The thredUP Capsule Wardrobe Challenge
Here at thredUP HQ, we’re big on keeping our closets in flux—which means we get rid of clothes we’re no longer wearing and making sure what we do wear brings us joy.
Inspired by Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic Of Tidying Up and Unfancy’s Capsule Wardrobe, a group of women at thredUP headquarters challenged each other to wear the same 10 items for 30 days (shoes, jackets and handbags did not count, thank goodness).
After the 30 days were up, we brought our items into the office and did a photo shoot of the outfits we wore over the course of the challenge month. We surprised even ourselves at how many combos we came up with. (Bonus: all our items are from thredUP!) Watch the video below and read on to hear more from each participant.
Madeline Cronin, Organic Growth Manager
Style: Sporty Cool
Why did you participate in this challenge? Honestly? Because my coworkers were doing it, I was new at thredUP, and I wanted to make friends.
What was your favorite part? Getting dressed in the morning was way easier. Also, having something to talk about with my new coworkers.
What was your least favorite part? I got a little tired of wearing pants! Some days I craved the instant femininity of a skirt or dress.
What did you learn about yourself? Don’t forget your hair! For me, my hairstyle is an important part of my outfit and great way to express myself/be who I want to be that day. Even if I’m working with a limited (but lovely) closet, I can style my hair in an edgy, feminine, surfer-y, you-name-it way.
What was your favorite piece? My periwinkle culottes from 3.1 Philip Lim. They are such a statement. They make anything into an outfit.
Ashley Atipornpanich, Graphic Design Intern
Style: Literary Chic
Why did you participate in this challenge? To see how far I could go before giving up …
What was your favorite part? Discovering new ways to style out my 10 picks by talking to the others participating in the challenge.
What was your least favorite part? During the challenge, I bought a new pair of jeans and really wanted to wear them… it was sad.
What did you learn about yourself? I say “yes” to solid colors and “no” to patterns (except stripes!).
What was your favorite piece? My red collared blouse from Kimchi Blue!
Lauren Schaumann, Jr. Graphic Designer
Style: Feminine Flair
Why did you participate in this challenge? I read several articles about reinventing the uniform. I was really interested in doing something similar, but with a little more flexibility.
What was your favorite part? Trying not repeat the same outfit twice and coming up with new ways to restyle the same pieces
What was your least favorite part? I shortly realized that I didn’t pick enough fun pieces, I wish I picked more patterns. My capsule collection wasn’t as exciting as it could have been.
What did you learn about yourself? I definitely have a distinct color palette: white, cream, beige, black, and denim. That’s basically my whole wardrobe, not just the 10 pieces.
What was your favorite piece? My Zara cream pleather knife pleated skirt. I love pairing it with a cream or white top, and heels for a chic monochromatic look.
Maggie Cheung, Art Director (a.k.a. The One Who Inspired Us All To Do This)
Style: Low-Key Luxe
Why did you participate in this challenge? The whole mindset of “less is more” and “KonMari” are resonating with me recently. Knowing that I could never have a uniform (how I dress is based on my mood and the weather), I came up with the idea to pick only 10 pieces and wear them for 30 days. It felt like a baby step towards optimizing my closet, while maintaining the ability to wear clothes based on my mood or weather. It was more fun when my coworkers wanted to participate.
What was your favorite part? Challenging myself to wear a different outfit with the same pieces for 30 days. Whether it was the way I styled my shirt and/or wearing different shoes, I never repeated an outfit. My second favorite part was getting dressed in the morning (see next question), so it was super easy and fast.
What was your least favorite part? Pre-planning. Because I didn’t want to repeat an outfit, I mapped out exactly what I wanted to wear every single day. That took me awhile, but it was worth the outcome of not having to think about what to wear. I’d look at my phone, check my notes and put the outfit on. No discussion. No excuses.
What did you learn about yourself? I can get rid of way more clothes. I need to get over the attachment I have to a lot of pieces.
What was your favorite piece? My dark gray skirt from Madewell—a truly versatile piece.
Kelly Fooy, Producer and Photographer
Style: Free-Spirited Fashionista
Why did you participate in this challenge? My job requires me to dress stylishly but comfortably. I’m constantly moving around. I always need help refining my style in both departments. This exercise really forced me to edit form and function.
What was your favorite part? Fewer morning freak-outs. I knew what I was wearing and knew I would feel cute.
What was your least favorite part? I chose too many bottoms in an unusually hot summer for San Francisco. I ended up wearing the same top over and over again. Thankfully, my coworkers love me and didn’t say anything.
What did you learn about yourself? I love one-piece outfits and I love denim even more.
What was your favorite piece? Two! My Kensie lightning bolt pullover and my Lou & Grey distressed jeans.
Join the challenge! Show us your capsule wardrobe pieces on Instagram and Twitter with #10for30.