August 10, 2018
If you’re not familiar with Project 333, it’s Courtney Carver’s brilliant idea to cut your entire closet back to 33 items, for 3 months.
I think a lot about Project 333 – it’s a very tidy way to experiment with a smaller wardrobe. And it works beautifully with a 4 by 4 Wardrobe, and a stack of accessories! Let’s pretend…
It Was a Gift
No matter how much she loves a beautiful scarf, she wasn’t likely to buy it for herself! But when someone hands it to you, all beautifully wrapped, and presented with so much love, what’s a woman to do?
To her, this was the perfect opportunity to organize her wardrobe for upcoming cooler weather, and for school-related functions which always seem to crop up as soon as autumn rolls around…
She starts with her neutral – black! A cardigan, a simple silk tee shirt, a pair of trousers and a pair of jeans give her a good starting point:
But this woman doesn’t live in strict black – she likes the sharp contrast of white… Corduroy pants are a classic in cool weather, and who can resist a dotted skirt?
Here’s where the real work starts – finding tops that will be beautifully perfect with her new scarf!
The last 4 garments have to be carefully chosen… She knows that she’ll want more than 1 cardigan, and that a couple of sleeveless tops might make sense for the first autumn days that turn warm in the afternoon. And, after much thought, she includes a classic black dress. Why not?
She double-checks her choices, making sure that she has enough tops to get through a week without having to do laundry!
NOW! The fun part – choosing accessories:
She suspects that she might be adding a pair of black pumps to her wardrobe at some stage, as well as another piece of jewelry or two… She’s not up to 33 items yet, so she has room to maneuver and adjust:
Just to make sure that she hasn’t gone awry, she test-drives 10 outfits – enough for 2 weeks of weekdays. If your wardrobe won’t give you at least this many options, you need to rethink things!
She packs all of her other clothes into garment bags, and arranges her tidy capsule wardrobe in her closet. What freedom, to have enough, but not too much!
What a great post. I don’t think I’ve ever seen Project 33 explained so clearly and simply. You. Are. A. Genius. I need to do this. I think I’ve got my colour scheme from a post last week so I just need to do it and stop procrastinating.
So here’s a burning clothes question, but not directly related to Project 333. Does this elegant lady wear pantyhose? Tights? Go barelegged? I can’t seem to figure that out anymore, especially when it’s still too warm for tights.
(By the way, this post was very helpful!)
She wears tights most of the time – if something is really dressy she wears hose. Bare legs aren’t something that my generation finds comfortable! Maybe she’s quite young and goes bare legged sometimes, but all I can ever think of is the damage to her dress shoes, all sweaty and sticky…
I keep coming back to this concept, black base and three quite distinct accent colours, preferably woven together with a scarf or a patterned top, as being the best model for me to work with- given my love of colour.
Mary The Pouting Pensioner says
Love the test drive idea! Must try this, I’ve done 12 and 18 but possibly 33 items could really give this concept some endurable legs. Thanks for inspo Janice. Hugs, x.
I love this! While I’d love planning a project 333 wardrobe, I’m pretty sure that I couldn’t sustain living from one (variety is the spice of life when I’m at home). In this capsule, I’d have to add blue jeans (always), which would be great with that fabulous scarf. Also probably two more sweater/cardigan/jacket items. And personally I would darken the yellow to mustard and the red to a claret. – nancyo
Perfect execution of a small wardrobe. I love the colors. This could the base of a travel wardrobe, maybe 12 to 15 pieces or even less. I always go bare legged unless it’s cold and then it’s black tights (and I’m 60+).
I need some help for a tiny, ever changing wardrobe. I work in a corporate office where I supervise 30 people so need to look put together. Six months ago I had weight loss surgery and have lost 85 lbs to date with another 65 to go. I have gone from size 32 to 18 in those months and am losing a dress size about ever 6 weeks now, I’ve even gone through 2 shoe sizes. I’ve invested in scarves and floaty kimonos but need help with a very limited wardrobe of non fitted garments. I look best in navy and grey, jewelry is gold, and I love pure jewel tones. Please help.
Linda in Arkansas says
Great idea to test drive some new colors! I am still getting up the nerve to pare down this much! I don’t have any issues with small travel wardrobes, but making it permanent still scares me! LOL
What purses/bags would you put with this wardrobe?
Well, it would be obvious to get something black and gorgeous. But I might be really drawn to something black with bright colored trim or piping – black with the 3 bright colors would be lovely. If you can find it, that is…