Wardrobe UpdateWardrobe Update

Photo credit: Michael Clemens , Sees The Day

Well, you’ve asked for it, so here it is, and in full! A close look at the contents of my fall/winter 2015, minimalist wardrobe (it even includes intimates!).

 

I was recently asked if, having graduated from Fashion school, I am not tempted to buy new, add pieces to my wardrobe or shop more often than twice a year…
My answer was: Once you discover the advantages of a small wardrobe, you’ll find that they are too great to give up!
Buy new? What a waste of money that would be!

I did buy one piece of clothing new in the past two and a half years, but the rest of my wardrobe is secondhand and the prices of the pieces that I purchased are so good, I could not go back to retail! The leather combat boots cost $2.50, the leather high heeled booties $10, the strappy heels $10, the nude pumps $8.50, the navy blazer $2.50, the leather skirt $5, the sunglasses $2, etc.

My pumps still have their price marked on them 😉
Add pieces to my wardrobe? No way! I’d lose mobility.

We not only save a lot of money buying less, it’s also owning less (the fact that our wardrobes fit in carry-ons) that allows us to easily rent our house while we’re gone. And both of these have made some truly awesome experiences possible (see below). I would not want to give them up for a bigger closet. They are core to our happiness and well being.

My 19″ Carry-On

 

Buy more often? What a waste of time that would be!
Life is short. Rather than shopping, I much prefer planning an adventure or living one, like kayaking overnight in the Everglades, as we did during the Holiday Season/Shopping Madness. We saw manatees, alligators, and Leo even found himself face to face with a Python. Facing the fear of his life, he never felt more alive!

Kayaking with my family: so much more memorable than clothes shopping! -and Max: being a teenager and hiding his joy;)

Buy less, waste less, live more…

Photo credit: Michael Clemens , Sees The Day

Well, you’ve asked for it, so here it is, and in full! A close look at the contents of my fall/winter 2015, minimalist wardrobe (it even includes intimates!).

 

I was recently asked if, having graduated from Fashion school, I am not tempted to buy new, add pieces to my wardrobe or shop more often than twice a year…
My answer was: Once you discover the advantages of a small wardrobe, you’ll find that they are too great to give up!
Buy new? What a waste of money that would be!

I did buy one piece of clothing new in the past two and a half years, but the rest of my wardrobe is secondhand and the prices of the pieces that I purchased are so good, I could not go back to retail! The leather combat boots cost $2.50, the leather high heeled booties $10, the strappy heels $10, the nude pumps $8.50, the navy blazer $2.50, the leather skirt $5, the sunglasses $2, etc.

My pumps still have their price marked on them 😉
Add pieces to my wardrobe? No way! I’d lose mobility.

We not only save a lot of money buying less, it’s also owning less (the fact that our wardrobes fit in carry-ons) that allows us to easily rent our house while we’re gone. And both of these have made some truly awesome experiences possible (see below). I would not want to give them up for a bigger closet. They are core to our happiness and well being.

My 19″ Carry-On

 

Buy more often? What a waste of time that would be!
Life is short. Rather than shopping, I much prefer planning an adventure or living one, like kayaking overnight in the Everglades, as we did during the Holiday Season/Shopping Madness. We saw manatees, alligators, and Leo even found himself face to face with a Python. Facing the fear of his life, he never felt more alive!

Kayaking with my family: so much more memorable than clothes shopping! -and Max: being a teenager and hiding his joy;)

Buy less, waste less, live more…

  1. jo says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 4:03 pm (#)

    fab, could we have outfit ideas,just curious to know Bea what item did you purchase new? many thanks for this.

  2. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:10 pm (#)

    Thanks Jo.
    I will disclose the new item in a subsequent post… Or you can check my Twitter feed, I tweeted it a while back 😉

  3. Anonymous says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 4:17 pm (#)

    cant believe you thrifted a hat like that it looks great.

  4. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:13 pm (#)

    Love that hat too! A TV crew followed me to the thrift store and was filming when I found it. You should have seen my excitement on camera: "Yoohoo! It's exactly what I was looking for!" 🙂

  5. Le loir dans la théière says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 4:20 pm (#)

    joli choix, jolie harmonie ; ms comment vivre avec un seul pyjama ?

  6. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:17 pm (#)

    Merci! mais je ne comprends pas votre question: changez-vous le votre tous les jours? J'ai toujours change le mien une fois par semaine. J'en ai choisi un qui est leger, que je puisse aussi bien porter en ete qu'en hiver, et est assez decent pour dormir chez quelqu'un. Je n'en ai vraiment pas besoin de plus.

