Mad Cat Capsule: Recent Additions and New Count

I have done a pretty good job all year of not buying any new clothes. I have bought some things second hand and we recently had a clothing swap at work, so I have picked up a few new to me items! 

I have never done a clothing swap before and it was so fun! It was a really great way to get rid of a ton of stuff but not throw it away or waste it. I tried to be careful not to obtain too many new items, but found a couple that I love!! And I never knew that seeing your friends wear clothes that you once loved, but no longer use, is such a fun and uplifting feeling!! 

So, since my last post, my Fall Capsule had changed a little. Here are a few of the items that I've added, and love, or had to let go of and a new count for fall:


Several of the button downs I selected for Fall either didn't get worn, or, in the case of one of my favorites, got a stain. I'm trying to figure out a way to salvage that one, but in the mean time I added 2 new tops: my red and blue top that I had left at an establishment about an hour away and took me 3 months to retrieve, and a new (to me) purple top that I got from a rummage sale. 


From the clothing swap, I got two tops I love; one cropped moon top. totally a new thing for me, but I love it!! And a 3/4 sleeve cream top with elbow patches. I wear both of these a ton. 


Two of my favorite pairs of jeans also bit the dust this season. My grey dot jeans got a terrible oil stain, and my snake print DK jeans developed some pulls and lost a lot of their shape. I took these out of my capsule (but kept them for "play clothes" or to wear around the house). But I found an awesome pair of black jeans second hand, which I had been looking for! I also picked up a pair of gab jeans at a rummage sale. They are worn and have a sizable hole at the moment, so IO plan to do some visible mending and add them to this capsule. 

Other additions include adding a "fancy" button down (from my clothing stock at home) bc I needed something to wear to a more formal event and I might as well keep it in my capsule. And although I don't count outerwear in my capsule, it's worth mentioning that I had to buy a red hat for my halloween costume and decided that if I had to buy it I should wear it as much as possible. 

I loved participating in the clothing swap and getting a few items here and there at rummage sales and thrift shops. I hope that we have another swap soon! But I'm also glad that my capsule has stayed pretty close to it's original number and I have only 38 items in this season. I'm also glad that  25 of the items fit into the slow clothing model. 

Have you readers ever done a clothing swap? How did it make you feel?

Mad Cat Capsule: Autumn (October - December)

At the start of my summer capsule, I had a hard time picking what it would be. This time around, I couldn't wait! Autumn is my third capsule and it was surprisingly easy to put together.  

This is the third capsule I've created since starting this project. When I was putting together Summer, I put several things aside for Fall, but when it came down to it, I only used a few of those. For Summer, I had one piece that inspired the whole collection, but for fall everything came together more organically. 

I happened to be going through all my clothes for a clothing swap with co workers, and I started by pulling everything I might like to wear and used that as a guide. I already had a basic idea of what I wanted to roll over from my Summer capsule.
The weather will be warm and cold and all other the place for this capsule so I have a wide range of clothing from tank tops to sweaters. 
For Fall, I kept my signature colors of grey and blue and I saved some coral pieces from Summer which worked well with some new items I'm adding.
Here is what is included in this capsule:


6 Tee Shirts - Most of these are rolled over from all of my previous capsules; A local brewery tee, a work tee from our 2016 picnic, a local radio stations tee, my grey v neck, a blue v neck, a cranberry crew neck. 

4 Tank Tops - These are all relatively old and well worn, and I'll mostly use them mostly for layering. These are all solids, some spaghetti straps, some wider strapped. 


7 Button Downs/Over Shirts/Long Sleeved/Fancy Shirts- I found that I wore a ton of button downs and over shirts for layering or just as is in Summer, so I'm keeping a few and adding a bunch. I'm also adding some long sleeve tees and shirts. I'm keeping both my denim button downs, and my white button down top. I'm adding a "fancy" button down. This goes with the blue silk tee that I've had for the last few capsules. I also have a waffle tee and a cowl neck 3/4 sleeve. 


7 Sweaters - I plan on getting a lot of use from sweaters and layers in this capsule. I have included some over sweaters and some that I can just wear as is. Two of these have been in my previous capsules. 


3 Skirts - I'm keeping the long flowing black skirt from Summer and adding a midi cordoroy, and a shorter wool skirt, all with pockets!


