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Teach me how to build a capsule wardrobe

'Teach me how to do something I'm rubbish at' is a series that encourages the clever clogs wearers of the world to show us less clever types how to do the things we've always wanted to do. This week we welcome the styling Sonia Bavistock who blogs at Sonia Styling. I don't know about you, but when it comes to personal styling, I need all the help I can get!

As much as I love fashion and all the pomp and ceremony that accompany putting an outfit together, at heart I really am a low key kind of girl.

I’m a big believer in having a wardrobe full of great basics that can be called upon any day of the week and changed up by simply adding a statement necklace or brightly coloured scarf. So when Bron asked me to write a post about a capsule wardrobe, I practically jumped through the screen to reply with a very enthusiastic “YES!” because I truly believe that fashion should be easy and fun and your outfits should suit your lifestyle and reflect your personality.

The pieces I’ve chosen for this post are items that I think will work for just about everyone and can be mixed and matched to create stylish casual outfits perfect for the school run, coffee with friends or dinner at the pub.

Start with a fashion philosophy...

Now, onto my fashion philosophy for creating the perfect capsule wardrobe. These are my tips for keeping your wardrobe stylish, manageable and real.

Be fussy

When it comes to basics, be fussy. Let’s face it. These items are your wardrobe workhorses. They’ll be getting the most outings, so you want to ensure they can be washed and worn with minimum fuss (and hopefully zero ironing) and will look practically brand new for as long as possible.

Stock up when you love it

My other tip is if you find a basic that you love, buy multiples! I’ve been known to buy a minimum of two tanks or scoop neck tops at any one time because if one’s in the wash, then I can grab the other and get on with my day.

Play with accessories

Affordable accessories are also a really good way to dip your toe into a trend before deciding to fully dive in. Think jewellery (necklaces, earrings, rings, bangles, bracelets, brooches, cuffs), nail polishes, hats and scarves...

Tread lightly with trends

Speaking of which, when it comes to trendy pieces you can totally afford to go cheap! Just because you love neon this year doesn’t mean you’ll love it next year, so don’t spend a fortune on that multi-coloured leopard print scarf (I may or may not be talking about myself here).

... and build from there.

Here are my picks for a fabulous capsule wardrobe that will see you through the rest of winter and into spring…

1. Everyday Pom Pom Beanie from Cotton On, $12.95

2. Distressed Boyfriend Jeans from Bohemian Traders*, $100 

3. Slouchy Angora Cardigan (in Grey) from Bohemian Traders*, $139 

4. Hatie Pointy Toe Flat from Nine West, $139.95 

5. Quilted PU Biker Jacket from Katies, $99.95

6. Triangle Stone Necklace from Colette, $14.95 

7. Breton Stripe Top from Sussan, $59.95 

8. Kelly Geo Print Scarf from Forever New, $29.99

9. Scoop Neck Top from Katies, $19.95

* Affiliate link (Sonia has a relationship with this company).

Do you use go-to accessories to jazz up a plain outfit?



:: A portrait of my children each week, every week in 2014 ::         
                    Maxi: Walking the wall in Bondi.
                    Cappers: So fresh and pretty. 
                    Badoo: Eyeing off the chocolates.

Playing catch-up with Jodi.


We made a vegie patch for next to nothing

I've pfaffed around trying to grow a few vegies here and there for a couple of years now. We had them housed up by the washing line but I kept forgetting to water them. Then we had a drip irrigation system put in but the chickens got into the patch followed by the wallabies and, well, bye-bye vegies. So, my problems were two-fold: neglect and vermin patrol.

A little while ago I was wandering up to meet the kids outside Badoo's classroom (yes, I still have to do that, no back gate for me) when I spotted a couple of old school desk frames languishing by the skip. I detoured by the Principal's office to see if I could have them to make some vegie boxes for home. She said yes, but I could tell she wished she's thought of the idea first.

So I stole the frames away in the dead of night (I'm being dramatic - I had to go back later as I couldn't fit the frames and the kids into the car in one go). Next I went out to Kimbriki - the local tip - to see what they had for me in their resale yard. I picked up a huge sheet of corrugated iron for $20. It was so huge I had to leave it there so I could return with Bart and the tin snips. 

Back home with all the supplies we needed, Bart and the kids set to work building me a vermin-proof vegie patch that we could put in a sunny, accessible spot (right in the front yard, as it happened). I directed.

The corrugated iron was cut to size (this was the trickiest bit) and tied to the desk frames. Then we used square chicken wire to fill int the gaps. Tubing was run along the edge of the corrugated iron (it cuts like a knife, so you need to protect yourself!). Later I put bird netting over the top to make sure the vegie patch was Fort Knox. All up it cost us about $40 to make two 150 x 90 cm vegie gardens. How good is that?

What's your vegie patch housed in?