Why you need a capsule wardrobe if you’re a teacher: if you’re anything like me, you buy a bunch of trendy & fun back-to-school outfits, just to stop wearing them a few weeks after school begins.
In an effort to reduce waste and be more intentional about my purchases, I’ve been working to limit my consumption (especially of fast fashion). One amazing way to do this is to create a capsule wardrobe!
A capsule wardrobe is a limited collection of pieces (typically tops, bottoms, and shoes) that complement each other and are meant to be interchangeably paired. With a capsule wardrobe, you spend money on high-quality investment pieces that you can wear again and again, as opposed to over-consuming cheap, trendy pieces that will quickly go out of style. This isn’t to say you can’t still indulge a little – but the idea is that you rely more on your capsule pieces to build everyday looks.
So for this back-to-school season, I thought it would be fun to create a summer/fall teacher capsule wardrobe! I focused on including timeless classic pieces (that wouldn’t go out of style in a year or two), combined with some more modern-style pieces. Ultimately, the capsule wardrobe contains 25 pieces (all under $50) that create at least 20 outfits – enough for a whole month of school!
Note that all of the items included below are affiliate links so I will earn a small commission should you purchase using my links.
I hope you enjoy the outfits I’ve put together and let me know in the comments: could you make the switch to a capsule wardrobe?
Tops & Sweaters
- Orange Double-Breasted Blazer: I love a bit of color in a capsule wardrobe! Orange is perfect for the summer/fall transition.
- Cream Chunky Knit Sweater: Neutral basics are essentials of capsule wardrobes! I love this sweater because it’s cropped – making it perfect to layer over dresses.
- Lavender Loose Ruffle Shirt: Being a teacher, we know that COMFORT is key. This top is cute, but also so comfortable making it the perfect staple top. P.S. it also comes in a TON more colors if you’d prefer a different shade!
- Denim Jacket: Again, every teacher knows that a denim jacket is an essential for layering over dresses with spaghetti straps or to pair with some fun patterned pants! I like to order my denim oversized.
- White Double-Layered Bodysuit: This bodysuit is the mother of all bodysuits. The high neckline makes it appropriate for school wear and the double layering means it won’t be see-through. Also comes in several other colors.
- White Rib Cardigan: Trust me I MEAN when I say every teacher needs a white cardigan. This staple is perfect for pairing with dresses, midi skirts, work pants – you name it.
Skirts & Dresses
- Gingham Shirtdress: Another comfort piece! This dress also ties into the neutral basics we’re looking for in designing a capsule wardrobe.
- Plaid Midi Dress: This dress brings a fun pattern and a pop of color to the collection. Also great for layering under sweaters!
- Tiered Babydoll Dress: I am a STRONG supporter of babydoll dresses for teachers. The comfort is unmatched (have I mentioned comfort yet?) plus they are great transitional pieces from season to season. In the fall and winter you can layer with cardigans and tights, and in the summer and spring you can wear them alone!
- Pink Smocked Waist Midi Skirt: This midi skirt is a great way to dress up any basic tees. It also has pockets – a teacher’s best friend!
- Tan Paperbag Skirt: This piece is definitely timeless but also so comfortable! It has an elastic waist and snap closure, making it perfect for all day wear.
- Pink Seersucker Dress: I can admit, this piece is certainly a trendy one. However, I love how effortlessly formal it is (perfect for parent night or report card conferences) AND it has pockets!
- Plaid Pixie Pant: If you’ve been following me for a bit, you know that I will die on the hill of the superiority of the Old Navy pixie pant. These pants come in SO many different colors/patterns, are SO stretchy, and are insanely affordable.
- Checked Paperbag Pant: Second only to the pixie pant is the paperbag pant. I find them SO comfortable and love them as a school-year closet staple.
- Tan Flowy Pant: I think I’ve emphasized how important comfort is, but these pants certainly fit the bill. They also come in a bunch of different colors but I personally love how versatile the tan is.
- Tan Pixie Pant: See above 🙂 These ones are also high-waisted and “never-fade!”
Shoes & Accessories
- 3pc Pearl Knot Headband: The savior for dirty hair! These headbands are my favorite accessory when my hair is just not cooperating because they elevate the look so much.
- Blush Celestial Drop Earrings: Love the subtle pop of color in these. It really ties into the color theme of the wardrobe!
- Gray Slip-On Quilted Sneaker: These shoes are SO comfy! I also love the color because it pairs with so much.
- White Leather Mule: Probably my most-worn shoe of the school year. I love the casual sophistication of this shoe plus it’s so easy to just slide on and go!
- Circle Bead Drop Earring: Statement earrings like these can easily elevate an outfit. The neutral color makes it perfect to pair with any of the pieces in this wardrobe.
- Studded Strappy Sandal: Another one of my most worn! These sandals are perfect for the summer to fall transition. I love wearing them with dresses and skirts!
- Brown Ankle Boot: Every teacher capsule wardrobe needs an ankle bootie. I love that these are pull-on, making them so easy to just throw on in the morning!
- Gold Huggie Hoop Earrings: Sometimes you need jewelry that doesn’t make a huge statement. A simple pair of hoops is perfect to fit that role!
- Pearl Barrettes: Another super easy hair accessory! Easy to put in, but so elegant.
One Month Outfit Plan: Week 1 – 4
Happy back to school season!