this pair of Sam Edelman sneakers in this white & beige shade. I thought they would be a perfect minimalistic look to any pair of jeans or leggings.

Birkenstocks

It’s hilarious to me Birkenstock clogs are back in style. I wore these almost daily in high school. I haven’t yet purchased these, but am looking to add these to my capsule wardrobe soon to add variety to my shoe collection. I feel like they would be perfect paired with my A&F jeans.

Dainty Statement Jewelry

I strongly believe you can enhance an outfit by just adding a few statement jewelry pieces. I love pairing my rose gold B&T necklace with a crop top & jeans or adding a pair of gold hoops.

Oversized Sweaters & Cardigans

Of course, it’s not fall without that cozy sweater weather feeling. I love pairing them with black leggings, a warm beverage & a book in hand. They are like warm hugs! For the most part, I prefer neutral shades like beige, grey or black , but I also love wearing Halloween themed jumpers to be festive.

Water Proof Boots

On the east coast, I feel like it’s crucial to own boots that are weather resistant. Whether it’s walking through the pumpkin patch or the muddy Renaissance fair, I’m so glad to have boots that will be easy to clean. During the Nordstrom anniversary sale, I purchased a pair of black water proof ankle boots & I have a strong feeling I’ll be wearing these a lot this fall season!

Graphic Tees

During my recent declutter, I let go of a ton of old graphic t-shirts that were faded or had holds in them. I still believe we don’t need to own an entire drawer filled with graphic tees, but I do think it’s fun to own a few to make an outfit more unique. One of my favorites is my zodiac sign flower t-shirt.

Even More Inspiration

Pinterest is my favorite site for finding fashion inspiration. Here are a few photos that depict the style I’m going for lately…

pin it for later
pin it for later
pin it for later

What clothing styles / pieces are you looking forward to wear this season?

-B

Minimalism

10 Minimalist Habits That Will Change Your Life

Minimalism is a mindset that can transform your life. Believe me, I know first hand. Although it is common to focus on the visible clutter & how those spaces can cloud our minds & judgments; what if I told you minimalism is far more than this? Minimalism is an intentional lifestyle. And with the simple shift in perspective & daily habits, you too can head down the road to simple & simplistic living. Here are 10 Minimalist Habits That Will Change Your Life:

Don’t Scroll Your Phone First Thing

In the morning, it was habitual of me to roll over on my side, reach over to my nightstand, unplug my phone from its charger & scroll socials for hours before I even got out of bed. Recently, I’ve turned a new leaf & decided to store my phone on my dresser which is a good walking distance away from where I sleep. This way, when my alarm goes off, I have no choice but to get out of bed & turn it off. In the past, I’ve talked about how decluttering your digital space is essential in staying productive. But this also goes with the amount of time we spend on these devices. By limiting my screen time in the morning, I start my day with a clearer mind. Another suggestion is to not scroll your phone right when you get up. As soon as you turn your alarm off, put the home down & continue your typical morning tasks. Go downstairs & drink some coffee in silence. Once you’ve been up for a while, then you can check your messages.

You May Also Like: Minimalism Guide: Digital Declutter

Slow Down

Slow living is what minimalists use to help them live more in the moment. Instead of being in a rush & almost forcefully adding too much on your plate, stop & take a moment to breathe. It’s called living for a reason. No matter what you may be doing, it is so important to truly be present & acknowledge what you are doing. This way, you can learn to better appreciate yourself & your routines. Most mornings, I enjoy slowly getting out of bed, making my way to the kitchen table & just be with my thoughts for a second with a glass of water in hand. Some of this has to do with the fact I am not a morning person whatsoever & I need time to mentally wake up. But this relaxing moment of just being & not rushing out the door or to exercise helps me stay grounded & stress free.

