I wanted to pop in and say hi to all the new readers (and current ones who have stuck around despite a lack of posts). Your feedback has been so lovely and you have inspired me to keep this blog going. My free time has been going to my new youtube channel but I do want to keep writing and there will be more posts coming your way shortly!
In this video I share the backstory behind my lifestyle change. I hope you enjoy. Don’t forget to subscribe to my youtube channel for more videos!
- 1 Cup Broccoli
- 1 Cup Cauliflower
- 2-3 Large Apples
- 2-3 Large Carrots
- Cinnamon to taste
Optional: fresh berries, bananas, fruit, nuts, seeds, raisins, dates, etc.
Blend broccoli and cauliflower in a food processor. Add to a large mixing bowl. Blend apples and carrots and stir into the broccoli/cauliflower mixture. Add cinnamon to taste and garnish with toppings. Enjoy with non-dairy milk like you would regular cereal. Enjoy!
I’ve always been a frugal person, and would buy as cheaply as possible. I thought this was a good thing. After all, I was saving money.
That was the old me. There are so many reasons to make the switch, but ethical reasons are the most important to me. The drastically inexpensive prices can come at a cost to the employees, whether that starts with the manufacturing process overseas or those on the retail end. People are being treated unjustly, or are not being paid a fair wage. Human labor trafficking can even come into play which is a tragedy close to my heart. I’m not saying every company that sells cheap items is trafficking laborers or paying their employees pennies, I’m just saying to be smart where you shop. Try to buy fair-trade as much as possible.
With that being said, how do you make the switch from for buying all your clothes at extremely inexpensive stores? Where do you even find ethical items? Aren’t they extremely pricey? Do I have to throw out everything that I bought from unethical places? Let’s dive into those questions below.
If you’re like me, most of my clothes are from very inexpensive stores: cheap, poorly made, and last only a few wears or washes. I’m also a vegan but own couple leather shoes.
There was a time I wasn’t a vegan, or didn’t understand how a shirt I purchased could contribute to unfair wages in another persons life. I don’t have the budget to donate out every clothing item that may or may not have been ethically made, or those boots made of leather. I live in an extremely cold climate in the winter and warm boots are essential (and expensive). Where do I go from here?
1. Make the switch, just not all at once.
Please don’t think you need to donate or toss every item you have that doesn’t meet “sustainable requirements.” I certainly haven’t and can not afford to. Instead, I no longer purchase any new items or consumables from unethical stores (as much as possible). I will replace my leather boots with a non-leather vegan alternative as soon as they wear out. I’ll purchase a higher quality top that will last years, instead of a bunch of $10 shirts that will last weeks or months. A google search will show you companies certified fair trade or ones that use sustainable materials. When I first started my journey to minimalism and sustainability, I was so worried how many things I purchased that didn’t fall into the “requirements,” but it’s not about that. It’s a conscious decision to buy fair trade as much as you possibly can from here on out.
2. Shop Online.
I mostly gave up shopping in stores (aside from produce and other grocery items). I purchase most of my consumables and clothing online from companies I trust. Items include things like coffee, nuts/seeds, castile soap, clothing etc. I support small and local businesses as much as I can. Sometimes you can search online for hours and never be absolutely sure a specific item is made fairly or ethically. In those cases, if you absolutely need an it, make the best decision you can with the resources you’re given. Do your best, and don’t beat yourself up if you made a mistake. You’re already making a difference by being conscious of the consumerism issue.
My favorite resource is Fair Trade USA. They give you a list of certified companies from food to clothing.
One of the most sustainable ways to shop is buying second-hand. It’s giving an old item new life, and not using any extra materials to revive it. This can include anything from clothes, to furniture, to a kitchen bowl. You’re almost guaranteed to get an amazing price and a really unique item. It’s hit or miss if you’ll score after an entire day thrifting, but it’s like a treasure hunt and you never know what you’re going to find. It’s a good option if it’s not in the budget for a high quality new piece. You can find a lot of quality pieces hardly worn. Almost half of my wardrobe and 75% of my furniture is from a thrift store.
