Alexis posed a minimalist challenge to me to come up with my 5 perfect, most versatile clothing pieces to wear year-round.
Can you create a wardrobe so minimalist that it has ~5 pieces TOTAL and can take you to 99% of life situations?
An outfit that is suitable for work, for play, for wedding and funeral… plus some layers that make it acceptable to wear all year round.
OK. It is going to be really limiting, but I can do it.
In these 5 pieces, I am not including things like loungewear, underwear, coats, shoes or accessories because if you live anywhere with 4 seasons, you need at least 2 coats (winter and a light trench or leather jacket), and that already eats up 2 pieces, not to mention the boots, winter boots & flats at a minimum.
All of the following items except the ones noted, would all be in neutral, solid tones so they could work together.
ITEM #1: WRAP DRESS
I definitely would pick a navy or black wrap dress without question and probably sleeveless to be as versatile as possible (sleeves are hard to wear in the summer).
ITEM #2: CASHMERE SWEATER
I like v-neck sweaters, in truly soft high quality cashmere (which can be had secondhand for a fraction of the price).
My colour picks for this would be beige, navy, or light grey. I wouldn’t ever pick black or anything dark because I want to keep the tones on the lighter end.
ITEM #3: BLAZER
I like my blazers in all sorts of neutral shades, but I’d go with a nice black, navy or dark grey in a blazer. I treat blazers like a comfortable, albeit dressier ‘sweater’ swap out option.
ITEM #4: SLIM FIT TROUSERS
I like mid to high rise trousers that are a cigarette / ankle length. They can be casual or dressy depending on your footwear.
My colour picks here are a dark grey, black or navy.
ITEM #5: T-SHIRT / TANK TOP
I would like a t-shirt or tank top that is perfectly fitted.
My ideal colours would be white, ivory, navy blue, and any grey. I’d even consider navy and white striped t-shirts as neutrals but they’re harder to wear under items as layers, so I’d stick to white as my pick.
T-shirts and tank tops are essentials in any wardrobe as an undershirt, or just to wear with some bottoms.
OUTFITS THAT CAN BE CREATED WITH THE 5 ABOVE PIECES
FOR WORK: 5 OUTFITS AVAILABLE
FOR THE WEEKEND:
Just change the shoes from high heels to flats shoes or boots:
FOR AN EVENT
Just wear the wrap dress with some heels. Add the black blazer if you feel the need to.
If the event allows, you can wear the white t-shirt, black pants, the blazer & heels instead of the wrap dress.
IS IT REALLY PRACTICAL OR IDEAL?
I think this sounds terribly limiting, and I can already see myself not loving it. Sure, it takes all thought out of dressing, and you can just change up the necklace, the rings, etc… but I love fashion and style too much to just limit myself to 5 pieces for an austere minimalist wardrobe.
Would I be happy?
Even as a minimalist wardrobe, I need at least 10 pieces to make a true, absolute must-have minimalist wardrobe for myself that could work year-round.
I would add these extra items to help transition between casual and dressier things and to add more spice.
- Blouse (sleeveless, silk and in a jewel tone is my preference or a great light blue and white pinstripe)
- High-Rise Dark Rinse Jeans (love these)
- A-Line skirt / Pencil skirt (need another ‘bottom’ option)
- Striped Long-sleeved top (soft, comfortable, long sleeved, in a stripe navy blue and white)
- Printed dress (a sheath dress in a nice print would be my pick)