The sad state of our economy and our increased willingness to be good to Mother Earth has motivated us to think in new ways about our wardrobes. It’s a case of less is more. It’s a little bit of a scary notion for some of us, to think that maybe only one pair of shoes and less than a dozen garment pieces and and handful of accessories would suffice, but the merits of a minimalist wardrobe need to be considered.

A little over two years ago, we followed The Uniform Project where Sheena Matheiken chose to wear one single dress for an entire year. Certainly she was creative in doing so and made the idea of wearing a single garment a little less painful for the rest of us. She offered the design for sale on her website and it quickly sold out. Since then, other contributors have proposed their own versions of the modular LBD, all of which have sold out as they were released.

There is definite interest in the pared down approach to fashion.

Other designers around the world are playing with this idea too. The Ultra 10 Challenge, who’s creators are based in Kuala Lumpur and China, has come up with a 10-piece-wardrobe-for-365-days concept. The collection includes some creative convertible and multifunctional pieces such as the 3-in-1 coat, which converts into both a shirt and a skirt and the 2-in-1 jacket which converts into a vest. Other included wardrobe staples are a white shirt/dress, stretch pants, cotton trousers, a skirt, a dress, a cropped top and a vest. The whole collection is made from organic cotton and recycled materials. Though it appears to no longer be available for sale online, I’m still finding that this concept provokes an inspiring way to think about reformulating my own wardrobe based on multitasking, interchangeable and classic pieces.

What about shoes? Israeli designer Daniela Bekerman has created a convertible shoe concept. Her shoe takes on different styles and heel heights depending on which heel attachment is chosen. The shoe is not available for sale (still in concept stage), but the idea is fantastic and would definitely be a godsend solution for frequent travelers.

I don’t think that most of us are there yet, in terms of being ready to adopt the discipline of wearing only 10 garments and one pair of shoes for a whole year. But definitely, visionaries such as the ones mentioned here are helping open our eyes to new ideas to curb over-consumption. There is definitely freedom to be had in such simplicity.

If I could set my vanity aside for a moment, that might help too.

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