How to Craft Your Own Capsule Wardrobe:

A Step-by-Step Guide for Fall 2023

Created by
Christine Kul
Fashion Lover
Inspired by Vogue
and Every Girl
Reimagining Runway Trends: Your Ultimate Guide to a Capsule Wardrobe

Fashion runways often dazzle with their extravagant takes on trends, leaving us wondering how to translate these styles into our everyday wear. Thankfully, a practical solution to this fashion dilemma exists, and it comes in the form of a capsule wardrobe.

The secret to timeless shopping lies in the artful fusion of core neutrals, seasonal fabrics, and subtle nods to the latest trends. Picture a wardrobe that seamlessly blends essential basics—think of cozy winter knits and breezy summer cottons—with those attention-grabbing pieces that grace the runways and street-style scenes. By thoughtfully curating a selection that encompasses standout items from each category, ones that effortlessly harmonize with one another, you're well on your way to a stylish and versatile season ahead.

Among the seasons, the transition to fall is arguably the most enchanting. Sandals make room for luxurious leather and suede boots; lightweight tees yield sumptuous cashmere and wool sweaters. There's a palpable sense of nostalgia in the air, as the days brim with anticipation and a fresh perspective that only this transient season can bring. And there's truly nothing quite like that first September morning, where the thermometer dips below 65 degrees, inviting you to slip into a cherished sweater untouched since March and venture outdoors to bask in the embrace of a crisp autumn day.

As you venture forth in your fashion journey, remember that a well-crafted capsule wardrobe not only enhances your style but also simplifies your choices, making every day an opportunity to celebrate your unique fashion narrative. So, seize the reins, curate your capsule, and let your wardrobe tell your story in the language of impeccable style.
What Is a Capsule Wardrobe?
Imagine your closet as a treasure trove, carefully stocked with pieces that seamlessly complement one another, reflecting your unique style. This treasure trove is your capsule wardrobe, a curated collection of versatile items that you genuinely enjoy wearing. Picture a range of tops, bottoms, dresses, outerwear, shoes, and accessories, all meticulously chosen to effortlessly mix and match, enabling you to craft looks for any occasion. Gone are the days of fleeting fashion trends that fade after a single season; your capsule wardrobe is built on timeless, high-quality pieces that endure, offering years of wear and value.

As you delve into the capsule wardrobe journey, you'll discover that investing in quality pays off. While it might seem like a bigger investment at first, you'll save money in the long run by reducing the need for frequent fast-fashion purchases. The best part? Once you've established the basics of your capsule wardrobe, adapting it to different seasons becomes a breeze. Each piece remains just as stylish as the day you acquired it, making it effortless to create ensembles that capture the essence of the moment.

Think of your capsule wardrobe as your secret weapon against the eternal "what to wear" dilemma. With a thoughtfully curated collection, you'll have endless outfit combinations at your fingertips, bringing ease, style, and a touch of your unique personality to your daily attire.
4 steps in building a Capsule Wardrobe

The first step to building a capsule wardrobe is to take a good, hard look at what you already own, then purge the rest. We don’t mean opening it and flippantly going through the hangers; we mean that you should take every single piece out of your closet, then evaluate if it should go back in. Don’t forget to take a look at your shoes and accessories, too.
Then, sort each item into one of four piles:
1. I love it and would wear it tomorrow: These pieces fit your body and your lifestyle, and you’re happy wearing them. Put these back first.

2. Maybe: These pieces might not fit perfectly, have sentimental value, or you just can’t put your finger on why you don’t wear them more. (If you haven’t reached for it more than once, it belongs in this pile too). Put all of these items in a box and store them in a place that’s easily accessible. If you find yourself reaching for an item, put it back in your closet after; if you haven’t reached for it by the end of the season, keep it in the box to take to donate. This is noncommittal (for now) and allows you to change your mind later.

3. Hard no: Whether it’s because it doesn’t fit or you just decided you don’t like it, pack these pieces up to donate them.

