Good Morning! Here it is, as promised on instagram- an overview of my entire closet. Though this is a slightly embarrassing post for me (I'm not even sure why- I think it feels a bit too personal?), I hope that it will give you some ideas on affordable places to shop ethically and how to build a lean wardrobe.
Honestly, When I look at this photo, my closet doesn't seem THAT small to me... I certainly have more than enough of everything that I need. I don't give myself a number that I have to stick to, by any means, though I'm quite happy at 43 pieces, I might go down a few more, or I might add a few more. I know that I'll definitely be adding a few pieces over the next few months, and there are a few worn-out items I'd like to retire when I do so.
Here's my closet sorted by type: Fair Trade/ethical pieces (though that white shirt is in the wrong spot and should be with the thrifted... oops!), Thrifted and Vintage, and Conventional. Everything that's in that section is at least 3 years old, most older!
I've tried, over the last few years, to collect items that work well together. I don't have a ton of prints, but I have enough to make sure that my look isn't boring and monochromatic all the time. I gravitate toward soft grays and blues, and stark black and white. As a petite girl with pale skin, pale hair, and light eyes, I've found that I don't look my best in things that are to bright or too bold- It's very easy to wash me out or overpower my features.
When I'm shopping, I ask myself "how many items that are currently in my wardrobe will match this piece?". Right now, most of the bottoms that I have match with nearly all my tops, and vise versa. This makes it so easy to get dressed in the morning!
Anyway, we can talk about that later... without further ado, my closet!
Here's a slideshow of the 43 items in my wardrobe, linked with sources where applicable!
Other Things to consider: Hats, Accessories, Swimwear, and Undies
My hats are from Threads4Thought, Krochet Kids, Vintage-made-in-the-USA, or handmade by my grandma, with the exception of the grey cap (which I've owned for many years) and the pink hat (a gift from a friend). Other sources that I love for hats include
I do want to add a few more scarves to my collection- they're such a great way to add a little variety to a limited wardrobe. Half of my scarves were gifts- the cowl was given to me last Christmas by my sister in law and the white scarf with words was given to me by my sister- she took all of my favorite quotes about social justice and radical living and hand printed them on the fabric. The striped scarf is by Connected in Hope and the colorful one is vintage.
Just for the sake of being transparent in this post, I wanted to photograph ALL my clothes, not just the ones that are in my daily wear-out-of-the-house wardrobe above. I've got an old Threads4Thought tee and Sevenly sweatshirt, as well as old jeans that are my designated "project clothes". I do alot of painting and DIYing and I don't want to wreck any of my "nice" clothes! I've also got a pair of workout capris, shorts, and a few tops (all very ugly and very old! I'm not cute when I work out.. though I'd love to find some pretty ethically made workout gear to replace a few of the most tired-out pieces!)
Swimwear- I love my made in the USA, vintage inspired suit that I purchased through Modcloth. My bikini is not ethically made- I purchased it because I thought that it would at least be long-lasting but unfortunately some sunscreen got on the fabric and BLEACHED it. I might try re-dying it this next summer? We'll see!
Socks and Undies! While I have NOT taken a photo of my entire collection (just a bit TOO personal. Awkward). I can assure you that I'm taking steps to add ethically made items to this essential category of my wardrobe. I'm a fan of PACT undies and socks (pictured below), and am working on switching over to all ethical pieces as things wear out.
One thing that is NOT pictured here, of course, is lingerie. This is the one area that I haven't "fair traded" at all (though I do, of course, boycott Victoria's Secret and several other companies)... There just isn't much out there that I've found! I feel a twinge of guilt every time I buy a piece, as it isn't a "necessary" purchase, but I love it... So it's on my to-do list this year to do a better job researching and finding things ethically made.
Fair Trade and ethically made jewelry was one of the first areas of my wardrobe that I started collecting. To be honest, I wasn't much of a jewelry person before I started buying it for causes, but now I really enjoy accessorizing a bit. The pieces I own are from the following companies: Amani Ya Juu, Hands Producing Hope, Starfish Project, 31bits, Mata Traders, Eden Ministries, Ember Arts, Sak Saum, 10 Thousand Villages, and Freeset. The few pieces that are left are gifts. My wedding ring is an old 1920's piece that Andrew found for me on Etsy, and both his wedding band and mine were custom made in the USA from recycled silver.
I hope that you've enjoyed this glimpse into my style and my closet! Let me know if you have any questions- I'd be happy to chat!