Introducing: 12 Garment Year

I’m sitting here at a coffeeshop reflecting on the past two years of my closet minimizing project. In ways, this process has taken much, much longer than anticipated. But really, it takes as long as it takes. I had been living in the terribly cliché realm of “I have nothing to wear” whilst peering into a closet bursting with garments. Minimizing one’s closet does not take an afternoon. It does not take multiple afternoons. In actuality, it takes months and sometimes years.

My favorite part of this project has been the desire to dress for myself vs. dressing for others. I no longer need a bunch of girly dresses to feel feminine. I also don’t desire loud patterns. My style has become a uniform of sorts, built of calming colors and nice textures. So I felt myself at a crossroads recently: I can say confidently that I know my personal style and I genuinely love my closet, but what’s next?


For the month of January, I conducted a shopping fast. And while I didn’t cheat, I couldn’t wait for February 1 to come along so I could buy something! This experiment led me to another idea: what if I set my sights on acquiring only ethical, sustainable clothes for the next 12 months — with one garment each month?

Enter 12 Garment Year.



While I’d like to do a year-long shopping fast someday, for now I’m putting my money where my mouth is — finally supporting ethical & sustainable brands while slowly adding quality pieces to my wardrobe. This is nothing groundbreaking, but I’ve been on the fence about making the switch to ethical brands — mostly because they just seemed so expensive. However, if I’m only purchasing one item per month, it’s much easier to feel like an investment, and a cherished one at that!

Here are my ground rules:

  • I can purchase 1 garment per month
  • The garment has to be ethically or sustainably made
  • I can make or alter my current clothes during the 12 months
  • If I really, desperately need more than 1 item during a certain month, it must be purchased secondhand
  • Underthings & socks don’t count 😉 but should only be purchased as absolutely needed

Stay tuned for my learnings during the first two months of this project!


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