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Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe

Hi friends! It’s good to be back to my regular posting schedule. 🙂

I had a really good break from blogging, and just doing normal mom things (like cleaning my house for the first time in a month… whoops!).

I’m really excited to share my winter capsule with you for a couple of reasons:

first because I did not fill my fall capsule with enough warm pieces so I’m excited to have some warmer clothes to deal with. I’ve been relying too heavily on my comfort wear capsule as of lately and it’s good to get back into “real” clothes.

But second because it’s the start of a new era here on Truncation. I’m not going to go into too much detail about what things are going to look like in the future because I’ll be uploading a post tomorrow (yes! Tomorrow!) that will do that. So stay tuned!

I know we chatted at the beginning of November about how ethical fashion is no longer going to be the main focus of my blog. And I wanted to share a bit more with you about why I came to that decision before we get into a breakdown of the clothes in this capsule.

When I first started pursuing ethical fashion, I put this enormous amount of pressure on myself to get it perfectly right out of the gate.

No room for margin… just perfection.

In an ideal world, that would have been attainable. But it wasn’t. And every time I had to purchase something that wasn’t from a small maker I felt an overwhelming sense of guilt.

But then something snapped in me this fall. The pressure became too much I suppose.

Because here’s the thing: I knew I was going need to purchase a fair amount of winter clothes.

I’ve lost weight recently, plus a box of my winter clothes somehow went missing when we moved last fall. Last winter I scraped by because I was pregnant with the twins and was living off of leggings and sweatshirts.

But, I was basically completely lacking in knitwear (not cheap). I thrifted as much as I could, but knitwear is extremely hard for me to find via thrifting. I have really sensitive skin so all wool (even cashmere) doesn’t work for me, and even some blends are still too scratchy.

Six months ago I would have agonized over what I should do and I probably would have just decided to freeze all winter (which is not fun in the negative temps in Minnesota).

But in my new head space I decided that it’s okay if not everything is perfect all of the time. It’s okay to be in process. It’s okay to work towards something instead of arriving at exactly the same place at the same time as someone else.

I would have loved to have purchased all new winter clothes from my favorite small makers, but because I needed quantity this go around, and because I don’t have a massive clothing budget (okay its pretty tiny thanks to, well, babies), I decided to give myself a break.

I’m calling it my happy medium… my new, balanced approach to ethical fashion:

Thrift first.

Small maker when possible.

And purchase from a handful of brands that I deem to have high enough quality, and classic enough pieces that I will wear the pieces for a long time.

Now, with that said, I do have a list of shops that I will never shop from because of their unethical practices. These include places such as Zara, Topshop, H&M, Forever 21, etc.

I hope that this new approach encourages you as well. I know not everyone is in a place to drop over $100 on each new piece they add to their wardrobe. I hope my modeling my real life process to you shows you that you too can work towards more sustainable shopping habits even when life gets in the way.

Okay. Now that I’ve said my piece let’s get into the actual clothes that I chose for my Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe:


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe


White TeeI’ve had this tee for three years now. It’s the first Everlane purchase I ever made and it’s going strong. I wore the heck out of my micro rib all summer and fall, but I wanted a more true t-shirt style for winter because of it’s layering abilities.

Cozy Cardigan Ethical Option | Wear for a long time option This was a new purchase for me. I’ve been looking for the perfect silvery gray cardigan for probably two years now so I’m happy to finally have one in my wardrobe.

Hoodie When I was looking at knitwear, my highest priority was comfort. I love this piece from Everlane because it looks like a pulled together sweater because of the structure and color, but it’s a sweatshirt!

Oversized Sweater (Thrifted) | Ethical Option | Wear for a long time option I thrifted this sweater when I was pregnant and wore it almost every other day. It’s just utter perfection. I did my best to link up similar options for you because if you’re in the market for a new sweater, I would highly recommend a style like this one.

Neutral Cardigan (sold out) Similar Ethical Option Wear for a long time option This was another new purchase. My old cream cardigan got destroyed in the wash (sad story!), and it took me almost a year to find one that I liked as much as that one. I’m glad I didn’t rush out and get the first one I found, because this one is going to fit seamlessly in my wardrobe.


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe


Vintage Sweater | Ethical Option Wear for a long time option Affordable option I also thrifted this sweater when I was pregnant and I can finally wear it! It hits right at the hip, so it for sure didn’t work when I was massively pregnant. I can’t wait to give it some mileage!

Turtleneck c/o | Affordable Ethical Option This turtleneck was gifted to me by Betina Lou when I partnered with Morgan from the Garment Life for her Fall Pop Up. I love a simple turtleneck because of it’s layering abilities. I always feel very Audrey Hepburn when I wear it.

Colorful Tee Ethical Option I’ve been working on slowly re-introducing color back into my wardrobe. I went through a phase where I was all about neutrals, but I’m back on the color train (that was cheesy).

