Those of you that have been reading for a while will know that I’m a big fan of the humble 10 X 10 Instagram challenge (10 looks from 10 pieces for 10 days) started by the capsule closet queens Lee and Caroline .
To be honest, I’ve had a mixed relationship with 10×10 challenges – held 4 times a year to coincide with the 4 different seasons. But no matter how successful I feel it’s gone, they’re always totally illuminating.
The winter 10 x 10 wrapped up just last weekend, and I thought it would be a chance to reflect and share more for those of you that have been curious to hear a bit more. So you can expect this post to cover
- why 10×10 challenges are a great idea
- my winter 10×10 choices and goals
- how it went
- top 3 takeaways
Well it’s a good question, and one I ask myself every time a challenge rolls around.
Do I really need to take part?
Yes, is the short answer 😉
In the end no matter how tired I am or how much I think it’s not a good time, or have nothing to wear, each challenge has brought me such interesting insights.
I think it’s down to the fact that these 10×10 challenges give me the space to think about what I wear, which doesn’t happen all that often in the cold hours of the morning when I’m throwing on things for the day.
Not only is this a good thing for upping the fun-ness of getting dressed – but it’s also so helpful for planning my maker capsule. Nothing helps you to zero in on gaps in your wardrobe like living with a micro wardrobe for 10 days!
Then there’s the whole inspirational community the 10×10 challenges have sparked. If you haven’t checked it out already the hashtags #10x10friends and #sewist10x10 have inspiration for d-a-y-s.
So, really what’s there to loose?
My winter 10×10 choices and my goals
Since re-evaluating my style using the maker capsule series as a prompt I’ve realised that I’m veering towards fitted silhouettes and clothes with more texture and interest.
So based on that recent analysis I picked the following for my winter 10×10.
1 skirt – my me-made Erin skirt in business denim (blogged here)
1 pair of jeans – black skinny organic cotton jeans from Monki via ASOS eco-edit
1 sweater – a secondhand Madewell bargain via eBay
1 cardigan – a super chunky vintage cardigan
1 pair of boots – black vegan leather boots from Vegetarian Shoes
1 pair sneakers – black Veja sneakers
To find new and interesting ways to wear these. I wanted to veer away from my usual looks – so I wanted lots of creative layering to push me away from my everyday approach.
How did it go
Annoyingly I had the mother of all colds halfway through so wasn’t able to do a full 10, but I managed 6 looks. Which isn’t too bad 😀
That said…. it was probably my most successful 10×10 ever!
At the very start I gave myself some time to try on different looks so I wouldn’t be left layering frantically and blurry eyed in the morning.
And guess what guys, Jackpot.
This made the whole challenge so simple. It helped me stretch myself as I already had a plan for what I might wear different days. Definitely a 10×10 game changer.
I tried a few things I never would have tried before – like dresses over jeans, bare ankles, backwards cardigans and tucked in sweaters.
OK, not all of them were successful, but I definitely experimented. 😀
Top 3 Takeaways
1. It’s OK to get it ‘wrong’
Right at the beginning of the challenge I gave myself permission to take risks and to experiment.
It may sound utterly ridiculous but I tend not to layer too much or mix things up because I don’t want to get things wrong. But from the start I wanted to approach this challenge with an open mind –
What if there is no wrong way to wear what’s in your closet?
Obviously that’s not revolutionary, but realising that experimenting can be fun – even when you don’t quite get it right 😁 – was a bit of a game changer for me.
2. It’s OK for favourite pieces to be subtle
Guys, I love a good separate. My black skinny jeans and Erin skirt were on h-e-a-v-y rotation. Definitely tied for favourite pieces but they’re pretty basic. Maybe even boring. Which then made me think –
Does that make me boring?
But really what is boring?
I’m going to steal from take away 1 here – if it’s OK to get it wrong than its OK to love subtle pieces. There’s no style rule book last I checked.
At the end of the day I only have to please myself, right?
3) It takes a community to support a capsule 😋
I definitely believe that all the inspiration in the 10×10 community is what makes these challenges so successful. Especially when you look at how creative people get with just 10 pieces.
Some of my favourites from this challenge were:
Top row (l to r): @kellymonson | @kati_bannister | @marybethrouth
Bottom row (l to r): @leevosburgh | @archandcrafted | @theotherbevachterof
So, have I managed to convince you to take part in a 10×10? Or did you take part in it this time (if so what would be your top take away)?