  7. Anonymous says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 6:15 am (#)

    Bonjour,
    Je me pose la même question : c'est un problème de séchage. Je ne sais pas si vous avez un sèche-linge? Moi c'est surtout pour le soutien-gorge que je me pose la question : sachant que généralement il ne faut pas les passer au sèche-linge, comment le faire sécher un une nuit pour le remettre le lendemain? Pour moi c'est l'équation impossible (sans compter que lavé à la machine, avec essorage maximum, ici il faut quand même au moins 24 heures de séchage, et bien plus en automne ou au printemps, quand on ne peut profiter ni du soleil, ni des radiateurs chauds). Là j'ai lavé des pulls il y a 4 jours, et l'un d'entre eux n'est pas encore sec (les autres ont mis 3 jours pour sécher). En Californie, c'est sans doute plus simple?

  8. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:47 pm (#)

    Bonjour Anonyme: Veuillez voir ma reponse a Bobette ci dessous (+ je mets mon soutien gorge a la machine et seche-linge)

  9. Le loir dans la théière says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 10:54 am (#)

    oui, j'ai plusieurs nuisettes et pyjama selon le climat (j'habite aix en provence ) , les variations de saison et je change ts les jours . et je n'ai pas investi ds un sèche linge donc en hiver malgré tout, ça met un peu plus de temps à sécher : difficile de laver le matin et de remettre le soir

  10. simply blythe says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 4:27 pm (#)

    always inspiring.

  11. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:17 pm (#)

    Thank you!

  12. Hannah Ransom says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 5:51 pm (#)

    My favorite part is Max being a teenager and hiding his joy 🙂

    But it's also always fun to see your closet!

  13. Kristen says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 5:55 pm (#)

    Undergarments/bras and panties – new or used? Those are things that I cannot imagine buying used, honestly.

  14. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 6:39 pm (#)

    A washed secondhand undergarment is cleaner than a new one from a department store. I highly recommend washing either before wearing 😉

  15. Bobette PopnCuticule says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 6:04 pm (#)

    C'est vraiment fascinant, tu es mon nouveau modèle depuis que j'ai découvert ton livre il y a quelques mois 🙂

    Par contre je me demande comment tu fais avec un seul exemplaire de pyjama et si peu de sous vêtements ou même de haut; lorsqu'ils sont au sale, période de lavage et séchage? Moi il me faut nécessairement les choses en deux exemplaires pour compenser cette période

  16. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:33 pm (#)

    Je seche sur un fil quand il fait beau, au seche linge quand il ne fait pas beau (on a investi dans le solaire sur notre toit, voir article dans l'historique). Dans un commentaire precedent je reponds a ta question concernant le pyjama. Pour ce qui est des hauts, j'en ai 9, plus 2 robes, c'est bien suffisant pour durer la semaine.

  17. Bobette PopnCuticule says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 9:30 am (#)

    Merci 🙂 chez moi (petit appartement tout petit), les vêtements mettent minimum deux jours pour bien sécher sur l'étendoir, et il y a peu de place, du coup je ressent le besoin d'avoir au moins un double pour ces jours de séchage, et le temps de latence dans le panier à linge (puisque je ne peux faire qu'une machine tous les deux jours).

    Merci pour ta réponse 😀 je suis super contente d'avoir découvert ton blog

  18. anne says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 6:13 pm (#)

    is your striped top new or from many seasons ago, I am intrigued to know whether you replace all your clothes on your biannual shop, or whether you hold on to your favourites.

  19. EmiliaB says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:15 pm (#)

    I was wondering the same thing about whether or not you replace your entire wardrobe when you shop. I am good about buying things second-had, but I haven't yet been able to par down to such a simplified wardrobe. Thanks for sharing, Bea. So inspiring!

  20. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:41 pm (#)

    Hi Anne and Emilia. I replaced my striped shirt 2 seasons ago. The previous could no longer be repaired (I darned a hole on the shoulder and then re-hemmed the cuffs, but the whole shirt eventually fell apart beyond repair). The only disadvantage of a small wardrobe is using things faster! I recycled the top (textile recycling) and bought a replacement -this one has blue stripes, instead of black ones. If you want to see the evolution of my wardrobe, you can compare this article with my post of 2 years ago http://www.zerowastehome.com/2013/05/my-wardrobe-inventory-in-pictures.html

  21. Anonymous says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 7:23 pm (#)

    Love seeing you blog more, so inspiring 🙂

  22. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 2:08 pm (#)

    ditto

  23. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:43 pm (#)

    Thanks Anonymous!
    I really appreciate your positive feedback! It's comments like these that keep me going! 😉

  24. Cassie Kifer says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 7:27 pm (#)

    Really inspiring post! I've been wanting to downsize my wardrobe to just a few essentials, I'll keep this post in mind! (I'm pinning it to Pinterest)

  25. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:47 pm (#)

    Thanks for pinning Cassie;)
    Downsizing takes a while – It took time for me to figure out what my essentials are, based on my leisure and professional activities (and regional weather, of course). The book gives a ton of tips on how to build a capsule wardrobe. I hope you find it helpful. Cheers!

