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Transitioning into spring in Southern California is like ripping food out of a shark’s teeth. We tend to experience winters late and don’t have transitional seasons like spring and fall. So come April, we’re already well into the 90’s and then experience sporadic rain.
Since it’s a habit for most people to buy new clothes every season, most seasonal items that are bought wind up going out of trend by the next season. Each year, when spring and summer hits I always seem to have no clothes to wear because the weather-appropriate clothes that were once cute are now things I wouldn’t dare to be seen in.
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This year, I’m drawing the line to end my expensive a easonal shopping sprees. I’m building a wardrobe consisting of mostly neutral items and basics that can be used and layered throughout all 4 seasons and limiting my spending on trendy items. I utilized this tactic for winter and wound up spending significantly less! Here are my key rules to remember when creating a minimalist wardrobe:
Stick to neutral colors (black, white, grey)
This outfit is inspired by the New York Fashion week trend of wearing button-up shirts off-the-shoulder. Had I already owned an oversized button-up shirt, I wouldn’t have had to buy one that fits, but a basic that can be as versatile as this can be layered in colder seasons as well.
Filling up your wardrobe with trendy button-ups like floral prints and denim may be cute for spring and summer, but may not translate as gracefully into fall and winter. Having some staple basics in black, white and grey can fill up half your wardrobes throughout all seasons, leaving you space to fill up the other half with strictly seasonal or trending items. My wardrobe consists of 50% neutral basics that stay in my closet all year, 25% seasonal essentials like coats or summer hats, and 25% trendy items you know are fashion-forward but predict they will no longer be in-trend next year.
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Limit trendy purchases each season
Going into depth with my 50/25/25 rule, it’s important to place limits on your trendy items for budget’s sake. Pick your items wisely. A few current trends of the moment include statement sleeves and fringed denim, and while they’re cute, buying 3+ bell sleeve floral tops and 3+ pairs of fringed denim may not be the smartest investment – you know that they’ll probably be out of trend next season. I like to buy no more than 1 item of each trend per season.
Build your seasonal wardrobes according to corresponding colors
The 50% of your wardrobe consisting of trendy items and seasonal clothes should be in colors that pair well with their respective seasons. darker colors during spring and summer are definitely possible, but if you stick to season-appropriate colors like pastels, florals, and white, you’ll get more longevity out of your pieces. By effectively eliminating items inappropriate for the season, we can reduce closet clutter and that “I have nothing to wear!” problem we encounter as a result of having too many clothes.
Purchase weather-appropriate essentials
Most often we prioritize fashion over function, but it’s important to think in the opposite. A functional summer wardrobe is key for me because where I live, we often experience 8 months of summer with most of those days being 100-110 degrees. As much as I love sheer fabrics and baseball hats, these items don’t allow my skin to breathe and actually make me more uncomfortable than I care to be.
It’s important to invest in seasonal items that provide function while lasting through trends. For my spring and summer wardrobe, I have one tan floppy straw hat and a paired of tan-colored strappy sandals that have lasted several summers, and for winter I have the same black wool coat and black biker jacket that I’ve both had since high school. These items have stood the test of time and have still yet to go out of trend.
Shop the look
Woven Sun Hat With Ring: $12.00
Khaki Straw Hat With Feather Detail: $14.00
Woven Straw Floppy Hat: $14.99
Khaki Wide Brim Hat With Bow Tie: $11.99
Off-shoulder Button-up Blouse: $21.00
Off-the-Shoulder Cropped Shirt: $48.00
White Off The Shoulder Super Long Sleeve Shirt: $14.00
Dip Curve Hem Button Up Shirt: $19.00
Tie Waist Pants With Pockets: $17.00
Elastic Waist Tapered Pants: $17.00
Woven Straight-Leg Pants: $11.13
Contemporary High-Rise Trousers: $17.90
Convertible Drawstring Backpack: $39.99
Tan Buckle Backpack: $32.99
Khaki Vintage Backpack: $21.00
Tassel Embellished Backpack: $21.00
Allegra K Chunky High Heel Sandal: $16.76 – $31.55
SNJ Chunky High Heel Sandal: $16.76 – $28.90
Forever 21 Faux Suede Ankle-Strap Sandal: $29.90
Shein Faux Suede Chunky Sandal: $33.00
Are you going to try building a minimalist wardrobe? Let’s chat in the comments below. Remember to subscribe to my newsletter for more outfits and fashion posts delivered to your email.
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This is a great post. I agree with you on the neutrals. It is my little secret on how I minimize my wardrobe too. Solid colors are likely to be used throughout the whole year. It’s a smarter way to shop and nust makes fashion life easier. Btw, i want those exact shoes… The ones you linked are similar but not the exact one lol. I like the thickness of the front strap because I have wide feet so those are the only ones that will look good on me. So… Where are they from lol??
Hey JJ, I actually got them from Ross a few years ago, so I’m afraid I can’t help that much there. Lol. the brand is “indigo rd.” if that helps at all!
So many gems in this article!
Thanks for reading!
I love all the advise here but specially the part about not buying too many trendy things! Moderation is key!
Thanks for popping in and leaving a comment – and yes, too many trendy items causes not only closet clutter but increases so much unnecessary and impulsive spending!
I love the styling tips!! I need to incorporate more neutrals!
xo Debbie | http://www.tothineownstylebetrue.com