I thought it would be fun to share the pieces I pulled together for my project 333 this spring! Here’s my complete petite minimalist spring wardrobe.
As mentioned previously, I kind of stumbled into participating in Project 333 last month and I ended up loving it. Of course, there’s already a lot of info out there about creating different types of capsule wardrobes from people who have far more expertise in the matter than I do, but I thought I might have a few thoughts to add that would be helpful to people who are also very much on the petite side and also who have found themselves leaning very much toward simpler, more classic clothing choices that will last from season to season and from year to year. I’ve found this to be such a rewarding and freeing experience and I think it’s definitely worth a try if you find yourself feeling overwhelmed and yet without anything to wear when you go to get dressed. You have plenty, I promise. And this exercise really helps you clear the air and see just how simple getting dressed can be and just how organized you can feel when it comes to wardrobe choices. So today I’ll be sharing my petite minimalist wardrobe for the spring season, which runs from April until the end of June.
How Project 333 Works
The basic idea is that you dress using a wardrobe of only 33 items for three months (a season), including clothing, shoes, and accessories. You can read more about it from the founder of Project 333, Courtney Carver, here. This exercise was created as a way to eliminate stress, overwhelm, and decision fatigue in a world where we’ve become overrun with too many options and too many choices in every area of life. As the saying goes, “Simplify your closet, simplify your life.” I really think she’s on to something.
If this sounds a little crazy to you and you don’t think you could possibly dress with only 33 items, just know that when I first went to put my little collection together I actually found that 33 almost felt like too many items at first. That’s because the fine print of the rules actually makes the whole thing really reasonable. What’s not included in your 33 items are things like socks and underwear, pyjamas and loungewear, and workout clothes, as long as you actually workout in your workout clothes. If you wear it to go for long walks or to paddle in your kayak, that counts as workout clothes, you don’t necessarily have to be going to a gym or yoga studio. Sentimental jewelry pieces like wedding rings that you wear every day also don’t count. I also love that Courtney explicitly states that this is not meant to be an exercise in frustration. It’s supposed to be exactly the opposite. A breath of fresh air. A chance to clear your mind. If something needs to be replaced, replace it. If something isn’t working anymore, switch it out. Just stick to only 33 items at a time in your closet.
Everything else gets stored away in a box or bin for the time being. After a season or two, it will start to become clear what can stay and what needs to be donated and you’ll probably only have one box of out of season clothes left to store.
I should also mention that the idea is not to purchase a whole new wardrobe every season. By limiting your options, you start to zero in on which items you really enjoy wearing the most. A lot of these items will end up being kept in your rotation from one season to the next because they will be the items that just work and that you won’t want to part with. I love that this kind of thinking will also encourage us all to purchase fewer, better quality items that will last longer.
OK, onto what I’ve put together for this season!
Petite Minimalist Spring Wardrobe: Tops
I always say that I believe a closet can and should be made up of about 50% thrifted items. When you think about it, almost anything you could want or need is already out there floating around in the world, you just need to find it. There’s no sense in using all those resources to make a brand new one of something, when there’s one out there already, just looking for a home. This can be a little tough to accomplish when you’re uniquely sized like I am (size XXS/00 petite), but there are still a lot of items to work with. I’ll note which items were thrifted below.
Please enjoy these extraordinarily casual phone photos that I put together on the bed while I was getting myself organized for Project 333 spring. Just noticing now that there’s definitely a fair quantity of dog fur that the clothes picked up off the bed. 🙂
The tops that I’m including are super simple, but they’re the spring versions of basically exactly what I’ve been wearing all winter long, and what I just find myself gravitating towards these days. I know I’m not alone in craving simplicity and functionality in my clothing choices in a post-pandemic world. I love a black t-shirt. I know I can always count on it. 🙂 Pictured above, and also a couple not pictured because I was wearing them (10 tops):
- Olive green crewneck sweater (thrifted) – similar here (this one would actually be a bit of a better fit for me because of the cropped length)
- Black crewneck sweater
- Sand/oatmeal cashmere sweater (thrifted) – similar here
- Grey cashmere sweater (thrifted) – similar here
- Black v-neck T
- White v-neck T
- Black tank
- White tank
- Black long sleeve v-neck
- Sweater fleece pullover (Patagonia regular sizes run a bit small, I’m an XS in this pullover instead of my usual XXS)
A little note on tops: I’m 5’3″ and petite sizes usually work really well for me for t-shirts and sweaters. For non-petite sizes, I look for tops that are 19-20″ in length, ideally, and no more than 23″ for something that will fall a little lower on the hip.