  26. welliewalks says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 8:55 pm (#)

    love, love, love this! thank you! 🙂

  27. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:47 pm (#)

    Thanks for the feedback! I so appreciate it!

  28. Anonymous says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 10:01 pm (#)

    Thanks for the inspiring post Bea! You are right, once you buy things second hand it is hard to buy new. I love how used things have already been washed so you know how they hold up. I have bought new items that never look the same after washing. It is so freeing to have a small wardrobe.
    Gretchen

  29. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:50 pm (#)

    Yes, one advantage of secondhand clothing is that it's gone through the test of time and washing. It helps the consumer make a smarter purchasing decision.

  30. Anonymous says:

    February 5th, 2015 at 11:13 pm (#)

    I am down sizing my wardrobe now. Lots to let go of. It's going to be so freeing!

  31. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 8:51 pm (#)

    Yoohoo! Go go go!

  32. Heather says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 12:00 am (#)

    Looks like you own no socks?? Or exercise clothing?

  33. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 9:14 pm (#)

    My wardrobe has been carefully chosen based on regional weather, and my professional and leisure activities. I do not exercise per se in a gym, but I have an active lifestyle, involving biking, walking, etc. These activities do not require the need for "specialized" exercise clothing or sneakers. The pieces that I select are comfortable enough for them. The only pair of shoes that require socks are the combat boots. I wear the tights pictured or borrow my boys' socks when I use them;)

  34. kyli olise says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 12:53 am (#)

    Thank you. (Minimalist comment)

  35. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 9:15 pm (#)

    🙂

  36. Chevanne Scordinsky says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 1:19 am (#)

    This just reminds me that my family still has soooo many clothes. Within the next month, I have to do some maybe clothes sorting to get it consigned or donated for spring and summer. This is great motivation. Thanks again!

  37. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 9:19 pm (#)

    You're so welcome Chevanne. Thanks for being such a long time follower!

  38. Julie B says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 11:14 am (#)

    I am so grateful that you are posting more often. I have really missed your communications. Most of my circle don't embrace the zerowaste lifestyle and that makes it easy to lose focus. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts and life it is very inspiring and always just what I need to hear. I have a zerowaste heart and am much happier when my actions are inline with that.

  39. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 4:04 pm (#)

    I feel I have a zerowaste heart too, and we do need communication from like minded people , especially Bea, it really does keep you going.

  40. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 9:52 pm (#)

    Yes, Anonymous, it does! So I thank you for posting your comment.

    Julie B: Thanks so much for your encouragements. I am so happy that you're enjoying my posts.
    It's not easy making room for writing in my leisure time (Contrary to most popular blogs, I turn advertising requests down on a daily basis to keep this space ad-free). I would much prefer doing something away from the computer with my free time;).
    The global and supportive community that has emerged from this blog (250K visitors this past month alone), is my drive: it feels so empowering to have started such an amazing movement and seeing it grow at a fast face, that I am motivated to keep writing. I have so much to say and share (I have a list of half written future posts) but it takes time to take pictures and find the right words to express myself, so I am sorry if communications lacked for a while. And I thank you for your patience.
    We're here to support you: No matter what your circle says, you are making the right choices, for your health, wallet, the environment and your well being. You go girl!

  41. Anonymous says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 2:30 am (#)

    I draw a lot of inspiration from your blog Bea. Most people are not even aware what zero waste is. So, when friends come to my house and see how simple it is, I just tell them that I just hate clutter. I don't want to be label a crazy eccentric, so the easier thing to say is :I don't like clutter. But, if someone expresses interest about environmental issues, then I would tell them about zero waste and also tell them to read garbology.

  42. Stargirl says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:49 pm (#)

    Thank you, Bèa, for keeping this a minimalist, ad-free blog. I really appreciate that. Your blog is similar to you home–white with a few orange touches, and only the necessary pictures to get the message across.

  43. MotherLodeBeth says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 11:24 am (#)

    While I have a similar amount of clothes I do however own more panties since I like having a clean pair of panties for each day of the week. Especially nice when one is on their monthly cycle.

    And like Heather noted you do not show socks or work out clothes. No work out clothes could be more French. So while Zero Waste myself I do however own 2 pairs of winter sweats and 2 pairs of work out shorts for summer. Oh and ski pants/jacket/boots.

  44. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 2:10 pm (#)

    Did you see that under the picture of the bottom pair of panties is says "times 7"?

  45. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 7:10 pm (#)

    if you look under intimates at the top right corner it looks like two pairs of socks.

