It seems that more and more people are ditching bright-colored skinny jeans and neon sneakers for black leather jackets and trouser pants. The transition to minimalist styling comes naturally with age as most professional women trade in flashiness for comfort. However, there is an added plus: minimalist styling (after the upfront costs) can save you loads of money in the long run.
The issue with “trendy” clothes or items that seem to be “hot” one season and “not” the next is that they have a psychological way of impacting your finances. Today’s fashion industry has constructed tons of “micro-seasons” that push out new trends almost every other week; the goal behind this “fast fashion” ideology is to get consumers to buy as many garments as possible by making them feel that they are suddenly “out of style” when the new trend hits. With not-so-real “discounts” and cheap prices, the industry lures style aficionados into this consistent money-wasting cycle of “fast fashion” through the attractive guise of being “fashionable all the time.”
Additionally, many of the trendy clothing that we purchase is meant to fall apart after one wash. Many fashion stores make their profit from the consumers’ desire to purchase new clothing — and that can only occur if the clothes you’ve already purchased is no longer wearable. This is why many of your “trendy” fashion items are constructed from lower quality fabrics or synthetic materials that don’t have the longevity of other timeless fashion brands. Each year, the average American throws out more than 68 pounds of textiles directly into landfills.
Minimalist styling, on the other hand, offers the option to build a classic wardrobe with quality pieces that won’t go out of style. With less items in your closet that do not ascribe to “fast fashion” rules, you’ll find yourself shopping less month to month and throwing out less clothes overall. It’s a super affordable way to live and challenges your inner styling creativity.
Here’s how to embrace the change and start your minimalist styling transition:
Step 1: Get rid of “trendy” clothes
Now is the time to throw away that asymmetric skirt hanging in the back of your closet! Before transitioning your wardrobe, it is always important to purge of things you definitely don’t wear anymore. I suggest starting with the fashions fads from 2014 and earlier. You can easily donate them to a Goodwill or sell your mint-condition, unworn trendy clothes at a consignment shop.
Step 2: Stick with a color scheme
Monochromatic colors are going to become your best friend. It is pertinent to stick to a greyscale and neutral closet. Yes, I know this sounds super boring but you’d be surprised at how creative you can get with black, white, grey and shades of brown. The trick is to mix textures and patterns. By swapping a black cotton skirt with a black leather skirt with sliver zippers, your outfit goes from drab to fab.
Step 3: Stock up on investment pieces
Basics: Basics are the lifeline of a minimalistic wardrobe. But we aren’t talking about a five-dollar pack of white t-shirts from Walmart; invest in a couple of premium fabric basics from stores like Zara, or Nordstrom.
Denim: An important lesson my mother taught me is that three to four denim jeans is essential in anyone’s closet. The trick to making your jeans work for all seasons is to own a pair of light wash, medium wash, and dark wash jeans. Also, investing in a pair of black denim is great for business casual looks. Good places to buy affordable denim are American Eagle, Levi’s (if you buy them from Dillard’s or Macy’s they’re slightly cheaper), and Fashion Nova (perfect high-waisted jeans for thicker women with small waist).
Outerwear: All you need is three types of coats: formal, casual, and dressy. The formal coat could be a trench coat because trench coats are ideal for colder seasons. Always buy youe winter coats during the summer or fall. Plenty of stores have amazing pre-winter sales of coats in the months of September and October. The casual coat (my favorite) is a black leather jacket. There are so many styles of leather jackets to fit any personality type. Nasty Gal sells amazing leather jackets. Lastly, the dressy coat can be a long line blazer.
Accessories: All I have to say is “less is more.” A simple watch, bracelet or dainty necklace is all you need. Save your bright and funky colored jewelry for special nights out or when you want to wear a statement piece that pops all on its own. Don’t forget to pare down in this department and to dump out any old jewelry that has tarnished or turned green.