There’s a reason people joke about the laundry never being done. Creating a capsule wardrobe for your kids is a smart, efficient, and eco-friendly way to cut down on stress and time. Let’s be honest, we all need a little of that in our lives! Especially with the new school year quick on our heels, this is a great time to get started on a new system that will keep you more organized and sane.
Read More: Back to School Outfits for All the Kids
First, let’s talk about why a capsule wardrobe for your kids is even an idea you should consider. It’s probably different than what you are used to and that will take time and effort to transition into. So why do it?
5 Reasons a Capsule Wardrobe for Your Kids is Worth The Effort
1. Say goodbye to the mountain of laundry you’ve been stuck in for the last few weeks.
Ever feel like no matter how many hours you spend washing, drying and folding laundry there just always seems to be more? With a capsule wardrobe you’ll know exactly which pieces you have and as long as you do a load or two per week you won’t be overwhelmed with piles of laundry for the seemingly infinite hours of your life.
2. Easier Choices, Faster Getting Ready Times.
Choices can be a good thing, but when you have too many choices it can cause us to stress out. The University of Columbia actually did a study and found that while having a lot of choices may seem appealing but in reality, many people actually find it more debilitating to have too many choices. If you only have five choices of ice cream, you’ll likely be able to choose out of those 5 rather quickly. However, if you had 25 instead, you’d peruse through each, mull it over and thus take much longer to decide. In the end, the result isn’t better or worse but the time is still wasted. Research has actually shown that too many choices actually makes us feel less, not more, satisfied once we finally make a decision. We are left to wonder if we made the right choice or feel like we could have or should have chosen something else instead. All in all, the time they (and you!) will save in decision making alone will make the effort worth it.
3. It’s Environmentally Friendly.
In our present day and age it can be hard to find sustainable ways to help the environment. By having a capsule wardrobe for your kids, you’ll be crossing this off your list too. Not only do your kids get more use out of their clothes but you aren’t buying excessively and you’ll be running your washer and dryer a lot less. By creating a capsule wardrobe you make it easy to reuse clothing pieces over and over again to create different outfits and looks. It all adds up to be a big step in keeping our environment healthy.
4. It Saves You Money
Who doesn’t like saving money? Especially with kids who grow out of clothes so quickly, a capsule wardrobe will definitely keep your wallet from drying up. You’ll purchase pieces that are versatile and adaptable, some that can grow with them. By providing them with strong, variable clothing choices, you’ll buy less and be able to save that cash for something more important. Another plus? You won’t be spending as much on electricity to run your washer and dryer. You’ll also be saving on dryer sheets, fabric softener, and laundry detergent.
5. Peace of Mind
It’s impossible to put a price or number on the value of having peace of mind but this will certainly give you a bit of it. Owning more clothing pieces it adds to your mental load. It occupies your mind in the likes of, “Is it put away?”, “Is it clean?”, “Does it still fit them?”, and on and on. Multiply that by a few dozen (or however many extra clothing pieces they may have) and it’s even to stress you out. Knowing that your child has what they need, can choose quickly and that you’re saving not only money but the planet as well, all contributes to the luxury of peace of mind in this area of your life.
How to Build Your Child’s Capsule Wardrobe
Not everyone’s capsule wardrobe will be the same. It doesn’t have to be under a specific number of pieces to work and for each family, that number will be different. You may want to start with having 8-10 outfits and commit to doing laundry once a week. Another way to measure is by the drawer itself. If their drawers are full after the laundry is finished, that’s the max. However, you choose to do it, make sure it’s comfortable and sustainable.
Believe it or not, when starting a capsule wardrobe you don’t have to start from scratch. Begin by emptying all their drawers and sort by type. (Example: long sleeve shirts, short sleeve shirt, shorts, pants, dress shirts, etc.) See what you have first before purging and sending them off to a thrift shop. Select pieces that you know they love as well as ones that can be easily paired with something else. That Mickey Mouse t-shirt they love so much? Keep it! It can easily be paired with shorts or pants and when the season changes, throw a long-sleeved tee under it and they can still keep it in the rotation! On the other side, that dance camp t-shirt covered in sequins? That may be much harder to incorporate.
Quick Tip: Having a hard time letting go of sentimental items? Take a photo of it so you can always remember it! Cut out the piece that you really love and sew it into a blanket! Use it as a sleeping shirt! There are lots of different options that don’t have to add to your mental load.
For a good foundation try starting with just 27 pieces to begin building your capsule wardrobe:
- 8 short sleeve t-shirts
- 5 long sleeve t-shirts
- 5 pairs of pants
- 5 pairs of shorts
- 2 dress shirts
- 2 dresses (if applicable)
You’ll notice we aren’t including things like outerwear, socks, underwear or pajamas. All of those things can be dealt with with minimal effort and therefore can be assessed by personal needs. If your child wears flip flops or sandals all summer they probably won’t need the recommended 8 pairs of socks until maybe Fall or Winter. If your child is still young and has toilet accidents every now and then, you will likely need more than the 8 pairs of underwear recommendation. Again, because these items are small and very seasonal they can easily be decided upon based on your personal experience with your child.
Need a few items that weren’t already in their drawers? Here are a few of our favorite, eco-friendly places to grab pieces to fill in those holes. Organic, sustainable or reused is always a great way to go when looking for capsule wardrobe styles.
- Thrift Stores
We understand it’s a big commitment. We know it’s a change. We even know that it’s kind of a daunting task. But who doesn’t want more time? Who doesn’t want to save money? Who doesn’t want to do their part to help the earth? Who doesn’t need to take something off of their mental load? Why not accomplish all of these at once? Give it a try, build your children a capsule wardrobe of their own and see how they blossom and how you bloom.
WANT TO READ MORE?
Check out this article on Prepping for Pre-K and Keeping it Minimal.
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