  46. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 10:04 pm (#)

    Re: Panties, I have 7, as noted in the picture board above. I really do not see the need for more;)
    As for workout clothes, see my reply above.
    As far as skiing is concerned, I rarely go anymore, because I refuse to pay $130 for lift tickets. I took a couple of half day passes during the holiday season and picked a pair of pants and socks from a bin a snow clothes that we all share. I wore the tights, pictured above, under the pants. On top, I wore the tank top, the black long sleeve (smart wool), and the parka, all shown above. I hope this answers your questions;)

  47. B. K KOO says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 1:31 pm (#)

    크고 많은 도움이 되고있습니다!
    감사해요~^^
    더 많은 소식 전해주세요!~^^

  48. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 10:30 pm (#)

    Hi B. K KOO:
    You're welcome!
    But please comment in French or English. I am not familiar with Korean (My Korean publisher had my book translated): I had to use Google Translate to read your message ;). Cheers!

  49. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 4:01 pm (#)

    your bag is so functional and nice was that thrifted too , it is hard to believe this wardrobe is used, I couldn't put this together if I shopped all day,itis truly amazing.

  50. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 10:15 pm (#)

    Hi there:
    My purse was of course thrift-ed. I bought it at a flea market for $20 (all leather). I had to do a few things to it -remove logo (I don't like being a walking advertisement), add hardware and strap etc to make it the way I wanted it. It shows as a shoulder bag (great for hiking and foraging), but it also folds into a clutch.
    It does take me a whole day to shop when I go, twice a year;) -I am looking for specific items for the whole family! But eBay has been great for really specific items (3 in my current wardrobe). I just make sure to select the "pre-owned" option on the left column and request paper or cardboard for shipping.

  51. Anonymous says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 3:47 am (#)

    Hello! Thanks for posting the pics, it's always so inspiring to get outfit ideas. Because of you, when I needed a white button down I tried the local thrift store where I scored one for $7!

    I'd love to learn your advice for how to tinker with thrift purchases, like you did with your bag. You're so creative with the way you approach these things.

    Thanks again for being such an inspiration!

  52. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 9:47 pm (#)

    Bea some of the comments must make you chuckle, thankyou for this post.

  53. Bea Johnson says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 10:26 pm (#)

    yes;) Some comments do make me smile. And sometimes I get frustrated responding to questions that I have answered in the book or many times before on the blog but when I have reached my quota, I make it clear -see my condensed answer to the used undergarment question above 😉
    But I am always happy to receive questions or feedback under a post and engage with readers. I do not judge anyone for asking. After all, had I heard about a Zero Waste family back in 2006… god only knows what I would have thought d and the questions that would have gone through my head;)

  54. marie says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 10:35 pm (#)

    could you do outfit combinations Bea,I am new to your blog and love it.

  55. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:34 pm (#)

    If you looked in the archives, you'll find that I used to do that.
    One of my kids would take pictures but I can't get them to do that anymore.
    However you just made me realize that maybe I could use the pictures above to make combinations. Thanks for the lightbulb moment:)

  56. Anonymous says:

    February 6th, 2015 at 11:37 pm (#)

    THANK YOU, BEA!

    You're an inspiration! I'm working on the wardrobe, but must really brag about my kohl eyeliner and mascara and beet cheek and lip stain – both from your book, of course! Fun to concoct, and great to wear.

  57. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:42 pm (#)

    THANK you so much for sharing! I am so glad that you are enjoying the cosmetic recipes in the book -they took a lot of work, but it was time well invested: I love them too!

  58. Olga Bailess says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 1:05 am (#)

    What a nice way to travel! Thank you for sharing your personal wardrobe! I am going to travel soon and I am going to truly try it!

  59. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:43 pm (#)

    Hi Olga and thanks for visiting my blog: Where will you be travelling?

  60. JLBNewton says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 3:19 am (#)

    I love your wardrobe. Thank you for sharing.

  61. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:44 pm (#)

    Thank YOU for the feedback!

  62. ladytoesocks says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 2:52 pm (#)

    I love thrifting. It almost pains me to shop retail. When you are accustomed to thrift prices and you see a sweater "On Sale" for $70.00, all you can think of is all the amazing clothes that you could buy for $70.00 at a thrift store. Once in a while it's fun to splurge, but even then it's challenging to one's methods.

  63. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 4:27 pm (#)

    Sometimes I translate things into shoes amounts. A $70 sweater? that's 7 pairs of shoes! 😉

  64. anne says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 6:15 pm (#)

    Bea many thanks for this ,does your bag last you more than one season ,how often do you replace it, I find it hard to find just the right bag, as I would rather have one to suit all occasions.

  65. Bea Johnson says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 9:09 pm (#)

    You're welcome!
    This bag takes me through all seasons, occasions (see clutch comment above) and activities. I've had it for 3 years I believe.

  66. Anonymous says:

    February 7th, 2015 at 7:02 pm (#)

    these choices are so clever, there are loads of fabulous outfit combinations.

  67. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 6:43 pm (#)

    Thanks Anonymous. With a small wardrobe it is important to find pieces that work together. And having only a few pieces makes it easy to visualize outfit combinations at the store, when considering a purchase.