2 Dresses - I don't wear a lot of dresses, but it's good to have some! One with pockets, one with out. 


5 Pants - All my currant jeans are thrifted.  I'm toying with adding some other pants but I can't decide. 

I'm glad that my Autumn capsule falls right at Slow Fashion October. Part of the idea of my using a capsule wardrobe initially was to pare down the hundreds of clothes I own, but it was also to be more mindful of what I wear and where it comes from. I'm happy that 18 out of 34 of this capsule falls under slow fashion criteria. These pieces are either over 10 years old or second hand. Many of the new items were bought in small local shops.

How is everyone else's current capsule going? 

Mad Cat Capsule: What's Not Working (Summer)

From July - Sept, I'm in my second cycle of capsule wardrobing. Both seasons have taught me a lot so far. Almost 5 month in, I'm loving having a capsule wardrobe! 

One thing I've learned is that it's nice to have a safety net. One reason I've started using capsule wardrobes is bc I have too many clothes, but I also have trouble parting with items I don't use. Once I've picked my capsule, I try really hard not to dip into the stash of other clothes I have. But it's nice to know it's there!

This dress was a late add in, but I only wore it once. I thought it would be great bc it has pockets and is so summery, but it's so short and casual, it's not my go to. I love this thrifted dress, so maybe it will come back next Summer. 

This dress was a late add in, but I only wore it once. I thought it would be great bc it has pockets and is so summery, but it's so short and casual, it's not my go to. I love this thrifted dress, so maybe it will come back next Summer. 

I've also learned that as carefully as I choose the clothes for the capsule, as much thought as I put into them, sometimes things don't work out. In the first capsule, I swapped a couple of items for ones that would work better but for the second capsule I avoided doing that. There were still items that didn't work, but I just put them away and didn't use them. 

This white top was one white top too many! I could never fit it into my rotation! I might doate this one, as I have a similar one that I do wear often.

This white top was one white top too many! I could never fit it into my rotation! I might doate this one, as I have a similar one that I do wear often.

My original picks this capsule were fewer than my first capsule and taking away the items that didn't work made it even smaller. I'm excited about the idea of eventually getting down to as few clothes as I can, just what I really need and love. 

I love this thrifted blue silk top and got a lot of wear out of it in Spring, but it was too hot in summer for this top. I'm keeping it, in case we get some cool days in September and rolling it over to Fall, for sure. 

I love this thrifted blue silk top and got a lot of wear out of it in Spring, but it was too hot in summer for this top. I'm keeping it, in case we get some cool days in September and rolling it over to Fall, for sure. 

At the end of September, I'll be choosing net season's capsule, and I can't wait to apply what I've learned from previous capsules. What are some things that you consider when putting together your capsule? What do you do when you find a piece you've picked isn't working?


Mad Cat Capsule: Summer (July - September)

In April 2017, I started my first capsule wardrobe and I really enjoyed it! Wearing and remixing just a few items for three months was a really interesting experiment. I've been trying to pare down the amount of clothes I have for years, and Spring was a good taste of what it would be like to live with less. I couldn't wait to try my hand at the next three months. 

It took me a while to finalize my new Summer capsule. I'm still using a pretty loose capsule method, so it may not even be finalized yet! Last time I tried to stick to around 50 items in my capsule. In the future, I'd like to get this number way down, but for Summer I'll have about the same. Even if each season has 50 items, that would give me an over all wardrobe of 200 pieces which is way less than what I have now. 


For Summer 2017, I rolled over quite a few items from the previous capsule. I also added items, either from my stash, or that I recently purchased. The skirt above I bought second hand years and years ago and when I pulled it out of my old Summer box, it became my color inspiration for this capsule. Spring was blues, teals, green, and purple with a little black and white and my signature grey. Summer is blue again, grey of course, lots of white, some black and pops of coral orange. 

These two band t shirts, plus a shirt from our work picnic and one from a local brewery got the most use and fit this season's color scheme, so I was happy to roll them over. The plain blue shirt, a lighter blue crew neck, and a grey V also got rolled over. The blue silk tee and the striped oversized pocket tee didn't get as much use, but were useful in certain circumstances so I've kept those too. 

