How to Build a Retro-Inspired Fall Capsule Wardrobe

A Retro Inspired Fall Capsule Wardrobe

AC/DC T-shirt | Black Turtleneck | Wrap Shirt | Striped Button Up | White Blouse | Sweater Vest | Pullover | Black Oversize Sweater | Wrap Kimono | Blazer | Brown Trousers | Blue Jeans | Black Jeans | Green Leather Pants | Sweater Dress | Coat | Hat | Bakelite Earrings | Scarf | Tote | Purse | Knee High Boots | Black Boots | Flats | Oxfords | Sneakers |


This was a fun one. I love a wardrobe that is so versatile that you can wear looks that are inspired by different decades. I tried to achieve that with this fall capsule wardrobe.

It was “back to homeschool” this week so bear with me. I didn’t have a lot of free time to work on this, and actually didn’t start it until Tuesday night :/

In high school, I used to be able to write my best papers when I was under a time constraint.

For some reason, I work better under pressure, but I don’t know how well it applies to this area of my life.

How I start the capsule wardrobe process:

When I am building a capsule wardrobe, at the very beginning I will often choose one or two pieces as the inspiration pieces.

These pieces will either define the colour palette, or the style of the capsule wardrobe.

Often times they will do both.

These will be the items that I build the entire wardrobe around.

I tend to find my inspiration for dressing in pieces versus people.

I highly recommend this if you have an item that you absolutely love.

It helps you to wear that piece more often since you have ensured the versatility of the piece by building the capsule around it.

Some may find it limiting. I think it makes the most of what you have. (this is where I would insert the shrug emoji).

I really depends on what your capsule wardrobe endgame is.

And on behalf of Secondhand September, I included several pieces that are second or vintage items.

Mostly the accessories.

I would have chosen more, or even built a whole capsule around a secondhand sustainable wardrobe but it would take me a while and I didn’t have time this week.

I just wanted to show how easy it is to integrate secondhand pieces into your wardrobe.

I try to include at least one secondhand items in my outfit each day, although I often fail because I need to really pay attention to what I am choosing to make sure that I do.

It is also 100% possible to build an entirely sustainable capsule wardrobe for any season.

It would be a slow process, and some seasons are much easier than others but it is possible.

One of my favourite things to do is to look through the clothes, shoes, and accessories at antique flea markets.

It brings me immense joy.

I find antique jewellery more often than most other things because I tend to have bigger feet and a bigger head than women of the Days of Yore (A friends reference if you don’t get it) 🙂

I did find my favourite 1950s pristine condition, old man fedora in the men’s section though, so hats aren’t completely off the table for me.

They just leans towards the masculine vibe.

I’m all about menswear anyway.

I like to imagine that the fedora belonged to some dapper old man, but honestly it doesn’t look like it was ever worn.

If you want to add a touch of retro menswear vibe, sweater vests are back in style and I included this one in the post.

This retro-inspired capsule could have been a real retro capsule versus inspired by including actual pieces from those decades.

I believe that the earrings are 1950s bakelite. Maybe earlier.

Finding a pair of them in that 70s green shag carpet colour is one of my wardrobe goals at the moment.

I’m still looking.

I have 30 outfit ideas built from this capsule wardrobe down below.

Keep scrolling.

Stay Safe.

You may also like:
How to Build a Fall Capsule Wardrobe with Neutral
How to Build a Fall Work Capsule Wardrobe
Fall Capsule Wardrobe Essentials
How to Build a Fall Capsule Wardrobe: Shopping on a Budget

Easy Fall Outfit Ideas

A Retro Inspired Fall Capsule Wardrobe Outfits 1-15

Simple Outfits for Fall

A Retro Inspired Fall Capsule Wardrobe 16-30

AC/DC T-shirt | Black Turtleneck | Wrap Shirt | Striped Button Up | White Blouse | Sweater Vest | Pullover | Black Oversize Sweater | Wrap Kimono | Blazer | Brown Trousers | Blue Jeans | Black Jeans | Green Leather Pants | Sweater Dress | Coat | Hat | Bakelite Earrings | Scarf | Tote | Purse | Knee High Boots | Black Boots | Flats | Oxfords | Sneakers |


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Sara is the founder and creative behind livelovesara. A George Brown College Fashion Styling Graduate, she provides advice on finding your personal style regardless of age and budget. She is always on the hunt for the perfect wardrobe piece and is a vintage and thrifting enthusiast who can't wait to share her newest finds. She is also trying to learn French.


  1. ugh, that kimono is amazing. i still come across that madewell one you have on poshmark every once in a while and “favorite” it for a possible future purchase.

    dumb question, but when you say you pick one or two pieces as inspiration and then try to build around that, do you necessarily already have that piece in your closet, or is it something you’re looking to add to existing pieces to get more use out of them?

    i found a couple of pairs of bakelite earrings on etsy; not sure if it’s more “shag carpet” green or “70s kitchen” green lol.

    • I have a friend who just bought the blue Madewell kimono off of Poshmark snd says she hasn’t taken it off since she bought it 😂 I’ve been hunting for the other colours but I don’t know if they are exactly the same which might lead to disappointment.

      No questions are dumb 😉 but I kind of do both. Often when I buy something that really caught my eye, it inspires me to figure out how many outfits I can build around it making a small capsule that has a focus on one item.

      Other times I’ll take something that I have already that I haven’t worn in a while or tend to wear in the same manner every time and build around that to freshen it up or make it more versatile.

      The way that I can tell if I should truly buy something is whether or not I start to plan outfits in my head with it before I buy it. That tends to show me it will be worth the investment of it costs more than I am comfortable with.

      Cost per wear is big for me and I use it on anything that I pay more than $100 on.

      I think 70s shag carpet and 70s kitchen are pretty much the same thing 😂 I already have the second pair on my saved list. I just hate having to pay almost the same amount in shipping as what the earrings cost.

  2. very true, if the kimono is a denim-rinse, then i would imagine there’d be some color variation. i’m that annoying person on poshmark that’ll ask questions verifying color, no pills/pulls, etc.

    lol thank you for not thinking my question is crazy! i know it’s hard to stick to a shopping “diet” or just shop your closet, and it’s easy enough to get caught up in one particular item without thinking it through. i have had to train myself to stop and really think things through-do i already have something similar? would i really wear it or does it just look that fantastic on the model that i’m convinced it’s for me? cost per wear is a great metric to have.

    ooof, i didn’t factor in the shipping to canada cost. i feel your pain though, i’ve had to swallow those costs on purchases from the UK and try to tell myself that at the end of the day it’s worth it because i’ve gotten what i want! LMK if you ever need anything from the states, i’d be happy to help get it sent your way!

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