How to Create New Outfits With Clothes You Already Own

Have fun and play with your jewelry again

Have you ever walked into your closet and told yourself you have nothing to wear? I mean, I already know the answer here is yes. It’s a never-ending cycle. As soon as you’ve worn something a few times, it starts to get knocked further and further back into your wardrobe. Each time you consider whether or not that means you should get rid of that particular piece of clothing and go to the mall for something new. Let me stop you right there.

No. Hell to the no.

Instead, it’s time to try something new.

Recently, I’ve found that if I challenge myself to pair items I never normally would, that I may find an outfit I love. Did you know that with just five articles of clothing, you can easily make over 10 outfits? Crazy, I know.

Why does this benefit you? Is probably your first question. So, let me tell you:

  • Firstly, if you ever travel and tend to have a classic case of overpacking – this will help.

  • Secondly, if you hate shopping.

  • Thirdly, if you love shopping and need to save money.

  • And lastly, if you just need to inspire yourself with new outfits. 

The idea is simple, but it’s also time-consuming. Let me preface this entire idea by saying that when you decide to go through your wardrobe, you need to have at least two hours to invest in the mixing, matching, and the many accessory changes. However, if you follow these five steps, the process might be easier.

Step 1 - Research

Look at you go, you’re already tackling step one right now! If you want to attempt to revamp your current wardrobe, it’s always a good idea to head to platforms that spark your creativity and provide you with inspiration. Check Pinterest, watch YouTubers, look at Instagram influencers. Don’t rule out an outfit because you “don’t own anything like that.” Check your closet first! You might be surprised.

Step 2 - Choose your five outfits

For each combination, you will need five articles of clothing. Typically, I lean towards two bottoms, two tops, and one dress, skirt or romper. These articles of clothing will all need to fall into a colour scheme that blends well together. I encourage you to not choose colours that clash. I can say from personal experience that if you do, it definitely ain’t pretty.

Step 3 - Exhaust one item of clothing

When I say exhaust one item of clothing, I don’t mean take it to the gym and make it do some pull ups. What I do mean, is to combine that item with every single article of clothing you have chosen. If you have a pair of jeans, match them with each item on your list except for the other pair of bottoms. Don’t be afraid to layer clothing on top of one another.

For each five items you choose, you should be able to create a large variety of items by doing the following:

Jeans - T-shirt, Sweater, Dress, Sweater + T-shirt

T-shirt - Dress, Leggings

Sweater - Dress, Leggings

Dress - Dress, Leggings

Leggings - T-shirt + Sweater, Dress + Sweater

Just like that, we’ve managed to create 12 outfits with five articles of clothing. Sure, some of these pairing options might look stupid – but, what if they don’t? By writing down the outfit combinations that you can put together, you will inevitably pair clothes you would typically never consider. If you just look at the pieces and try to imagine an outfit, chances are high that you won’t make the attempt even though it could work out to be a favourite.

Step 4 - Look in the mirror

For once in my life and on this blog I’m going to encourage you to be self-involved. Look at yourself in each chosen outfit for as long as you need. Ask yourself what you love about the clothes, ask yourself if there was a way you can change the look to make it feel more comfortable. Perhaps this sparks an idea to grab another article of clothing you’ve been thinking of. Don’t be afraid to take your time.

Step 5 - Accessorize each look

One way to spruce up your outfits it by using accessories. This is also a great way to enhance your wardrobe and your clothing in a more cost-effective manner. If you need to swing by an Aldo to grab some new shoes, purses, necklaces, earrings and scarves, it will cost you a lot less than going to Aritzia for an entirely new outfit. Have fun and play with your jewelry again. We used to do this all the time! At least, I did. You’ll be amazed how much changing from a funky heel to a chunky boot can change an outfit. Your Instagram followers will never know you wore the exact same outfit yesterday if there are enough small changes to influence the look. Also, screw your followers. If you want to wear the same outfit two days in a row, I’m team DO IT.

For me, fashion is scary even though it should be fun. One thing I’ve started to tell myself is to not be afraid to go all out if you’re bored with your current look. No one is going to tell you to stop. You’re a grown-ass woman (or otherwise) – and we love a grown-ass woman (or otherwise) with confidence.

To watch me try on a lot of outfits I don’t love, but a few that I really do, here is an example of my new outfit research: