1 simple rule for curating a minimalist wardrobe

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Minimalism is officially trending and if you want to build a minimalist wardrobe where everything goes with everything, there’s only one simple lesson you need to learn here.

It’s crazy how you can have a closet full of clothes but still feel like there’s nothing to wear. The main reason for this is probably because you have too much loud clothing.

What is loud clothing?

Loud clothing is the opposite of basics. Typical features of loud clothing:

  • Statement pieces
  • Attention-grabbing or oversized details
  • Vivid or artificial colours
  • Multiple or clashing colours
  • Prominent prints or patterns
  • Bold or unusual features

It’s taken me a long time to learn this lesson, not to mention the amount of money I’ve wasted on these pieces.

They’re always the pieces I try on and take off immediately as nothing else in my wardrobe seems to pair.

Whenever I go to clean out my wardrobe, they’re the pieces I want to get rid of as I never wear them.

But then I also think,

What a shame it is to throw out such a new and unworn piece of clothing. After all, it is a cute piece and that’s why I got it in the first place, right? So I guess I’ll just have to buy something new to pair it with.

No, no, no! If you want to build a minimalist wardrobe, it’s plain and simple. Stop buying loud clothing.

Loud vs. Basic

There’s very little loud clothing in my wardrobe these days so it was a struggle to find examples to show you.

I’ve dug up the loudest pieces I could find to put together these outfits and show you the struggle of trying to piece together outfits with loud clothing.

White, beige and prints

Comparing basics with loud clothing white
White long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Red floral shorts from Billabong. Swan ruffle blouse from YesStyle. Beige silk shorts from LilySilk. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.

Here is a white long sleeve top (basic) and swan print ruffle blouse (loud) to compare.

I have also chosen (loud) red floral shorts to match.

As you can see by just comparing the first two outfits, the basic white top pairs quite well with the shorts but with the swan blouse it just looks like there’s a bit too much going on.

If you compare the second and third outfits, you can see that I’ve kept the swan blouse the same, but paired it with basic beige shorts to balance out the look.

The third outfit looks much more wearable than the middle outfit.

Solid black and black floral

Comparing basics with loud clothing black floral
Black long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Black floral shorts from City Beach. Black floral blouse from YesStyle. Black faux-suede shorts from Zara. Goldeneye ankle leather boots in black nubuck from Bared Footwear.

For the next comparison, I have solid black and black floral.

From a quick glance, you can see that the middle outfit clashes more compared to the first and third outfits.

It’s not that bad as both items are floral and of the same theme, but it’s definitely not an everyday or versatile look.

Imagine having to add accessories or outer layers…it would be tricky to find pieces that pair well.

Navy, floral and polka dots

Comparing basics with loud clothing navy
Navy long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Black floral wide leg trousers from Sheike. Tiny hearts blouse from MNG. Black high waisted trousers from Zara. Swan strappy heels in black suede from Bared Footwear.

For this next example, the middle outfit doesn’t look too bad. The print in the blouse is actually of tiny white hearts and they’re so small that they look like polka dots.

In this case, I would say that this top is actually not that loud and can still be quite a versatile piece for putting together outfits.

Nude, beige and prints

Comparing basics with loud clothing nude mustard beige
Nude off-the-shoulder ruffle blouse from YesStyle. Animal print velvet pants raided from mum’s closet. Mustard off-the-shoulder floral blouse from Blockout Boutique. Beige trousers from Uniqlo. Black pointed sandals from Diana Ferrari.

Strictly speaking, the nude top in the first outfit is not really a basic top, because of its ruffles and off-the-shoulder neckline.

This top would look much better with basic bottoms, but I’ve used it as an example here to show you how it still pairs better than the much louder top in the middle outfit.

The third outfit, although paired with basic trousers, does not look good because the colours clash too much.

If the basic trousers were of any of the prominent colours in the blouse it would pair much better.

Now don’t get me wrong, all the outfits in the middle still work. Style is what you choose and if you like bold and interesting outfits then more power to you!

But that’s not minimalist fashion and what I’m trying to teach.

How to curate a minimalist wardrobe

Once you understand the difference between loud clothing and basic clothing, it’s simple.

Invest in quality basics and classic pieces such as a white tank top, black leather jacket and well-fitting jeans for your minimalist wardrobe.

Stop buying loud clothing.

I live in a tiny apartment with a tiny wardrobe and tiny dog.

I need to be selective with my pieces so that I can get the most wear out of every piece of clothing I buy.

Maybe one day when I have a massive house and massive wardrobe I’ll go back to collecting loud pieces, ha!

But for now, here are 9 different outfits I put together using only 7 basics selected from my minimalist wardrobe. They are all practical, versatile and extremely wearable for everyday.

You’ll definitely be seeing more outfit inspiration in my future posts for how else you can style these basics.

TEA BREAK!

  • Rest your eyes
  • Take a deep breath…inhale peace & exhale happiness
  • Make a small wish for someone you love
  • Get up & stretch your legs
  • Hydrate & energise
  • Set an intention to live your best life

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CONTINUE READING

Beige silk shorts

White long sleeve top and beige shorts basics outfit
White long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Beige silk shorts from LilySilk. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.
Sage tank top and beige shorts basics outfit
Sage tank top from TK Maxx. Beige silk shorts from LilySilk. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.
Navy long sleeve top and beige shorts basics outfit
Navy long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Beige silk shorts from LilySilk. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.

Black suede shorts

White long sleeve and black shorts basics outfit
White long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Black faux-suede shorts from Zara. Goldeneye ankle leather boots in black nubuck from Bared Footwear.
Navy long sleeve top and black shorts basics outfit
Navy long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Black faux-suede shorts from Zara. Goldeneye ankle leather boots in black nubuck from Bared Footwear.
Black long sleeve top and shorts basics outfit
Black long sleeve top from Uniqlo. Black faux-suede shorts from Zara. Goldeneye ankle leather boots in black nubuck from Bared Footwear.

Beige trousers

White long sleeve top and beige trousers basics outfit
White long sleeve top and beige trousers from Uniqlo. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.
Sage tank top and beige trousers basics outfit
Sage tank top from TK Maxx. Beige trousers from Uniqlo. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.
Navy long sleeve top and beige trousers basics outfit
Navy long sleeve top and beige trousers from Uniqlo. Nike Air Force 1 sage low sneakers.

Confession: All these long sleeve basic tops (white, navy and black) are from the men’s section. The reason being, I prefer a looser fit through the shoulders without it being too loose either.

These basic outfits might be too plain for your taste and although I keep saying to stop buying loud clothing, there are exceptions to every rule.

Statement Pieces

Statement pieces can add character to an otherwise boring outfit and make your look unique. They’re the loud pieces that catch our eye and lure us into the shops.

So here’s the first exception. When it comes to accessories, feel free to go as loud as you like. Statement accessories pair very well with basics and can elevate your look entirely.

It’s a different story when it comes to clothing, however.

If you look at my summer outfits here, you’ll notice that I have a lot of statement dresses with very loud features.

This is my exception to the rule of loud clothing. If it is loud, let it all be loud in one loud piece. Be it a dress, playsuit, jumpsuit, swimsuit, two-piece suit, etc.

The point is, it’s a suit and purposely made to be worn together. Or a dress that’s already well-thought-out and designed to be worn as is.

The trouble is when you have several different loud pieces that weren’t designed to be worn together…and surprise surprise, they don’t look good together.

But that’s why basics are good because you can balance out the outfit for a more effortless and harmonious look.

Summary

  • One rule for curating a minimalist wardrobe is to eliminate loud clothing.
  • Loud clothing is difficult to style and not versatile or wearable for a range of different occasions.
  • A minimalist wardrobe will comprise mostly basics as they are very wearable and easy to style.
  • Statement accessories pair very well with basics.
  • Statement clothing in the form of dresses, one-pieces and two-piece suits can sometimes be an exception to the rule.

I hope you found this information useful and I’d love to know your top tips for building a minimalist wardrobe in the comments below.

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