5 Steps To Curate a Conscious Wardrobe !

Fashionable and Sustainable!

Trends come and go, but the damage we do to the environment in the name of fashion is a concern. Fast fashion brands that come up with a new collection every few months are the root cause of these problems. Mass-produced, cheap and disposable clothing is a problem. Nearly 100 billion garments are produced each year and we discard tons of textile waste which raises an alarm. 

Creating a conscious wardrobe would be the first step you take towards sustainable fashion. Most people don’t use 1/3rd of the clothes they own. We unintentionally wear the clothes that form the top of the pile. It’s a human tendency. Creating a capsule collection for yourself will ensure that you buy only a limited number of clothes per year and that each year, you assess your requirements and add or delete accordingly. Falling for the ‘latest’ trends or splurging on an outfit to wear for a couple of hours isn’t a sustainable practice. Let’s look at ways we can ensure we look stylish with limited means: 

1. Like Marie Kondo says, “Keep only those things that speak to the heart and discard items that no longer spark joy”. Living by this philosophy is tough but practising a little bit every few days would help declutter your wardrobe. Evaluate your style, take inventory of what you have and assess what you wear every day. This way, you will know what style of clothes you are currently wearing and what have been sitting in the back of the cupboard for years. Anything, apart from festive wear, if you haven’t worn in the last 6-8 months should be in a discard pile. Clothes that you have year marked for when you would lose weight or gain weight should be reconsidered. Sometimes we hoard clothes in the hopes that we would wear them someday. But if the day hasn’t arrived yet, these ‘things’ are not worth keeping. 

2. Figure out your style, what you like, your body type, your place of work and your day-to-day requirements. Some of us have aspirational clothing which may not be suited for our current lifestyle. Aligning your wardrobe with your style will help you utilise it to the best. Curating a style that’s true to your personality and is best suited for you is ideal. Especially since online shopping and one-day deliveries are the norms now, it’s very easy to get blinded by the sheer volume of what’s available.

3. Shopping for Wardrobe staples: Now this is an important point, let’s help you pick a few wardrobe staples that you must invest in. Rather than buying 10 pieces of clothing within your budget, go for 2 items that would give you styling options and quality over quantity. For example, 2-3 pairs of good quality denim jeans will last you a lifetime! And they can be styled in millions of ways. To make things a bit easier, here is a breakdown of what a capsule collection looks like – White Shirts/T-shirts X2, neutral colour tops X2, Coloured T-shirts or tops, Blacktops X2, Denim jacket X1, Beige/Brown/Black Blazer X1, Black leggings X2, Blue jeans X2, You can certainly add more pieces to this depending on your liking and needs. 

4. Mix n Match: Now that you own the staples, you can create various permutations and combinations. A blue jean with a solid top paired with a blazer is informal office wear but at the same time, if you wear the blue jeans with a black top, it’s great for a night out. 

5. Shop consciously: All this does not mean that you don’t shop, you just shop consciously. A set of staples in your wardrobe makes getting ready effortless. A lot of Indian brands believe ethically and slowly. Okhai, The Summer House, Nicobar, Anokhi etc have collections that are sustainable and very close to the ethnic sensibilities.  

Pictures from Okhai and Anokhi Jaipur.

It’s all about embracing minimalism. A few good pieces will do wonders for your style rather than buying what’s currently hot and trending. A careful and mindful assessment of what your ideal wardrobe should look like will make this process a lot smoother.

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