How Many Pieces Would be in the Ideal Capsule Wardrobe?

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The capsule wardrobe is a popular concept. We can certainly see the attraction of having a minimalist wardrobe populated only with the very best bespoke tailoring. The idea of a capsule wardrobe is that everything is a hundred percent your style, is of the very best quality and is the perfect fit. Also key is that all pieces within a capsule wardrobe should be complementary; everything in there can be worn with everything else. 

In reality, very few clothing collections could truly be described as ‘capsule’. Most of us have rather more items than we need, many of which are rarely worn. This might include a couple of suits that no longer quite fit, shirts we were given as gifts but aren’t really our colour, novelty t-shirts from sporting events or stag weekends, and perhaps even a Christmas jumper or two.

Sound familiar?!

If you’re hankering after an easier way, perhaps it’s time to downsize your wardrobe and move more towards the capsule model. After all, if everything in your wardrobe is well considered and well made; it will be much easier to dress well. 

But how many pieces should you be aiming for? Men’s Health suggest that twenty four is the perfect number, while Esquire suggest that you only really need twenty items to create the foundations of a successful wardrobe. However, both these suggestions seem generous compared to the suggestion of Susie Faux, the boutique owner who originally coined the term ‘capsule wardrobe’ in the 1970s. She felt that the ideal capsule should be made up of less than a dozen pieces

With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of fifteen items that we think would be a strong starting point for a tailored mens capsule wardrobe:

1 x medium weight suit

1 x summer weight suit

1 x winter weight suit

1 x blazer/sports jacket

1 x dinner suit

1 x white dress shirt

3 x shirts

1 x black silk tie

1 x silk tie in a solid colour

1 x pair of chinos

1 x v neck sweater

1 x pair of traditional black leather brogues

1 x paid of brown leather chelsea boots

What would be in your ideal capsule wardrobe?