As we prepare to shake off the winter doldrums, I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling very ready for a wardrobe refresh. After a season of nothing but puffy jackets and heavy boots (or in San Francisco’s case rain boots – there’s been so much rain our freaking crawl space flooded out killing our furnace – but that’s a different post), I want to put on things that are light, bright and most importantly easy to wear.
While I used to troll street style blogs for innovative outfit inspiration, I now look at street style and simply wonder what the heck they’re thinking! Fur lined slides, a kaleidoscope of colors and a mishmash of 80’s and 90’s trends?? Blech. I’m sorry, I dressed through those decades, I don’t need to do it again. I might be dating myself or have simply become boring, but this season I’m ready for timeless, classic silhouettes and quality wardrobe staples that I’ll wear for years to come. Minimalist style all the way baby.
The formula for minimal style is fairly straight forward. Step one: pick a monochromatic color palette and stick with it. White is my favorite pretty much all year round, but then comes camel, black, gray and navy. Right now I’m actually into a light putty, even so far as going with a blush piece or two, for spring. And a good striped shirt is a nice change from the classic white button down, but can still function as a neutral.
Denim is my closet’s foundation, but I’m ready to say see ya to all the skin tight and overly-distressed jeans that have been the look du jour. Wide legs are having their day. Extra long and high waisted or cropped at the ankle, either way, they look stellar. And kick that stretchy denim to the curb. Raw denim, though a bit more finicky, is really denim at its best. You just need a good fit in the waist and butt (cuz they will stretch out) but that crisp straight leg is a good look on anyone.
And even though they’re called basics, minimal pieces can be anything but. If you invest in high quality fabrics – think cashmere, Japanese linen, good chunky knits, supple leathers – the craftsmanship is going to stand out in the fast-fashion crowd. And the details don’t hve to be boring. I’m obsessed with the oversized cuff of Anna Quan’s shirts. Levi’s and Citizens of Humanity are doing some very cool vintage denim. High waists, good tailoring or dramatically oversized pieces keep your look feeling fresh.
So as spring gets in full swing, attack that closet. Set aside the 5-10 things you actually wear and then gather everything else in a giant pile. Do you see yourself wearing anything in that pile in the next six months? If not, out it goes. Consign the good stuff and donate the rest. Then you can fill in any gaps with the aforementioned minimal basics. Trust me, you’ll feel ten times lighter and ten times happier every time you get dressed.
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