On Project 333
Three months. Thirty-three items.
Project 333 was a fantastic experience for me. I was able to pare down my wardrobe significantly. I learned that I could style the heck out of 33 items, rarely feeling bored. I committed to quality and fit. I began the journey to dressing authentically.
Phase two has commenced, and after thinking hard about what I wanted to gain from this round, after chatting with Drew and Cheryl about the rules I was planning to break (Cheryl decided to break some of the very same rules! Great minds and all that.), I decided that the best approach for this round for me is to lump some categories together.
Phase 2 List
- Gray print jersey dress
- Pink and black print jersey dress (new item from those I'd boxed)
- U.P. LBD dress (we’ll see how it fits post letting-down-the-hem)
- Orange pullover
- Gray cardigan
- Mint green cardigan
- Black fair isle cardigan (new! Christmas gift from Neal & so cozy)
- White blouse
- Gray turtleneck
- Black cap-sleeved knit shirt
- Black long-sleeved shirt (might replace as I really prefer a v-neck)
- Jeans (replaced the "casual" pair with a darker wash I had boxed up)
- Jeans (dark jeans from last round)
- Black slacks
- Gray slacks (Need to be hemmed. Great for work or dressy casual situations)
- Gray a-line skirt (it's big now, but I love it so & next size down is not available currently)
- Blue a-line skirt (Christmas gift from Neal)
- Slim skirt (newly added from items I boxed up for Phase 1)
- Chinoa boots
- BBC boots
- Pearl Harts
- Uggs (newly added from items boxed up for Phase 1)
- Yellow shoes
- Moop bag (testing out as replacement for black leather tote. Phase 1 was rough on tote!)
- Orange bag
- Small black leather bag
- Alpaca wrap
I'm not making many adjustments to the last round; I have added more accessories, perhaps over doing it with the shoes. In Phase 1, I learned that I did not like being limited to one handbag, especially a large one. There are times when a smaller bag is better.
Now for my reasoning in deciding to break a few rules.
Jewelry: I got used to wearing very little, but I missed my jewelry. I've culled out a huge pile of costume jewelry I know I don't want to hang on to, and I'm boxing up all but the most sentimental of pieces: my bracelets, which I like to stack; a few necklaces; a pair of thick silver hoops bought to celebrate my undergraduate graduation; my mother/daughter ring, my turquoise ring, and my 13 ring.
Belts: I'm also lumping together the two belts I like to wear. Would one do the trick? Of course, but I am unwilling to part with either, again for sentimental and style reasons. I have no plans to donate or sell either, and rather than having them (wastefully) languishing in a box in the basement, I'll use them to hold up the jeans that are a little loose.
Outerwear: Like many parts of the country, New England's weather is fickle. I know from Phase 1 that I would get a lot of use out of a 3/4 season raincoat or trench, so I'm keeping an eye out for one with a removable lining. I have two vests and two winter coats. Depending on Mother Nature's mood, any one of these items might be the most appropriate. I hope by the end of this phase to see which I get the most use from and donate the rest.
Handknits: I am not a prolific knitter, but I have a couple of sweaters on the needles. If I don't even have a chance at wearing them this season, they won't get finished. I know myself. I have a few lace shawls that I like to wear, and let's face it: Clapotis could use some company!
I eliminated a t-shirt this round, as well as the ill-fitting jean skirt (I found another, better fitting skirt among the boxed up items, but I'll save it for spring), and the floral blouse. I think I'll miss the option of a second blouse, but it didn't fit, and I don't have another I like enough to put into my closet. Since at least two months of Phase 2 are bound to be chilly, I will depend more on sweaters.
I would venture to say that everyone participating in Project 333 has his or her own reasons for embarking on dressing with less, and the project is wildly celebrated among minimalist bloggers. In the last three months, I've learned that minimalism is a blog topic that is almost as popular as knitting.
I am not a minimalist.
I applaud those striving for a minimalist lifestyle, for whatever reason, but I do not identify myself as a minimalist. Life's circumstances have at times required minimalism and simplicity from me. I do not like clutter. I do not like waste. I do not like owning too much. Sometimes I get caught up in excitement of new projects, new possibilities, and I have clutter; I am wasteful; I own too much.
I want to have exactly what I need and no more. If that makes me a minimalist in the eyes of some, so it goes. More important to me, though, is that I reach an understanding about the things in my life: how they make my life better, how they nurture my creativity, how they fit, how they are part of the complete picture of me.
That said, what is one thing you own that speaks to the "complete" you?