  68. Stargirl says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 1:12 am (#)

    On another ZW note, I bought some cayenne pepper in bulk today. It was $0.14 for the amount needed to fill my little spice jar. ZW for the win!

  69. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 6:41 pm (#)

    Kuddos!

  70. Anonymous says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 6:21 pm (#)

    Dear Bea I continue to downsize and also only do second-hand. I have the most beautiful clothes that I would never be able to afford retail ever! I pay mostly 5-10 dollars per item.On a recent trip home I decided to just take white jeans for a 4 week trip. So easy to pair w everything.

    I have implemented many ways to reduce garbage and all the things I enjoy doing for the environment and to simplify life for the housebut it has caused a really big problem in my marriage. And kept adding to my husbands stress. "Too many rules and can't relax and just be."..Marriage or environment….

  71. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:01 pm (#)

    The difficulty in a couple is growing at different rates. My husband wasn't not on board with the zw lifestyle at first either. He thought it was too expensive for us, but when he found we were saving 40%, he completely changed and adopted it! I am sure that your husband will too come around. All it takes is patience and time. Changing your whole lifestyle cannot happen overnight. Hang in there!

  72. Nokkela says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 6:25 pm (#)

    Hi Bea, and thanks for the post! I love to see minimalist wardrobes: I'm working on downsizing mine and have during the last year gotten rid of a good half I'd say, but it's still huge… my question is about colors. A lot of your stuff seems to be black, so how do you get the white ones washed often enough? Me and my SO almost don't have enough white garments together to fill up the 5kg machine with whites – so what's your secret? Because I've been thinking of tossing my whites out completely because of this… but I love them, some of them are my favourite s& have lasted for years too.

  73. Anonymous says:

    February 10th, 2015 at 9:09 pm (#)

    I have run across this issue myself. I found that lumping in other linens helps. For example white towels and sheets. Also grocery bags and vegetable bags.

  74. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:23 pm (#)

    Hi Nokkela and thanks for your question: I do not have a secret 😉 We own a small, European washer and we simply fill one load of whites each week with the few white/light items that we have in our wardrobes, our 4 bath towels, kitchen towels, sometimes sheets or shower curtain or anything else that's light colored.

  75. Nokkela says:

    February 18th, 2015 at 12:19 pm (#)

    Oh yeah: some of my whites have elasthane though and I think they dislike 60 celsius I wash my towels and sheets in. Of course the very fav ones! Besides, the towels in my household are of different colors. Sure the amount and variety of everything is the reason for my "problem". I'll continue pondering. (And/but I DID just fill up a plastic bag of clothes that I'm going to put into a donation box soon enough. Some down! More room in the closet again!

  76. cottageatno10 says:

    February 8th, 2015 at 6:39 pm (#)

    Technical question – and sorry if it's been asked before, I didn't read through all the comments – how do you photograph your clothing like this? Do you put each piece on a big lightboard??

  77. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:25 pm (#)

    Thanks for your question! I am happy to read that you appreciate my artwork, because it took me hours to put it together. I used Powerpoint!

  78. Anonymous says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 7:33 am (#)

    I have been reading your blog for 5 years now and am so grateful for all of the inspiration and practical advice. I don't talk about zero waste much but it shows through my lifestyle//decisions and an old friend recently sent me an email – 'hey I think you'd really like this blog, w/ your website'- that really made me smile 😉

    I found this today and thought it would make you laugh: http://youhavetoomuchshit.com/

  79. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:28 pm (#)

    Thanks Anonymous- The link looks like spam!? 😉

  80. Anonymous says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 3:59 pm (#)

    From someone who requested a wardrobe update in the comments to other posts, thank you! : ) This inspired me.

    Kirstin

  81. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:32 pm (#)

    Thanks Kirstin for requesting it! I procrastinated doing this, knowing that it would take a huge amount of time putting it together, but it appears that it was time well invested: others are enjoying the post too!

  82. Anonymous says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 5:01 pm (#)

    Looks like I'm the only guy on this comment section – This may sound kinda strange but how does your husband manage his wardrobe? I ask because I have an office job and I feel like I can't really downsize the number of dress shirts, pants, shoes, socks, etc that I wear (then there's the workout, outdoors stuff too). I am really trying my best to downsize but I feel like I can do more. I kind of resent having to maintain an inventory of work clothes because they take up too much room. I'm just having a hard time trying to prioritize and come up with a good strategy to make my wardrobe truly minimalist. I've given second hand stores a try but I have a difficult time finding things. Perhaps women have an easier time of it (because there's more variety)?? That aside, I just want to say that your site is a great resource and it has really opened my eyes to the many ways I can reduce waste. Thanks and keep up the great work!

