Minimalism: Less is more

It’s officially the first day of fall but this Houston heat hasn’t backed down even a smidge. It might even be mid to late October till we get a cool breeze around here during the daytime. My wardrobe sure as hell won’t be waiting around for that (trust me, we’d be waiting till January for a decent drop in temperature).

It’s a new season, and I’ve got a new fashion approach I’m willing to take on. It’s trending, it’s in, and it’s what all the broke college kids are talking about these days — minimalism. You mean like minimal body coverage? Ummm, no. It doesn’t mean minimal effort either. Minimalism is about living with fewer material possessions and making the most of what you have so you can focus on what’s really important in life. This can mean redecorating your home in the simplest way possible, reducing clutter, and donating things you really don’t need.

Forget about the latest Gucci bag or that new iPhone your eyes are plastered on. Once you have them for a week, you’ll just want the next new thing that comes out. Take it from a shopaholic like myself. That momentary euphoria isn’t worth breaking the bank for. And yes, we are still talking about shopping here.

I’ve already decluttered my room and donated old clothes I’d never want to be seen wearing in public. That’s a start. The minimalist lifestyle is too broad to cover in one blog post so we’re going to focus on minimalism in terms of fashion. Here are some key tips to follow:

1. Figure out what you haven’t worn in the last year. If it’s traditional or wedding attire, make that two years. Dump all those into a cardboard box and donate them to a charitable organization. If you don’t wear them, someone else will. And yes, this includes clothes from your middle school goth phase when all you wore were platform boots and fishnets. People change and so do their tastes in clothing. You had a phase; now move on.

2. Make sure to purchase quality clothes since you’ll be repeating many pieces.

3. You can never go wrong with neutral colors like solid blacks, blues, whites and grays. They are easy to match with in the larger scheme of your outfit. They are fantastic to layer with other items and it’s easier to pull off wearing them multiple times. Avoid complex patterns if you can.

4. Wearing basics doesn’t make you basic. Stock up on simple v-necks, turtle necks, denims, coats, a small leather backpack or even a nice hat.

5. Figure out what statement pieces look best on you, whether it’s a black trench coat, sunglasses or even boots. You can even include a few pieces with a pop of color that will go with your neutrals.

6. Style what you have. There is so much you can do with a basic T-shirt. Fold up the sleeves along the seam, tuck it in halfway or all the way, layer it with overalls or an oversized skirt and a cardigan.

7. Keep jewelry to a minimum. Let your outfit speak for itself. Keep the total ring limit to two and maybe wear a dainty necklace. A cute watch is always your best bet.

8. Invest in neutral or nude pumps/flats to go with most of your looks. My go-to shoes are my white Converse, grey oxfords, and beige ankle strap heels.

9. Minimalism may seem expensive initially, but I promise you it’s a good investment. You won’t lay off on the quality just to save a few bucks. The goal is to wear what you have a lot, and keep it around for as long as you can.

Ultimately, minimalism is all about what you make of it. Follow my steps, or even better, don’t! Fashion has no bounds and rules are meant to be broken. Let me know how it goes for you in the comments below!

For more outfit inspo, follow my Instagram @rafafarihah.

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