I have added a few tees to my Summer capsule; a brighter blue V and another graphic tee that can be turned inside out to be a solid tee.


I've been using a lot of over shirts for layering, and wearing a lot of lightweight button downs lately. The white shirt is a million years old from American Eagle via Marchell's. I've had it for at least 15 years. The denim was from a previous job's lost and found. The grey Gap sweater I got from a friends stoop sale in Brooklyn. All three of these got a lot of wear last capsule and will probably be around for a while!

I recently bought this shirt at goodwill. It had lace on the sleeves, which I thought I liked, but ended up hating. I cut it off and the rough edge is way more my style. 

I recently bought this shirt at goodwill. It had lace on the sleeves, which I thought I liked, but ended up hating. I cut it off and the rough edge is way more my style. 

I'm adding a few more button down style shirts to this capsule, too. The white is very old, and I have a similar one in blue and white. The plaid is one I bought locally when I lived in Brooklyn but haven't work much. The polka dot and black linen are some of my newest purchases, but both are second hand. I also have a short sleeved grey button down (not pictured).

I had a lot of tank tops in my last collection and I did use most of them (great for layering!). This capsule I still have a lot, but they reflect my new color scheme a little better. Only two or three of these are rolled over. 

For Summer I have several pairs of shorts, and a few skirts, and of course, jeans and pants. I've discovered that I really need pockets in all my shorts, skirts, and pants of any kind so it makes it easy to narrow down what I already have. This collection has the skirt I used for my color inspiration, a chambray shorter skirt, and a grey high/low with unique details. I bought a pair of linen joggers 2 Summers ago that I couldn't wait to bust back out. I've been wearing these lightweight orange pants for years now, and they fit it perfectly!

All the jeans I currently have were in my Spring capsule. And all of them are thrifted!

Last capsule, I couldn't decide on any dresses. I tried out a few but none ever really worked. But this capsule, I already have two! Both have pockets - pockets are a must! It's possible that I might add another dress  if I can find one that works. Right now, I have the orange one that I bought several years ago from a local Brooklyn shop, and the other I bought about 3 years ago. Although I love this blue dress from Old Navy, it was the purchase that made me decide I would never shop there again. 

Not pictured, I have included one sweater in this collection, too. All these items bring this capsule up to 44 items. That breaks down to 27 tops, 14 bottoms, and 2 dresses. As with my first capsule, I'm not including any undergarments, outerwear, shoes, accessories, gym clothes, or hoodies. 

This was a fun capsule to work on bc I know the weather/temperature will mostly be about the same. I really felt like I could play around with a wide range of style and fabric. It was nice not to worry too heard about warmth. I'll be interested to see how this capsule progresses. I hope you'll join me for updates over the next few months. 

Is anyone else getting their Summer (or whatever season your currently living in) capsule together?  Maybe you don't even go by seasons? Shout out any links to recent capsule posts! I'd love to see what some of you have been wearing!

Mad Cat Capsule: What's Not Working

Over a month in and I'm loving my capsule wardrobe. My Mad Cat Capsule consists of approximately 50 pieces of clothing not including loungewear, sleepwear, shoes, work out wear, under garments, or outerwear. That's a lot more than a typical capsule, but as this is my first one, and I literally have hundreds of items of clothing that I'm trying to pare down, this feels like a good start. I've really enjoyed refining what I wear, seeing what works and what doesn't. Going into this project, I really didn't know what to expect, but it's been helpful and exciting to wear only clothes I really enjoy. Over the past month or so, I've definitely noticed that there were items I chose that I didn't end up wearing. Here's the scoop about what I've discovered so far:

I chose quite a number of tank tops at the beginning of my 3 month capsule. I layer, layer, layer and I knew this capsule had to take me to the beginning of Summer so this was a good idea. But as the month progressed, I realized that I was only wearing some of them over and over and never reaching for others. I'm packing up the ones I'm not feeling. 

I thought having a few long sleeve shirts would be a great idea for a capsule that had to span April to June. I wore them once or twice, but noticed that I pulled out sweaters more often. Several of these are going into storage. I love these shirts, but not right now. I feel like I'll be pulling these back out for my 4th quarter capsule in Oct. 

