I have been minimizing closet-by-closet, room-by-room, but
my wardrobe has been one of my last projects. I’m a girl. I like to shop. I also love fashion…or do I? Just like the rest of the commercials both on TV and through social ads we are plagued by “stuff’” (hence my entire realization on the subject matter of minimalism). You need this, you need that, but what we really need is a break from all the crap. Last month I participated in a clothing swap and shop event in order to de-clutter my closet. Afterwards I took my clothes to Platos Closet and then straight to Goodwill. I didn’t even want them back in my house!
Now is the time to stop talking about the simplification and truly living it out in all areas. I still have over 200 pieces in my wardrobe and again, I can’t possibly be using those pieces to their fullest extent; maybe once in a blue moon. So Project 333 came across my Pinterest feed one day while searching ways to simplify and it has stuck with me. Not only because I like a good personal challenge, but because I’ve stripped away almost every title but this one has held strong. I am not what my wardrobe defines me as. One look at someone and you think dollar signs or style. Or you think about their fashion sense or lack their of. Or maybe you envy their ensemble and it leaves you a little less…happy.
Why simplify in the first place, some have asked? I want happiness. I want to know it at its deepest level and to its fullest extent. I believe happiness is an evolution and it takes work on our behalf to dive into every area of our lives to find what that means and how that suits each of our desires and hearts. I want to wear happiness, not just on my face and in my heart – but literally be clothed in it. Join me for My Own Version of Project 333 to find if there is happiness within your closet!
KNOW THE RULES:
33 Items in 3 months!
There is no rhyme or reason to how many of each genre of clothing! (i.e. I have 4 jeans, 1 pair of shorts, 5 dresses, etc.)Shoes ARE included in this number. (Tennis shoes are excluded, unless you wear them throughout the day besides working out!)Accessories ARE included in this (not everyday pieces, sunglasses or your everyday purse as you’ll see below)No switching pieces throughout the weeks!Any new purchases cannot be added to the 33 items until the challenge is over. So if you’re buying a new coat – it isn’t allowed to be switched out with the current one.
Your everyday jewelry pieces. (you don’t even take it off in the shower or to sleep) i.e. My stud diamond earrings, my wedding ring, my college ring, my cross necklace, etc.Sunglasses – the original Project 333 listed this as an accessory # in the item list, but I believe this is a necessity, especially living at the beach! Now that doesn’t mean you can switch out styles everyday – you get 1 pair!!!Purse – You are allowed as many bags as you want, but only 1 is excused as your everyday accessory. If you add a clutch or another purse, then that’s included in your 33 items!Workout clothes are NOT included. However, they MAY NOT be worn throughout the day. Only to workout in and then take off. So if you LOVE your yoga pants and wear them to do errands, carpool kiddos, etc. …they must be included in your 33 items. (this includes tennis shoes)PJs/undergarments also don’t count, but again, you can’t stay in them throughout the day like I know some of us love to do! If it’s you’re favorite comfy sweatshirt that you lounge in right after work until you have to shower – it has to be counted!Bathing suits –I’ve seen some challenges where they don’t count at all and some of them where every suit counts – but if workout gear doesn’t count, then I don’t think a bathing suit should! Now, that doesn’t mean you can wear your suit top as a shirt beneath your overalls! And I’m personally limiting myself to 3 because I have an abundance of them. (Confession: I haven’t cleared out that drawer yet!)Coat – You are allowed 1 heavy coat. Who knows what our crazy weather will do – it could be in the 80’s in November or 30’s with snow…so I’m allowing 1 heavy coat to be excused from the 33 number and utilized as a constant accessory.
IN A NUTSHELL:
33 items including shoes and accessories (Plus everyday jewelry, purse, sunglasses, coat)
** Pjs/undergarments, bathing suits & workout wear excluded
HOW TO GET STARTED:
Go through your wardrobe – Make 3 piles: Donation, Maybe, Donate. Remember the season you will be doing your challenge in!
Start by not even thinking about the Project333 challenge. Just clear the clutter.Once something goes in the donate pile – you can’t take it out!!!If you haven’t worn the piece in the last 6 months – it can be donated. If you have only worn it once, it’s definitely a donation. Remember, you can always rent the runway for the same cost as one purchased dress that just sits in your closet unused!
Reevaluate the maybe pile – Just say no! I promise in a few weeks, you won’t even remember what they were. I know I didn’t.
Find the basics for your 33 – We all have our favorite go-to’s. Maybe it’s your denim jeans or your little black dress. Start pulling those to the side! Remember universal is key.
Think of solids or simple patterns that can be rotated underneath or overtop of other pieces to switch the style. Printed T’s – I know these are all the rage right now! I have a ton myself, but I had to limit to the ones I knew would suit my fall color scheme choices AND were going to work with all of my bottoms!
Bottoms – After I got my go-to jeans, I added a couple of extra bottoms that I knew would be versatile and wouldn’t get boring. I’m always thinking of how to turn a daytime wear into a nighttime glam!
Layered pieces – You’ll want pieces that can be thrown over to switch up an entire look. Shaws, shrugs, jackets, scarves are great for this!
I like scarves, but figured I wouldn’t really need them until full on winter. So I’ll utilize that in the next season challenge.
Shoes – Pick your must have shoes. I suggest your every day wear, your dress up pair and a basic alternate color that can be worn day time or night time.
If you’re a shoe fanatic – you can surely have your shoe as your accessory piece, but remember you can do a lot more with a layered piece than you can with a pair of shoes!
Think Patterns – So you have your basic solids. Now let’s find your basic patterns. Concepts that aren’t too over the top that they won’t be forgotten, that can be mixed and matched with different colors and layered pieces.
Wild Cards – You want something that gives you some pizazz when you’re on a date night or out with friends. Pick a piece or two that may be louder than the rest, so you aren’t tempted to cheat! They can still be versatile. Perhaps a floral print or a favorite dress.
Accessories – I did this last. I obviously have my everyday I never take off pieces (so those don’t count to the 33), but any other pieces do!
If you don’t sleep or shower with your wedding ring, that can slide too. Basically if you can’t workout in it – it doesn’t count!I chose 2 hats – I know that seems silly to some who never wear hats, but to me it was a fun way to change up an outfit and make it look entirely different. Plus I have mom hair on the regular!
I also chose a piece that I could use a necklace and a wrap bracelet. Remember, versatility is key!
Bin the rest! All the remaining pieces and shoes not included should be put in bins or in another closet. Out of sight, out of mind.I have a big closet, so I pushed all of mine to the side and draped a white blanket on them like they’re being left for an estate sale! HA
So I’m allowing myself 2 cheat outfits that can each be worn ONLY ONCE during the 3 month time frame.My birthday falls during this time, so I figured one for that and then if you have a wedding or more formal event to go to that can be excluded too. (Not pictured so it can be a surprise to hubs.)
I hope everyone who joins along on the adventure finds a sense of peace about how they dress, what they actually “need” and what style means to them! I hope they can let go of the worldly view on what fashion is – no one can keep up with 52 seasons in a year! I hope you learn about an area of your life that deserves true focus, time and attention outside of “what am I going to wear”. I hope you relieve stress and burdens of comparison. I hope you find happiness beneath all of the clutter that consumes your closet. After all, happiness can not be bought.