My simple all-year wardrobe system ::
2 cashmere pullover
+layering tanks + long-sleeved tees
total number of tops: 13 + layering
2 fitted pants
3 soft pants
total number of bottoms: 7
total number of flexible elements: 3
total number of footwear: 4
This is what my simple wardrobe breaks down to for the life I lead right now. It's easy enough to switch some elements as needed, but I know from observation that these numbers work for me. As my wardrobe stands right now...in the colder months, I will make use of:
-button-downs, sweatshirts, tees + cashmere pullovers
-layering tees + tanks
-fitted pants + soft pants
-tennies, flats + boots
There is still variety that comes from dressing with the weather. In October, I wore button-downs + tees...In November, I'm wearing sweatshirts + tennies most....and by January, I'll be wearing the pullovers + boots most.
-dresses + jumpsuit
-tees + tanks
-softs pants + shorts
-sandals + tennies
A few benefits that I've found to using a wardrobe like this:
-I know how much is enough + don't get anxious about not having enough at the beginning of each season.
-I can look at what I already have at the beginning of each season + easily make a small shopping or making list (or none at all).
-Less resources go into the making of less clothing.
-My clothes get used up.
-Clothing becomes much more multi-use. I don't save pieces for rare occasions.
-All of my clothes are getting worn regularly at some point during the year. I don't have any clothing sitting unused. No extra resources are being held from others.
-Replacement is more manageable, when there is less to "need".
-The need to replace keeps better time with my changing desires. Things do wear out with more regular use, and my tastes change slightly over time.
-I chose things carefully so that I can put together outfits for different uses (a pair of silky pants can be worn with a silky tank or cashmere sweater + flats for a nicer occasion...but can also be worn with a cotton tank + sandals on any warm day). I feel more prepared + have actually done less special occasion shopping since having a smaller wardrobe.
-One new item can make a big impact.
-I don't make as many impulse purchases...which saves money.
As always, I feel the immense amount of privilege that is inherent in a post like this. "Enough" can be defined in a vast number of ways. I am fortunate to even have the ability to consider "less" + what it might mean to me. This brings me to one more huge benefit of my simple (to me) wardrobe...it allows me to consider generosity with joy + freedom. I don't simply mean in an initial clothing-donation-generosity sort of way (which is a whole other discussion)...but in a continual open-handed way. I have freed up my budget a little bit more, so that rather than searching for another thing to buy...I can search for another way to give. And that truly shines quite a bit more joy into my life!
All lovely photos via links. Unlinked photo mine. They are representations of some of the pieces I own, not necessarily the pieces.
A few words on my other, more specialized clothing.