I also had a 3/4 sleeve shirt that I really love and thought would be great, especially for work. I forgot that this shirt captures every cat hair, lint ball, and speck of anything really. This shirt will go to donation. 


I chose a few skirts for this quarter 2 capsule and I haven't worn any of them. Huh. I don't want to give up on them just yet but some of these will be put away soon. Again these are pieces that I love, but haven't worked out just yet. On the other hand, I was sure that I wouldn't need my favorite shorts until July, but grabbed them up for a hot beach walk around the beginning of May and am happy that I'll have them for the rest of this capsule.

After scrapping these items and a few others I'm just not wearing, you would think that I would have less pieces in this capsule, but alas, I don't. I lost a few, swapped a few, but added a few, too. In lieu of the long sleeve shirts, I added a dotted sweatshirt I quite fancy, and I recently got a few more graphic tees. So I'm hovering right around the same number of items. 

Really lessening the items I wear has been challenging. Getting rid of items that I definitely won't use, don't like, or don't fit has also been surprisingly hard. I have found it to be difficult to find the time to get these pieces out of my house and into new hands. Anyone out there have any suggestions?

If you've recently started a capsule wardrobe, tell me how it's going!

Mad Cat Capsule: Spring (April - June)

This Spring, I have decided to try a Capsule Wardrobe. I plan to do a full year of capsule as an experiments for having less, loving what I wear and being comfortable all the time. More about capsule wardrobes here. 

For the last 2 weeks, I've been paring down my closet, reorganizing my stored clothing, cleaning, getting items ready to donate, or throwing things away. My plan in to wear my Spring wardrobe from April through June. I hear that putting your first capsule together is the hardest, and I can say, it's giving me some trouble. Although I have the bulk and core of my spring capsule together, there is still a substantial maybe pile, including a dress section to add. 

Traditionally, Capsule Wardrobes are 33 - 37 pieces and usually don't include under garments, workout clothes, loungewear, swimwear, etc... Some people include shoes, accessories, etc.. some do not. Some include everything and still manage under 40 items. 

My Spring Capsule rounds out at 50 items of clothing not including shoes, under garments, lounge wear, active wear, or anything else. I did include the 3 slots I'd like for dresses. I think this is pretty good considering I have hundreds (probably thousands) of clothes. I can also see myself pairng this down over the next three months. Just today I eliminated 3 items I thought I'd need, but when I looked at them again, I didn't. 

Here's my capsule:
9 tank tops.

Flounder couldn't resist helping me with the photos for this post. 

Flounder couldn't resist helping me with the photos for this post. 

This seems like a lot and may be too many. But I use tank tops for layering and wear them pretty much every day in the colder weather. I also often wear them instead of bras so they kinda double as underwear. I have some with spaghetti straps, some wider straps, some short some long. I chose a wide variety, but tried to stick to my loose color theme. 

3 plain crew neck tees.
These are also a go to for layering for me. I picked my three favs that work with the color scheme I have going this season. Green, blue, and grey. Check out the picture above for an example. 

4 plain V neck tees. 

Again, I wear these mostly for layering, but as the weather gets warm, I'll wear them on their own, too. 

5 graphic tees.


You guessed it, layering. But also, on warm days I'll wear these alone (or with a tank underneath, and/or over shirt). Again, I tried to pick my favorites that fit my color scheme. Mostly they are band tees, but that local brewery shift is new. One of the only new items I have bought so far this year.

1 oversized stripped tee.

This is a anomalous item. I got it last year (new) and really loved it but barely wore it bc of several reasons ( it's white, oversized, not my usual style, etc...). But doe this capsule idea I want to incorporate some items that are different than what I normally wear. I want to find and develop my style. I know I love this tee, so I should wear it. 

1 ratty striped tee.  

This is another weird item. It's one of my all time favorite tees, and well loved, but I never wear it. This capsule I want to wear it and wear it out if I have to. One things I realized when I was crafting this wardrobe was that I loved actually distressed clothing. Not the store bought ripped knees things but clothes that I've worn to pieces. I want to incorporate this into my style more as a statement, not just neglect. Some might say I've gone too far with this shirt, and I couldn't wear it to work, but I feel great when I wear it. 

2 nice tees.


One floral, one silk, both vintage. These are great for work, fancier occasions or everyday. 

