In doing so, I have decided to only purchase clothing if I know it was made without slave labor. It has been a challenging but rewarding experience transitioning my closet to a totally conscious one. One thing I’ve learned throughout this process is that it takes time. And patience. And money. So one of the mantra’s I have adopted in my closet clean-out over the past two years is to buy better not more. That has served me well.
I get quite a few questions from women about how they can start their own transition to a more ethical closet. So as we start the new year, I thought I’d share some of my favorite core pieces and how I choose to add a piece to my closet.
First of all, I don’t have a large, endless clothing budget, so I have to buy smart. When I make purchases I always ask myself these questions:
Will this dress/sweater/top/etc. bring me joy?
How versatile is it?
How do I care for it?
Can this piece transition from cooler weather to warmer weather?
Can I layer it and wear it different ways?
What is the fabric like?
Is it durable?
And most importantly:
How was it made?
Who made it?
Where did the fabric come from?
Once I’ve gathered as much information as I can about the potential purchase, I think about how it will fit in with other items in my closet. Cleaning out your closet is a long process. So give yourself patience!
Here are a few pieces that have been core for me in re-building my conscious closet. My hope is it will kickstart you on your own conscious closets journey and give you a good foundation from which to grow.
I love a good well made dark jean that can be worn a million different ways (The Paige Denim, Hoxton Ankle Peg Jeans in Barnett)
Black pants are a must to change up your look and they can be fancy or casual depending on what you pair with it (Imogene+Willie, Elizabeth Jean in Black)
Again, look for a dress that you can wear multiple ways, like over jeans, or a button down, or with a sweater or blazer (Loup black dress)
A Good Button Down:
(Everlane white poplin) Always a great easy piece to keep in your closet
Something with stripes:
(Everlane stripe boxy tee) To keep you on trend
(Modern Vice Blue Suede Handlers) Because I dress very simply and monochromatic, I love a cool shoe. And the comfier the better.
Lastly, if you are a fashionista on a budget, check out Tradesy.com or eBay for awesome finds at a much cheaper price. I do a lot of my conscious shopping at thrift stores. And lookout for sales! I got my modern vice booties (pictured above) for half price!
Photos by Brian Tropiano