I mentioned Ariana at Paris-to-Go in my spring wardrobe cleanout post last week, offering up her pared down wardrobe as a beautiful example of sartorial simplicity. Her style grows so organically out of her values that it doesn’t feel like some minimalist imposition: “You should own __ number of garments!”
Instead, her commitment to simplicity, sustainability, and generating zero waste, combined with her love of well-made clothes and her superb sense of style, has produced a lovingly curated closet stocked with gorgeous secondhand finds (we’re talking Céline, Dior, Louis Vuitton et al) and handknit items made by local artisans. Check out posts on her wardrobe to discover the contents for yourself—click “older posts” several times on the lower right to find the good stuff.
I have to say, even though her pants-light, dressily feminine style is quite different from my own, looking at Ariana’s pared down wardrobe makes me happy. You can tell that she LOVES the items she has; there’s a sense of calm and contentment that comes from a limited number of beautiful possessions and the space freed up by owning less.
She certainly has more…concise…taste than I do—I think owning so little in the way of clothing would be a stretch for me in terms of variety. But maybe I just haven’t found pieces I love enough to wear significantly fewer clothes more often!
Bea Johnson of Zero Waste Home is another zero waste blogger—arguably the one who really put zero waste on the map, and did it with a husband and two boys in tow. (She’s one of Ariana’s sources of inspiration and she’s definitely gotten me thinking about ways to reduce my waste footprint.)
Her blog is a goldmine of zero waste ideas and it’s easy to spend hours digging through it in alternating states of awe and intimidation. (My advice for the overwhelmed: pick one thing to try and see how it goes! Then choose another. Repeat at your own speed.)
She, too, has an entirely secondhand wardrobe and keeps her clothes very pared down. Check out her wardrobe posts for some ideas on a very different style wavelength. Think “French girl” (since she is French, after all): monochrome, stripes, a few bold patterns/pops of color, and very few embellishments. This post in particular talks about translating her love of fashion into responsible consumption while still providing variety.
What are your thoughts on zero waste wardrobes? (We might call these specific examples “super minimalist”!) Do you find freedom in very few garments and a very focused wardrobe, or do you need a little more room to play? And isn’t it fascinating to see people populate entire wardrobes of such a variety of styles using non-retail alternatives?
Happy weekend, Thrifters—and for those of you who celebrate, Holy Week and Easter blessings.