3 long sleeved tees.


These are for layering, and stand alone times when a long sleeved shirt is what you need. I have a warmer but very light and thin waffle tee, a striped tee, and a plain green tee (not pictured). 

2 three quarter sleeved shirts (not pictured).
These are really great middle weather shirts and will be especially useful for work. I also like wearing them, of course, so even tho they aren't my go to right now, I see myself getting a lot of use out of them. 

3 over shirts.

These are a mix of my favorites that I wear all the time, and my favorites I never wear. Now's the time! The sweater is from a friend's stoop sale, the denim was at a lost and found at work, and the checks is from the Boys section of a big box store. I've had all of them for over 5 years. 

4 sweaters.


This one was tough. I'm really into sweaters right now. 

4 skirts. 

I'm not a huge skirt wearer, I tried to pick a few that I love and will last me 3 months. 

6 pants.

I mostly wear pants! I love jeans! Lately I have been hunting for the best of the best of second hand pants. 5 out of these 6 are second hand. I would also like to find a really great pair of black pants to add but I have't yet. I didn't include any shorts in this capsule, partly bc I wear pants almost the whole summer and partly bc skirts can serve that purpose. 

2-3 dresses (not pictured).
I have narrowed my dresses down to a few I think I'd like. It's tough for me to know/decide which ones I will be likely to wear and style for cold and warm weather. I'll show these when I come to my decision. 

Maybe that's only 49 pieces? Phew, thats a fraction of what's normally in my closet and it still seems like a ton!! I'm not including hoodies, outerwear or lounge wear either. I have a feeling this will be a changing wardrobe as I see what clothes I gravitate towards. I already see the same items again and again. Part of the challenge for me with be to wear items out of my normal comfort zone, but partly I will ax items that I just don't wear. 

I'll continue posting updates, ideas, and thoughts about this project. 
If any one else is working on their Capsule Wardrobe please share your findings! Or share you wardrobe!

Something New: Spring Capsule Wardrobe Ideas

Despite having read a lot about and taken inspiration from Capsule Wardrobes, I have never actually made one. This Spring, I plan to actually try it. You may be thinking, but it is Spring! I know! Just two days after the vernal equinox I'm testing out some ideas, writing some goals and getting started. I hoping to have my Spring Capsule done and ready by the start of April. 

"What is a capsule wardrobe?" You might ask. Basically, a capsule wardrobe is a an assortment of clothing limited to a few key pieces (usually 33-37 items) that are the only ones you wear for a season. All your other clothes are either given away, discarded, or stored for another capsule. 

There are many reasons I want to try a capsule this year but a major reason is that, although I have cut way down on what I buy (and I almost exclusively buy second hand now), I still have far too much. This is true of several aspects of my life, but with my clothes it's out of control!! This seems especially unnecessary bc I mostly wear the same things over and over. For 2017, I'm focusing on reducing my things and the waste that comes along with having too much. 

I'm trying to make our house less cluttered and more usable. Reducing the ridiculous amount of clothing I have (and don't use) will help that. The space taken up with these could be better utilized and I am sure I can learn to live with less. I'm hopping that I can be more organized and only hold on to the items I really need. This will be a good way to continue to shop sustainably, either by buying second hand or buying clothing made in the USA, or by responsible makers.  

Here are some initial thoughts:
Style - I'd like to have one... Maybe this can help. 
Work clothes - Id like to dress a bit more thoughtfully at work. Why not dress more thoughtfully all the time?
Comfort -  Is paramount.
Things I love - Color, pattern, high wasted jeans, plain t shirts, sweaters, dresses and skirts with pockets, Vans...
Precious things - I want to wear clothes I love, not hide them bc I worry they will get ruined.
Practical things - I want the clothes I wear to be useful in all aspects of my life and not in only one or two situations. I want them to fit well, and make me feel good. 

I have tried some other wardrobe projects in the past, but I'm hoping this one works. I'll be checking in from time to time with more thoughts. I hope to keep a record of this experiments but also to open it up for discussion among my readers. For more info and inspiration on Capsule Wardrobes follow these links:
Be More With Less
The Blissful Mind
Rowdy Kittens

Anyone else new to capsule wardrobes? Already have one? What works for you?