    Brian

  83. Anonymous says:

    February 10th, 2015 at 6:39 pm (#)

    Hey Brian, I'm not a guy but I do have to work in an office, so I have to keep at least 5 days worth of business attire at all times. I find that I can keep my business clothes to just that and I get away with rewearing the same pair of black pants 2-3 times (my husband has a harder time rewearing clothing, however). That said, my non-office clothing consists of one pair of jeans, a handful of tshirts, and one "casual" button up — that's it. You can't sacrifice your professionalism, so maybe focus on pairing down your non-work clothes instead.

  84. Anonymous says:

    February 13th, 2015 at 2:14 am (#)

    My husband also works in an office and is extremely tall, making thrifting difficult, so I sympathize. His wardrobe is not exactly "minimalist," but here is what works for him: 8-10 cotton dress shirts, 5 wool sweaters, 5 pairs lined wool pants and 2 pairs khakis, one wool blazer, one formal suit. Most of these items are blue, gray, or black and can easily be mixed and matched. He has a couple shirts and sweaters in other colors for variety. While this is not a tiny wardrobe, it easily fits in a small closet and works for all seasons (we live in a four-season climate, but with air-conditioning, wool or a plain shirt is fine in the summer). My advice is to buy quality items and fibers that last a long time and change clothes immediately when you get home to minimize laundering–new clothes last a very long time that way. In the future, I am also going to replace worn-out items with things that work with black shoes, eliminating the need for both black and brown shoes and belts, different socks, etc. As the commenter above suggested, my husband also has an extremely small casual wardrobe. You can also try ebay for high quality used clothes.

  85. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 7:57 pm (#)

    Hi Brian and thanks for speaking out for the guys! It might come as a surprise to you (as it did for me), but I found out that I have more male readers than females. Or maybe it's due to internet accounts being registered under husband's names? My husband too needs a professional attire for work, and then there is business casual, and casual… The trick is finding multipurpose pieces and picking brown or black for shoes and accessories. My husbands' inventory is on my list of future posts…

  86. Anonymous says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 5:08 pm (#)

    Salut!! Je suis le blog depuis quelques temps et j'ai lu avec intérêt tout les articles posté depuis le début! J'ai été ravie de te voir hier à la télévision française 🙂 et félicitations pour IKEA!! Si cette grande marque pouvait améliorer ses pratiques ça serait formidable pour l'environnement vu le nombre de clients! Sinon j'avais une question concernant le balm multiusage que tu fais avec la cire d'abeille et l'huile d'olive si je ne me trompe pas. Tu arrives à trouver de la cire d'abeille en bulk? Aurais tu des idées d'où trouver de la cire d'abeille en vrac? En tout cas merci pour ton blog qui m'inspire, mais comme beaucoup je ne sais pas trop comment faire accepter les changements à mon copain…

  87. Mathilde Girardey says:

    February 11th, 2015 at 1:04 pm (#)

    Bonjour! vous pouvez trouver de la cire en vrac chez les apiculteurs, souvent ils la vendent ou la donnent sous forme de plaque fine. Bonne journée!

  88. Anonymous says:

    February 11th, 2015 at 10:39 pm (#)

    merci 🙂

  89. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:03 pm (#)

    La cire se trouve sous forme de paillettes en vrac (aux US), mais aussi en bloque d'une livre. Il me semble avoir trouve ce dernier chez Botanique, sinon au marche, stand des apiculteurs.

  90. mary huang says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 5:33 pm (#)

    Thank you for sharing. Getting your frequent post via my email really helps to remind me to live more minimally. It is so often easy to get side tracked and get sucked back into consuming.

  91. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:06 pm (#)

    I am so glad the email subscription helps you! (I thought about eliminating it at one point!)

  92. Anonymous says:

    February 9th, 2015 at 6:51 pm (#)

    bonjour Béa je viens de vous voir dans l émission CAPITAL ce dimanche 08/02/15 sur la chaîne française M6 bravo pour votre combat et merci pour vos astuces, je vais en tester quelques unes pour commencer, ça me parait difficile de tout changer d un seul coup.
    Martine

  93. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:13 pm (#)

    Bienvenue Martine: ravie que vous soyez tombee sur le segment de Capital!
    Ce mode de vie est pour nous une relle epiphanie. Il parait naturellement difficile a tout le monde au depart, mais il suffit de commencer et tout s'enclenche. J'espere que mon livre vous inspirera a suivre le pas, comme l'ont deja fait des milliers de lecteurs en France. Tout y est expliqué en détails.
    Bonne lecture et vive le Zero Dechet!

