Minimalist Monday: 5 Tips for Maintaining a Minimalist Wardrobe

Minimalist wardrobes are pretty awesome and inspiring. But how easy is it to stick to one once you've settled on your items or pressed publish on your minimalist wardrobe blog post? Self doubt can kick in (austerity in your wardrobe are you mad?). It's so easy to relax the the number of items in your wardrobe. After all 40 items or less can look lonely and it's so easy to take pity on stray garments that come your way, look you in the eye and somehow connive their way onto a spare hanger. Yes, maintaining a minimalist wardrobe takes discipline. But it can be done. Here's 5 simple tips to help. 

1. Go shopping less often. Ideally go shopping for clothes twice a year. Shop purposefully with a wish list. If you feel tempted to buy something wait 24 hours, then a week, then a month and the desire for that item often disappears. Remember that you already have a well put together minimalist wardrobe to cover your clothing needs. Put anything you still desire on a wish list. 

2. Have fun. A minimalist wardrobe doesn't have to be totally monochrome. You can have colour, pattern and quirky details in your wardrobe and having them can make all the difference to making a minimalist wardrobe work. If you desire some colour go for colour in a dress as this is a stand alone piece that only has to coordinate with footwear and a coat. It's an easy way to add pizzazz to your minimalist wardrobe and make your wardrobe a happy place.  

3. Stick to some rules. Set a limit for your wardrobe size. Mine is 40 yours might be more or less. Use the 1 in 1 out rule to maintain the size of your wardrobe. Apply the 2 to 1 ratio of tops to bottoms rule to have versatility and balance in your wardrobe. Try following other rules like not shopping in the sales or aiming to have just 1 of some items such as 1 handbag, 1 pair of gloves or 1 winter scarf.

4. Get rid of items you've stored away. If you have stored some 'just in case' items of clothing away in the process of creating your minimalist wardrobe after 6 months try and get rid of the boxed up items. If you've not missed the items (and can be brave and ruthless) get rid of the boxes without looking in them. If you must take a peek don't save everything, salvage several items to store for longer but get rid of the rest. Your aim is to own only the items in your wardrobe and not have extra boxes of clothes in storage in your home. The temptation to raid a box of clothing is never far away and you could easily end up with an expanding wardrobe if you start raiding clothes that are in storage. Soon you could back to where you started with a bursting wardrobe. Not a good result. 

5. Be happy with what you've got. Working towards having the ideal wardrobe takes time so don't expect every item to be perfect. Instead make the most of what you've got. Some items might not be the right colour or as versatile as you'd like but stick with them until you can afford to improve these pieces. Use the information you've learned from wearing 'not quite right' clothes to make more purposeful purchases in the future. Be happy with the progress you've made to date even if your minimalist wardrobe is not finished. Be kind to yourself if you make mistakes and believe that one day you'll create a minimalist  wardrobe. Be happy with the extra time and energy not having to maintain a large wardrobe gives you. Use this time to nurture yourself taking time for your health and relationships all of which can improve how you feel and look. Looking good isn't just about what you wear it comes from the inside too. 

More important than anything in your minimalist wardrobe is having a healthy and happy relationship with yourself. Take care and have fun xo



  1. I have just taken a break from watching the Snooker final, was about to shut down my computer but just had to take a peep at my favourite blogs and have just watched your video ... excellent advice. I don't think I have 40 wearable items in my wardrobe, I think that would be quite a selection. Do you include outer wear in this wardrobe? What about scarves which I use to ring the changes with neutral colours. I even tie a scarf around my straw hat in summer and it makes the hat look different each time I wear it.
    I'm not sure about the quest for just one bag. I'm not barmy about bags, but I do have about four good ones in the neutral shades of black, navy, tan and one which is a mix of cream,navy, taupe and tan (yes, it does work!) which goes with so many of my neutral outfits.
    I really enjoy your blog and even though I'm perhaps a tad older than most of your readers, we can always learn something new, regardless of age.
    Margaret P

  2. I love this! Point 4 is very applicable to me. In our house we have stuff in the spare bedroom which has been sorted through and is just sat waiting for... well who knows!! From here it goes into the garage (which I jokingly call my holding bay), in anticipation of going onwards to car boots, etc. I have in the past raided these bags for stuff I had second thoughts on. It really has got me nowhere. I must try to be more radical. (Mrs LH)

  3. Lovely to see and hear you again Claire - and offering such good advice as usual.
    My minimalist journey continues apace but I agree with you that it's important to value the progress made and learn from mistakes.

  4. I love these posts... They make me want to reevaluate my clothing all the time & be sure I really like & wear what's hanging in my closet! :)

  5. What a pleasure to drink my morning tea in your company, Claire!

    And thankyou for pulling the most important tips together, which I'm sure is going to be really helpful to many and a great concise reminder - I agree with them all, even if I don't hold myself 100% to them ;o As a knitter, I'm always going to have many shawls/scarves/socks/gloves... lol

  6. Good video and good advice! It was heartfelt and I can tell that your wardrobe changes have made a difference in your life.

  7. Claire it's so lovely to hear and see you! You came over really well, and those are great tips, thank you. x


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