4. Seasonal: There’s no need to keep a chunky sweater next to your summer tank tops. Move all of your seasonal pieces into a storage location that will be easy for you to swap out once the time is right.
Fall isn’t fall without at least one all-black ensemble getting taken out of your closet. To make yours interesting, pairing different textures with one another—like the cashmere, satin, and leather seen here—are what make it feel like a styled look, rather than one you chose on autopilot. If the weather is chilly, layer your favorite blazer over top of the sweater vest for a quintessential fall dinner outfit.
Whether you’re heading to the office for a casual Friday or are taking your laptop and heading to a coffee shop to romanticize your work-from-home routine, this ensemble will have you covered. A crisp white button-up and straight jeans are a no-brainer year-round, but with such a basic base, the devil is in the details. A pair of cognac ballet flats, a suede bag, and earrings that deliver a subtle statement are what make this look worthy of being repeated throughout the entirety of the season.
Fall fashion is often dominated by earth tones, but in this case, we’re happy about it. The combination of the warm, neutral shades that this blazer, sweater dress, and flats all have in common make them a match made in heaven when paired together for the office.
Any leather jacket is a closet staple, but our eyes are set on oversized bomber ones this season. They bring an effortlessly cool edge to any pairing, including this seamless jeans-and-tee combo that’s perfectly complimented by chunky black loafers—these happen to be my favorite loafers I own—and oval sunglasses.
~To work from a coffee shop ~
~Out to dinner ~
~To be office ~
~For a Saturday in the city ~
Tilda Publishing

The Staples
· Longer Coat/ Trench
· Casual Coat
· Blazer
· Turtleneck
· Knit Sweater 1
· Knit Sweater 2 (optional to be a more fitted style than sweater 1)
· Boyfriend Shirt or Button-down
· Bodysuit
· Tee or Tank (ideally carried over each season)
· Knit Dress
· Dress
· Straight-Leg Jeans
· Wide-Leg Trouser
· Skirt
· Lounge Pant (knit pants or leggings, depending on preference)

  • Heeled Boots (based on height preference)
  • Classic Sneaker
  • Flats
  • Loafer
  • Pump/Heel
  • Optional: Knee High boots
· Handbag/Shoulder Bag
· Tote-Style Bag
· Go-To Jewelry
· Optional: Statement earring or jewelry piece

Weather-Dependent Pieces
· Cold-Weather Hat
· Scarf
· Gloves
· Tights

Creating a Timeless Capsule Wardrobe: Lessons from VOGUE

Creating a truly remarkable capsule wardrobe is a journey that demands both time and patience. The process commences by assessing your existing collection and identifying any gaps – a starting point recommended by Vogue (consult their comprehensive wardrobe detox guide for valuable insights).

What makes up a capsule wardrobe, you might ask? Vogue's seasoned editors have a few tried-and-true essentials up their sleeves. Begin with the basics: according to Team Vogue, white T-shirts reign supreme as wardrobe MVPs. Seek out a style that fits impeccably, paying attention to details like hemline and sleeve length. Equally vital is exceptional shirting, a versatile piece that can be matched with trousers, blazers, loafers, and jeans for both formal and casual occasions.

In the realm of outerwear, a trench coat is an unequivocal winner, with contemporary interpretations by brands like Kassl Editions and Raey holding significant value. A tote when it comes to bags, a capacious and durable tote that accommodates all your necessities is a must.

Initiating your capsule wardrobe journey is a personalized endeavor, contingent on the contents of your current wardrobe. However, a productive starting point is identifying what you genuinely wear. Here's a top tip: align all your coat hangers in the same direction, and with each wear, rotate them. By the month's end, you'll have a clear picture of your go-to wardrobe heroes – whether it's a crisp white shirt or classic straight-leg jeans. These invaluable pieces will serve as the cornerstone of your capsule wardrobe, paving the way for an effortlessly stylish and versatile ensemble.

