# 10 Item Wardrobe

Ten-Item Wardrobe Prep Fall Winter 2016

Happy Labor Day! In this week's video, I am sharing my process of transitioning the ten-item wardrobe between seasons. I show you how I store my out of season clothes (in canvas bins from Bed, Bath & Beyond) and discuss my unique situation this year with the ten-item wardrobe. I hope you join me and that this video inspires you to organize your closet the ten-item wardrobe way.

If you are unable to see the video above, click here, look in the sidebar or visit my channel (and don't forget to subscribe!) at www.youtube.com/TheDailyConnoisseur

Be sure to tune in for next week's video where I give you a tour of my closet!

For my Japanese readers: I have a newly released DVD book in Japan that includes 18 original videos, all in Japanese, that I made just for you! This wonderful DVD is brought to you by the Young Corp. I hope you enjoy it!

Also, Deanne, from Smart Solutions for Busy People tries out the ten-item wardrobe. Have fun, Deanne!
Question of the Week

Hi Jennifer,
Congratulations on your new little boy!
I enjoyed your video about getting ready for the Coldplay concert. I loved your nail polish and am wondering if you would share the brand and color.

Thank you, Frances! The nail polish I wore in last week's Get Ready with Me video was Essie Mademoiselle.

Comment of the Week

Summer Smith writes:

Looks like you had a blast! I saw Coldplay in college when they were just getting big in the states, at a small theatre in Indianapolis. It was right when Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow started dating and he got her to very shyly poke her head out and say hi. It was a blast and I love the way he rocks out on the piano. No one does it quite like Chris does! I too cannot pick a favorite song of theirs because so many of their songs have good memories for me.

Hi Summer, that must have been so fun to see Coldplay in a small venue! Some of my favorite songs of theirs are Yellow, Lovers in Japan/ Reign of Love and A Sky Full of Stars. I love their whimsical lyrics.

This week I would love to know... are you prepping for your fall ten-item wardrobe? Are you having any trouble? (If so, leave me your concerns and I can address them in a question of the week segment.) Are you having any success? Let me know everything. See you next week for a closet tour!

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Denise said...

I enjoyed this video on the process of reviewing last year and figuring out what is needed for this year.
Is there a past video with a checklist on 10-item wardrobe that is a companion to this?

Sonya said...

It's so great to see your process! I was in a similar position last fall. I had just had a baby in July, was a different size and was nursing. However, rather that taking my time with my capsule wardrobe, I rushed out to buy some inexpensive items. Many of them have already been donated. Now I've learned to take my time and work with the clothes I have as much as possible. A capsule wardrobe cannot be rushed!

Unknown said...

Hi Jennifer love the video! It is so practical and inspiring. I had a baby as well few months ago and had a difficult time of recovery. I was thankful for my 10 item wardrobe in this difficult time. Going to the store, to baby's dr's appointments or meeting a friend for coffee seemed almost impossible or running a marathon. I was so glad though for my 10 item wardrobe. It was such a blessing just to grab 'whatever' and look representable. It helped me to feel better in my clothes that I enjoyed in those days when things seemed impossible.
I never walked in yoga pants or stained t-shirts even though that's how I felt and other mom's around me did.
It really improved my mood and my posture :)

Thanks for sharing!

Unknown said...

Great video. I loved seeing your process. I paid extra attention this time because I've lost a bunch of weight and nothing fits except my favorite work skirt which I tailored. Since I'm not sure if the weight loss is permanent, I'm going to search for a few pieces to add while my body sorts itself out. I'm thinking a skirt and a couple of dresses.

Unknown said...

Also, my husband and I went to a museum this weekend and I dressed up a little rather than wearing jeans and running shoes as I would have in the past. Thank you for teaching me the value of dressing for the occasion.

Linn said...

Thank you for sharing how you adjust your 10-item wardrobe to fit your needs.
I started my first 10-item wardrobe this summer and I am very pleased with the results. Now that the seasons are changeing here in northern Europe I definately feel the need for some warmer clothes. I would love to hear your thoughts on how to do a 10-item wardrobe in a four seasons climate.

