Book Review: THE CURATED CLOSET by Anuschka Rees
This book has very calculated, organized advise.
This book is for anyone that, like me, likes things spelled out for them. Likes clear questions, and clear to-do lists. Everything is broken down into manageable steps.
The Closet Diagnostics at the beginning of the book is very helpful if you feel like you’ve already started the journey. It helps you decide where you are in your current wardrobe curation, and what chapter to skip ahead to if you’ve already accomplished things in the beginning chapters.
Even if you feel you’ve already started your curation journey, I recommend starting at the beginning. Just in case helpful things are mentioned that you hadn’t previously thought of.
PART 1 goes over The Curated Closet Philosophy with guidelines like:
1. Be selective
2. Be authentic
3. Aim for quality
4. Style trumps fashion
5. Put in the work
Part 1 also gets right to you, having you answering lots of questions about your deep-seated feelings with your current wardrobe. So grab something to write down your answers and dive in to self-style-exploration. This is wardrobe counseling 101.
The first three questions are below, with my answers as examples:
What was your favorite outfit that you wore during the last two weeks and why? How did that outfit make you feel?
Grey sheer long sleeve top, Nike jogger pants, MiAdidas Superstar Sneakers.
I like the modesty of it, and it shows my nice figure and trim waist without being overtly sexy. I look like a fashion designer.
It makes me feel powerful, confident, clean.
What was your least favorite outfit and why? How did it make you feel?
Basically every outfit with the J.Crew boatneck denim top. The sleeves and body hang so wide and big.
Makes me feel fat, and frumpy.
On a scale of 1-10, how happy were you overall with your outfits during these past 2 weeks?
I would say about a 5. I feel solid and confident about where I am, but I can do much better.
PART 2 is all about discovering your personal style. This includes gathering inspiration online, in magazines, or on the street.
My platform of choice to organize my wardrobe vision is Pinterest. You can check out my Pinterest boards here.
There’s no reason to feel overwhelmed. Rees has many tips and tricks to break down each project into bite-size tasks.
Once you’re swimming in a deep sea of inspirational pictures, it’s time to translate those pictures into categorized words in your very own Style List.
Here is my Style List as an example:
Impeccably tailored trousers
Tight, thin knit luxury T-shirts in merino wool or cotton
Fitted long shirts with side slits up to waist
Trim fitted cropped jackets
Small, low, light-colored shoes/boots
Light-colored leather purse
Possible Color Combos
Darks on top (Maroon, Plum, Brown, Black, Navy)
Mediums on bottom (Grey, Mauve, Magenta, Blush Mauve, Blue, Seafoam, Bluish Purple Mauve)
Lights on shoes/accessories (Blush, White, Rose Gold, Lavender)
Bottoms: Medium or Dark
Shoes/Accessories: Light, Medium, or Dark
High-Rise, Slim-Waist Pants
High Side 1Slit Shirts
Wrap-Style Tops and Pants
Pant Skirt Hybrids
Silk Crepe Matte
Silk Crepe Satin
Thin, Small Jewelry
PART 3 is about building your dream wardrobe. This includes cleaning out your current closet, building your new wardrobe (hold onto your hats there’s some math in this section), closet composition, color palettes, and outfit formulas.
If you had any doubts about the clarity of the steps in this book, here’s the Closet Detox diagram. Yes, Rees holds your hand through the whole book.
This is my color palette. Yours will look totally different. As you can see, these colors match the colors I listed above in my Style List.
PART 4 is all about shopping tips. How to assess garment quality, how to find clothes that fit, how to tailor garments, and wardrobe maintenance.
Here's a sample of how to deal with fit problems. It's my personal opinion that fit is the most impactful change you can make to your wardrobe. Impeccable fit is difficult to achieve, so it's very noticeable on a person.
What comes to mind when you think of fashion?
Maybe words like new, trendy, temporary, fast, loud, colorful, attention-seeking, sexy, daring.
This book takes everything we’ve learned about fashion from magazines and media, and throws it out the window. This book explains that style can be timeless, methodical, organized, slow, long-lasting, modest, minimal.
This is an especially great book for anyone NOT interested in fashion. But wants to dress better without caring about fashion trends.
Rees makes it clear she’s not a fan of the ‘one size fits all’ style solutions. Rules are ok, but set them for yourself. Don’t let a magazine tell you what to wear based on your body shape or anything else. There's no right or wrong. There's just what's right for you.
It’s a serious read. So make sure you’ve set aside time. And be prepared with a notebook, or computer to answer all questions she throws your way. And it’s a lot. This book ultimately is about you, the reader. So read the book, take notes, dive deep into self-style-exploration, and reap the rewards.
Comment below and let me know the number one problem you have with your wardrobe.
Get the book, Kindle, or mobile version at Amazon. Or check with your local library to check out a copy.
I independently chose this book to review. If you enjoyed my review and would like to buy a copy, please consider purchasing through my affiliate link below, which, as an Amazon affiliate participant, will earn me a commission. This supports my blog and allows me to continue offering reviews, articles, and information on all things fashion.
All opinions in this article are solely my own.
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