Prioritize Your Energy Wisely

Lately with blogging, I’ve had to prioritize my routine to what is actually working vs. what is a complete waste of energy. I felt like I was comfortable in such a sedentary lifestyle where I would spend hours on my laptop trying to create content that would hopefully boost my success rates. I realized some of the things I was doing showed no change in results. As I started to cut back in my tasks & prioritizing just a few, I began to develop more of a balance. This mindset can be used in all aspects of life whether it’s with friendships, work or even your free time.

You May Also Like: How To Be More of an Intentional Blogger

Don’t Rush Your To Do List

When it comes to making a list of daily tasks, I like to consider them things I’d like to do vs. things I have to do. Rewording it this way releases the pressure & stress of completing said tasks. And ever since I shifted my mindset, I am more inclined to finish the list no matter how long it may be. I noticed when I get myself stressed out over anything, it causes this self sabotage in my mind. The more overwhelmed I feel the less likely I’ll actually accomplish it. Another tactic I discovered with handling my to-do list is the 3 item to-do list method which is determining 3 of your most important tasks of the day & write those down. This will help you understand the power of priorities.

Move Your Body

Sitting on the couch, hunched over a laptop all day isn’t good. As a blogger, I need this sentence drilled in my mind. I’ve learned my creative juices need a break once in a while & a 30 minute or one hour workout won’t hurt me. It will actually benefit me in keeping a healthier lifestyle & clear my foggy writers block. Getting outdoors & breathing in the fresh air is an added bonus. I’ve been reminding myself to get out in nature even if it’s simply helping with yard work or just reading a book on our deck under an umbrella. That vitamin d has truly made a difference.

Practice Gratitude

Whether it’s a daily journal entry or a short statement in your head, practicing gratitude will help you see life in a different light. I truly believe when you start focusing on the good, the good things start flooding in. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t devalue other emotions other than happiness, but to develop a sense of grace & understanding of life’s situations. Even on your worst days, think of at least one thing you are appreciative of & you will notice yourself releasing such negativity & feeling much better.

Be More Present

One of my biggest pet peeves is when I’m having a conversation with someone & that person is faced down & glued to their phone screen. All you hear is the occasional “mhmm” or “ok”. Instead, truly engage with the person. Look them in the eye & add valuable rebuttals. Developing relationships & friendships are one of the main highlights to our lives. Put effort into the ones you want & let them know they matter to you by putting the phone down once in a while.

Focus on Quality Time

After a long day of work, my fiancé & I love carving out a few hours in the evening just for us. Whether it’s eating dinner together or watching a tv series or simply having an un- erupted conversation; having this quality time with each other is something we always look forward to. I think it’s easy for people to believe they don’t have time for certain “so called meaningless activities”. But I’m here to tell you these moments aren’t meaningless. They are what maintains your relationships & friendships.

Nightly Clean Ups

Before you go to bed, make sure all the dishes in the sink are cleaned off or put in the dishwasher. Meal prep & have it set for the week a head or the next morning. Make sure the living area is picked up & arranged in a tidy manner. Quickly wipe up any noticeable stains or crumbs on tables.This should not be a deep clean but simply a short reset for the next day. This way, you start your next day on a clean slate. Nothing bothers me more is waking up to a messy house. These nightly clean ups reduces this stress.

Create A Donate Bin

Decluttering can be quite the task if you do it in one sitting. Having a designated bin either in your closet or spare room can help you. Anytime you put on an outfit you end up hating or doesn’t fit, throw it in the bin. Did you find some decor or gadgets you no longer wish to use, put them in the bin as well. Once the bin is full, you can then send it on its way when you have the time. This allows you to continuously downsize your space on a regular basis.

By keeping these 10 habits in mind, you can slowly shift into a more simple & intentional lifestyle. Let me know in the comments other habits you do to make your routines more at ease.

-B

advice, Minimalism, Minimalism

How to Gift More Practically

Call me a Grinch, but I find gifts to be quite self serving & a form of clutter that really can get out of hand. Safe to say, I don’t fall under that type of love language. You’re probably reading this & thinking, “that ungrateful bitch.” But even the Grinch said it right – all those gifts you receive or desire ends up where? In your garbage! And it’s not only the winter season that causes so much gifting stress. It’s an all year round toxic cycle that needs to be reevaluated. This is why instead of saving this PSA for the holiday season, I’m stressing this change in habits now because thanks to Hallmark cards & commercialism, there’s always an excuse to gift someone.