Vogue’s capsule wardrobe wish-list

Here, Vogue’s guide to the clothing essentials that will serve you all year round.
The do-it-all tote bag
Tote bags are an accessory that you can trust. These roomy styles will fit anything and everything.
The white T-shirt
“I’m forever looking for the perfect white T-shirt because I pretty much wear one every day,” remarks British Vogue’s global content lead and European deputy editor Sarah Harris. Follow her lead with our pick of the best styles.

Hard-working jeans
Finding the perfect jeans is no mean feat, but great ones will last you a lifetime.

The trench coat
There’s a reason why trench coats have stood the test of time. Easy to throw on, they instantly pull a look together.

Black leggings
No longer reserved for gym outings, let black leggings be your style companion in 2023.

An oversized blazer
When done right, louche tailoring can be exquisitely chic. Our tip? Ensure the oversized fit doesn’t swamp you.
The vest top
An undisputed favourite with the style set, the classic tank top is a wardrobe staple fit for day-and nighttime. Match with tailored trousers and heeled sandals for a versatile look

Hoop earrings
No jewellery box is complete without a great pair of hoops.

Versatile jumper
When it comes to cold weather layering, a simple crew neck or rollneck (be it high-street or high-end) will do the job nicely.

Smart loafers
Facing a footwear conundrum? Loafers are your answer.

The maxi skirt
Mini skirts are a key trend for 2023, especially denim styles. Pair with autumn boots and a coat for winter, and sandals with a tucked-in T-shirt or tank top for summer.

The biker jacket
Oversized and rugged or upgraded with minimal embellishments, the biker jacket was back in a big way on the autumn/winter 2023 runways (not that we ever really stopped wearing

The party bag
A well-chosen grab-and-go party bag is the easiest way to transition your daytime looks into evening. JW Anderson is always a safe bet for styles in feel-good colourways.

Tailored trousers
Tailored trousers are not only a failsafe office essential but a capsule wardrobe necessity. If off-the-rail styles don’t fit quite right, visit a tailor to make tweakments.

Trendy trainers
Almost any outfit can be dressed down with a pair of trainers. New Balance are the ultimate “Dad” trainer among the It-girls, while coveted Adidas Sambas and Onitsuka Tiger’s Mexico 66s will add pizazz.

The crisp shirt
Never underestimate the quiet power of a good shirt. Be it clean and crisp poplin or breezy linen, there’s one for every situation.

The classic belt
Once you’ve secured your favourite, don’t let it out of your sight. A classic leather belt with an elegant metal clasp will be one of the hardest working pieces in your capsule wardrobe.

Go-to heels
Slip on with your favorite pair of jeans for an elevated take on an every-day look, or take your work attire from day-to-night with wide-leg trousers and a great pair of heels.

It's Within You: Unveil Your Inner Inspiration.

In the grand scheme of things, building a timeless capsule wardrobe goes beyond merely following the ebbs and flows of fashion trends. It's a journey that beckons you to connect with your authentic self – to infuse your style with your personality, your daily rituals, and even your ever-changing moods. Ultimately, the true magic lies in the symbiotic relationship between your attire and your inner essence.

Imagine stepping into your day dressed in outfits that resonate with your individuality, effortlessly mirroring your quirks and preferences. Your wardrobe becomes a curated reflection of your journey, a canvas upon which you artfully express your unique story. This is the essence of a capsule wardrobe – it's not just about the garments; it's about the confidence and empowerment that stem from aligning your appearance with your genuine self.

As you navigate life with this newfound sartorial harmony, you'll notice how your clothing choices intertwine seamlessly with your identity. A well-curated capsule wardrobe isn't solely about creating a visually pleasing ensemble; it's about amplifying your self-assuredness. When you wear outfits that truly resonate with you, your confidence radiates, and the world takes notice. The perfect shirt, the tailored blazer, or the impeccably fitting jeans become more than just fabric – they become extensions of your inner strength.

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