Why & How I Created My Fall Capsule Wardrobe

I sort of began explaining this last week … but wanted to give a little more information about why and how I created my capsule wardrobe for this fall.

Why & How I Created My Fall Capsule Wardrobe || Teri Lynne Underwood

Two main questions have come up since I posted last week. The first is always “Why??”

My friends at church and at ball games have looked at me like I have two heads when I say I’ve narrowed my closet down to under 50 items to wear for the next three months. Here’s the deal: my life is really busy right now. Between football games, family illnesses, and a big writing opportunity, I can barely manage to keep meals cooked and laundry done. I spent some time one day making a list of everything I do that stresses me out — and figuring out what to wear was on it.

I know that may sound crazy but my closet was overflowing and had a range of sizes and styles. It wasn’t uncommon for me to try out three or four outfits and end up frustrated because of the way things fit {or didn’t}. And, frankly, it just wasn’t worth it to me. I finally decided the system I had wasn’t working and I had to try something else.  Enter capsule wardrobe!

Then came questions about how I decided what to keep and what I needed.

I read a ton of posts about capsule wardrobes and looked at several different ways of doing it.  In the end, I took what I thought would work for me from a few different places and formed my own system.

Here are my “rules:”

  1. No more than 50 items. {This includes pants, tops, and dresses.}
  2. I did not include the following in my 50 items: work out clothes {because the doctor said yesterday I have to start exercising}, loungewear {for the rare days we have nowhere to be}, and game day clothes {since my girl cheers I have several shirts I just wear for games, etc}.
  3. Accessories are unlimited.  {I included shoes in my accessories with the stipulation I would not be buying myself any new shoes for the next three months. Some capsule wardrobe plans don’t handle shoes this way.}
  4. Every piece had to work for at least five outfits in order to stay. {With dresses this was a little more challenging but I only kept 2 that were neutrals and could be worn with multiple accessories and other pieces in the capsule.}

And one more — since September through November can bring a very wide range of temperatures here in North Alabama, I have allowed a couple of substitution items as the temps drop.  For example, I kept one pair of navy shorts but will be exchanging them for a pair of navy leggings when if cools off. I don’t have both items available now.  Once I wear the leggings, the shorts are no longer part of the capsule and become off limits {no matter how high the temps get!}.

As far as my style goes, looking at the calendar for the next three months, I have no major speaking events scheduled nor will I be attending any conferences which meant I was able to go with a casual capsule. I do have a few items that can easily be dressed up if the need arises but mostly, I’ll be doing a casual look.

Over the next two weeks I’ll be sharing the exact contents of my capsule wardrobe.  Next week we’ll look the pants, skirts, and dresses and the following week I’ll show you all the tops. But for today, here’s what I wore for the first three official days of using my fall capsule wardrobe:

Fall Capsule Wardrobe {September outfits}

September 1 — Labor Day! We stayed home most of the day but we did spend the evening at a local housing project playing with children and serving their families a meal. {shorts: J Crew via thrift store, top: Target, shoes: Bass}

September 2 — I had a doctor’s appointment and several other things to do and wasn’t sure I’d have time to change before the football game so I wore school colors all day! {t-shirt: Target, cropped jeans: Nine West from Sam’s Club, scarf: [affiliate link] zulily.com, shoes: Target}

September 3 — My girl has an orthodontist appointment and we have church tonight. {black button down shirt: Target, cropped jeans: Nine West from Sam’s Club, scarf: gift from a friend}

{Apparently I get a lot of shirts from Target! LOL}

Don’t forget to check out my Fall Capsule Wardrobe Pinterest board! I have invited a few other friends to collaborate with me and I think this will be a great resource for all of us!

What are you wearing lately?



Linking up with Lindsey and a bunch of other lovelies who are sharing what we’ve been wearing lately!

Read the Psalms this summer with Scripture Dig!


  1. This is probably the best post I have ever read. Love the way your guidelines don’t feel so overwhelming… I am a clothes hoarder and I am trying to rid myself of so much… I want to simplify but it is hard mentally. You know trying to talk your self into not getting that sweater in 6 different colors!! Anyway thank you for this post… Just a question… Any suggestions on what to do with clothes that don’t fit are brand new with tickets still on?? I see the price tag for $50 and think I have to donate it!!?? Thanks again!

    • Monica, I feel you! There are a few options for all those awesome clothes you have. There are several ways online to sell your clothes such as Craig’s List or a local online sale group on Facebook. Another option is Thred Up. I’ve sent a few things to there to sell and ended up with credit toward my Stitch Fix account. I’d recommend trying Craig’s List or something of that sort first because you will likely get a better deal than with Thred Up, especially for clothes with the tags still on. Hope that helps!!

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