  94. aline says:

    February 10th, 2015 at 2:04 pm (#)

    Bonjour Béa et merci pour cet article.
    J'ai bien essayé votre méthode pour la garde robe. Mais j'avoue que c'est le seul point qui ne me satisfait pas. 🙁
    J'ai horreur de faire les boutiques, je fais forcément les mauvais choix quand j'achète! (même d'occasion).
    J'ai 3 jeans, des pulls (4 ou 5), autant de sous pulls (oui, il fait froid l'hiver en France).
    Pour les robes, je ne me voit pas en porter sans collant en ce moment, et comme je refuse d'en acheter des "jetables", ben j'ai arrêté les jupes/robes). Du coup j'ai le sentiment d'être constamment habillée pareil et je suis un peu frustrée de ce coté là…
    Peut-être que je devrais me faire aider?? (par un relooking par exemple)
    Qu'en pensez-vous?
    Vous avez la chance d'avoir travaillé dans le mode.
    Au passage, toutes vos autre techniques sont formidables et m'ont "allégé" la vie! merci

  95. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:22 pm (#)

    Pourquoi ne pas mettre de robes ou de jupes en hiver avec des collants? Personnellement, je trouve qu'elles sont multifunctionnelles. Pour vous donner des idees, jetez donc un coup oeil a cet article: http://www.zerowastehome.com/2013/03/mini-wardrobe-fave-lbd.html

  96. maria says:

    February 10th, 2015 at 4:33 pm (#)

    Béa, thank you for your inspirational post. A couple of weeks ago, I ripped my favorite pair of jeans. My initial thought was to replace them, but after reading your post I'm thinking "what if I don't"… what if one pair of blue jeans and one of black jeans is enough for me. Thanks!

  97. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:22 pm (#)

    yes!

  98. kyli olise says:

    February 11th, 2015 at 5:08 am (#)

    Thank you so much for the post, the blog, and the inspiration to be able to live life to the fullest. I have greatly minimized the amount of clothing in our home and it feels fantastic! My 4 kids were a bit skeptical at first but have loved having a clean room and less stuff to worry about ( and I have loved having less laundry). I did the first purge of their clothes last week and then did a quick follow up purge today. I am addicted! My home is becoming a calm and tidy place (as calm as it can be with 4 small ones running about). Again, thank you sweet bea for your life changing insight.

  99. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:27 pm (#)

    You are so welcome Kyli! I am so happy that my blog has helped you achieve a simple life, with less stuff to care for and pick up and less laundry loads, so you can enjoy more time with your family! This lifestyle has been a true epiphany for ours. And I am so excited that people all over the world have bee inspired to do the same!

  100. Amy says:

    February 11th, 2015 at 7:41 pm (#)

    Thank you for sharing your insights. I'm attempting to make strides with my family to clear out the clutter and buy LESS!! The kids (surprisingly) are pretty much on the bandwagon. My husband….he's a harder sell! I think it is such a blessing that I can work part time, bring in less money but be so much happier because I get to pick up my kids at school every day and make a home cooked meal every night. Those are luxuries I can't buy and I cherish them.

  101. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:29 pm (#)

    It seems to me that you have your priorities in the right order! Cheers to that!

  102. Claire says:

    February 11th, 2015 at 11:08 pm (#)

    Bonjour Béa !
    Je suis en pleine lecture du livre (Sur mon Kindle, j'ai déjà été un peu "zéro déchet" sans le vouloir !) et je suis fascinée. C'est vraiment "life-changing" comme lecture (je ne trouve pas l'équivalent en français !)
    Et coïncidence, je vous voir sur Capital hier ! Je dois dire que j'étais super contente de vous voir "en vrai", et soulagée aussi de constater que vous gardiez un super sens du style. Donc on peut être minimaliste, écolo, et chic ! (J'avais en tête une image de hippie avec poils sous les bras, désolée pour le cliché !)
    J'achète déjà tous les vêtements de mes enfants d'occasion, et je ne pourrais plus payer le prix neuf, même en soldes. Après avoir lu cet article, je suis allée faire le tri du placard de ma fille et je n'ai gardé que 10 tenues complètes. Le reste sera donné et vendu. J'ai hâte de m'attaquer à ma garde-robe (et j'ai peur, aussi).
    Prochain objectif : le tri de la salle de bains. Et là, j'ai une petite question : Que faire des produits cosmétiques et du maquillage entamés et/ou périmés ? A part la poubelle ? Ca me fait mal au coeur, vue la quantité que j'en ai…
    En tous cas, merci 1 000 fois pour le livre et le blog, bravo à vous de partager votre mode de vie et de nous inspirer !
    Bises de Nantes !

  103. miss lo says:

    February 12th, 2015 at 8:34 am (#)

    Bonjour,
    Les cosmétiques entamés peuvent être donnés à des amis ou la famille. Ceux périmés peuvent être réutilisés : crème solaire pour nourrir le cuir des chaussures, crème pour le visage en soin pour les pointes des cheveux, etc … Et puis une fois vidés, certains contenant peuvent être réutilisés pour les futures préparations maison.

