30 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 2 bags
This is Part 6 of my blog and video series on how to build a minimalist wardrobe. In Parts 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 I showed you how to style fifteen basic items in a variety of ways. In this part, I talk about choosing fabrics for your wardrobe.
I’m sure you have noticed that a common thread in my videos and blog posts is an obvious obsession with the types of fabrics I wear. This neuroticism exists for two main reasons. The first is that I value comfort so much. Better quality fabrics generally feel better on my skin. I know I will not wear something that irritates or makes me sweat. The second reason is wear and tear. In my small wardrobe, I wear each of my items often. I need to purchase items that are resilient, as they will get washed more and are at risk of getter worn out quicker.
It is valuable to have an idea of the qualities of different fibers to make informed decisions and ensure the durability of what you purchase. In my video (below), I divide fabrics into those which are made from synthetic fibers versus those that are of natural origin.
Natural fibers are more breathable, insulative and look better. As a general rule, natural fibers require more care, but are more durable, practical and comfortable. Synthetic fibers, especially those with elastane in them, are more likely to warp with wear with time.
My favourite summer fabrics are cotton, linen, silk and viscose. In winter I mostly wear merino and cashmere wools. If you would like a rundown of the origins and benefits of each of these, check out my fibers post from earlier in the year.
Here is one important disclaimer, though. Higher quality fabrics require higher care, so make sure you read the care label of an item before you purchase it. While I’m a bit cheeky and at times ignore the words ‘dry clean only’, this is risky behaviour that can result in ruined outfit dreams. Always consider whether you can even be bothered caring for an item as per instructions, especially if it is of considerable expense.
Here is a video I made with a lot more detail about this topic.