5 Lessons from The Curated Closet You Can Apply to Your Home
Have you read The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees? It’s a great book about defining your personal style and then creating your ideal wardrobe so you don’t look into your jam-packed closet and think “I have nothing to wear!” It touches on creating a capsule wardrobe, which is something I’ve been doing to some extent for the past couple of years. A capsule wardrobe is basically a mini-wardrobe for a season that is made up of versatile pieces that can be mixed and matched. And while you’re using this capsule wardrobe, the rest of your clothes are stored away. I love the ease of a simplified, paired-down wardrobe!
One of the most important aspects of The Curated Closet, or any system for creating a capsule wardrobe, is to thoroughly detox your wardrobe by getting rid of everything that doesn’t fit properly, you don’t love or you used to love but haven’t worn in years. This detox takes a fair bit of time, but once you have done it, you will reap the rewards. I love opening my closet and looking at just enough clothes to easily pick out an outfit from pieces I love and know all go well together. Some devotees of a capsule wardrobe cut their wardrobe down to a specific number, like 37 pieces. I’ve never gone that far, but I have significantly reduced the number of clothing hanging in my closet at one time and I have found it incredibly helpful and even freeing. I’ll be honest with you, over the past three years I have been really good at doing this for some seasons and not so good during others. But every time I really put an effort into doing it, I have been so happy that I did.
The Curated Closet really motivated me to define my style and think about creating “outfit formulas” (your usual outfit combinations, such as blazer with jeans or tunic over leggings) and keeping them in mind when you open your closet door. Having these in mind really saves me time in the morning. I even went on Pinterst and printed out some great shots of potential outfit combinations based on pieces I already have and taped them up in my closet. I know, I’m a nerd when it comes to this stuff!
So, you might be wondering, what does all of this have to do with interior design? Well, as I was reading the book and considering all the benefits of curating a closet, it got me thinking about how you can apply these same principles to creating a curated home. I believe you will really love and feel comfortable in your home when you also learn to define your style, get rid of excess that you don’t truly love and thereby create your ideal home.
So here are 5 takeaways from the book that I think can be applied to your home:
- “Be selective: Reserve your [closet space] for items you love 100 percent.”
Change that to: Reserve your home for items you love 100 percent. As I mentioned above, one of the main components of creating a curated closet is to first detox your wardrobe; get rid of everything that doesn’t fit or you don’t love. The same goes for your home. We have so many things in our homes taking up space, often times we don’t even know why they are still there. I am certainly guilty of this! I think it really makes sense to do an inventory of your home. Choose a room and walk through it and really look at each item you see and ask yourself these questions: Why is this here? Do I love it? When you actually take the time to look around your home you notice that there are items filling your space or hanging on your wall that you don’t even like, they have simply become a permanent fixture in your home.
2. “It’s not about owning or doing as little as possible. It’s about owning and doing the right things, things that add value to your life.”
This statement is so true, whether you are talking about your clothes or your home furnishings. Minimalism has become very trendy over the past few years and I see so many images of white rooms and hardly any objects, especially in glossy magazines and on Instagram. Yet most people just aren’t capable of living like that so it’s a completely unrealistic ideal. The other side of the spectrum is the massive clutter that a lot of people live with every day. Our homes don’t have to be one of these two extremes. As you do your detox, really looking at your your possessions and ask yourself: Is this serving a purpose? Is it adding value to my life, either because of it’s function or because of it’s beauty? Things that make you happy serve an important purpose. But if you can’t answer yes to serving a function or being beautiful, get rid of it!
3. “Our [clothes] tell a story. Our [clothes] reflect our personality and what’s important to us.”
Change to: Our homes tell a story. Our homes reflect our personality and what’s important to us. It’s such an interesting exercise to think about what story our homes are currently telling. What story do you want your home to tell? Are they the same story? Maybe you want your home to tell the story of a fun-loving family that enjoys good food and going on adventures together, but what your home is telling at the moment is something more along the lines of “chaotic family who leaves piles of shoes next to the front door and doesn’t manage to clean up the crumbs under the dining table.” Ahem, that may be the current story my home is telling. Actually the shoes next to the front door and the crumbs under the table aren’t what’s really important. Whether your home is tidied up or not, it’s the decoration that tells the story. What’s hanging on your walls? What colors run through your home? What books or collectibles are proudly displayed on your shelves? These aspects make a home come alive with a sense of identity.
4. “Styling is what turns a good [outfit] into a great one.”
Substitute home for outfit, and this is my mantra, baby. I firmly believe this is true for your home as well as your clothes. Styling is everything. It’s what gives personality to a space. And you don’t have to spend a fortune to do it. You could take a room full of generic Ikea furniture and make it look magazine drool-worthy simply by applying a few styling techniques. Stack coffee table books of the same color and top with a pretty object, lean art against a wall, artfully arrange photo frames. These little details make all the difference.
5. Your best defense is a clear, succinct shopping list. Decide what you want to buy before you hit the shops.
This sentence can be applied to shopping for your home just as well as shopping for clothes. Whether it’s for clothes or home decor, a lot of us go shopping and are lured in by trends and sales. At the store, we see a super stylish piece that we think will make our home magically chic. But when we actually get home and put it on the shelf or the coffee table, it appears to be just a little trinket that doesn’t radically change anything. Trendy trinkets don’t make your home suddenly stylish and comfortable. What we’re really doing is wasting money and adding more clutter to our homes. It is so much more helpful to have a clear idea of what your home style is, what your color palette is and what story you’re trying to tell. Armed with these three pieces of information, when you see something nice in a shop you can determine if it will fit into the home you want to create. This is how you avoid adding just another random piece to a mismatched house.
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I would love to hear what you think about creating a curated closet or a curated home!
Have a wonderful week!