Classic Tee This was one of my high priority items to replace. My other black and white tee was one of the items in the mysteriously displaced box of winter clothes, and it’s something I wore all of the time. I’m happy to have this classic style back in my closet.

Boxy Sweater This was a fall purchase from Everlane and I am in love with it. I’m excited to get more wear out of it this winter.


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe


Crewneck Tee I’ve had this tee for awhile, but I wasn’t feeling the crew neck when I had my nursing boobs (real talk). Now that I’m back at my normal size, I’m into this style again.

Chunky Sweater (Old) | Ethical Option Wear for a long time option I’ve had this sweater for a long time and I’m so happy it survived the move! It’s so cozy and it’s the perfect length. Yay for old favorites!

Blush Sweatshirt (Old) | Ethical Option So remember when I talked about how Pantone made me do it? Well this was one of those pieces. But after using it for lounge wear for the past year, I’ve decided that a little blush pink isn’t really the worst thing after all. 🙂

Striped Sweatshirt (Old) | As close as I could find Ethical Sweater Option I’ve also had this sweatshirt for a really long time… it was actually in my very first capsule. I haven’t worn it in awhile because of pregnancies, but it’s officially back in the rotation!

Statement top c/o (sold out) | Same top in different printSimilar Option Oh how I love this top! And oh how I love this company! Unfortunately this print is sold out, but I linked to the same top in a different print.


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe Row 4


Boyfriend Denim I bought these jeans from Everlane this fall and I’m so glad I did! They are just perfect. I love the weight of the material, the just right amount of stretch, and the high waste. I’ve already gotten so much wear out of them and I know that will continue over the winter.

Skinny Denim Wear for a long time option Another option | Affordable Option I’ve had these jeans since two summers ago. It’s actually funny because I wore them until I was about 25 weeks pregnant, which is crazy. I have no idea how they survived that long, but my care team (yes, team. It takes a village when you are pregnant with twins!) always called them the magic jeans! They are so stretchy that they feel like sweatpants so I think that’s why they carried me so far, but, well I’m a fan.

Striped Tee Red is my favorite color and I knew I wanted to add a red striped shirt to this capsule. I was happy to discover this gem on Everlane! It’s a really nice, classic fit but the red is a really nice vintage red color.

Colorful Sweater (no longer available in this color) | Super Similar | Affordable Option This was a new purchase as well. This may seem like a color that won’t stand the test of time, but I was comfortable purchasing it because up until about three years ago, I had some form of this color in my wardrobe at all times. Yes, it’s a trend right now, but my past purchases made me confident that I’ll wear it even when the color isn’t as trendy as it is at the moment.


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe


Marled Cardigan (old) | Made in USA Option | Wear for a long time option | Affordable Option I got this for Christmas maybe five years ago? Anyway, it’s still going strong and I’m glad it also survived the move. I’ve yet to find another cardigan with this exact color combination.

Flannel (old) | Same in different colors | Organic Cotton option | Affordable Option  This is another piece that I’ve had in my wardrobe for a long time. It’s the perfect flannel in my opinion. It’s incredibly soft, the colors are perfect for me and it has the perfect fit. It’s still in great condition so I know it will be around for a long time!

Long Cardigan c/o  This is the only piece in my winter capsule that I’m partnering with a brand on, but it’s for a really good reason! Stay tuned for more info!

Gray Denim | Affordable Option These are the same jeans as my blue skinny jeans, but in a gray wash. I picked them up while I was pregnant because of how amazing my other pair was.

Black Denim (30% off!) | Affordable option I picked up these jeans this fall. I was hoping for a more modern fit in a pair of jeans, and these are it. They’re also as comfy as sweat pants (see a theme here? #stayathomemom)


Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe


Black pants (old) | Ethical Option | Made in USA option | Affordable Option I’ve had these pants since my workin’ days. I’ve been craving an actual pair of pants (instead of jeans), and instead of purchasing a new pair, I just pulled these out of my box of work wear. I wanted a more high waisted silhouette, but I decided to stick with what I already own (even though they aren’t perfect).

Silk Tank | Same look in a non silk option I probably won’t get as much wear out of this tank because, well, little grubby hands, but David and I are starting to fit in more date nights now that the twins are older and it’s nice to have a dressier option.

Pullover Sweatshirt Yes, this is the fifth sweatshirt in my capsule and no, I’m not sorry about it. I am fully embracing the fact that I live a very casual lifestyle and sweatshirts are my jam.

Black Sweater (thrifted) | Ethical  Option | Non Wool Option | Affordable Option  My black sweater was one of the pieces that went missing so I knew I wanted to replace it. Thankfully I was able to find this gem at my local thrift store!

