Creating a Professional Capsule Wardrobe Style

By: Jo Seir

As students enter the professional world, one item that is often overlooked is what to wear. Interviews, internships, and professional events mean stocking your closet with business-casual clothes for the first time and curating a closet that reflects your personal style. Building a capsule wardrobe is a great way to downsize your clothing selection and shorten decision-making time when the dreaded question “What should I wear to the interview?” rolls around.

A capsule wardrobe is a limited selection of interchangeable clothing pieces that complement each other. These are often classics that don’t go out of style and consist primarily of neutral colors. A capsule wardrobe allows you to create multiple different outfits with a smaller selection of clothing.

Why Create a Capsule Wardrobe?

Decision Fatigue

Our brain is only programmed to do so much during the day. After that, it gets tired, and we struggle with decision fatigue. Instead of spending endless hours pairing outfits that will impress employers, a capsule wardrobe lowers the decisions you have to choose from. That way, there’s no need to get tired from overthinking the professionalism of your outfit.

More Sustainable

Capsule wardrobes mean less clothing pieces, so you will be wearing everything you own more frequently. Investing in quality pieces that last a long time makes for a more sustainable wardrobe. Choice pieces, while more expensive than fast fashion, define yourself as a professional individual. Co-workers, classmates, and employers will be impressed with your style and avoidance of the wasteful fast fashion industry.

Save Money

With a capsule wardrobe, you don’t have to go shopping as often because your closet is interchangeable and versatile. Buying pieces you will not wear regularly will only defeat the purpose of having a capsule wardrobe. Plus, as a college student on a part-time job hourly paycheck, saving money is always a good idea.

How to Create a Capsule Wardrobe

Sort Through Your Clothes

The first thing to do when creating a capsule wardrobe is pick out what you want to keep and what you want to give away or store in boxes for a future season. Keep pieces that you wear often and make you feel confident.

Add Things you Know You’ll Wear in the Future

Select a few quality pieces that you feel confident wearing. For business-casual clothing this may include a dress shirt, dress pants, and neutral-colored suit jacket. Select shoes that go with multiple outfits and can be worn year-round. Make sure to have multiple layers of clothing so you can wear your outfits throughout the seasons.


Mix and match your outfits! Get creative by adding staple accessories like jewelry, scarves, and jackets. That way, it doesn’t feel like you are wearing the same outfit to every interview.

With these tips, you can create the perfect capsule wardrobe of professional clothing. As your career progresses, you can add more pieces and evaluate your closet once again.

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