How to create a capsule wardrobe?

In these difficult times, it might be a good idea that we take a moment for ourselves and do something we otherwise not would take the time for in between our busy schedules of juggling work and social engagements. That's why OSIER interviewed Teresa Mineiro, a fashion designer who cares about sustainable and ethical fashion. We asked her to share her tips on how to create a capsule wardrobe at home...

Teresa Mineiro stylist

Why should we even have a capsule wardrobe and how do we get started? 

Having a capsule wardrobe means that you really know what you have in your closet and what pieces of clothing are key to create the basis of an outfit. You should start by going through what you already have and try to identify which pieces you wear the most. Is it a white shirt? A pair of jeans? A blazer that you wear with everything? That dress that works in every season? Those clothes will become the basis. And then you can review all the other things you have and find out if you would wear them with the pieces you chose as your basis.


How many pieces should we have?

I would say between 20 and 30.


Teresa Mineiro

What are the criteria to decide over choosing to keep or toss an item of clothing? 

If you haven't worn that piece of clothing during the last year, you should toss it, if you wore it less than 5 times, you should check if it matches well with those main pieces you chose beforehand. If it does, keep it, if it doesn't, pass it along.


How can we repurpose the items that we are no longer keeping?

This is the question that gives me the chills. As people put no thought into what they're buying, they're creating a huge amount of waste. People buy on impulse. Either because they get excited or because they can't live without that trendy pair of neon green boots. or just because the price was so low that "why not?". If you still like it, try to give it another life, take it to your local seamstress and make a new piece out of it. Getting rid of clothes, you don't want anymore shouldn't be something you do light minded. You can try to resell the items, swap them in swap markets or with your friends. Or you can try to donate to local organisations (check if they really need what you're passing along). As an active citizen in my own city and having promoted swap markets and donation programs, I can assure you that sometimes, these charity organisations don't know what to do with the piles and piles of clothing that were donated to them.


Teresa Mineiro


Buying new, trendy pieces: Yes or No? 

NO WAY if you're buying from fast fashion stores! Unless you are a person who is very aware of your own style and with a lot of money and you can buy from top creative designers (there are a bunch of them going sustainable). These designers are the ones being copied by fast fashion stores. They have a new idea and it is stolen unscrupulously by all, and because everyone is leeching on that idea, it becomes a trend. So, if you want to support fashion as an art, go for it! If it is just because everybody's wearing that this month, please, don't.


What are your tips on styling basic items in a way for them to be chic and on trend?

If you have a very simple basis, like, one pair of blue jeans, one pair of black, a mini skirt, a midi skirt, a suit, some tops, blouses and sweaters in different colours, two or three dresses and some classic and warmer outwear, you’re all set. You can be classy with a minimal outfit or funky, if you use a dress on top of jeans, you can play with length, and layers. Plain coloured pieces work better for capsule wardrobes, but it doesn't mean that you can't play with cool scarfs, belts, headbands, bags, and all kinds of accessories (be sure to buy second hand or sustainable). I think it can be super fun to add some metallic hues, some pops of color, prints and textures to the simple look that you're already wearing.
This way you'll never be unfashionable, because classic and well-constructed items never go out of style and you can get creative around them, adapting your look to something or someone that inspires you at the moment.
We love these styling tips! What better time than now to get our wardrobe spring cleaned and organised.