Project 333: Working with a Minimalist Closet

Dave and I have recently made a huge change in our lives.  We have started thinking and living in a more minimalist lifestyle.  Now I know what you are thinking “Heather, does that mean you have a completely empty house, with no sense of personality?!”  The answer is far from that.

If you come into our home you won’t only see a single chair and lamp in our living room.  We have quite a bit of art, a pretty full bookshelf, and a few little chachkies: mostly stone bears and skulls.  We enjoy art, we enjoy books, and we enjoy our coffee gear.  Don’t be fooled, however, we did get rid of a lot of excess crap.

As a person that struggles with anxiety, I have found having less physical clutter in the house has helped me in many ways.  Minimalism means to me keeping things that make me happy, and getting rid of the things that don’t.  I love my Storm Trooper dog treat jar, various coffee gadgets, and potted plants.  Those things serve me and bring me joy, so I keep them.  Where having 3 full sets of kitchen plates does not.

What I am going to focus on in this particular article is our wardrobes.  I get the most questions about my clothing, and how it works for me.  I hear often “I could never live with just 33 items!  That is crazy!”  Tons of friends have asked me how we do it and how we like it, so here we go!   We are using Project 333 (http://bemorewithless.com/project-333/) and we are very happy with the results.  To sum up the article, you have 33 pieces of clothing in your closet, not including undergarments, loungewear, and workout gear.  You switch out or asses the clothing every 3 months and change as needed.  Here is a picture of our closet.  I wish I had a before photo, it was stuffed to the max with stuff.  Every time I opened the closet door I feel like it was going to explode!

Yup, that’s my whole wardrobe 🙂

I have been living with a minimalist wardrobe for around four months now and I love it.  I pretty much know exactly what I am going to wear every day before I even get out of bed.  I really enjoy the outfits I have in my closet, and I still show my personal style through my clothing.  The most amazing part, is that I could remove even more clothing from my wardrobe and be happy.

Here is exactly what I have in my wardrobe:

Winter/Fall (mind you, I am in AZ so I don’t have to have extreme cold weather gear.  If you are in a cold climate you should probably switch out some of these things for warmer stuff.)

  • 2 pairs of boots: one black, one brown
  • 1 pair of fun sneakers
  • 2 pairs of moccasins
  • 1 pair of ‘dressier’ booties
  • 2 basic tanks: black and grey
  • 3 t-shirts (variety of basics and fun prints)
  • 1 wool turtleneck
  • 1 silk shirt for more dress up events
  • 2 long sleeve shirts
  • 1 heavy wool cardigan
  • 1 military style jacket
  • 1 jean jacket
  • 1 pleather jacket
  • 2 flannels
  • 1 heavy jacket
  • 3 pairs of jeans: 1 blue, 1 grey, and 1 funky print
  • 1 hat
  • 1 scarf

*** Jewlrey

Total: 27

Summer/Spring

  • 2 pairs of sneakers: one grey, one fun print
  • 2 pairs of sandals/ flip flops
  • 2 pairs of moccasins
  • 1 pair of Toms slip ons
  • 1 pair of ‘dressier’ booties
  • 2 basic tanks: black and grey
  • 4 t-shirts (variety of basics and fun prints)
  • 1 ‘fancier’ tank
  • 1 silk shirt for more dress up events
  • 2 dresses
  • 2 flannels
  • 2 kimonos
  • 1 weird fringe cover up thing
  • 3 pairs of jeans: 1 blue, 1 grey, and 1 funky print
  • 2 pairs of jean shorts

*** Jewlrey

Total:28

*** Even though you are supposed to count jewelry in this project, I don’t.  It is just my personal preference.  I did, however, assess all my jewelry pieces and got rid of quite a lot.  In total I probably have ~15 pieces of jewelry.

I modified this program to a 336 (~33 pieces, change every 6 months) method because of the climate I live in.  I don’t need a separate wardrobe for each season.  As you can see above, a lot of my pieces exist in both closets.  I put the other seasons wardrobe in our office closet, and rotate when the season calls for it.  I also keep one nice dress for weddings and a pair of pumps in that closet.  That is not counted in my 33 items.

When you start this project, you pack up all the extra clothes and put them somewhere that is out of sight out of mind.  For us we used the storage shed.  If you don’t miss any of the clothing by the end of the 3 months, then you don’t need them!  If you find yourself really missing a certain item, get it out of that box and switch it in your closet with something else.  The biggest tip I have if you are debating what to keep is to use basics as a base.  The you can add layers, fun shoes, or jewelry to add personality!  Some good quality basic tanks and tees will get you far in your wardrobe, since they are so versatile.

My husband and I started in our minimalism journey in our closets, tired of all the clutter and the closet exploding every time we opened it.  This mindset quickly spread to the whole house.  We took spring cleaning to a whole new crazy level.  It feels SO GREAT to have the excess clutter removed from our lives, and I have seen a big difference in my anxiety levels since we started this journey. I encourage all my readers and friends to try it out.  What’s the worst case?  You pack your clothes up, realize this isn’t going to work for you, and put them back!  Or, you may be like us, and find such inspiration in the mindset that you use it in your entire home.  You never know :).

I would love to see any tips or tricks other 333’ers have in the comments!  Tell me what works for you or what doesn’t.

Cheers friends!

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