Minimalism - Project 333
Or 303 in my instance. Finding those extra 3 pieces after the initial clearout was too challenging. However - perhaps I'll count my Hagloffs Hiking boots, Sumit Series Goretex jacket and... black flats.
In 2009 I began developing affiliate relationships with clothing companies. In the past six years my shopping habits have changed, perhaps in alignment with life choices.
There came a point when there was too much. The dresses, the bags, the shoes, oh, it truly drove me mad. I think the source of the issue lies in my memory.
To remember complex things, I often close my eyes and try to see it. It wasn't until a drunken fishing trip with family members in South Africa where a few relatives described their photographic memory that it finally clicked - I remember by seeing.
When I open drawers or boxes I instantly commit the contents to memory, when I open my wardrobe I do the same. It's when there's too much that my mind feels cluttered. Worrying about 50 pairs of shoes used to be okay, but now I just don't want to loose my energy to it.
When I first learnt about the 333 project, something really resonated. I get such a kick out of getting rid of stuff, and stripping my possessions down to the bare minimum that I thought I can do this.
First though, I really want to conceptualise the impact the whole project will have on my lifestyle. So, I stripped down my wardrobe. What you see below is either exactly or near to what it is that I will be living with for the next three months. Alot of the items below I already own, or have ordered, or are close to what I own.
A few of the considerations I have are:
- Workwear. I work for my own company as a consultant. All work that I get is pursued through face to face meetings and focused discussion. The work is such that jeans and a tshirt are absolutely not appropriate but at the same time, high fashion can look out of place. It's a corporate balance which still delivers a great deal of self confidence.
- Occasions. It's the summer in England right now, and weddings, events and beautiful situations are occurring. Any item of clothe needs to be dynamic to go from corporate, to beautiful, to a sudden cold snap.
- Outdoors. I spend a few hours each day romping around fields chasing Apollo or hiking up mountains to climb - and I love it! My clothes tend to require alot of technical craft behind them in the event that an evening walk turns into a hill climb.
- Travel. Many hours each week are spent driving, commuting or travelling. I have to take this into consideration constantly - okay I put the air con on in the car if I'm in long sleeves, but when I get outside and have to park, then walk in to wherever, erm... I'm going to get sweaty. Most weekends we find ourselves in polar ends of the country, while the South Coast invokes balmy temperates, the North West isn't often as kind. Layers and versatility.
- Ethics. I'm not okay with certain practices. I'm fussy with purchases as I know that as a consumer I have a bit of power to steer practice. However, in order to find 100% silk and merino which will last my 3 month jaunt either requires further float in the budget or a retrograde in quality.
- Time. A fast turnaround time when it comes to cleaning is at the top of my priority list. If I'm limited to what I have access to wear, I need to be able to have it clean and ready for use in a short space of time - by that though I normally mean, I don't want to do any more than just stick it in the wash. That means no ironing, no steaming, no dry cleaning, it literally needs to go in the wash, come out, and be ready for wear once dried.
With these issues taken into account - and a long and careful exploration into the existing and future contents of my wardrobe, I've come up with the following items.
For me, the greatest resolution to the above mentioned issues, is quality of fabric. Where feasible I've sourced silk for its easy washing and travel friendly qualities, and where possible I've sourced wool for wicking abilities and versatility.
Tomorrow this journey begins - and looking to my seemingly empty wardrobe I cannot help but feel fear and excitement!
Lets see how this goes!