How To Build A Capsule Wardrobe in 2024

Have you ever stood looking at your closet thinking that you have nothing to wear?? How is it possible that you can have a closet full of clothes and yet feel like you still have nothing to wear? The struggle is real! And most women struggle with this! But have you ever considered having a wardrobe capsule?? Let me show you how to build a capsule wardrobe so you can learn to love your closet and the clothes in it!

What is a Capsule Wardrobe?

First off, what is a capsule wardrobe?? A wardrobe capsule is a small collection of clothing that you curate to fit your lifestyle. You weed through your huge closet full of clothes and build an intentional wardrobe of pieces that are versatile, classic, and that fit your fashion needs. You say goodbye to the fluff and unnecessary pieces and hello to your everyday foundational pieces. 

If you want your wardrobe capsule to last, invest in high quality pieces. You might want to consider supporting slow fashion brands. Some of my favorite ones are Able, Quince, Sapahn, and Sarah Flint.

How to Build a Capsule Wardrobe

It can seem overwhelming building a whole new wardrobe. But when you break it down, you can take one small step at a time until you achieve your capsule.

  • Clean out your closet
  • Take inventory
  • Do some research
  • Pick your season
  • Pick a color scheme
  • Consider your lifestyle
  • Decide on the amount

Clean Out Your Closet

In order to create a capsule wardrobe, it’s important to first go through the things that are currently in your closet. Yes, this means you must do a closet clean out! Now, you can make this as painful or pain-free as you want. You can rip it off like a bandaid and go through your closet all in one go. Or you can take it a section at a time. You do what works best for you.

When you’re ready to dive in, consider these 4 questions when cleaning out your closet:

  • Is it in good condition?
  • Is it versatile?
  • Do you look great in it?
  • Do you love it?

Take Inventory

Take time to look through your closet and take inventory of what you currently have and what you would like to add. It’s important to take note of what holes are missing in your closet. Keep a list in the note section on your phone what things you currently have so you don’t make repeat purchases and things you would like to look for. This will help you be a more intentional shopper! When you go to the store, in person or online, you can search for exactly what you’re needing.

Do Some Research

This is the fun part! Head to Pinterest, social media, and your favorite blogs. And scroll with a purpose! Start a board on Pinterest of your Ideal Style and start pinning any pictures that you come across that you like. This will help you narrow down your style. What trends do you notice you lean towards? What colors do you like? What cuts and styles do you prefer? This will help you understand how you want to look.

Pick Your Season

I personally prefer to create 2 capsule wardrobes: 1 for spring/summer and 1 for fall/winter. You may live in an area that has 4 very different climates or you may live somewhere that only has one. Decide what season you want to create your capsule for and that will help you determine what types of clothing you’ll need.

Pick a Color Scheme

Picking a color scheme will help you be able to mix and match your pieces so you can create lots of looks! If you haven’t already gotten your colors analyzed, you need to! I have a friend that does it HERE. Get your colors analyzed will help you know what colors look best on you. You’ll get a custom palette of colors that you can refer to to help you shop smartly. Use those colors to create your color scheme for your closet.

Consider Your Lifestyle

I think we’ve all bought something that we’re in love with only to have it sit in our closet because we don’t have anything to wear with it or don’t have any place to wear it to. We need to shop for the life that we live! I love beautiful pant suits and sleek dresses. But I don’t live that kind of fancy life. I’m a work-from-home mom. My life is casual chic. So I need to shop that way.

Think of the kind of life that you live. What activities do you do? What events do you attend? How do you need to dress? Build your capsule wardrobe around your lifestyle. You may find that you need an exercise capsule and a normal capsule. Figure out what works best for you!

Decide on the Amount

There is no right of wrong answer to the amount of clothing and shoes you want to have in your capsule. You get to choose the rules! Do you want to limit yourself to a certain amount of pieces? Do you want to limit yourself to space? Think about how little or big you want your capsule to be and stick to it.

Why a Capsule Wardrobe is Fashionable

A capsule wardrobe allows you to be more intentional with what you purchase, what you keep, and what you wear. When you shop or clean out your closet, you are doing it with more purpose. You will only buy and keep what you love! You will only buy what looks great on you. You will only buy high quality and versatile pieces.

I find that I feel the most fashionable and put together when I have carefully curated the pieces in my closet. My closet is no longer full of fluff. It’s full of pieces that I love! And that is the most fashionable thing you can wear…things you love and look great in.

Take a look at my top investments last year. You’ll notice that they are all high quality, versatile, and classic pieces that I can use and love for years! Having a wardrobe capsule isn’t boring and ugly. It’s classic, it’s freeing, and it’s fashionable!

When you want to mix things up a little, have fun with your accessories! Wear jewelry, scarves, belts, shoes, and purses to create different looks. See how you can elevate your look with classy purses and silver shoes.

Key Pieces for a Capsule Wardrobe

Everybody has their personal preferences. You can search the internet and find tons of advice on the perfect “closet essentials”. But your closet essentials and key pieces will be different than mine. It really comes down to preferences, lifestyles, and climates.

