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Capsule Wardrobe Challenge Because Why Not

The Essentials

Capsule Wardrobe challenges are something I’ve read a lot about but never participated in. My wardrobe is already fairly small after a few years of buying mainly second-hand and being ruthless with eliminating things that I didn’t wear and that no longer fit. But I liked the sound of the Project 333 challenge (literally, my favourite number is 3) and decided to give it a try.

Selecting my 33 items felt a lot like packing for a longer holiday, but when I had my true essentials out I counted them up and only got to 17. Whenever I do pack for any length of holiday I put a lot of thought into packing as a way to re-direct my travel anxiety. I guess I’ve got that part of the capsule wardrobe process down.

The 10 items x 10 outfits challenge seemed too short a time to actually challenge my creativity when it comes to combinations and styling.

So like a modern-day, 33-year-old Goldilocks* I found the middle option to be just right…

10 items for 30 days

For my 10×30 challenge I have borrowed most of the rules from Hello Brownlow’s similar challenge:

  • Simply pick out 10 wardrobe items, including accessories, and wear only those 10 for 30 days.
  • Accepted exceptions to the rule of 10: socks, underwear, bras, workout clothing, sleepwear, jewellery you don’t generally remove (wedding ring, non-earlobe piercings, etc).
  • My personal exceptions: outerwear, shoes, sunglasses, bags.

I live in a city and I either walk or cycle so I need a bit more freedom when it comes to shoes and bags. I have chosen a jean jacket for one of my ‘official’ items, but I reserve the right to pick something different to suit the weather. Sunglasses are non-negotiable as I am very light-sensitive.

Here are the 10-ish items that you and I are about to get suuuuper familiar with:

wardrobe challenge clothing pictured: black culottes, ripped jeans, black t-shirt, black and white stripped t-shirt, black and grey top, patterned sleeveless shirt dress, jean jacket

black wide-legged culottes (1)
ripped and cropped skinny jeans (2)
black v-neck t-shirt (3)
black/white t-shirt (4)
sleeveless black/grey top (5)
patterned sleeveless shirt dress (6)
jean jacket (7)

wardrobe challenge accessories pictured: black belt with rose gold buckle, set of bracelets, zodiac coin earrings, sunglasses

black belt with rose gold buckle (8)
set of bracelets (9)
zodiac coin earrings (10)
sunglasses (necessary)

bags pictured: black crossbody or shoulder bag, black backpack, black slouchy tote

black crossbody / shoulder bag
black Kanken backpack
and for variety… a black slouchy leather tote

shoes pictured: black leather sandals, black suede trainers, Dr. Martens

black leather sandals
black suede trainers
Dr. Martens

Aside from the obvious challenge of making these things look and feel good for an entire month, I think the hardest part – and possibly the most environmentally unfriendly – will be keeping the clothes clean. If I end up doing laundry more often, then this size of capsule wardrobe isn’t exactly sustainable is it?

We’ll see. And we’ll also see just how creative I can be when I’ve been wearing the same seven pieces of clothing for 23 days and I still have a whole week left.

If you’d like to follow along in real time I’ll be posting my outfit each day on my Instagram feed, with outfit outtakes and other fun bits on my stories! #10x30xRachel

*Fun fact: when I googled Goldilocks to make sure I remembered it correctly I learned that in the original story the cheeky intruder was on old woman who trespassed into the home of three civilised, bachelor bears. Which makes this my new favourite fairy tale!