How to create a capsule wardrobe for men

You might have found yourself staring at your closet full of clothes, yet thinking “I don’t know what to wear”. A capsule wardrobe is the solution to that problem.

There’s a common belief going around that in order to have multiple outfits, you need to have a lot of clothes. But that’s far from true, you just need the right garments.

And that’s what a capsule wardrobe is. It’s curating a minimalist and functional collection of clothes that can be mixed and matched into a variety of timeless looks. A capsule wardrobe needs to cover all possible scenarios: from a business meeting to a night out with friends. You can even have different capsule variations per season.

It sounds difficult, but we have all the tips and tricks for you to nail the task.

Shop strategically

Creating a capsule wardrobe for men starts with smart purchasesIf you have decided to curate a capsule wardrobe, then you need to go over your closet first. Start building it up from what you already have and then make a list of which pieces are missing out. You should identify which garments you use the most and why: do you like them because of the fabric, the color or the fit?

You should also identify which clothes you never get to wear and why. Doing so will help you make better choices in the future and not fall for any garments you dislike.

Once you have revisited your entire closet, you can get to the second step and that is heading to the shopping mall. Here’s the most important advice of all: you need to shop mindfully. Don’t just grab clothes randomly because you think they look cool or the shopper tells you they are trendy.

The most plausible outcome is that they will be joining the pile of clothes overflowing your closet and you will never wear them again. So, you need to have a plan.

Whenever you purchase a new garment, think of how many outfits can come out of that single piece. Ask yourself these questions: “does it match the other pieces I have at home? Will I wear this in five years? Do I feel good in this?”

A capsule wardrobe will allow you to mix and match your clothes automatically, and easily create several looks with just a few garments, without getting distracted by current trends.

Every purchase needs to be strategic. Think about what you need and what you already own, bear in mind what colors best fit your personal style and what designs will never go out of fashion.

Say goodbye to trends

Trends are the cryptonite of capsule wardrobes. They are the exact opposite. Therefore, you need to look for timeless pieces.

In fact, classic designs look great today and they will still do so in ten years. That’s what we are aiming for. On the opposite side, trends only last a couple of months at most and you will need to buy new clothes when the next trend shows up. That will certainly cost you a lot, but also the planet.

A few examples of garments that are a must have in a men’s capsule wardrobe are:

  • a comfortable pair of navy blue jeans;
  • a couple of basic t-shirts and polo shirts in neutral colors (like white, black and gray);
  • a leather and/or denim jacket;
  • a pair of white sneakers;
  • a pair of lace up leather boots (in black or brown colors);
  • a button down white shirt;
  • a pair of khaki or olive chinos;
  • a smart casual blazer that can work for both casual and business affairs.

As you can see, it’s key that you keep prints at the lowest and focus on neutral colors instead. Prints are usually connected with trends, so it will be harder for you to make them work out in the long term.

That doesn’t mean your entire wardrobe needs to be lifeless. There are certain patterns that outpass fleeting trends, like the military print that we can often find in cargo pants or bomber jackets. Or the classic checked print that has taken over men’s flannel shirts.

By the way, if you’re looking for extra advice on basics, this is how to wear a black t-shirt for guys.

Versatility is key

The foundation of a minimalist capsule wardrobe is versatility: you need to be able to create several outfits with just a few pieces. Let’s make some examples.

A pair of ripped jeans will clearly not work during a business meeting. Instead you can purchase black fitted jeans that will look great for work, but also for a casual date.

The same happens with a leather jacket. You can style it with a white t-shirt and sneakers for a night out with friends at the local pub. Yet if you swap them for a button down shirt and a pair of leather boots, you have a smart-casual look for attending the office.

From footwear to jackets, all garments should be able to transition from relaxed to formal dress codes, from day to night.

A sustainable alternative

A sustainable wardrobe means prioritizing quality over quantity, which also means purchasing only what you really need. And that translates into a capsule wardrobe.

As you can see, building a capsule wardrobe is all about minimizing your clothing expenses, and that will benefit your style and your wallet.

Because you are investing in classic pieces that won’t go out of style over the years, you’ll be saving tons of money. This is the opposite of the fast fashion logic, which encourages you to buy trending clothes with very poor quality that will only last a few months. And you’ll constantly need to replace them.

On the other hand, you’ll also be saving a lot of time everytime you need to get dressed: the fewer options you have to pick from, the easier and faster you’ll get ready to go.

A sustainable capsule wardrobe allows you to enhance and bring out the best of your personal style, as well as give more meaning to the things you truly value. In similar news, these is how to dress appropriately based on your body type.