An update on my minimalist uniform project. Photo from Superior Court in San Jose, CA.
Decluttering, Minimalism

Minimalist Uniform Update – July 2015

It’s been five months since I started my minimalist uniform project, and I’m still wearing the same set of clothes when I go outside of the house.

After the first week, I got the sleeves shortened on the Wool & Prince button-down gray oxford shirt. It was also the first and last time it was dry-cleaned. Since then, I’ve worn the shirt out of the house whenever the weather is cooler or for business meetings. It has stayed relatively wrinkle free, stink free and clean. There’s some slight ring around the collar, but it’s barely noticeable; I’d imagine it’d be worse if I purchased one of Wool & Prince’s lighter colored shirts. I’m very happy with this shirt and would consider buying additional ones in the future; I just can’t decide which color I’d get!

Due to the warm weather we’ve been experiencing in the Bay Area, the Icebreaker Anatomica t-shirt continues to get more use than the button-down. I ran a half-marathon in Laguna Niguel in the middle of February wherein the shirt got drenched with sweat. Yet, after washing it in the sink and air drying, I was happy to smell no stink from the shirt! I have since added a a black v-neck Anatomica and a gray long sleeved Anatomica1 to my collection after finding a 40% off deal online. One negative with the Anatomica shirt is that they are prone to tearing due to their thinness. I poked out a small hole underneath the left arm area in the gray shirt. It’s not noticeable when I wear it, and I’ve been more careful when I put it on and take it off so as not to make the hole bigger.

I've been wearing the Icebreaker Anatomica t-shirt more because of the hot weather in the Bay Area.

I’ve been wearing the Icebreaker Anatomica t-shirt more because of the hot weather in the Bay Area.

As for the pants, I continue to rotate between the Bluff Works pants and the Levi’s 559 jeans. I have washed the Bluff Works a couple of times but the Levi’s have remained unwashed. Bluff Works recently released relaxed fit and Chino styles to their lineup. The regular fit pants fit me well standing up, but they can get a little tight when I sit down or kneel. I’m curious to see if the relaxed fit pants are better without looking too baggy.

The Scottevest Hidden Cargo Pants, unfortunately, are too large around the waist and legs, even after getting them altered. I haven’t worn them at all and have relegated them to my emergency clothes kit. Scottevest pants start at 30/30, and I’d prefer a 29/28 or 29/28, so it’s unlikely I’ll be ordering any more pants from them until they offer smaller sizes.

The biggest news is that I’ve donated one of my two boxes of clothes to Goodwill this afternoon. That’s right, I’ve cut the cord with half of the clothes that I’ve worn for the past decade and a half.

Two boxes enter, one box leaves!

Two boxes enter, one box leaves!

Left in the remaining box are some t-shirts for doing yard work and for lounging around the house, a couple pairs of pants for house work, a couple of shirts that I could use for exercising in cooler weather, two scarves and some knit caps. I certainly don’t need those clothes seeing that it’s been five months since I last looked at the clothes, but I decided to give them a reprieve for now. Gone are several pairs of pants that no longer fit me, six button-down shirts, a hoodie, and numerous free t-shirts that I’ve accumulated over the years.

The box of clothes that I donated to Goodwill this afternoon.

The box of clothes that I donated to Goodwill this afternoon.

It’s been great to not have to think about what outfit I’m going to wear each day. How long will this Minimalist Uniform Project go? I see no reason to stop, so I’ll keep this going for the rest of the year. Onward!


1 I’m still wearing the gray Anatomica more than the other two Anatomica shirts. When the weather is too warm for the W&P but still cool, I’ll wear the long sleeved Anatomica. The black is there to alternate with the gray.

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Wearing my new personal uniform while doing pull-ups at the local park.
Decluttering, Journal, Minimalism, Travel

My Minimalist Uniform Project for 2015

Since my exercise and weight loss journey began in the middle of 2014, I have lost about five inches off my waist (34 inches to 29 inches). That custom tailored double-breasted suit from Hong Kong that I got in the summer of 1995? I’m glad that style is coming back into fashion because the muffin top is gone, and the suit fits me again! Those durable North Face shorts I wore on my Desolation Wilderness backpacking trips in the late 90s and early 2000s but hid in my closet the last decade because they had gotten too tight? Time to start planning another backpacking trip because they’re loose and comfy now!

Getting my suit fitted and adjusted in Hong Kong circa 1994. After my weight loss, it fits again!

Getting my suit fitted and adjusted in Hong Kong circa 1994. After my weight loss, it fits again!

Seeing that the clothes I’ve been wearing the past several years are now too big, I’m jumping head-first into this sartorial opportunity to do something I’ve long wanted to do but was afraid to commit to: creating a minimalist uniform for myself. I’ve been inspired by people like Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein, Mark Zuckerberg, President Obama and others who have adopted a minimalist clothing approach or a personal uniform. They’ve chosen to wear the same or identical clothes every day in order to concentrate on the things that are most important to them instead of wasting time on deciding what to wear. While my daily decisions don’t yet affect the financial future of multi-billion, multi-national companies nor the fate of the free world, I can still benefit from simplifying my life and freeing myself of the clothing decision every day.

Read more on my Minimalist Uniform Project

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