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Planning a capsule wardrobe in the Bullet Journal

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On Pinterest I often see the most beautiful wardrobes and clothing racks. All clothes neathly ordered and color coordinated. I love to watch these images. They look so beautiful an have a certain calmth over them. After reading several books about minimalism and ofcourse Marie Kondo’s books, I realised it is actually possible to create a wardrobe that will make you happy every single time you look at it instead of getting stressed out of all the different shapes, colors and textures that look at you every time you open your closet.

What is a capsule wardrobe

A capsule wardrobe is a clothing collection existing of only those pieces of clothing you truly love, that fit your personal style and lifestyle and that are easily combined with each other. A capsule wardrobe is created for a period of three months. In total you’ll have four different capsule wardrobes throughout the year. One for each season. A capsule wardrobe often consists of 33-37 items including shoes, coats and bags. Ofcourse not everyone “needs” four different wardrobes. In some parts of the world, there are only two seasons and there is no need for four different wardrobes. The capsule wardrobe is fully adjustable to your needs and wishes. Maybe you are happier with only two capsules consisting of just 10 items or you couldn’t be happier with 12 capsules consisting of 57 items each. Whatever suits you, suits the capsule wardrobe. The only thing is, that every single piece in your capsule should fit your life and should make you happy.

There are several benefits of having a capsule wardrobe. First of all, the aestetics of a capsule wardrobe are amazing. Your wardrobe has never looked so instagrammable before. Secondly, getting dressed in the morning will take much less time. Since every single piece of clothing will look great together and will fit your lifestyle, you can literally just pick anything and you’ll look great. Imaging what you could do with all the time you save when you don’t have these “I don’t have anything to wear” dilemma’s anymore! Lastly, a capsule wardrobe will save you money. It will make you much more conscious about the things you buy and it will help you in only buying clothes you will love for several years to come.

Maybe the question we should be asking is: Why NOT have a capsule wardrobe? I really wouldn’t know.

Your wardrobe has never looked so instagrammable before

In this article I will give you a guideline on how you could use your Bullet Journal in planning a capsule wardrobe. The method I will talk about won’t be a fast approach. The capsule wardrobe won’t be perfect overnight or in a couple of hours. It will take some time to truly find out what suits you and what makes you happy, but that’s okay. Even tough I have given my capsule wardrobe quite some thoughts now, it isn’t finished yet. It might take a couple of months extra, but after that I’ll have a wardrobe that I can use and update for the rest of my life.

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How to plan a capsule wardrobe in the bullet journal

The color schedule

Planning the capsule wardrobe start with defining your color scheme. Try to choose several base colors with some accents. White, grey, black, beige, navy and toned down jewel shades are often good base colors. For the accent color you can go as wild and bright as you want. You can also choose a certain pattern as accent in your wardrobe. Maybe you love flowers or maybe dots are something that make you instantly happy. In order to keep your wardrobe coherent, you could choose about three base colors and add in two accent colors or patterns. But again, a capsule wardrobe should suit you and what makes you happy. If you want to add in more accents or use only base colors, that’s fine too.

Defining your (life)style

Now it is time to ask yourself a couple of serious questions.

  • Is there a certain way of dressing that always makes you feel on top of the world if you dress accordingly?
  • What do you do for the largest part of the day? and what clothes are needed doing that activity?
  • What is the weather like where you live and what kind of clothing will suit this weather?
  • What clothing style do you love?
  • What do you do in your spare time? and what clothes are needed for that?

When you know the answer to these questions, it could help to write down a couple of keywords to remind you of these answers when you get further in the process.

Sketching it out

With all the questions answered, we take a piece of paper and start writing down the essential items that pop in your mind. The items that you wear very often and that are needed for the activities you do in a day. Keep in mind the items you already own. Maybe you can already make a distinction between some seasons. For example: do you need shorts during winter? Probably not, but it could be handy to have a pair of shorts in summer. Maybe some black jeans and blue jeans, a blazer, a little black dress. Just write down what you think is essential.

Now how many items have you written down? It is very likely the number of items will come very close to the average of 33 to 37 items per 3 months. Now we know what our essentials are, we can go onto the next step and start with bringing some actual change into our wardrobes.