Unknown said...

Love this! We just moved and a lot of our stuff was in storage and it's amazing how tired all of the clothes make me. I can't wait to go through them and just get rid of what does not work or will not work for this coming fall/winter. Thank you again for the inspiration! P.S. You look fabulous in the green, it compliments your eyes perfectly.

Meagan said...

I love this post and video! I was in your position last year but only bought one or two tops and tried to make it through which was good on my budget. But this year I'm feeling overwhelmed that I "need" clothing because I only have 4 tops total for fall/winter and a pair of jeans and a pair of black pants. That's everything except exercise clothing. I'm wondering if you limit your extras (tee shirts for example)? I find myself not knowing what I need/want to round out my wardrobe and always end up just buying a few tee shirts but then feeling boring and blah all the time. Any tips?

Madame Melville said...

Hi Jennifer! Thanks for the insight into your process. I agree, opening up your storage of last season's clothing is like going shopping....especially when you have followed the ten-item wardrobe in the past and love all your clothing. It all feels new and exciting It's a fresh start even if they are just your old clothes from last year. I recently started sorting through my things and am looking forward to the fall switch in wardrobe, loving the thought of jeans, boots, cozy fall sweaters and scarves!! Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

It's still a little warm here in the mid-Atlantic region to go through my Fall wardrobe; I usually do that in mid-September, but I DO look forward to it. Toward the end of a season, I start getting a little bored and eagerly anticipate the next season. I'll get rid of any summer things that just aren't doing it for me, storing what does work in my computer room closet. I'll bring out my fall/winter things from said closet and go through them, trying on everything, asking myself if I love it or not, and getting rid of anything that doesn't work or is excess (One doesn't really need several black wool pullover sweaters. One always has a favorite and that is the one to keep. The rest can be donated.) After neatly hanging up the survivors, I see what gaps I may have that need to be filled in. There is always something This year, I know I would like some presentable winter sleepwear. It gets pretty cold around here, and I like something that's toasty yet chic. A tall order.)

Thank you for all your excellent videos. Even though I pride myself on being hyper-organized, I still learn helpful hints from them, or new products to try, or new ways of applying the old ones.

Christina said...

Hello! I loved this video and it inspired me to grab my box of fall/winter clothes. One struggle I alway have is when to draw the line between summer and fall and totally put summer items away. Even though it's hot here in Texas I still like to dress for the season. I have a few linen tops that won't carry over because of their fabric and style. At what point do you box up your summer items and start wearing your fall clothes? Also, I'm never sure what constitutes extras. Are all tops and tees extra? Thank you for your books and videos.

Caley said...

What perfect timing for this video! I just pulled my fall clothing out of storage over the weekend and have been feeling incredibly overwhelmed by my closet right now. I live in Victoria BC, where we have a very sudden and distinct shift to crisp, damp autumn weather; however, there will still be many beautiful, warm sunny days scattered throughout well into October. That being said, I do need to keep both seasons somewhat accessible for a bit longer and it is making my closet feel much more cluttered than I am used to.

I am also in the same situation as you, Jennifer - planning ahead for nursing-functional clothing. I am due on Sunday with babe #2, and I am trying to piece together practical and put-together outfits based on what I already have, while knowing from experience what will NOT work for everyday nursing. At the same time, there's the added issue of not knowing exactly what (or when) certain items will fit well again! Quite the conundrum! This video just reminded me to slow down, work with what I have for now, and figure out where the holes are as my needs change over the season. I need to remember that just because I might require for a new "fall" item later into the season, doesn't mean it is a waste - I can shop smart and find items that can work for both fall and winter, especially in my climate! It's not about having it all in place by a certain deadline or one complete wardrobe "roll over" in a single day!

Emma Knight Peel said...

