How to Plan Your Outfits a Month in Advance
Efficiency at its highest. What I am about to describe to you has been the greatest life hack I have imposed upon myself.
Let me first say that I am a big fan of Project 333 and I also am intrigued by the “daily uniform” idea that people such as Steve Jobs, Mark Zuckerberg follow. But neither of them totally clicked for me. One is too exact and the other too confining or too limiting. But it did give me the desire to clean out my closet and what I was left with were clothes that I loved or felt good in. Once this happened I began to realize immediately that picking out my outfits became so much easier. There was less distraction by only having chosen and beloved pieces. Picking out my outfits became so easy that the thought crossed my mind that I could pick them out a month in advance.
So I tried it and haven’t missed a month in over 2 years. Now I will say that if I didn’t work outside of the home that I wouldn’t feel the need to plan my outfits this way. I do have a Monday through Friday administrative position with a company that allows business casual to casual attire. So as long as this continues, I am positive I will keep on doing it this way.
Let me explain the process.
Reminder on my phone. On the last Saturday of each month, a reminder lets me know that I need to pick out the next month’s outfits. The entire task will take 15 minutes or less.
Standing in front of my closet. I go to my closet and start with the pants. I don’t ever wear dresses or skirts but this would also apply if you do wear them. I pick out pants for a Monday, pants for a Tuesday, pants for a Wednesday, pants for a Thursday, and pants for a Friday. Five pairs total.
Choose 10 shirts. Once I have my five pants squared away, I pick out two shirts that will go with each day’s chosen pants. Two shirts that I will wear with the Monday pants, two shirts for the Tuesday pants and so on.
Storing outfits. Now there are several options out there on how you could store these ensembles. I actually have a tension rod in the bottom half of my bathroom linen closet — I get dressed in my bathroom so it is handy to hang them there. But you could section off a part of your closet, buy one of those awesome, trendy, rolling racks or even use hooks behind your door.
Now that you have five pants with each having two shirts to go with them, and you have them hanging somewhere separate from all the remaining clothing in your closet, you are done!
Here’s how I reap the benefits of my 15 minutes of work. When Monday rolls around I retrieve my Monday outfit (choosing between the two shirts). When I get home for the day, I hang them back up where they came from. For me working a desk job I can totally get by with wearing the same shirt twice before washing. Even longer with the pants. The same thing on Tuesday, pulling out the pants and picking a shirt. And I start back over the next week with the Monday outfit again wearing the same shirt I wore the week before. After wearing a shirt twice, I will throw it in the laundry and it’s out of the rotation for this month now — using the other remaining shirt for the remainder of the month. I will decide if the pants need laundering within the month. Sometimes I will wear them all four days/times before washing. During the fourth week of the month as I wear that day’s outfit, I retire it to the laundry basket.
This process has worked so well for me for a number of reasons:
Fast and easy outfit prep. I have never spent more than 15 minutes choosing 20 days of outfits. It is so easy once the pants have been chosen to just pick out the corresponding shirts and tops.
Clothing variety. It gives me just the right amount of variety. I know that I will get to pick out new outfits each month.
No one notices I wear the same outfits. They really don’t. I work with a lot of women and when telling them I wear the same outfit two Thursdays in a row, they always say they never noticed it.
Easy morning routine. This saves me so much time each morning. Being able to walk to my linen closet half asleep and just pull out a preselected outfit is golden.
Removes clutter from my mind. It really is true that removing small routine and trivial decisions from your daily life makes things easier. Now I can do things in the morning that really matter such as yoga or writing or walking my dog.
Check out my morning routine here.
- How to Slay the Day by 8:00 a.m.
Two hour morning routine that covers each area of health, wellness and getting things done.
This works in all climates as well. I live in a four season area but I always know for the month ahead what kind of weather to expect. For me here in Tennessee, my August outfits have all been short sleeve and light fabrics. Also, some months have five weeks or the month starts in the middle of the week. I just aim to pick out the four weeks that encompasses the majority of the month and work with that. So to use August as an example: I chose clothing for the weeks beginning the 6th, 13th, 20th and 27th. In July I chose to extend my 3rd and 4th week choices to an additional 5th week.
If you want to give this a try I suggest going through your closet and getting rid of stuff that just doesn’t speak to you anymore. At least box it up and get it out of the way. If you can walk up to your closet and just see things that you love, the process will be super fast and easy, I promise! Go on, try it — see if it works for you.
I would love to hear your comments and if you do try it out let me know.