How To Build Your Own Tiny Closet: Final Step

Prepare your shopping list.

It's time to create your shopping list for the season!!  We've compiled data on how we want to feel in our clothing.  We've listed what kind of clothing and styles make us feel that way.  And we've organized, customized and purged our closet.

We are ready to go shopping...

But wait!  Like all mindful shopping, it's best to go in prepared.  I'm sure all of us have experienced the difference grocery shopping with a thoughtful list made ahead of time as opposed to shopping without a list.  And shopping hungry?  Forget about it.  Well, chances are, you're past ready to go shopping for a new and improved Fall collection because it's Fall.  Now.  And what are you going to wear to that meeting you have on Wednesday?  And what about getting a new jacket for your morning runs?  And isn't it time you finally got a new blazer for work?  .... We usually always need something and we usually never feel like we have time to get it or shop for the right one.  So shopping tends to be rushed and a bit annoying for those everyday things.  Let's get out of that, shall we?

Shopping should ALWAYS be fun.  Why wouldn't it be?  But with blah everyday wear, we tend to buy the wrong thing or the new "it" thing or it'll-work-for-right-now thing, because it's easier.  Get what you really want.  And if you've completed steps 1-4, you're getting a really good picture of what that is.  So make a list!

And not just any list.  An informed, very specific list.  Because that's exactly what you'll be buying.  Take a look at the difference.
The list to the left tends to be what is in our heads when we go shopping.  Yikes!  Wouldn't it be better walking into a store or going online with the list to the right?  Know what you came for.  Go in and buy exactly what you want.  

A shopping list is not a browsing list or an ideas list.

And I love browsing!  I love leafing endlessly through the racks!  I live in the busiest part of a bustling city because I love being surrounded by retail.  But when you're walking by a display case and then finding yourself in a dressing room 20 minutes later, know the difference between shopping and browsing.  Those two activities shouldn't go together.  See it in a window?  Sure, go in, try it on, take a selfie.  And leave it in the store to return back later prepared.  When I browse, I usually see something - or lots of things I like.  9/10 times, I do not buy right then and there.  I make a mental note or take a photo for future reference when I plan to buy in the future.  

Think of browsing as compiling really fun research.

There is a process of getting from the left list to the right list.  The list to the left is what you start with.  It's your search reference.  The list to the right is what you are left with after narrowing down your search to the perfect item.  I usually use shopping sites like Shopstyle.  Looking for wide leg pants?  Find a pair you love.  Narrow it down from 30 to 10 to 5 to 1.  Til you find a pair that is totally YOU.
And online mega stores like Asos or Yoox are helpful for in-depth searches, options and comparisons...  Get pages and pages of black, midi, skirt options.  Because it's okay to not be sure.  You're browsing.
So I know you're probably very familiar with shopping sites and searching for what you want.  But when you're not exactly sure of what it is you want but you know you're looking for a "black wrap dress", solidifying what that is makes you less likely to become distracted by something that is maybe more hip and new, or cheaper or, etc....  

This browsing and "compiling" is specifically connected to Step 3.   Using the formula of activity//location//feeling.  In step 3 you listed how you want to feel and then what those emotions looked like in the form of clothing.  Step 4, you assessed what you already have in your closet and what you need to add to it.  So now today, you are putting the work of those two steps together to create a shopping list.  

The right list example is the product of searching, comparing, pricing, and making sure it goes with how you want to feel when you wear it.  For each item on your list, once you've found "the one",  I always Pin it.
This is the list as a Pin board.  These are not "options" - these pins are exactly what you're going to buy.  A visual list of what you want to complete your capsule wardrobe for the season.  The plethora of options you worked through is now trimmed down to a complete shopping list.  Satisfying, no-guilt shopping.  It took a little time but don't all things that are worth having?

Now, as you probably know, my closet is literally Tiny.  But that is not what The Tiny Closet is about.  Yes, The Tiny Closet is about having a minimal lifestyle but I think people misunderstand minimal as being next to nothing.  It can be that but that's not what it is entirely.  It is having what is necessary.  No junk, no clutter.  It is only what is purposeful and streamlined for your lifestyle and use.  Everything has its place and it's purpose.  

Sooooo, what's purposeful and complete for me is 28 pieces in my closet.   Your shopping list may be a small list of just 2-3 items.  Or it may be a very long list.  It's your lifestyle, it's your wardrobe.  What if you like having a different style every month?  What's wrong with buying a new wardrobe every month??  Nothing!  Are you on TV a lot?  Performing constantly?  Or do you just have a whirlwind social life of constant events?  Awesome - your collection of clothing should reflect that.  So if that means having 3 closets, so be it.  Mindful shopping and having a wardrobe you absolutely love is the purpose of these steps.  

The end goal is just never having to say again, "I have nothing to wear.".

That concludes the 5 Steps to having a Tiny Closet of your own.  Looking fabulous everyday and totally loving your closet shouldn't just be for celebrities and people with personal stylists.  Shop mindfully, take the time to customize your clothing, toss items you no longer love and wear the heck out of the clothes you have!  Thanks so much for reading and I hope I've helped even a teensy bit in managing and looking at your wardrobe differently.
Happy Monday to youuuu!


  1. All of your posts on this are great!! I have been wanting to downsize my wardrobe for quite some time now and I will definitely be using all of your suggestions! I have to admit that I've been dreading tackling my closet.:=) But the steps you have provided make the process doable and even fun! This is a huge help! Thanks so much for doing this!!

    1. Awesome, Sydney! So happy to have helped you in downsizing and making your closet more valuable! I hope you do have lots of fun making over your wardrobe!

  2. I loved this series of posts! I am notorious for my very large closet (I have recently overflowed directly into my guest room/office's closet as well), but too often I find myself feeling like I have nothing to wear! It's absurd. And when I go to purge my wardrobe, often removing at least 2 or 3 garbage bags worth of clothing to sell and donate, I still end up with a hydra-like monster, growing exponentially in the areas I had just gouged. I need to break the cycle and I am going to follow these steps in hopes of achieving pure style bliss. It will still be way more than 28 items, but the important thing is as you said in step 3, that I figure out how I want to feel. I truly believe that only then will I love my wardrobe and always have something to wear, because all of the pieces in it will be for me. Thank you for the inspiration!

  3. These tips were really helpful. I thought a few years ago that I'd purged a lot of my clothes but there's still so much! And the "I have nothing to where" dilemma while looking at a full closet is SO true. I've started whittling down my clothes again (too much curating of seasonal wear) and asking a simple question: "Do I love this?" If the answer is no, it's headed out. If it's too small, no use hoping I'll get back into a size 7. Out. It's so refreshing to be throwing on clothes that are actually stylish. Since I created and organized a fall/winter wardrobe, I don't have to stand in front of the mirror dissatisfied and feeling frumpy. No effort necessary! And getting my shoes together means comfortable styles for my life with a few fun pieces. Thanks again for being my fashion guru. ;-)