I just went through my closet again and got rid of more items. I find that it takes constant reassessing. I donated some button down blouses that I had been keeping because they were in good condition and pretty colors, but this time I was honest and reminded myself that I haven't worn them in years, I'd have to lose a lot of weight to wear them again, and when I did wear them, they weren't very comfortable. The arms were snug and the buttons might gape open, and they require too much ironing! Another striped top that I thought I loved because it's so soft and comfortable, I realized looks unflattering on me when I saw photos of myself in it. The stripes emphasize my large chest, and that it's not very perky. So, things that I automatically put back in the past because I thought I wanted to keep them, I finally cleared out, and it feels good! I think of you every time I pare down my closet. :)

Vicki Zimmerman said...

What a wonderful way to get ready for autumn with your practical tips, always shared with your experience, wisdom and friendly nature. I'm getting ready to attend a wedding in Pasadena this coming weekend with some lovely ladies I met on a fashion blog, so planning for that has helped me to organize for the season, too. I'm so glad many of your pretty dresses can be used and the others will await you next year.

I keep my sweaters stored in a box with three drawers and my tees and extra tops in storage boxes similar to yours so they are easily accessible from my armoire. Thank you!

Bosendorfer32 said...

This might be one of my favorite videos ever, Jennifer! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this! It is so refreshing to have someone be so upfront and honest with the struggles of dressing ourselves through the different stages of our lives, especially during pregnancy and nursing, when most women still have some weight to lose. I have had seven children myself and for some reason, I felt like I could only have a 10 item wardrobe when I was at my pre pregnancy weight. I was honestly so confused on how to implement it during the first few months of pregnancy, when regular clothes don't fit, and the first 4-6 months postpartum when very few of my clothes fit and feel like they should! I would usually end up buying several really cheap items to get me through, but the quality was poor and they made me feel worse and affected my self esteem. I hated feeling like that at such a joyful period in my and my family's lives! Now I know that especially for these times when are bodies are not as they usually are, to keep quality rather than quantity in mind, and it's ok to gave a 5 item wardrobe of beautiful and flattering clothes and to just keep an eye out for what you need and to not feel the pressure of having certain things right away(for instance a pair of jeans.) This week's video was so very helpful and I think I can speak for a lot of us when I say your candor and your beautiful but down to earth way of handling life is so refreshing. You look beautiful and congrats on your precious baby.

Maureen said...

Thanks for the great video, Jennifer! I have the same situation on my hands and will be going back to work at the end of October, so I need to start working out my fall/winter wardrobe. My question for you is baby-specific: what about spit-up? :) Maybe (and I certainly hope for your sake) that your son doesn't have the same talent for missing the burp cloth as mine. However, at this point, I look at my 2015 wardrobe and think to myself that there's no way that I can wear my old favorite cashmere sweaters and similar items because I would hate for them to be casualties of my precious spit-up machine. I'd love to hear your thoughts!

M.C. Sommers said...

This is an awesome video! I've actually been pregnant or nursing for over three years so I completely understand the struggle. I had a little boy last fall and I really wanted something nice to wear to all the holiday stuff coming up, but I also knew that I'd be a different size than normal while I was losing the weight. My friend suggested I buy a skirt in my current size and then tailor it after I lost the weight. It was the best idea. I was able to wear something that I felt good in and then still able to tailor it and keep it after I'd lost the weight. It prevented me from rushing out and buying something cheap and I wasn't trying to squeeze into something that made me feel badly about myself.

Joy said...

I love this! I'm also nursing right now, so I can definitely relate. Thanks for talking about issues like how nursing affects wardrobe choices! If you do buy any new dresses, can I recommend again Karina Dresses? Many of them have a surplice neckline so are excellent for nursing. I have four! They are made in the USA, too. They are pricey, but I think worth it.

I just moved to South Korea from Hawaii. So for me, one of the big factors I'm considering for my fall wardrobe is the weather -- it's so different from what I had last year. There will actually be seasons here, and the wind can get crazy! Last week I was wearing a peplum top with jeans, and it literally blew up around my armpits!! So that's where I'm at.

