How to Minimize Your Wardrobe


Go through every item in your closet and drawers right now. If you’re like a lot of people, you’ll likely find several items you don’t even remember owning. Guess what? That means you probably have more clothes than you need. So often we end up buying something because it’s on sale or we intend to wear it “one of these days”. Unfortunately, that one day doesn’t happen and in the meantime your closet and dresser are stuffed to the brim. It’s time to minimize your wardrobe and to keep it that way. There are numerous benefits:

  • You’ll be leading a more sustainable lifestyle. By keeping a smaller wardrobe you can concentrate on purchasing clothes that also align with your own ethics. You can focus on buying a few high quality pieces produced by companies that are eco-conscious, focus on good conditions for workers and also find ways to reduce their use of natural resources.
  • You’ll save more money since you won’t be shopping as often.
  • You can get dressed in the morning quickly since you won’t have an overwhelming amount of choices.

All of this leads to your own freedom from the consumer cycle. By keeping a small wardrobe, you’re forced to look over all of your purchases and see whether it makes sense or not. You’ll be reducing your overall environmental footprint since you won’t be buying “fast fashion” pieces and the things you do buy should last you decades. It can be hard to part with all of your clothes, but once you get over the emotional idea that more is better, you can truly start leading a fashionably sustainable lifestyle. If you’re not sure where to start below are a few steps on minimizing your style.

  1. Separate out clothes you don’t remember owning – If you don’t even remember owning it, then it’s likely you’ll have no intention of wearing it in the future. Dig through your closet and you’ll likely find a few pieces you completely forgot.
  2. Get rid of clothes that don’t fit – Whether they’re just too tight, too large or just don’t fit right, there’s no reason to keep these items in your closet. They’ll just collect dust.
  3. Say goodbye to ugly clothes – We all seem to keep clothes we don’t like for some reason. Maybe it was given by a family member or it holds some other piece of sentimental value. Still, if you never wear it because it’s hideous, get rid of it.
  4. Reduce duplicates – No one needs 50 sweaters, 20 pairs of jeans or even 30 shoes. There’s no way you will possibly wear them all enough to justify their costs. Instead, whittle it down to 3-4 of your favorites.
  5. Drop it off at a Thrift store or Goodwill – If your clothes are in good condition don’t contribute to more junk in the landfill, donate your clothes. You’ll not only help others, you’ll also reduce the amount of natural resources used in the production of new clothes.

A minimal wardrobe doesn’t mean you can’t try out new clothes every now and again. There are plenty of sustainable ways you can keep your closet small and fashionable.

Host Clothes Swap Parties


You and your friends likely have similar tastes in clothes, or maybe not! If you want to try out something new but don’t want to spend the money, why not host a clothing swap? This way you and your friends can try on some other styles without worrying about buying something new. Of course, always try the clothes on before committing to the swap to ensure it fits properly. This is not only a great way to get rid of items you no longer wear, it’s also a lot of fun. If you don’t have any friends with clothes that would fit, there are also apps you can use that host virtual swap parties. Of course this means you’ll need to either pay a shipping and handling fee or meet the person to make the swap.

Find stores where you can “rent” the clothes

Companies like Rent the Runway are disrupting the fashion industry by allowing people to “rent” the latest fashion. This means you can still be on trend without cluttering your closet. Of course, there is a fee involved in the rental. There are more companies who are doing something similar and even some local businesses that have incorporated similar ideas. Now you no longer have to keep a tag on the clothes so you can return it the next day.

Learn How to Sew


Learning the basics of sewing can go a long way to helping out your wardrobe. Simple things like fixing a popped seam, adjusting your hemlines, taking in or out seams, sewing buttons back on and so forth can keep your clothes lasting longer. Not only that but you might even be able to repurpose some old styles of clothes into something new with some basic stitch work. A lot of young, eco-conscious people have gone down this route which they have no dubbed refashioning. Basically, it’s taking something old and revitalizing it with a couple tweaks. If you have something in your closet you love but it’s too big or maybe even outdated, it’s possible you can update it if you know how to sew.

Keeping a small closet doesn’t mean you don’t have any options. If anything, it gives you a lot more flexibility to mix and match all of the different articles of clothing you have in new and creative ways. Plus it’s an easy way to reduce your impact on the environment and save precious natural resources.

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