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Cleaning out your closet

Well, it needed to happen some time didn’t it? Cleaning out your closet is essential to making a change in the way your closet looks and in how you dress. Take everything out of your closet and put it on the floor or on your bed. Don’t leave anything behind and refresh your wardrobe with some hot water and a sponge. I know it seems like you’re making a mess, instead of cleaning up but I can assure you this is the only way you’ll make this cleanout session work.

Now go trough all the items you took out of your closet. Ask yourself the Marie Kondo question: “Does it spark joy?”, does it make me happy? There are also some other questions you could ask yourself: “How often do i wear this? Do I need this for the activities I do in a day? Does it fit my style, my body, my life and my color scheme? If your answer to all of these questions is no, then maybe it is time to let this item go.

I know this can be very hard sometimes. Maybe you haven’t worn this item at all or you feel guilty about throwing out so many “good items”. But is it really such a shame if this item doesn’t add any value to your life at all? Maybe the item could add value to the life of someone else and you’re being selfish keeping it, for no particular reason.

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I have bought a lot of clothing in the past, especially during sale season. When I was younger I was very happy that I could afford to buy “real clothing” from my pocket money and I loved experimenting with different styles and clothing combinations. Did I wear these clothes a lot? “No”. Shouldn’t I have bought them in the first place? “No”, because at the moment they gave me the opportunity to experiment with my style and to help me find the style that I feel most comfortable in. Now I don’t wear them anymore, I can donate them to someone who can get even more value out of the item.

Organize your items in several piles. A “keep” pile with items you truly love and that fit your lifestyle. A “throw away” pile with items that are dirty, broken and unfixable.  A “donate” pile with all items that don’t suit you or your lifestyle anymore and maybe a pile for very specific seasonal items.

After organizing and cleaning out everything, you can hang back your keep items in your closet. It will already look a lot more neat and put together than before.

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Comparing and testing

Now take your list of items that are essential to the activities in your daily life and compare it to the items in your closet. Write down which items you already own and notice the items that are still missing. Don’t go out on a shopping spree just yet! First try to live with your new wardrobe for a couple of weeks or even months. Do you really miss the “missing items” on your list? Or weren’t they as essential as you thought they would be?

When you really do miss these items in your life, then you could go out and look for the perfect piece. But shop intentionally. Don’t buy things just to buy them. Be honest with yourself: Does it fit the color scheme of your capsule? Does it fit your body perfectly? Does it match other items in your capsule and is it an item of good quality that will last a long time? If you can honestly answer all these questions with a yes, you can add the item to your capsule wardrobe without any guilt.

Since every season has its own activities, weather and needs. It might be needed that you try out your current capsule wardrobe for a whole year, before you can honestly say which items are redundant or which items should be added to your wardrobe. Don’t worry, building a perfect wardrobe takes time and there is no shame in that. Once you’re comfortable with the list of “must haves” items, you can write the list into your bullet journal. Organize it by categorie or by season. Organize it however you like. This list will help you remember which items are useful and essential for your lifestyle.


I told you creating the perfect wardrobe wouldn’t take you a couple of hours! But even when it takes some time to finetune your capsule wardrobe, it will help you save time, money, stress and it will give you a boost of happiness every single time you open your closet. Are you convinced yet?

11 thoughts on “Planning a capsule wardrobe in the Bullet Journal”

  1. Wauw, wat een geweldig artikel! Je ziet dat je er heel veel tijd en moeite in hebt gestopt, petje af. Super tips ook. Ik ga dit artikel zeker bewaren en gebruiken. Keep up the good work!

    1. Wat een super lieve reactie! Ik ben blij dat je het zo’n informatief artikel vindt. Nu ik fulltime werk en minder tijd heb om te bloggen, vind ik het extra leuk om de artikelen die wel online komen extra aandacht te geven. <3

  2. Dat is echt zó leuk om de kleuren van je (toekomstige) kleding zo in je notitieboekje te plakken! En misschien ga ik dit binnenkort wel namaken, als ik tijd heb (nouja, ik móét hier gewoon tijd voor vrijmaken, haha).


    1. Dankjewel! Ik heb eigenlijk geen idee hoe oud de meeste lezers van mijn blog zijn op dit moment. Ik denk dat je nu inderdaad bij de jongere groep hoort, maar dat maakt helemaal niets uit. Ik probeer altijd te schrijven voor mensen tot eind twintig omdat mijn belevingswereld daar het dichtst bij ligt, dus daar pas je perfect tussen!

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