What's the next step?

I'm settling in well with my current curated closet, as week 2 progresses.  I continue to organize small aspects of my world - jewelry one evening, go-to daily beauty products the next. More and more simplicity emerges.

Natural morning and evening routines have developed too.  These are not force activities, but rather organic progressions.  Putting things away is so much easier and more enjoyable when I have fewer things and each one has a designated spot in which to be placed. Choosing an outfit for the next day is a pleasurable puzzle, resulting in a calm excitement about getting up and donning it the next the morning. Things fit together more easefully.

Creating structure and routine that feels natural and joyful is nothing short of miraculous for me.  I am very pleased.

The top of my dresser now - clutter-free and happy-making.

I have, contrarily, been feeling a bit of anxiety about switching to the next season.  I promised myself not to purchase anything fashion-related online or new for the next two months. I also thought I would switch to a late spring capsule May 1st. Then I realized, without shopping ahead, I would either have to buy everything in a frenzy or rethink this approach.

I like to take my time with online shopping to find just the right thing.  I will do some "window shopping" ahead of time to know what new things I want to purchase for summer - but I am also hoping to find a few things on ebay... and that takes patience and time to materialize in the moment... so I decided to make May an open shopping and planning month instead of making a clean break between early and late spring.

That is not to say that I will throw caution to the wind and shop indiscriminately.  Quite the contrary, actually.  I think that having a bit more time to consider everything will help me to be more deliberate and savor the process, as well.

Once I decided on May as a planning month, I felt a weight lifted. I started to think about nautral seasons and cycles in my geographical location and my life throughout the year. I came up with a whole shopping schedule. June/July/August as one curated closet, September for planning, October-January as another curated closet, February as a planning month.  March-April as an early spring closet, which brings us back to May as the next planning month again.   In July and December, I will make a small shopping allowance to get myself birthday and holiday presents, respectively. This flows naturally as a refinement of what I have already been doing intuitively. It makes sense for me, as an individual.

I'm also really enjoying trying things on to experiment with styles while thrifting, with no pressure to buy right away.  It's like tactile window shopping.  This practice has grown out of making the thrifting wishlist. I went wild on Pinterest for couple of weeks and then looked at everything carefully.  I saw things that visually appealed to me over and over in the pins and I created a wishlist for my summer closet.  I started trying those things on but not rushing out and bidding on ebay or tracking them down in an online sale. This waiting period is serving me really well & I'm not having any less fun for not having purchased in the heat of the moment.

Some of the images I fell in love with are just good images, not style directives.  Some colors and styles look better in photos of other people that they do on me.  It isn't disappointing - it is research.  The discovery provides valuable knowledge. Through this practice, my obsession with stripes and florals is scaling back and shifting toward mixing prints in the same color scheme - like navy and white stripes with navy and white plaid... maybe a dash of floral here and there.

I'm now kind of smitten with off-shades of primary, like this fabric I'm currently using for a skirt muslin of Megan Neilsen's Veronika circle skirt. (yes - I am making clothes again!  More on that to come.)

A fabric/style I was admiring that looks better on other people is chambray -- oversized chambray buttondowns and tunics, in particular. Tried on a bunch of variations on two separate occasions. They are all terrible on me. I am okay with that. I release chambray back out into the Universe to look stunning on Pinterest.

One more Pinterest tryst that is, in the light of day, but a dream for me: mustard colored sweaters.

I should really have known that falling for a combo propagated by Taylor Swift might not be the wisest idea, but I love the way mustard looks with burgundy and have been fashion-crushing on photos of the colors together on Pinterest for a few weeks.  Imagine my glee, in the aisles of the Goodwill Superstore, to find a mustard silk crew sweater, perfectly the color of my dreams and in beautiful condition. Fast-forward to the dressing room, where the color made me look simultaneously pallid and flushed in a very unhealthy way. And strangely puffy too. No amount of appreciation for other people wearing mustard sweaters can change the fact that this color, anywhere near my face, makes me look instantly hungover.

Chartreuse, however, is a strange and ghastly shade of yellow that I *can* pull off near my face.  I was wearing a chartreuse cardigan today and saw such a stark contrast between the two variations that it all became clear.  From now on, I will be scouting the aisles for a cooler shade of garish yellow that suits my complexion. A lesson learned, a mistake avoided.

What's that they used to say about... "the more you know!" "?!

(next up: treasures from a once-in-a-blue moon weeknight thrifting adventure.)