If you’ve never tried or stuck to a small capsule wardrobe, then you’ve never watched your wardrobe degrade quickly from weekly wear and laundering. It’s very challenging to maintain the look of a small wardrobe. Shopping high quality pieces makes a huge difference, but distinguishing high quality clothing for your daily wardrobe can be challenging versus high quality pieces for special occasions.
I’ve predominately shopped consignment for my capsule wardrobes. I’ve messed up items in the laundry, and gotten tired of pieces after wearing them day in and day out. I knew I needed to do something dramatically different because shopping every season was time consuming, expensive, and surprisingly getting on my nerves.
The reason why you haven’t seen a Fall/Winter 2018 Capsule Wardrobe from me is because I decided to buy only linen garments and eliminate all synthetic fabrics.
After thrifting two linen skirts for My Spring/Summer 2019 Capsule Wardrobe, I noticed that European linen is much different than the basic linen garments I would traditionally see in American stores. European linen is much thicker and more beautiful in comparison. Both skirts in that capsule wardrobe were by the brand FLAX and made in Lithuania.
Sadly my organic pima cotton t-shirts stretched out, the organic knit top and skirt I made pilled, then I messed up two other pieces in the laundry from this previous capsule wardrobe. Six items in that wardrobe were linen pieces. I noticed that linen was very easy to care for while maintaining its shape. Only linen knits stretched out, but they still would return to their natural shape. I even stopped ironing both skirts and began to enjoy the wrinkles. Medium and heavy weight linen looks just fine to me with wrinkles.
Linen is considered to be the world’s strongest natural fiber.
Pure 100% linen which is made from flax…
- is 30% stronger than cotton
- keeps you cool in the summer and if layered unexpectedly warm in the winter
- is hypoallergenic
- is very breathable
- absorbs moisture easily and dries quickly
- uses less water and chemicals to manufacture
- gets softer with each wash
- is very comfortable
- lasts 2-3 decades versus cotton lasting only 3-5 years
After learning more about linen, I’ve come to the conclusion that it’s the most environmentally friendly fabric out of the bunch. There’s been a huge push for organic cotton, yet I’m now 100% sold on linen. If it is organic linen then even better!
100% linen garments tend to be more expensive than most other fabrics, yet it makes sense if they can last 2-3 decades and is slower to process than other fabrics.
Linen garments actually get better with wear if taken care of as the fabric becomes softer with each wash. I prefer machine washing my linen pieces in cold water on the delicate cycle then hanging to dry. Handwashing works great too. In the past, quality items in my closet needed to be dry cleaned. I honestly can’t be bothered.
The most fascinating discovery I learned about linen fabric is it’s high frequency.
I read an article about a Jewish doctor, Heidi Yellen, who studied the frequency of fabrics and how it relates to the body in 2003. A healthy body has a frequency of 100. Organic cotton also has a frequency of 100. Anything that compromises the body’s signature frequency of 100 puts unnecessary strain on the body. A diseased body has a frequency of 15. This is also the frequency of polyester, rayon, and even silk.
Both linen and wool have a frequency of 5000.
Although linen and wool have a frequency of 5000, if woven or worn together the high frequency of both fabrics were supposedly canceled out to zero. In Leviticus 19:19 and Deuteronomy 22:11 the Bible states not to mix linen and wool. (Please note that not mixing fabrics is one of the 613 laws of Moses and not required under the New Testament covenant. I also have not found any other studies about the frequency of fabrics. This is something I’d love to research more.) You can read the full article on this study here.
Slowly I’ve been investing in linen garments that I enjoy wearing for my daily lifestyle as I don’t want to wear anything else.
I find that medium and heavy weight linen are my favorite. I’ve been purchasing second hand linen pieces on EBay (some still unworn with tags) and also handmade on Etsy. The pieces from Etsy sellers can take up to four weeks to be made before shipping which encourages very intentional shopping.
This dramatic turn in creating capsule wardrobes will hopefully lead me to having a longer lasting wardrobe while also spending less on clothing throughout the year. At least this is my goal. I will also possibly go back to a year round capsule wardrobe. I truly enjoy knowing the benefits of wearing linen and experiencing how soft linen becomes overtime.
Are you a linen lover?
(Image by Dawn Michelle)