  104. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:35 pm (#)

    Excellente note, miss lo. Merci pour votre point de vue.
    J'ajouterais que les produits qui peuvent encore servir peuvent etre donne aux foyears pour femmes battues ou les sans-abris. Si pour certains produits vous ne voyez que la poubelle comme solution, ne la laissez pas vous demoraliser. Apres tout, votre facon de consommer est desormais changee, et c'est ce importe le plus! Felicitations!

  105. yuvraj says:

    February 12th, 2015 at 12:41 pm (#)

    Nice to see this post and I really enjoyed a lot.

  106. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:36 pm (#)

    Thanks. I hope you found it useful too!

  107. robba says:

    February 12th, 2015 at 1:19 pm (#)

    Dear Bea, thanks, you are for me a source of inspiration. Excuse my extreme curiosity, and if I make a question already made by someone else, but the white shirt that you wear in the picture with the kajak is no longer in your wardrobe, is it? Thanks again, Roberta

  108. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:39 pm (#)

    Hi Roberta: It sure is!
    The white shirt in the Kayak is on the poster above: see tops, center left, off-white buttoned-down shirt with rolled up sleeves.

  109. Diane says:

    February 12th, 2015 at 7:39 pm (#)

    chere Bea,

    je suis ravie que vous postiez de nouveau. Merci beaucoup car en tant que médecin j 'étais inquiète durant ma grossesse à propos de l'exposition à de nombreux produits toxiques ( connus et inconnus, la teratogénicité d'un produit n'étant parfois mise en évidence qu'après des années) et grâce à vos conseils j'ai eu plein de solutions pratiques pour remplacer mes cosmétiques. Mon bébé est né en octobre mais je continue ma routine…
    Merci encore
    Ps: je m'attaque à désencombrer mes placards ( une autre histoire….)

  110. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:48 pm (#)

    Bonjour Diane: Tous ceux qui s'interessent au mode de vie Zero Dechet ne partagent pas le meme declic. Les raisons different: Pour nous ca a ete de vouloir un future meilleur pour nos fils apres avoir lu et vu des documentaires sur les problemes environnementaux. Pour d'autres, c'est la simplicite. Pour d'autres encore c'est la sante. La votre c'est le bien etre de l'enfant que vous portiez (magnifique)! Quel que soit la raison qui motive, ce qui nous lie est l'action (au lieu de l'inaction), un mouvement global pour un monde meilleur. Alors, merci!

  111. Anonymous says:

    February 13th, 2015 at 8:32 pm (#)

    Hey Bea! I found your site a few days ago and I am so excited! There is so much for me to do, but I'm excited to get started. I love your idea of "refuse first" and I refused my first thing today! It was the"grab bag" from my dental cleaning. I'll admit I took the toothbrush (haven't done research on sustainable toothbrushes yet), but I refused everything else!

    I love your smaller wardrobe. Mine is small but I don't think I could fit it in a carry-on. One more thing to aspire to 🙂

    -Tricia

  112. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 8:56 pm (#)

    Kuddos on your first Refuse! Refusing is the first step to a waste-free lifestyle so you're on your way and I am so proud to welcome you to this amazing active community! No need to "research sustainable toothbrushes": Check out the tips page, the blog's store and my book for sustainable alternatives: Bamboo toothbrushes will soon replace your plastic ones… Cheers!

  113. Lollyg says:

    February 15th, 2015 at 6:41 pm (#)

    Thank you for this post! I am re-reading your book, and realize that I have way too many clothes and shoes, even for the serious New England winter, and other drastic seasons. This post has inspired me to spend my house bound (due to weather) time sending clothing to a new owner.

    Keep the posts coming, I (we!) need the encouragement to keep going!

  114. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 9:02 pm (#)

    Thanks Lollyg for going through your clothes and donating some of them: Zero Waste lifestyles depend on the secondhand market, and your donations feed it. So thank you thank you thank you for growing the secondhand selection!

  115. Gittemary says:

    February 16th, 2015 at 4:08 pm (#)

    I absolutely love your lifestyle, it is amazing!

    Huge hugs from fellow zero waster and fan http://www.gittemary.com/

  116. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 9:47 pm (#)

    Having inspired the launch of hundreds of blogs like yours throughout the world, could not make me more proud! Thank you!

  117. Zelde says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 11:03 am (#)

    One thing that always strikes me as interesting is that in some ways I think it is almost easier to live on a very small wardrobe as a family than it is alone. I lived on a similarly small list of items for a while and I always had the problem that I ran out of items (usually underwear and tshirts) long before I had enough dirty clothes to fill the washing machine. I refused to run it half empty so I just ended up hand washing a lot, which actually uses huge amounts of water and detergent so it arguably even worse than a half empty machine.

    How do other single people deal with this issue?

  118. Bea Johnson says:

    February 17th, 2015 at 9:52 pm (#)

    The trick when living alone is to stick to either colored items or light ones for both your clothes and household linens, so that at the end of the week, you can combine them in the machine to fill one load (instead of running one white load and then a dark one).

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