How to Minimize Your Wardrobe: 5 Struggles & Their Solutions

Ana Goldberg
by Ana Goldberg

Currently, I have a pretty limited minimal wardrobe comprising approximately 37 items overall, excluding socks and underwear.

Over the years of practicing minimalism, I figured out some straightforward yet effective ways to keep my wardrobe small yet enjoyable, regardless of its size and constant surrounding temptations to own more. Today I want to share with you these tips.

Changing buttons

1. Changing buttons

The easiest one that I have found so far is changing buttons. 

This trick can change the look of your shirt drastically. I also use my remaking techniques to change the clothes to fit my body better.

For example, I have a pair of linen culottes I bought a couple of years ago from a marvelous designer and seamstress, and I love them. Although the length felt slightly off for me, they were not long enough and cut my leg in a weird place. 

Changing buttons on clothes

So for this summer season, I decided to elongate them by adding cuffs in a different color. I just bought what was available in a nearby fabric store, and now I'm thrilled with these pants. You can remake clothes yourself or use clothes repair services.

I always get rid of heavily worn-out items, especially underwear or socks. I'd rather have three high-quality and enjoyable underwear items that feel good on my body than have ten heavily worn-out or torn items. 

2. Have at-home clothes

I always have a set of clothes to wear just at home. I do not necessarily have dedicated home-worn items; I rotate them. 

At-home clothes

My rule is always to change clothes when I return home from the outside. 

This habit gives me a feeling of security, cleanness, novelty, and even excitement whenever I go out or choose a different item as a home outfit. Currently, my wardrobe is pretty small, so I don't have just home leisure items, except for my pajama shorts. So I change and rotate my home and outside sets of clothes.  

3. Have a wider variety of tops

I have a more diverse top selection versus the bottoms. Bottoms can be very basic. They have to fit my current figure and mood. Having fewer bottoms makes me more responsible with choosing my tops. 

Mixing more tops with fewer bottoms

For example, when I buy or choose what top to make, I always make sure that it will look good with at least two bottoms that I have. 

Currently, I have three pairs of pants, one pair of leggings, two pairs of shorts, and one skirt, and it's more than enough for all the tops that I have. I tend to wear high-waisted models because they are more versatile and comfortable for me, both physically and psychologically, so I don't have to worry about showing too much extra skin. 

Flattering tees

Tees wear down more quickly, and finding a good flattering tee is hard. 

For me personally, especially if I'm outside, tees are not always the first choice. They stretch out. It takes a longer time for them to dry, especially when it's very humid, and they stop looking good very fast. I have one sleeping T-shirt, another sleeping T-shirt that was Brian's, and two cropped tees.

That happened to be a great buy last year, and it was more of an exception to the rule of two T-shirts. I prefer relaxed shirts, blouses, and button-ups, but I'm going to need more tees myself because they will last longer, they will look better on me, and of course, they will be much more unique. 

4. Limit shoes

For this warm season, I have two pairs of shoes. 

Warm weather shoes

One is my forever favorite Birkenstock Arizona model for narrow feet, and the other is just regular Crocs sandals. 

I almost forgot that I had them, and I was so happy to discover them in my suitcase when it began to rain heavily here in Belgrade. I always have a pair of Crocs for rainy days because they also help save shoes not meant for wet weather.

I recently got caught in a heavy thunderstorm while wearing my Birkenstocks, and now I have to get them to a cobbler to fix some issues.

Another type of all-time favorite shoe is high-top sneakers like Converse. I don't have any at the moment, but I plan to buy a pair of those maybe this summer or in the fall. I wear these shoes almost all year round, especially during a mild winter.

Shoes are one of the biggest challenges in my minimalist wardrobe because I have long and narrow feet, and it's always hard to find something that fits well. That's why I always have very few pairs of shoes, but they should be excellent quality. 


5. Color palette

My minimal wardrobe struggle at the moment is the changed color palette preferences. I don't like warm hues anymore, partly because I fell into the rabbit hole of color analysis and partly because I've felt like that for quite a while.

I'm a human and easily influenced by others, which I think is normal. So I got to thinking that warm, earthy colors are the best when you want to express your softness, love of nature, and that subtle poetry of life. I love cool colors more. 

How to minimize your wardrobe

I have several warm-colored things now, and I'm struggling and tempted to declutter them. 

On the other hand, I love their cut and the story behind each garment. They've been through a lot with me, so I decided I'll still wear them. I will try to cool them down whenever possible by adding a scarf around my neck or silver jewelry pieces.

It might be just a whim, but I don't want to depreciate this whim, and I will follow it without causing any serious pain to my wallet, and I will see how it feels. 

How to minimize your wardrobe

Your minimal wardrobe should always be clothing you love wearing. Feel free to share which of these personal tips resonated with you in the comments. What are your ways of personalizing your wardrobe? Share your ideas in the comments below.

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