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Why My 'Less Is More' Style Mantra Makes Me Happy

22/02/2018


Let's start this post by talking about minimalism. It's a term I see a lot online and it's an ideal that I've very much aspired to in the past, but what really is it? When I think about what it is to be a minimalist, I think of open white spaces and concrete floors, a stream-lined wardrobe made up entirely of neutral tones and ultimately, a life completely free from clutter. Through some trials, errors and plenty of clear-outs though, I've come to the final conclusion that I'm not quite disciplined enough for the minimalist mighty beings Marie Kondo and Love Aesthetics, much as I do love them. No, for me it's about living a simple life - not a minimal one.

I think the best way for me to explain what I mean by a simplified lifestyle is the William Morris quote:

"Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."

Makes sense, right? By applying these wise words to each area of my life, it's made me a much happier - and yes, slightly wealthier - human being because the less 'stuff' I have, the less stress I experience. Over the years my collection of clothes in particularly has shrunk more and more; in fact, I'm itching to throw even more out as spring approaches! As I continuously condense my closet, I somehow find myself growing more fond of the pieces that remain on the rail. Get your bin bags out girls, cos I'm gonna reel off the reasons why I've found less is definitely more when it comes to getting dressed...





STYLING BECOMES SIMPLER

Something I've already touched on is that the less pieces I own, the more I appreciate the hero pieces I can't imagine parting with. Through my many deep cleans and ruthless clear-outs with Big Bang Theory on in the background, I wade my way through any seasonal s**t that's since lost it's charm, keeping my very favourite clothes front and centre. Without the trendy distractions, it's so much easier to work an outfit around what I love most in my wardrobe. Whether it's my very favourite  pair of straight leg jeans, the blouse I bought in New York or the leather jacket that's seen me through years of quintessentially English weather (or in the case of these photos, all three!), it's much more straight-forward to get dressed when every styling option is equally special.


YOUR PERSONAL STYLE BECOMES MORE PERSONAL

When I started giving myself more of a restriction on consuming clothes in favour of more considered shopping, inevitably I found a greater sense of self when it comes to my personal style. By stopping myself from dipping my toe into every trend, I became a lot more aware of what I really liked and wanted from my simpler wardrobe. Of course, like us all I get tempted in by various fashions of the moment. For example, at the moment I'm mulling over a stylish cream string bag to carry I don't know yet exactly, but I have to ask myself in true William Morris-style: A) will I always think it's beautiful as I do now and B) does it serve a purpose in my wardrobe? For now, I'm still undecided but it's this thinking process that keeps any slightly out-there spending in check.





QUALITY OVER QUANTITY

Perhaps my favourite part of my 'less is more' style mantra is the perk of investing in truly beautiful pieces over lots of so-so fashion items. My logic is by spending less frequently, I can save up that money for more exciting purchases that not only last longer in terms of care, but also in terms of longevity in my wardrobe too! I love shops like Urban Outfitters and & Other Stories and I'm particularly partial to a branded pair of sunglasses or trainers but these pieces don't typically come cheap, so instead of buying a handful of average sale items I put my money towards something bigger, better and preferably in black, of course.


THE INEVITABILITY OF A 'STYLE RUT'

Perhaps the question I get asked the most by those who know about my streamlined selection of clothes is: "But don't you get bored of wearing the same thing?" And the answer is sometimes I really, really do, but that's got nothing to do with owning a modest amount of clothes. I've found style ruts are born out of circumstance and no matter how much we own, we will all find ourselves feeling uninspired from time to time. Whether it's because we're sick of our winter clothes and crave coat-free weather, or we're having PMS and just can't be assed to wear anything that doesn't have an elastic waistband, having a floordrobe of clothes up to your waist won't fix any of the above. So when the style rut does settle its way into my morning routine, I acknowledge it, consider the cause and ride it out in my usual uniform of cosy jumpers and blue denim because when in doubt, your favourite pair of jeans will always make you feel better. That, and Ben & Jerrys Cookie Dough...



SUNGLASSES: CELINE  |  LEATHER JACKET: SIMILAR  |  BLOUSE: SIMILAR  |  STRAIGHT LEG JEANS: TOPSHOP  |  CHELSEA BOOTS: RIVER ISLAND