Today, when less is better than more, it is fashionable and considerate to use what you need. The truth is we don't need a Kardashian-size closet to be happy. And maybe it makes life easier to have less to choose from. A limited wardrobe represents more time and energy for the things that really matter. It's part of a growing movement to simplify, appreciate, and focus.
A capsule is an edited wardrobe of versatile, essential pieces that compliment each other. It simplifies getting dressed for every occasion and minimizes shopping for trendy and fast fashion items.
The start to your capsule is cleaning out your closet, deciding which items you love and which have to go. For new items it's best to create a color palette to work with. Include tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, and shoes. Use a rule of three for each category: one casual, one statement, and one in-between.
01. Tee Shirt
T-shirts today come in endless styles, fits, and fabrics. Choose tees that are softer, simple, and more saturated for longer-lasting color. Don't forget to throw in a graphic tee for good measure.
02. Chambray Button-up
You can count on a chambray shirt. It's the everyday essential, always there when you need it, and appropriate for every adventure. Today chambray is available in every color under the sun. #chambrayeverydamnday
03. Dark Jeans
A favorite for fashionistas and tomboys alike, a dark indigo denim jean weathers any season, any year, and any trend. Try variations of raw, unwashed, selvedge, unsanforized, slub, or nep. For heavy duty wear try long-lasting 21-ounce denim. When warmer weather arrives go for the lighter 10-ounce versions.
A quality American-made jacket can take you through 3 seasons of the year - and even cooler summer nights - when you need a solid layer that works with every item in your capsule closet. Try a goes-with-everything parka, a hard-wearing chore coat, or a classic jean jacket.
Well crafted leather boots are an investment piece. The best part? As with many quality items, they get better with time. With regular conditioning and care, boots will always be there when you need to fall back on the most reliable footwear in your capsule.
06. White Oxford Shirt
The white oxford is a timeless shirt as popular today as it has ever been. You can count on this season-spanning favorite no matter how you throw it on. That's what happens when you combine quality oxford cloth and an unbeatable fit. The white oxford shirt is an impeccable, sturdy, and uncompromising piece for every closet.
“In my opinion, the white oxford button-up shirt is the most essential, classic, and timeless addition to any capsule wardrobe,” shares Sadie Roberts, founder of women’s shirting company Tradlands. “Every woman needs a great oxford shirt. Pair it with anything - because what doesn't go with a white oxford shirt? Call it your new uniform.”
Roberts’ own company, Tradlands, focuses on creating menswear-inspired shirts for women with a relentless emphasis on fit, quality, and details. Tired of searching for the kind of quality she only found in the menswear section, Roberts set out to create the best button-up shirts for women.
"Tradlands was started because I saw a problem in women’s shirting. I spent a lifetime wandering to the menswear section of my favorite stores and asking 'Hey, why don't they make this for me?' After surveying other women, I learned I wasn't the only one who noticed this dilemma."
This focus led her to create The Perfect White Shirt, a button-up made from high quality cotton oxford coupled with Tradlands' signature relaxed yet feminine fit. “Every woman can build a variety of functional yet stylish outfits around a classic white oxford shirt,” she added.
"I believe less is more. Women deserve more than fast fashion and disposable products. We are making thoughtful, heirloom-quality shirts made to last," notes Sadie. "Women want practical yet fashionable pieces that feel comfortable while looking sharp."
Drawing from her own experiences, Sadie thinks modern women are looking for something similar. “I want wardrobe staples I know I can count on time and time again. Quality pieces that withstand trends, are transitional season to season, and will hold up after many washes.”
Judging by reviews on her website, Roberts has gained a customer base who both love her products and believe in what a great button-up shirt can do for their closet.
A recent review from a customer reflects Sadie's own feelings about quality and thoughtful wardrobe staples:
"What I love most is how the shirt frees me up to focus on other things. I know that I'll be comfortable and look pulled-together all day when I'm wearing it, and I can use those precious few moments in the morning, which I used to spend fretting over clothing choice, on other, more important choices for my day. I don't have to wake up in the morning and ask, "Who will I be today?" I know the answer is: comfortable and stylish.
I've taken to referring to this shirt as a feminist - it affords women the same opportunities for practicality, style, and durability that men have in their clothes. Thank you for making an all-season shirt I'll come back to again and again, and thank you for providing women with practical, beautiful, durable, sustainable choices."
Tradlands' core line focuses on the button-up shirt, an essential to any capsule wardrobe. With a distinctive fit and a cult following, each collection features seasonal favorites, new and fun prints, simple and refined neutrals, and a selection of staples carried year round. With something for every personality and a remarkable fit, it's not a surprise these shirts fly off the virtual racks.
Why focus so heavily on the fit? Sadie explains, “To start, our intention was to create the best universal fit for women. After spending years tailoring men’s versions and settling for women’s shirts that never felt just right, we began building and testing our own shirt.” She adds, “The fit is like a first date. When a company nails fit, we consider taking the next step to purchase, right?”
If the objective was to make the best button-up shirt for women there is a passionate crowd of customers who will agree Tradlands has succeeded. Along with fit there is a focus on fabric and history with each shirt. Roberts draws much of her inspiration from her father’s closet, her mothers sense of style, and the cultural surroundings of her travels. “Growing up on the east coast I was surrounded with great heritage brands, and a rich history of prep and nautical culture. My father had a closet full of plaids, ginghams, and striped shirts. My mother would wear my father’s shirts and sweaters, looking effortlessly cool, even if they were a bit oversized.”
Sadie's mom is clearly an important influence on her own personal style. “Her eye for great textiles, her everyday work ethic, and the way she put outfits together inspired The Essentials Collection. These staples are made of timeless fabrics, like white oxford, in our signature fit. Our customers are mothers, travelers, teachers, gardeners, and students. The Essentials are made for the lifestyle of the modern woman, wherever their adventures take them."