One of the hardest things about being vegan isn’t the food, it’s the fashion. (It’s probably the first time you’ve heard “vegan” and “fashion” in the same sentence, but trust us.) Since vegans don’t wear wool, leather, or silk, finding sweaters, shoes, and cute tops can be a big challenge. One of our goals here at Rebelle Kitchen was to inspire you to buy cruelty-free fashion without becoming materialistic. The solution? A capsule wardrobe: a curated mini-wardrobe you plan for and wear by the season. Below, I give you:
- The who, what, when, where, why, and how this capsule wardrobe came to be
- My complete capsule wardrobe, and
- Each part of my closet broken down by type
The who: Just me this time. But wouldn’t a maternity capsule be so cute? Let’s convince Kendra!
The what: Inspired by one of my favorite blogs, un-fancy, I wanted to pare down my closet to just the items I loved/felt great in. No more “blah” outfits, even casual ones. Also, I tend to resort to retail therapy when I’m stressed or upset, meaning I had way too many items that were bought on a whim and didn’t fit my style or the other pieces in my closet.
The when + where: Summer 2017 , though our summer weather in Charlotte tends to be long. Pray for me, y’all. Since it stays so hot (and humid!) for so long here, I plan on wearing these clothes May – September at the very least.
The why: In short, because I was tired of having a closet full of clothes with nothing to wear, or a bunch of stuff that almost worked but wasn’t quite the right fit/color/shape. I’d rather have a few items I love and adore vs. a pile of things I just feel ok about. That meant tossing a basic tank that was too tight, a chambray shirt that rode up, and a pair of jeans that stretched to three times the original size each time I wore them. I replaced all of those things with similar items that worked much better.
The how: Using this (free!) downloadable capsule planner from un-fancy, I defined my style, the favorite pieces that were already in my closet, and the colors I gravitated towards. I made a list of a few missing “puzzle pieces” to buy and off I went!
Ready to see it? Here we go!
So there you have it: my split wardrobe personalities. Part Lilly-everything, part basic neutrals with pops of leopard. If anyone wants to analyze my personality based on this wardrobe, I’m up for it! Let’s get into each part of my closet with a little bit more detail:
Nothing super crazy here, but I actually had to do a good amount of shopping for basics. After looking at what I already owned and liked (mostly solid colors, tunic length when I could find it) I set out to find black, white, and navy tanks in both casual and dressier versions. I never found a dressy white top that I loved, so I’m still on the lookout! Other than that, I obviously gravitate towards solid tops that can be paired with most or all of my jeans/shorts.
- Casual white tank (not see-through!)
- Seersucker button-up (old) | similar | similar | similar | similar
- Chambray shirt
- Gauzy olive tunic | similar | similar
- Grey tunic (old) | similar | similar | similar
- Casual navy tank
- Dressy navy halter | similar | similar | similar | also fun
- Silk-like shirt (old) | similar | similar | similar
- Dressy black tank
- Casual black tank
| BOTTOMS |
My smallest category for my not-so-small bottom half. Ironic, right? My pear-shaped self tends to like to highlight my upper body, which means this category is small and simple: preppy white scalloped shorts + jeans, a super-comfy pair of distressed jeans, and the world’s best pair of jeggings. (I get compliments on them all the time.)
- White scalloped shorts
- White skinny jeans | similar | similar | jegging version
- Distressed jeans
- The world’s BEST jeggings
| DRESSES |
Out of these 10, I already owned 8 of these dresses. Holla! The only two I purchased were my black shift dress from Old Navy and the black midi dress from Gap. When it’s summer, I just never get tired of my Lilly dresses. They look great whether I just got back from the pool or am trying to be a little dressier and head to a party. (I love parties. *cough* Invite me to your next one *cough*). And despite my love for LOUD Lilly Pulitzer prints, there’s just something about the simplicity of black that I can’t get enough of. Plus, with a summer tan black is even prettier. Bring on the black!
- Casual racerback Lilly Pulitzer dress (old)
- Popover Lilly maxi dress (old) | similar
- 3/4 sleeve Lilly dress (old) | similar | similar |
- Lilly tank maxi (old) | similar | similar
- Casual racerback Lilly dress (old) | current version |
- Black tank dress
- Midi dress (on sale!) | similar
- Navy Lilly shift dress (old) | current version 1 | current version 2 |
- Fancy black maxi (old) | similar | similar
- Racerback maxi (old) | similar | similar | similar |
| SWEATERS |
I know, I know. Who needs a sweater in 95 degrees? But I grew up with no A/C, so I get chilled (and cranky) very quickly when restaurants/movies theaters are icy cold. Plus, I’m taking trips to places like Portland, where a breezy evening may call for something on your arms. As for vests, I just love throwing them on over all-black workout gear or plain jeans and a tank to make it look like I’m putting in some effort. (I’m putting in zero effort. #nameofmygame.)
- Long gray cardigan
- Light sweater (old) | similar
- Long blue cardigan (no longer available) | similar | similar | similar
- Leopard vest | similar | Here’s how to turn a scarf into a vest
- Field jacket (old) | similar
- Gray vest (VERY old) | similar (<$10!)| similar | similar | similar
| SHOES |
Seriously the most challenging category when you don’t wear leather or suede, but we’re persistent over here at Rebelle Kitchen. When I was looking for shoes for my wedding last year I found the holy grail: gold wedges that were leather-free. You’ll love the two options I found for you below!
- Slip-on sneakers (old) | similar | similar
- Leopard “Birkenstocks”
- Gold “Jack Rogers” Navajo sandals | similar
- Peep-toe espadrilles
- Gold wedges (old) | similar (and 40% off!)| similar
Whew! There it is in all of its capsule glory. P.S: A capsule wardrobe doesn’t include workout clothes or accessories, so I still have plenty of those lying around. I also have a small amount of “special occasion” clothes that aren’t included in the capsule that I’d wear to church, a wedding, etc.
What do y’all think? Is a capsule wardrobe something you’re interested in trying? Holla at me in the comments below.
And if you’re in Charlotte June 12th, come take my Building a Capsule Wardrobe SkillPop class! It’ll be my first day of “retirement” from teaching and you can bring your own wine. I would love to see you there!