Petite Minimalist Spring Wardrobe: Bottoms, etc.
This looks like a ridiculous number of bottoms to me, but I had space in my 33 items so I just added a few extras. The wiggle room is great because you can add things you might only wear at the beginning or the end of the season because of weather changes. Definitely won’t be wearing the shorts for the next few weeks, but eventually! Included in this category (10 items):
- White jeans
- Distressed jeans (these ones are kids size 14, a perfect match for someone who is size 00-0 petite, depending on how loose you like them!)
- straight jeans
- skinny jeans
- Grey pants
- Black pants
- Denim shorts
- White denim shorts
- Black sleeveless dress (thrifted) – similar style here
- Black leggings: Zella Live-In (not petite sizing, but fairly petite friendly anyway)
Petite Friendly Shoes and Accessories for Spring
Well, this was not on purpose, but I notice that my items are divided pretty evenly between tops, bottoms, and accessories. Again, I definitely have more than I need here. You really don’t need any more than one pair of sunglasses, one sun hat, or a couple of pairs of shoes, but I think it’s fun to show myself just how many fun options I can still have available to me, even with a really paired-down closet. I really have a sense of abundance with these items, and I get to enjoy and open and airy closet at the same time. This is definitely a bit of an “a-ha” moment. 🙂
By the way, those $900 shoes? Thrifted for $10! It pays to have a look.
- *Fancy* sunglasses: Ralph Lauren RA5203-54 (a pretty good cat-eye frame for petite faces)
- Casual sunglasses: Le Specs Bandwagon (a smaller frame on regular faces like the models, perfect for petites though!)
- Cognac leather cross-body bag (old) – similar here
- White baseball hat: Nike Heritage86 women’s cap (great for smaller heads)
- Tan baseball hat
- Taupe pointed toe loafer
- Black ballet flats
- Cognac suede driving flats (my color is sold out, so these are a bit darker leather)
- Birkenstock sandals – Yao in narrow width
- White canvas sneakers – Superga Cotu 2750
- Gold bracelet (gift from Chris from local jeweller) – here’s a very similar but more affordable option
Spring Outerwear for Petites
Spring and summer are definitely going to be a bit easier for testing this type of minimalist wardrobe out because outerwear isn’t a huge concern. I’ll keep a couple of trusty spring jackets on stand-by, because I am in Canada and it can be chilly right until the end of May, but I really only need to include one spring jacket. Again, including two just for fun because I have the space. So. much. abundance!
- Olive green utility jacket (mine is older, really love this new one from LL Bean)
- Classic Levis Denim jacket (this one is older too, but I find they fit on the smaller side, so are good for petites)
Breaking the Rules
One of the things about Project 333 that really intrigued me is that you’re kind of encouraged to “break the rules” to make the system work for you. So if it’s winter and you’re going on a beach vacation, of course go to your bins and get what you need. If you find that 27 or 42 items is a better fit for your life, modify the challenge and run with that number instead. I have to say I’m not super tempted to break many of the rules because I’ve so far found the extra space and the ease of it all to be so rewarding, but there are a few little things. I’m definitely keeping my winter coat in the rotation for as long as needed. We have some super chilly, rainy days in April and even the beginning of May and I think it’s wise to not make myself cold and miserable. I’m also not counting the earrings and the necklace that I wear every day because I never switch them out with anything else, or really even think of them, so they aren’t causing me any decision fatigue and they aren’t taking up any mental space at all. I might find one or two more rules to break over the next few months too. I’ll let you know. 🙂
Have you heard of Project 333? Have you tried it for yourself?
MORE IDEAS LIKE THIS
- Five Things on a Friday 4/1/22
- Things I Love More Now Than When I Bought Them – Home Edition
- How to Wash a Ruggable
- My New All-Weather Adirondack Chairs – Review
- How to Clean White Canvas Sneakers
- The Creek Line House Recent Posts
This post contains affiliate links.