Do you dream of a wardrobe that truly fits your needs? If so, spend a few thoughts on how your environment influences what you want to wear.
Quite obviously, our clothes have to be suitable for the climate and typical weather conditions we’re exposed to. But other external factors like our local environment and infrastructure play a role too. Moreover, culture, traditions, and the common style in our community likely influence our choices.
Hence, reflecting on these environmental and cultural sways is a good first step on your way to a well-curated wardrobe.
Your Way to a Well-Curated Wardrobe
This article belongs to phase 01 of wardrobe curation, which is all about discovering what influences you in your choices and analyzing the current state of your wardrobe. And then, based on your findings, start planning your wardrobe more strategically.
Please refer to my Ultimate Guide to a Well-Curated Wardrobe for a complete overview. I wrote this guide for all of you who want to be more strategic about their choices and build a wardrobe that perfectly suits their life and style. So, if this is you, check it out!
I also created a printable workbook to support your journey. Sign up below to get it instantly delivered to your inbox.
The Well-Curated Wardrobe Workbook
Enjoy a well-curated wardrobe that perfectly fits your life and style.
And now, let’s see how our environment and other factors influence what we want to wear.
Climate and Weather Conditions
Depending on the weather conditions, our clothing has to meet specific functional criteria such as being breathable, rain resistant, windproof, or extra warming. Moreover, our needs can vary throughout the year. In some regions, the temperature difference between seasons can be huge.
When planning and curating our wardrobe, where we live, of course, matters the most. But it makes sense to also take into account where we frequently spend our vacations. For instance, if you love traveling to tropical countries, you’ll probably need a few hot weather clothes – even if you live somewhere with cooler temperatures throughout the year.
Different Wardrobes for Different Seasons?
Let’s say there are four distinct seasons where you live. Would you need four different wardrobes then? No. You can always add seasonal pieces such as a warm coat and boots for winter, shorts and tops for summer. No problem, as long they match your core wardrobe’s overall style and color palette.
Ask yourself …
- In which climatic region do I live?
- What’s the average temperature?
- What are the typical weather conditions?
- Do temperature and weather conditions vary throughout the year?
- How many distinct seasons do I have to consider?
- Do I frequently travel to destinations that have a very different climate?
Local Environment and Infrastructure
The local environment and infrastructure also play a role when planning and curating our wardrobe. We have different needs living in a big city, small town, or in the countryside. Just think of footwear. In a big city, you likely want a pair of comfy sneakers for your commute. On the other hand, in the middle of nowhere, you’ll probably be happy wearing some heavy-duty boots.
Ask yourself …
- Do I live in a (big) city, (small) town, or in the countryside?
- What types of clothes are appropriate where I live?
- Do I need functional clothing? For instance, do I need hardwearing, protecting garments, or just a regular wardrobe?
Common Style, Culture, and Traditions
Where we live will most probably affect the style of our clothes. People dress differently, e.g., in New York, Paris, Rome, or Berlin. How you deal with these influences, though, is up to you. You can adapt to the common style rules. Or choose to dress deliberately differently. It depends on what you aim for. Do you want to feel part of the crowd or stand out? However, even if you decide to wear mainstream, it doesn’t mean you can’t have a distinct personal style.
Culture and Traditions in Different Regions
In my opinion, we should never wear clothes that are seen as entirely inappropriate because of cultural differences. Thus, it’s a good idea to check this before traveling to foreign countries. And, of course, before moving to another place.
Ask yourself …
- What do the people in my community usually wear? Do I want to be part of the crowd or stand out?
- Am I planning to move? How far will this influence my choices?
- Is there anything I have to consider based on the culture and traditions of where I live (or move/travel to)?
External Influences vs. Personal Preferences
As explained above, external influences matter. But, to what extent? This is where our personal preferences come in.
Here is a simple example. Let’s say you’re not really an outdoor person. If so, you’ll probably need less bad weather clothes than someone who spends most of their time outside. Even if you live in an area with rough weather conditions.
Another good example is when the people around you usually dress very casually. That’s the common style. But if you love to dress up, you’ll need fewer casual clothes than the others. Just be aware that you might get comments on the way you dress. Because you’ll not blend in with the crowd. But this is ok. After a while, the ones that know you better will just take it as what it is – your personal style and preferred way to dress.
Ask yourself …
- Considering my personal preferences and lifestyle, what kind of clothes are relevant for me?
Acknowledging how our environment influences what we want to wear definitely lays the foundation for a well-planned, curated wardrobe. But, equally important are our personal preferences – and, of course, our lifestyle. So, as a next step, let’s take a closer look at your lifestyle and how it determines which types of clothes, shoes, and accessories you need.
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Let me know how far your environment influences your wardrobe choices? Do you prefer to blend in or stand out from the crowd? I’d love to hear from you!