Spring Capsule 2021: Inspiration

spring capsule 2021 inspiration
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Spring Capsule 2021

I railed against the popularity of capsule wardrobes for years because so many people were using them as an excuse to buy more than they needed. But now that I live in a true, four-season city in an apartment with one closet, my wardrobe has essentially turned into a capsule out of necessity. In this post, I want to share my Spring Capsule 2021 Inspiration, and how it informs my shopping decisions.

For me, a capsule simply means that I rotate clothing in and out of storage based on the weather. Just last week, I moved my heavy winter boots back into boxed storage and brought out loafers, oxfords, and lower-traction boots. I also put away my heaviest winter jackets and brought out a few mid-weight, short sleeve shirts for the warming days.

I think of my wardrobe as prioritizing two main seasons: winter and summer. Those items then get mixed and matched by weight, style, and fabric for the transitional months of fall and spring.

During my sorting exercises, I took the opportunity to try on nearly everything that had been in off-season storage. Due to weight gain and lifestyle changes, I ended up donating two bags of stuff to my local thrift store. Fortunately, I won’t need to replace too much because I had an overabundance of certain items, like t-shirts and sweaters.

But I’m glad I did the assessment because now I know what it will be worthwhile to purchase going into this season.

Practical Shopping Lists

One big lifestyle change is that I’m about a year out from the clergy workforce. And I’m already working part time at a local parish. As we move toward more in-person events, I need to consider a more professional wardrobe.

Though I prefer denim, I need to have at least a couple pairs of tailored work pants and would like a pair of nice leather loafers. I could also stand to invest in 2-4 nicer shirts and a comfortable blazer. I don’t want to overdo it, because I know that I’ll have a better idea of what to buy once I’m working full-time. But I would like to put my best foot forward in the meantime.

Vs. “Listening to My Lizard”

A woman I follow on twitter, @frisky_gatos, has sparked a conversation on choosing clothing that we are intuitively drawn to rather than trying to meet certain criteria or dress according to others’ expectations.

I appreciate the conversation inasmuch as it celebrates each person’s uniqueness and potentially points away from aspirational buying for lifestyles we don’t actually have. But I have to be conscientious of the fact that my “lizard brain” would literally only buy mid-wash denim and striped t-shirts, and that I already own an overabundance of these things.

I am in the process of sorting out what intuitive dressing looks like in the context of a more professional wardrobe. And I’m doing it on a student budget with a hard-to-fit body.

Lots to think about!

Inspiration

Casual, Everyday

Features: Mid-Wash Denim, Straight and Cropped Bootcut Jeans, Crew-Neck Styles, High-Cut Tank Top, High-Tops, Loafers
Colors: Green, Black, Neutrals, Blue, Pink

Already Own: Jeans, High-Tops, Tees
To Buy? High-Neck Tank Top, Loafers

Dressy Meets Casual

Features: Midi-Length, Buttons, Windowpane, Floral, Dots, Neutral Vertical Stripes, High-Tops, Slip-on Sandals
Colors: Navy, True Blue, Black, Taupe, Cognac, White, Pink

Already own: Mid-Length Skirts, Navy Dot Dress, High-Tops, Sandals, Cognac Leather Bag
To Buy? Vertical Stripe Skirt, Floral Skirt or Dress

Trousers & Blazers: Work Attire

Features: Gingham, High-waist, Pleated Trousers, Stripes, Belted, Mock-neck
Colors: Green, Rust, Taupe, Cognac, Black, White

Already own: Gingham Pants, Black Trousers, White Shoes, Striped Top
To Buy: Warm-tone Trousers, Black Cigarette Pants, Blazer

Putting it Together

Looking at all of my inspiration together, here is my color scheme:

I’ll add yellow and lilac to this list, because they’re already in my closet.

And here is my shopping list:

  • High Neck Tank Top
  • Classic Black Loafers
  • Neutral Stripe Skirt
  • Floral Dress or Midi Skirt
  • Black Cigarette Pants
  • Taupe or Brown Trousers
  • Bright Blazer

Some of these are more wants than needs, so I can hold off for awhile. My priorities right now are the loafers, pants, and a blazer.

I’ll head over to my old standbys to look for clothing and also check out Etsy, Ebay, Thredup, and Poshmark for secondhand options.

Related:
Sustainable Work Clothing Guide
Ethical Alternatives to J. Crew
Sustainable Shoe Guide
Work Shoes

See past capsule inspiration

Looking for more? Shop 100+ sustainable and ethical brands with my Sustainable Brand Directory.
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