You ever find yourself standing before your overflowing closet, only to feel you never have anything to wear? I've reached that tragic point in life, partially due to my ever growing love for all things neutral. Yes, I'm that woman always dressed in black.
I didn't set out to have a uniform like Steve Jobs or Janelle Monae. I simply fell in love with the sleek basics that allowed my favorite accessories to shine. However, my monochromatic look was an accident and my wardrobe no longer fit my style. It was time for a complete fashion overhaul.
Determined to be intentional with my closet cleanse, I made my way over to Pinterest for a little inspiration only to stumble:
The Five Piece French Wardrobe (FPFW)
A list of basics that spoke to my minimalistic yet thought out styling desires. A guideline to keep me from needing racks of clothes that I rarely ever wore. I was ready to dive into the Five Piece French Wardrobe.
What Is The Five Piece French Wardrobe?
You may or may not have heard of the capsule wardrobe. A throwback to the sixties, this simplified curation of garments is about owning a few pieces that you can easily mix, match and accessorize to fit any occasion. Well, the FPFW embraces this concept, but with a twist.
The concept is pretty straight forward: You start by donating/tossing the clothes you don't love or wear. After taking stock of the pieces missing from the list, you buy only top-quality basics to fulfill your needs. Now this is the best part. Using your seasonal clothing budget, you purchase five new pieces to update and brighten your look. But keep in mind there are only two fashion seasons, spring/summer and fall/winter.
- You're allowed five new items every six months
- The basics don't count as one of your five items
- Socks and underwear do not count
- Only one investment bag per year
- Moderately price accessories don't count (under $100)
- However, shoes are a part of your five
How can this benefit me?
Beyond being able to fit your wardrobe into one closet, FPFW can enhance other areas of your life by:
Saving your time. When we streamline our clothing, looking polished becomes effortless. You won't have to question what matches because your entire closet is complimentary. Imagine having time to put on make-up or eat breakfast at home because you picked an outfit in 5-10 minutes.
Feeling your best. If your closet is full of past seasons' trends and sizes, it can be a struggle to feel put together. As you invest in high quality and tailored pieces, you begin always to feel amazing. Plus, you won't have to put away all the outfit fails still on your bed when you return home.
Being Less Stressed. Ever get halfway to your destination only to start wondering have you dressed appropriately? Once you have curated a basic wardrobe, you will be able to change your look with a shoe or accessory swap. By just throwing a clutch and heels in your bag, you're instantly ready to make any needed transitions.
Saving money. Look at your closet. How many piece have you rarely or never worn? We waste thousands of dollars on pieces we don't need over the years. By designing an iconic look, you will no longer waste time or money on clothes that don't fit your style. You will be able to invest in timeless pieces that you value.
The basics need to be based on your lifestyle needs for this to work. You are not necessarily trying to look like a Parisian woman, but embrace her style philosophy of less is more. With my style needs in mind, I have developed a list of my own.
My Additions: Tan/Nude Camisole, 2 Silk Blouses - Black & White/Creme and 2 Blazers - Black & White
My Additions: 2 Dresses - Black & Winter White and 2 Skirts A-line & Pencil
*I ditched the shorts because those are not my style
My Additions: Faux Fur Coat and Down Jacket
My Additions: Knee High & Snow Boots
My Additions: Necklace – Dainty & Long, Earrings – Hoops, Diamond , & Pearl, Bags - Large Tote & Crossbody, Pashmina, and Beanie/Beret
As I get busier and wiser, I understand that saving time and money are essential to creating the life I desire. Being a product of a fast-fashion and consumption driven age, I found myself spending money on clothes that I never wore. This list of basics contains all of the pieces that I always find myself reaching for or wishing I owned.
The process of curating an intentional wardrobe will be a journey for me, and I will be sharing it on the blog. Changing your shopping habits and views on style is not an easy transition, but we know all habits aren't good ones. If this has peaked your interest, I invite you to join and share the journey with by using the hashtag #REBELFPFW on Instagram and Twitter.
Five Piece Wardrobe Tips:
- Create the color palette for your basics that fit your style. You may opt for a lighter base for spring/summer and darker for fall/winter.
- Do your research. Start a secret pin board, Shopstyle or Polyvore feed of potential seasonal purchases.
- Budget your basics and always shop the sale.
- Embrace your style. Pick pieces that fit your body and help you feel your best.
Tell me, have you tried the FPFW before? If so, what were your triumphs and challenges? If not, have you considered being more intentional with your wardrobe? Are you willing to give this a try?