And no, I’m not saying you should NEVER buy someone anything or boycott gift giving all together. We can’t let our hearts shrink to a thimble. But I think we need to consider a few things before we make a purchase. In the past, I’ve discussed the issues of impulse purchasing, shopping addictions & being more intentional with our spending habits. Be sure to check out my intentional spending blog post after you read this one. These reminders hold true when it comes to gifting others.

I’m guilty to say, over the years one of my biggest culprits to clutter & maintaining a minimalistic home, are the items that come in from other people. And although I stay appreciative & understand not everyone lives a less is more lifestyle, it can become frustrating when you are constantly making donation runs trying to combat the chaos. Over time, I’ve had to be rather forceful & state we don’t need xyz, we prefer gift cards if anything & honestly – we just want their time.

This year, I want to make the conscious effort to gift more practically. And I’ve come up with a list of a few gift ideas I plan to consider when the situation arises.

Food

I think food whether it’s bake goods, a meal or even a gift card to someone’s favorite restaurant are great sustainable gift options. Now, I will admit we had someone return a restaurant gift card back to us, so maybe tread lightly with that suggestion. It did allow us to have a lovely date night at the Cheese Cake Factory – so win win for us. In general, I think food is a lovely option because there’s a stronger chance it will get eaten instead of being wasted. During the holiday season, we enjoy making cookies, so if you have leftovers – feel free to send those off to loved ones or for a dinner party dessert. If you want to be even more creative & add a hint of experience to the gift – you can always surprise someone with cooking lessons [ but always consider who you are gifting when making these decisions ].

Gift Cards

I’m personally a fan of gifting gift cards. I feel like it allows the person to have an experience or treat themselves when they see fit. Be aware of the potential “returning situation” like I mentioned above. I feel like that’s a rare occurrence & most people are appreciative. I personally love gift cards to Barnes & Noble [ follow book worm over here] or certain department stores. Instead of giving something someone may or may not use, you allow them to choose something they may truly want or need when they wish to buy something.

Photo Album

Personal gifts are one of my favorites & showcasing photographs with a specific friend or memory is a nice way to let someone know how much they mean to you & cherish their time with said person. For instance, my now husband gifted me a jar of rolled up photographs of our memories together that year. He knows how much I enjoy our adventures & capturing said moments, so this with an added note reading, “the best gifts are the memories we make together” really made my day. And I display the jar of photos in our living room to this day for the daily reminder.

Books

As minimalistic as I try to be, I will always find books to be worth buying. I do have a rule of selling / donating the books that are 3 stars or one’s I plan to never re-read. But I’m always looking for recommendations. If someone comes up to me & says, “I love this book & you need to check it out – 95% of the time I will read it. Will I always keep said book in my collection? No, but I’m always itching to read & add to my TBR.

Experiences

This can be as broad or simple as you wish it to be. It can be checking out a local coffee shop or ice cream parlor. Or it can be an extravagant 10 day vacation. I always believe traveling is worth the money. Those travels gain you memories, culture & help you grow as individuals. For instance, my husband & I plan to hopefully go to a lantern festival this summer. It acts as a creative date night & a new experience we can cross off our bucket list. Other experience related activities could include: going on a hike, visiting a new state, play top golf, spend the day at a theme park or even check out a new restaurant.

Help Complete a Task

I’m not the biggest fan of favors. I think people can take advantage of a person’s good nature. I definitely want to go more in depth on that topic in terms of boundary setting in a later post. But I think if done right & for the right person, helping them with a task or completing something is an appreciative gesture. Whether it’s helping someone move to a new house, gardening or painting, to name a few things – not only are you helping them but you are also spending time with that person as well.

What are some other practical gifts you can think of?

-B