If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll have noticed my copy of The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees has featured regularly since it finally arrived. I feel like I’ve had this book on pre-order forever! The American version was realised back in October but I decided to (im)patiently wait for the UK edition. I’m so glad I did as I’m in love with UK cover, it’s just so Instagrammable. But we all know a book is more than just a pretty cover so is it worth a read. The quick answer is YES this is well worth a read.
I’ve been a reader of Anuschka’s blog InTo Mind for a while now. It’s like a treasure chest of great advice on building your perfect wardrobe. I found it so help when I was starting out on my wardrobe journey. I would recommend this book to everyone, no matter what stage of your journey you’re such to find The Curated Closet useful. For those of your just started out with creating a more minimal wardrobe there the sections on finding your personal style and build your dream wardrobe are so useful. And everyone will love the section on the art of shopping and maintain your wardrobe. I just love Anuschka’s writing style and there is a Pinterest-worthy quote on every page (I’ve featured a few of them in this post).
What is a Curated Closet
The curated closet is everything I talk about here on the blog. It’s about not following trends or buying into a standard list of wardrobe essentials or must-haves. Instead, it’s about creating a wardrobe which works perfectly for your style and life. Having a curated closet is a great start to a more ethical and sustainable wardrobe. Since you’re buying clothes, you truly love and will want to keep for years to come. No more buying into the ever-revolving fast fashion trends.
“The Curated Closet is a wardrobe that’s perfectly tailored to your unique personal style and your life. It contains everything you need to feel confident and inspired every day – no more and no less. It is not based on trends, style typologies or a one-size-fits-all list of ‘wardrobe essentials.’ Your life isn’t the same as everyone else’s, so why should your closet be?”
5 key takeaways from The Curated Closet
Personal style trumps being fashionable
I couldn’t agree with Anuschka more on this. While I used to be one of those girls obsessed with the latest trends and caring more about what’s fashionable. Over the last few years, I’ve learnt that wearing clothes I love and feel confident in is way better than being fashionable. Or as Anuschka puts it being fashionable it totally optional.
“One of my biggest style related pet peeves is the idea of ‘keeping up with fashion’. It suggests that the key to dressing well is following the rules and wearing whichever trends and must-haves the fashion world is prescribing that season, regardless of whether we actually like them or not. But here’s what I’ve learned: Being fashionable is totally optional”
Anuschka makes a great analogy comparing fashion to music to explain this. You wouldn’t force yourself to listen to a song because it’s in the charts and music ‘insiders’ tell you it’s popular. No, you listen to the music you like and enjoy. So why not do the same with clothes buying things you like and enjoy wearing rather than what’s ‘hot right now’.
Aim for Quality and Be Selective
We should all be focusing on quality over quantity in our wardrobes. Shopping around for the best quality you can afford is always worth the extra effort. It’s OK to leave the shops empty handed if you don’t find the right piece for you. When it comes to our wardrobes we should all be a little bit fussier and only add things we truly love.
“Training yourself to become more selective is the single most effective thing you can do to upgrade your wardrobe. Try to think of your closet as an exclusive, members-only club. Only pieces that you love and are truly excited to wear get an invite. Anything ill-fitting, scratchy, worn-out, barely ‘good enough’, or that simply doesn’t suit your personal style is not invited.”
Your wardrobe must fit your life (not your fantasy life)
This is something I’ve spoken about here before (read dressing for your real life, not your fantasy life). There is absolutely no point in buying clothes which don’t work for your lifestyle. I don’t get invited to fancy black tie events so I don’t need to own any fancy ballgowns. That doesn’t mean I can’t admire a ballgown when I’m shopping I just won’t buy one.
“Fashion is a form of art, and you want your clothes to look good, sure, but you also need them to feel good and be practical because you spend your life in them. You have stuff to do, places to go, and people to meet. A functional wardrobe us one that supports you in all these endeavours, rather than making your life harder”
Like everything is life, styling takes practice
No one is born with style, it’s something we all learn. Like everything else in life, the more effort and practice you put it the stronger your styling skills will become. Discovering your personal style and building a versatile wardrobe will mean you always have something to wear.
“Anyone can learn to [style] and you don’t have to be born with a natural talent for it. But you also cannot expect to be great at styling without putting in any effort at all. It takes time to figure out which types of pieces work best for your lifestyle and to curate a versatile wardrobe”
Your style is always evolving
We are always growing and developing who we are as a person and our lifestyles are constantly changing so of course, our style will continue to change and evolve. A curated closet is one which grows and evolves with you. It doesn’t restrict you or force you to wear clothes you no longer love.
“Here’s the thing: Not even the most carefully curated wardrobe is ever 100 percent done. Your life isn’t static, and neither is your personal style. A great closet is one that can grow and evolve alongside you, your style, and your life.”
All Quotes used in this post are reprinted from The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees (Copyright Anuschka Rees 2016) published by Penguin Random House UK.