Thanks for posting this! I love what you do!

Lillian said...

Hi Jennifer

I just finished "Polish your Poise" this month. I have to say that some of your advice has really helped me lately. Recently I got into a political discussion with a family member I don't always agree with. I've really been taking your advice to heart, especially about not letting others affect your inner peace. Instead of getting defensive about my position, I maintained my cool and listened. Then when there was an opportunity for me to respond, I thoughtfully suggested my stance as an alternative way to look at the issue. The person still didn't agree with me, but I realized that was ok. Just because they didn't agree with me didn't mean my opinion was wrong. We both listened to each other, and the conversation and the rest of the evening was very pleasant.

This weekend my friend and I went shopping for some fall updates. When he found a shirt he liked, he went back to buy it in every color. I stopped him. After a little discussion, it was clear that the color he had instinctively grabbed to try on was the only one he actually liked. His strategy is usually to buy a lot of one thing he knows works for him (a useful strategy for someone who doesn't particularly like shopping). I suggested instead "What if you just wear this one a lot? This one will be your favorite anyway, you'll probably chose it over the others whenever you can, so just don't buy the others to begin with." He saw my reasoning. We'll see, but you might have another 10-item wardrobe convert soon!

unknown said...

Hi Jennifer,

I loved this video because prepping for Fall/Winter is exactly what I have been doing this week.Thank you!

While I have never have had an over-stuffed wardrobe, I have decided to do the 10-item wardrobe this season because I would like to have a more complimentary closet. My problem in the past has been buying items in a "neutral or classic colour that I thought would go with everything. I always read how every woman should have a black dress or pants or whatever it may be. But then I ended up with a wardrobe full of predominantly black, gray, navy, and brown of various shades that really did not make a complimentary outfit, much less a wardrobe. I would ideally like to have a more balanced wardrobe where every piece can go with every other piece, but it seems so difficult to orchestrate this! Do you have any tips on choosing a colour scheme or palette for Fall/Winter? How do you consider colour when shopping for multiple items?

Thanks for any advice you could give me! And thank you for all your posts and videos. I always look forward to Mondays and your posts.


Unknown said...

Chère Jennifer,
étudiante parisienne, je prends un grand plaisir à regarder vos vidéos et surtout celles sur les "10-item wardrobe". Comme vous, je me réjouis toujours lors des transitions d'armoire lors des changements de saison.
J'ai acheté votre livre "Lessons from Madame Chic" et j'y ai reconnu beaucoup d'éléments de mon éducation, mais j'en ai appris ou mieux compris et assimilés d'autres. Si je devais citer, comme dans les vidéos d'interview du Vogue UK
"99 questions with...", des livres qui m'ont influencés de manière positive, le vôtre figurerait certainement dedans!
Permettez-moi par ailleurs de vous complimenter sur le choix de couleurs et aussi de formes que vous faites pour vos vêtements. Si je puis vous donner un conseil, jetez un coup d'oeil au travail du styliste américain David Zyla, qui a une théorie sur les couleurs qui sieyent le mieux à chacun et sur l'effet qu'elles ont sur notre apparence. Il a écrit un ouvrage de vulgarisation de sa théorie, qui fonctionne de manière minimaliste avec une palette de 5 "couleurs" et de 3 neutres par personne, facilement accessible sur Pinterest. Ce livre s'intitule The Color of Style ou Color Your Style, je ne sais plus trop... vous comprendrez alors pourquoi vert d'eau, vert émeraude, fushia et prune sont les couleurs qui vous mettent le plus en valeur!
Encore bravo pour vos livres que je relis régulièrement, et vos vidéos que je suis sur YouTube. Ne cessez pas de propager votre passion pour une vie pleine de bon goût et de culture, je suis de tout coeur avec vous.
Louise Hülsmann

chelsey said...