Little Black Dress | Same fabric/color, different style | Affordable Option This is my one and only dress/skirt option for this capsule. I’m not a dress person normally, but I’ve really been enjoying them lately for days at home. Sometimes it’s nice to not have the waist nipped in, you know? Then all I have to do is throw on a pair of tights or leggings if I leave the house. Perfect!



Comfy Sneakers | Ethical Option you might remember me talking about these shoes in this post. I had originally replaced them with a pair of Vejas, which I have now decided to sell… and return to these shoes. They are just so dang comfy and that’s kind of my top priority at the moment.

Statement Shoe | Ethical Option. I’ve been looking for a pair of statement shoes for a long time, but I never could seem to find the right pair. And then I realized I was trying to find a fancy statement shoe, which just simply doesn’t make sense for my lifestyle. Do I have four pairs of sneakers in my capsule? Yes. But I refuse to add a pair of ballet flats or heels, just because I “should.” I’m a sneaker girl through and through and my capsule reflects that.

Waterproof Boot I’ve had these for so long… maybe seven years? These with a pair of cozy socks equals the most formidable team against whatever weather Minnesota throws at me. Definitely my most practical shoe option, but also one of my dearest because we’ve been through so much together.

Ankle Boot (old) | Ethical Option | USA Made Option | Another Option | Affordable Option I’ve had these for a couple of years and I love them. My only pair of brown shoes, but they fill the category so perfectly I don’t feel the need to have any other shoe in this color.

Casual Sneaker | Ethical Option These Vans were a long time coming. I knew I wanted to purchase them via thrifting and it took about eight months of patience before I found them. They were worth the wait. Fist pump!

Warm Boots (thrifted) | USA Made Option | Wear for a long time option | Affordable Option I thrifted these when I was pregnant and wore the heck out of them. I was all about flat, warm, comfortable, and non restrictive foot wear. I still love them to pieces and can’t wait to wear them for another season.

Neutral Sneakers | Ethical Option You’ve seen me wear these through almost every single capsule, so not much to say here except they are a major staple in my wardrobe.

Lace up Boots (thrifted) | USA Made Option | Affordable Option  Ah! These boots! They were another much waited for and anticipated thrift purchase… and they almost didn’t make it home with me. I’ll share more when I feature them in a post, but suffice it to say that they have already been, and will continue to be, on steady rotation in my wardrobe.

And that’s it! 37 tried and true pieces that 100% work for my lifestyle.

Stay tuned for tomorrow because I’ll be kicking off my new format and I’m excited to share it with you!

Now how about you? Have you started your winter capsules yet?

Until next time,

Signature

 

 

 

Further Reading:

Capsule Wardrobe 101

My Winter 2015 Capsule Wardrobe

My Winter Maternity Capsule Wardrobe

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14 Comments

  • Reply Erin | A Welder's Wife

    I love your winter capsule! Mine is still a hodgepodge, but that is okay. Thank you for being honest about how difficult it is to shop ethically 100% of the time. It is not always easy to find what you are looking for in a price range that is affordable. I am saving up for certain pieces, but I am having a hard time with doing that for absolutely everything I need. So with all of that said, I am glad I am not alone, and I cannot wait to see your new format in your next post!! Exciting!

    December 4, 2017 at 11:04 am
    • Reply Karin

      Thanks Erin! I think it was a bit easier to put together because I did have to purchase some new things… it gave me a vision I guess. You are definitely not alone! I have a friend who was encouraging to me when I was expressing my frustrations with not doing it perfectly and she said (paraphrasing), well isn’t it like everything else we want to do in life? We want to eat healthy, except we don’t all of the time… We want to get in shape, except sometimes we don’t work out… I love the element of grace in that. We do the best that we can and we can’t do it perfectly we offer ourselves grace.

      December 5, 2017 at 8:31 am
  • Reply Lo

    I love all your pops of color! Very excited to see more about this capsule, and I appreciate your transparency–budget is always a huge concern of mine when shopping, and it’s probably my biggest obstacle in shopping “ethically.” Looks like you picked some great, thoughtful pieces, though. 🙂

    December 4, 2017 at 2:13 pm
    • Reply Karin

      Thanks girl! I’m happy I can find that golden yellowy-greenish color (I’m sure there is an official name for it haha) in stores again! And that’s exactly why I shared my struggles… because I think a lot of people never even try because they can’t do it perfectly. I admire people like you, and others that I have seen, that are open about being in process. I think I put a LOT of pressure on myself to get it right 100% of the time, but I’m ready to give myself grace and realize that it’s a process.

