We all want to save the planet, right? With the Extinction Rebellion protests bringing London to a halt – thankfully making headlines that we really do need to act. Whilst I know many families have been focusing on ‘no plastic’ or at leas less plastic, and that really is a positive. But if we really want our kids to to inherit a healthy world, I really believe we need to look at the whole picture.
That includes our clothes. I love buying clothes. And tempting adverts keep popping up on my Instagram feed about box schemes that send a steady supply of new clothes. They look so much nicer than my clothes and there are moments when I achingly want them.
Whilst clothing might not sound like a ‘big deal’ compared to emissions from cars, or the plastic polluting the ocean. I do actually think it is a problem. I’ve read that the fashion industry is the second largest polluter in the world – right after the oil industry. Even if that’s not true and it’s the third or fourth or fifth largest polluter, it really doesn’t sound good.
One of my favourite instagrammers, Jessica Rose Williams has shared a lot about her efforts to simplify her life – and is queen of not only making do with less clothes, but also making the clothes she has work harder.
Back in the summer (when I actually had time to breathe), I thought I’d explore this concept a little more by trying the 10×10 Wardrobe Challenge.
If this is a foreign concept to you the idea was originally created by Lee Vosburgh and Caroline Joy about 2 years ago. It’s a way of really delving into what you already have, and exploring a different way of making those things work for you.
I’m often in the habit of just wearing the same things – in the same combination – on repeat. But actually this really is just habit and by mixing/matching even a little, old items seem new again.
The premise of the challenge is really quite simple: select 10 items from your wardrobe. Tops, sweaters, jeans, skirts, dresses, etc. So long as you already own them, coats, shoes, and accessories don’t count.
Those 10 items are your wardrobe for the next 10 days.
If you haven’t got 10 items that will work together, admit it and add a few more. When the time comes when you need to buy something new, consider how it will work with your existing wardrobe.
Your aim is to end up with a wardrobe that is big enough to cover your “regular” events – but not so big that you have clothes you hardly ever wear.
My summer attempt
Ok, so fashion blogger I am not. I have no idea how people get things looking nice/not creased or whatever. But here’s what I went from in late August in Edinburgh.
Whilst it was still warm, it was often wet, and cooler in the evenings. So whilst I could get away with bare legs – an oversized cardigan and the option of longer jeans was sorely welcome.
I opted for a white skirt I had bought in a fit of confidence and subsequently abandoned in my wardrobe, a trusted pair of shorts, an old skirt (not pictured) that needed repaired, and some ankle length jeans. Then for my top half, aside from the cardigan, a loose fit tee, a silk cami, a relaxed fit shirt, a fitted tee, and a weird twist top I’ve always felt a little self conscious in.
You’ll probably notice that it doesn’t contain much colour – none of my wardrobe does – but to me it was key to contain a couple of things I didn’t feel overly confident in. Whilst I knew donating them was an option (particularly given they’ve barely been worn) – I equally must’ve bought them for a reason to begin with and it was nice to explore that.
I’m not a huge fan of having my photo taken – and I went on a short trip with Katie half way through the challenge (who hasn’t quite mastered photo taking). But you here’s a few combinations I came up with…
Why am I sharing this now? Partly – I’m trying to keep up with Blogtober – but actually I found it a lot of fun. I ended up creating a capsule wardrobe for work, which I’ve found very freeing, and I’d like to try it again now Autumn is here.
So, would you a) like to see my work capsule, b) like to see what I come up with for an Autumn in Edinburgh 10×10 challenge or c) would you attempt this yourself?! Let me know in the comments below!