I hope these three tips help you make the gradual switch to sustainability. It’s a lifestyle change, and it’s worth it. You’ll not only be contributing to the movement for companies to change their standards, but you’ll be purchasing quality items that last. Win-win if you ask me. :)
Don’t forget to head on over to my youtube channel for more minimalism and vegan videos! Hope to see you there! :)
If you want a capsule wardrobe and don’t have the funds to donate everything and start over, this is for you. I personally had a ton of clothes in my closet that didn’t fit, I didn’t love anymore, and most of them didn’t go with other pieces. I also didn’t have the budget to donate it all and start building a new wardrobe from scratch. So here’s what I did to create my capsule wardrobe overtime, and how I’m still tweaking it now.
My capsule wardrobe is not perfect. There are pieces I still feel are missing, and some pieces are not ethically what I want to have in my wardrobe. I became a vegan for health reasons and for animal cruelty, and I own shoes from before that are made of leather. I do not have the budget to buy all new, quality shoes, especially winter boots. The majority of my clothes are from inexpensive places and are not good quality, or maybe they’re not exactly what I want. Instead of starting from scratch which would be extremely pricey, I’ll wear my shoes until they need to be replaced, and I’ll purchase a high-quality vegan alternatives in its place. I’ll do the same for my clothes. I want to have a closet full of high quality, vegan, ethically sourced items that I love and fit well, but not overnight.
So if you’re in a situation similar to mine, here are some practical tips that can help minimize your wardrobe.
- Take a few minutes and write down exactly what you want in your wardrobe. Comfort, style, color pallet. This will help you in the decluttering process decide what fits with your vision and what you can let go of.
- Declutter. This is the most time consuming but also most critical. Spend an afternoon or a weekend going through your clothes. Try them on and honestly evaluate if you love an item, if it was a gift and you’ve never worn it, or if the material is uncomfortable or it doesn’t fit. If you have to keep pulling at something to make it more comfortable, donate it. Decide if an item fits with the capsule wardrobe vision you want to create. and let the rest go to a donation pile so someone else can find joy in those pieces. Once you’ve decided on the items you absolutely want to keep, think about why. Do you love the color? The fit? Start hanging up everything so it’s visible. If you’re unsure of any items, put them away in a box or somewhere out of sight. If you haven’t touched them after a a few months, it’s probably safe to let them go.
- Evaluate the clothes you have decided to keep. Think about if the pieces can go together. Try combinations on if it helps. Try wearing only these items for a week or two and see how you feel. Can you edit these items even less? Is there something you thought you loved but actually don’t? Be honest with yourself and find what works best for your lifestyle.
- Work with what you have, even if that means working with less. Don’t feel like you have to go out and purchase a bunch of new items, it’s actually better if you do it slowly overtime so you can really make sure an item is exactly what you want and need before you invest in it. I wear the same few pieces each week because I feel the best in them. Eventually I’d love to add additional things I’m missing and replace the poor quality items, but that will come in time.
You can replace or purchase missing items from your wardrobe at your own pace on your own budget. If you are in absolute need of something (maybe for work as an example) but don’t want to invest in an expensive item, check the second hand stores in your area. Ebay is another great option.
Take before and after pictures of your closet as a reminder of how far you’ve come and where you want it to be (I wish I had done this). If you see something you want to buy, remember to ask yourself the questions of “Do I need this?” “Does this fit in my capsule vision?” “Will this go with multiple items already in my closet?”
Enjoy the journey of minimizing and creating your capsule wardrobe. Play some music or listen to a great podcast and declutter away. :)
Thanks so much for reading.
I have a lot more videos planned with the topic of minimalism and it would mean so much if you subscribed. :)
What are your five top priorities in life? Maybe one is your family, and another might be a hobby you enjoy. How much time do you give to those things daily?
These questions were a wake up call for me. I was giving hardly any time to the things I said mattered most to me. I spent my time doing other things that were “important” but never yielded any benefits or personal growth.
I decided to write out my top priorities in life:
- Helping Others
This list may change overtime, but it’s a good starting point for me. I’ve started to give more time to each thing on the list and it feels so good. I’m excited to see what each day brings because I know I’m living what I’m passionate about.
It wasn’t easy at first, especially with a long to-do list in front of me. I knew I needed to do laundry and dishes but I was craving to go on a hike… so I went. I hiked up a mountain nearby for over an hour and felt so accomplished. I took the time to do something I loved and still managed to get everything on my to-do list for the day done.
I encourage you to list out what you’re most passionate about. It may be three things or seven. Try to take time for those things throughout the day, even a small amount of time can make a difference.