      December 5, 2017 at 8:32 am
  • Reply Marti

    Wow, what a great selection of 37 items! I’ve started a capsule & never really let go of all I needed to. Basically my closet feels a little to full, yet not enough to wear. You know that all to familiar gut feeling-time to clean out & make room for loves only! It’s an ongoing process for sure! Thanks for all you do & letting us peak inside your closet space! 🤗💖

    December 4, 2017 at 9:57 pm
    • Reply Karin

      Thanks Marti! It’s taken me QUITE a while to really get to a point where the only clothing I own is the clothing I wear. It took our move last year for me to really dig deep and finally get rid of that extra bit that I was holding onto “just in case” I’m glad you finally made the jump though! It’s been fun seeing your posts about it on Instagram!

      December 5, 2017 at 8:34 am
  • Reply Paige

    Karin,
    Love this mix and your thoughtful approach. I too had some non-ethical brand purchases this fall and that is OK. Being mindful of my purchases and choosing items for the long-term is so much more important and sustainable in the long run. Glad you enjoyed your break and I’m glad you’re back!

    December 4, 2017 at 10:07 pm
    • Reply Karin

      Thank you Paige! You were honestly one of the key people that made me realize it’s okay to be in process. Your thoughts on the sweater you picked up from Old Navy were so thoughtful and inspiring. I REALLY appreciate your perspective!

      December 5, 2017 at 8:35 am
  • Reply MNboymama

    Thanks for posting this! I’m new to your blog. I live in MN also so it is really helpful to see how a capsule can work in our climate! I love that Dijon mustard color as well! My closet is a work in process right now as I’m in my third trimester of pregnancy and I have many clothes in multiple sizes due to body changes. I’ve been craving more simplicity these days (I also have a 3 y.o. and work outside the home) and my end goal is to have a smaller wardrobe (in the correct size) that I love and to be a more mindful shopper. I expect this next year (or two) to be a big transition in both sizes and life overall. I don’t want to over purge until I have a better idea of how my life and body will look, but I’m thinking of trying out some capsules (mine might be a little bigger than yours as I love variety and wearing color, particularly jewel tones) for the various stages (3rd trimester, postpartum at home, post baby work) and store the rest temporarily until my weight settles. Looking forward to seeing your winter pics!

    December 5, 2017 at 9:50 am
    • Reply Karin

      Hi Jackie! Welcome! Yes, it can definitely work! I’ve pretty much resigned myself to the fact that a year round capsule will never work due to our extreme weather swings, but a seasonal capsule is definitely doable! I have 100% been in your shoes! When I started capsuling I was 5 months postpartum and have been either postpartum or pregnant since that time, so I totally get where you’re coming from! I think your approach is spot on. Definitely don’t do any major purging until you have a better idea of where you’re at. I’m finally starting to get rid of stuff that I’ve kept for that very reason. And congrats on your new baby!

      December 6, 2017 at 8:22 am
  • Reply Ophelia

    I do too–great and honest post. I follow the same format you do.
    Confession: pants have proven the hardest for me to find ethically–everything’s online and I’m lazy about sending stuff back–and darn they are hard to FIT without trying them on. And then I think about the environmental cost of shipping them back and forth and the packing material….yeesh. I try to thrift first, but the truth is that pants (unlike shoes and tops) turnover the most frequently in my wardrobe. I don’t have the same pants I did 5 years ago. That’s fact. I changed shape and pants/styles changed shape (or I finally got with the times?)…so I just work on buying a few versatile colors that fit will that I can wear as long and as frequently as possible (even though they are from a chain).
    I still think it’s SO GOOD to shop your values when we can–it charts a better course overall (even though sometimes, I just gotta take a detour)
    https://sites.google.com/view/americancloset/home

    December 9, 2017 at 8:20 am
    • Reply Karin

      I completely understand! I have had the same problem with jeans and you’re right, it is exhausting to try to do it “perfectly” when you are in a phase where the turnover in a certain category is so frequent. And the environmental cost of shipping is something that I’ve recently really been thinking of and I agree that a huge drawback of ethical fashion is the the waste that happens with online shopping. This just proves that there is no perfect solution and that each person has to find a way to make this work on an individual basis.

      December 11, 2017 at 8:22 am
  • Reply Melly

    Thanks for your honest post. Everything we do in life is a process. The main thing is that your heart is in the right place. And yes, most of us don’t have a big clothing budget, so sometimes we just have to do the best we can. I love that you try thrifting first, and wait for things you want. A great example that we don’t have to have everything NOW. But warm winter clothing is a basic human need so giving yourself grace is OK. And even with those purchases, you are still thinking about using what you have for a long time. Thank you for being real and helping others like me to be much more thoughtful and intentional and content.

    December 9, 2017 at 8:17 pm
    • Reply Karin

      Thank you so much Melly! I worried about posting this because I feel like sometimes there is a standard that people hold up in the ethical fashion community and I didn’t want anyone to judge me (although I’m sure plenty of people will/have done so). I’m glad I posted now though because it sounds like a lot of people are in the same boat. I’m learning to embrace the process! 🙂

      December 11, 2017 at 8:26 am

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