Great video! I love the idea of using the fabric bins to store your out-of-season wardrobe items, and think I might give that a try.

I just read your first book, Jennifer. I "stumbled" upon it at the library, checked it out and absolutely loved it and the ideas you put forth. I am attempting to begin my capsule wardrobe. I live in Ohio, where we have hot, humid summers and cold, snowy winters. I think I might need more than 10 core items but I'm committed to having less - I have already donated or sold half the items in my closet and dresser. I have always been a believer in "quality over quantity" but after becoming a mom, I lost my sense of self and style for awhile and just began wearing whatever fit, whatever is on sale. I'm excited to change that. I've also placed your other two books on hold at the library and am can't wait to read them!

A couple questions I have for you: how do you deal with the pressure to "lose the baby weight" in our society that focuses so intently on women's bodies? I do not mean this as a judgement, but more as a conversation on the way media focuses on the task of getting thin again as quickly as possible after giving birth. I know so many women who lament their bodies during pregnancy and feel pressure to have a "perfect body" post partum that they miss out on the beauty of enjoying their babies. Almost every magazine has a celebrity who recently gave birth on the cover in a bikini, touting their "weight loss", and the pressure on women to follow suit is crushing. I really wish we could change this!

Also, what was the music playing in your Coldplay video? Can you recommend some upbeat classical music to listen to during daily tasks?

Thanks, Jennifer!

Jo said...

Dear Jennifer,
I thought you might be interested in my recent experience with a limited wardrobe. I have just started a new job after many years of working from home and raising my children. My immediate instinct was to go shopping for new clothes – although my work environment is not very formal, I do need to look presentable. Financially, a shopping trip (or, more likely, a catalogue-shopping binge) was out of the question.
So, with you in mind, I did a thorough review of what I already had and found three serviceable dresses, two summer dresses that I’ve had for several years and another dress that I bought for a special occasion and have not worn since. With two cashmere cardigans, one of which I repaired, I have enough to be presentable five days a week. I have some tailored trousers for when the weather cools and I am on the lookout for a neutral skirt to mix and match.
Aside from the convenience of the limited options, some interesting things I have realised are:
New is not necessarily better. I have always thought that confidence came from new clothes. In fact, the same feeling can come from having my outfits well planned.
The two summer dresses were not favourites. In fact, one of them I did not like very much but being ‘forced’ to wear it has made me value and like it more.
There is a satisfaction that comes from ‘wearing up’ clothes, rather than adding new ones. It is like the feeling that comes from using up the last bits and pieces of food in the fridge at the end of the week.
Finally, when I do purchase new clothes for my work wardrobe in the future, I will have a clearer idea of what works best and what I really need.
Good wishes

Jessica said...

What's your take on splitting up 2-piece outfits forever, as in donating half and keeping the other half?
I have some suits that were purchased a few years back, they are still in great shape. I just don't wear them as suits anymore, I usually just wear the skirt. I am more of a sweater person than a blazer person I guess. If I donate the suit jacket to Goodwill, the poor suit will be split up for good. I would feel guilty, like I'm causing a wardrobe divorce!
On a side note, I had to pack in about 10 minutes for an emergency flight back East and was essentially stuck with a Ten Item Wardrobe. I loved it! Although it meant more washings, it sure makes the decision of what to wear each day easier.

The Daily Connoisseur said...

Thank you so much to all of you for reading and watching. As usual I have enjoyed reading every one of your comments. Thank you to those of you who had questions. I always try to address questions in future videos and will aim to do that. I am not able to reply to each individual comment because I have limited time (baby snuggles come first!) I know you all understand. Just wanted to share my appreciation to all of you for being such active members of the blog. Thank you! Best wishes, Jennifer

Maureen said...

Hi Jennifer, thank you for this video! I would love to know your approach to shedding the baby weight. I too would like to return to my pre-pregnancy form, but I am worried about compromising my milk supply.

As always, you inspire me, and I appreciate your warmth and elegance!