Here is a guideline for some key essentials you might want to incorporate in your closet. You can put your own spin on the style of the items, but it will give you an idea of what to include:

  • Jeans (straight leg, flare, bootcut…)- Every woman needs a pair of jeans that she feels fabulous in! They are well worth the investment! Find a pair that you love the cut, color, and style of and wear them to death!
  • Slacks (trousers, ponte pants, or leggings)- some type of elevated pants will help add elegance to your closet
  • White button down– this can be oversized or tailored but is the perfect way to dress up any look.
  • Tees– every closet needs some tees that you love for a casual look. They can be plain or graphic, whatever suits your style.
  • Dress– we all need a good dress that we feel great in! A LBD is a safe start, but once you get your colors analyzed you may see that black is not the best color for you.
  • Skirt (a-line, pencil, maxi, or short)- choose a skirt that you look and feel great in!
  • Cashmere sweater– a cashmere sweater is a great way to elevate your look and stay warm in the colder months. (this one is only $50!!)
  • Denim jacket– there are so many denim jacket styles out there! Find one that matches your style and wear it with dresses, skirts, and pants.
  • Leather jacket– a leather jacket is a timeless investment that you will have for years! Buy one that goes with your color palette and wear it with anything!
  • Wool coat– if you live where it’s colder, a wool coat is a classy investment that will elevate any look in the cold weather months.
  • Sneakers– invest in a pair of stylish and versatile sneakers for those casual days.
  • Flats– buy a pair of flats that can be worn with any look to polish the outfit off.
  • Heels– get a pair of heels that are comfortable and classy for those days that you need to dress up.
  • Boots– during the colder months, a pair of classy boots will help you stay warm and stylish.
  • Sandals– please don’t wear a pair of flip flops as your warm weather shoes. Invest in a pair of nice sandals that are casual, yet classy.
How To Build A Capsule Wardrobe

Other pieces to consider depending on your lifestyle and weather: sweatshirts, shorts, exercise wear, loungewear, swimsuits, blouses…

All of these items should be able to be worn in multiple ways. They’re all timeless and classic pieces that can be mixed and matched to achieve different looks.

Consider a 10×10 Challenge

If committing to a capsule wardrobe is too overwhelming for you, then consider doing a 10×10 challenge. This will help give you a taste of what it’s like to have a limited closet. What is a 10×10 challenge?? A 10×10 challenge is when you choose 10 items of clothing in your closet to wear for 10 days. It helps you think outside the box and really love those staples pieces in your wardrobe. It helps you see that you really don’t need a huge closet of clothes to look and feel great!

10×10 Challenge Guidelines

First off, it’s best to know the guidelines of the challenge. Basically, you can pick 10 pieces total, including your clothing and footwear. And it’s definitely challenging! 


  • Pick 10 pieces from your closet.
  • Style those 10 pieces 10 different ways.
  • Wear the same things in variations over a 10-day span.


  • Workout, lounge ware, or pjs don’t count
  • You can choose to do Monday-Friday two weeks in a row instead of 10 consecutive days. 
  • If you feel like a piece isn’t working for you, you can switch it out for a better option. 
  • You can pick 10 pieces of clothing and not include your footwear in the challenge.  Do what works best for you!
  • Accessories don’t count so use them to your advantage! 

Some Tips When Choosing Your 10 Items

  • Go with a color scheme.
  • Check the weather.
  • Consider your activities over the 10 days.
  • Pick a few of your favorite pieces.
  • Keep your footwear limited to allow for more clothing items.

There are so many benefits from this challenge! This challenge gets you thinking outside the box! It brings out your creativity! It helps you rediscover your love for pieces in your closet. It helps you realize that you don’t need to shop. You waste less time wondering what to wear for the day and it simplifies getting dressed! You won’t regret participating! 

How to Create a Makeup Capsule

While we’re on the topic of capsules, have you ever considered creating a makeup capsule?? It is the same idea as a wardrobe capsule. Instead of curating a closet of clothes that you love, you curate a palette of makeup that you love! You consolidate everything you need into one palette. It’s the perfect way to save space and time. When you get overwhelmed with looking at a closet full of clothes with nothing to wear, you probably get overwhelmed with looking at your drawer full of makeup!

The Seint makeup palette is the perfect way to create a makeup capsule! Everything you need (minus mascara) can fit into one simple compact. You can put whatever you want in it: foundation, concealer, contour, bronzer, blush, lipstick, chapstick, powder, illuminator, eyeshadow, eyeliner, brow gel, brow color! Read more about Seint makeup!

You can purchase prebuilt collections to save a little money and to not have to worry about decision fatigue, you can browse the color match guide to create your own, or you can have me (a certified makeup artist) help you create your own custom palette but clicking the button below…

Color Match Me!

Here are other blog posts you might enjoy:

Unlock Radiant Skin with Oliveda’s Skincare

Winter Essentials to Stay Warm and Stylish

Perfect Purses for Traveling

6 Habits to Improve Self Confidence

Modest Swimsuits for Spring Break

How to Prep Your Face for a Great Makeup Application

Shop Here!

About the Author

JoEllen is a licensed aesthetician, certified makeup artist, and certified John Maxwell coach, speaker, and trainer. She works with women helping them look and feel confident. She loves teaching women simple beauty techniques so they can feel empowered to try it at home. Her motto is that when you look and feel good, you do good!

How To Build A Capsule Wardrobe

*This post contains affiliate links. If you choose to purchase an item featured in this post, I get a small portion from the sale. Thank you! It does not affect you at all.

How To Build A Capsule Wardrobe