Whats In Your Closet

Lately, I’ve been on a quest to compile a personal wardrobe essentials list based on booksmagazine articlesblogs, and my own lifestyle and tastes.

You might be surprised by how many different views of “essential” there are out there.  Some lists insist that every woman needs to have a sparkly cocktail dress and one pair of jeans.  Well, it’s been a long time since I’ve needed a cocktail dress (did I ever need one?!?) and having one pair of jeans would mean I’d be doing laundry almost daily.

In short, many of the lists just aren’t realistic for me or my lifestyle.  So why even try?

Here’s why.  For me, the battle against materialism is a daily one.  I try very hard to keep my focus on the importance of intangibles rather than tangibles.  And I fail.  Often.  On a daily basis, in fact.

I’m hoping that by spending some time thinking about my wardrobe now, I won’t have to think about it later.  And hopefully, I’ll be able to exist with fewer items of clothing and still have what I need for most occasions that come up.

Not only that, but I won’t have a closet filled with clothing that I don’t wear.  What I have, I’ll wear.  At least, that’s my plan.

The idea of wardrobe planning was foreign to me until I read Hallie Lord’s eBook, Dressing with Intention.  In it, Hallie encourages the reader to have a wardrobe plan and systematically acquire the individual pieces.

I’m not sure why such a simple concept was so revelatory to me but, it was.  Of course the best ideas are usually the simple ones, aren’t they?  It truly changed the way I thought about my wardrobe.  Combine Hallie’s book with my 6-item clothing challenge and the result was a change in my attitude toward clothing.

So, it’s my hope that a little planning and strategic shopping now will mean that I won’t have to spend time thinking about or shopping for clothing later.  Instead, I’ll be free to think about other things like my family and my spiritual life perhaps.

My own Wardrobe Essentials list is still under construction.  Here’s what I have so far:


  • Workout shoes
  • Black boots
  • Brown boots
  • Black pumps
  • Black flats
  • Brown flats
  • Colorful sneakers
  • Canvas slip on shoes (either neutral color or accent shade)


  • Black sheath dress
  • Brown wrap dress
  • Colorful sheath dress


  • White tailored button up shirt
  • Colorful tailored button up shirt
  • Short Sleeve T-shirts (white, black & color)
  • Long Sleeve T-shirts (white, black & color)


  • Tan dress skirt
  • Tan cotton skirt
  • Black dress skirt
  • Black cotton skirt
  • Brown dress skirt

What’s on your wardrobe essentials list?

Copyright 2014 Laura Nelson

photo credit: peddhapati via photopin cc