Fashion is everywhere




Yep, I am really trying this again. I passed once (see how I made it possible here) and failed miserably over the last 12 months, but as of January 1st I am back on the 5 Piece French Wardrobe principle again. (If you want to read what it’s all about, it’s best to read this (very old) post.)

What might make things a little easier this time is the fact that I do not want or need anything specific right now (except for maybe those Valentino Tango pumps I wrote down on my Christmas wishlist (size 38 in non-patent black or red pretty please)). If we are going to do this, it’s best to start without wanting a bunch load of things already.

As for basics, I do need a new black belt since mine has been held together by a piece of duct tape for a while now. Do you know how hard it is to find a simple black belt that is far from boring? Maybe I should just take mine to a leather magician and get it reproduced or something.

Other than that, I need to either take my Margiela suit to a proper tailor or sell it and get a new one that actually fits like a glove.

Ok, here’s my rules for the next six months.

1. Basics don’t count.
2. Shoes do.
3. Accessories don’t count unless they’re over 100 euros.

Simple as that. Let’s do this!

Anyone with me?

PS: If you really don’t know how to get started, here’s a post on that too.


  • Rena says:

    Sounds like a good plan! Wish you many success 🙂
    xx from Bavaria/Germany, Rena

  • Jana says:

    Wow, that was fast, I am really exited how it will turn out. Let us know!

  • Céline says:

    Oh please. I’m sorry but I’m freaking fed up with what you call “French style”. I am French and just let me tell you that most of us are not about minimalist-casual-chic!!! We also love our prints, embroideries, flirty romantic skirts! Most of French think that this way of dressing is really boring. I don’t mean any offense but please guys stop thinking that French style means gray-lack-white tones, good basics and clean lines. We are not all seeing Caroline de Maigret as the only ultimate style Icon!!!

    • Sabrina | afterDRK says:

      Thank you for your comment Céline, I appreciate your criticism. Without wanting to get into defense, this is not my concept, I didn’t come up with the name and I am not sure who did. Also, I am not saying a wardrobe is supposed to be minimalist-casual-chic. I think this concept can be used in many different ways and for many different wardrobes and it’s not at all about the style of ones wardrobe. It’s about fighting against your own overconsumption, etc. It’s about slowly building a wardrobe that you’re really truly happy about, which – in my opinion – is something some French are really good at. But the Scandinavians are too.

      Anyway, I totally get what you’re saying and I didn’t mean to generalize the French and their style. It’s just that this is the name someone else came up with and it’s a name most of my readers recognize as I wrote about it before.

      • Céline says:

        I guess my comment was perhaps also not well enough explained. My exasperation comes from this general trend on many blogs who associate French style to minimalism, I’m sorry I finally ended up to say all my thoughts on you blog, of course I don’t criticize you in particular! I understand the point of your article and I think you’re absolutely right in that sense, but I actually I fear that as often, people might think that a French woman’s wardrobe is only composed of good basics and that she only shops casual stuff…
        Thank you for answering me, I really appreciate it as many blogger dislike debates!

        • Sabrina | afterDRK says:

          No worries at all! I understand your frustration completely and I love a decent conversation about things like this.

          • Hi Sabrina and Celine–

            Sabrina, I absolutely love your blog and your style but I have to err on Celine’s side.

            It’s very frustrating to continuously see different terms/fashion concepts misappropriated on popular blogs. Mis-information, even on the smallest level, is dangerous in that it can stratify and misrepresent specific groups of people. Luckily, “French Wardrobe” is meant to be celebratory– and isn’t as offensive as editorials that go by the name of “Indian Summer” or Rihanna’s botched eskimo feature for W magazine– but it’s still a generalization about an ethnic group.

            Our words construct or reality, and I don’t think that a lot of major bloggers/public figures realize the power their words have.

  • Liz says:

    I love this idea

    Giveaway on my blog!

  • Helene says:

    I am SO with you this time, basically because I just used a small fortune today on a new sofa, and I really don’t need any clothes, so I think I’m ready to give myself this challenge. I did however already buy my first item yesterday: a leather jacket – I don’t assume that counts as a basic? 😛

  • Fia says:

    sounds like a great plan, i’m excited to see how it turns out 🙂

  • Nadine says:

    Yes! I’m taking this a step further and actually doing NO MORE shopping till spring. I know. Pray for me.


  • Janice says:

    I am all over this project – I’ve written about it too, and I’m going to try to put it into practice so that I can buy some really high-quality things.

  • Amanda says:

    I have spent the majority of my life in the dark when it comes to fashion, and I am trying to commit to developing a wardrobe in the new year! So forgive me when I ask but…when you say “Basics don’t count”…what are the basics? I have to start somewhere before I expand to selecting trendy/seasonal pieces and I think I’m probably lacking in sensible basics! Have you written a blog post on this?

    PS Love your blog! You’re outfits make me happy

  • Jess says:

    Yes! Ik ga het ook proberen. Misschien niet zo streng met 5 stuks per 6 maanden (sowieso zijn een aantal van mijn basics aan vervanging toe) maar ik ga in ieder geval beginnen met een lijstje maken met basics, dingen die ik mis etc. En uiteraard m’n kast uitruimen.. Drama. Ik denk dat het heel goed is dat je nu niet start met een vrijwel ingevulde wishlist met 5 items, heb je minder kans dat je halverwege iets geweldigs tegenkomt terwijl je al aan je max zit. Ik heb zelf net ein-de-lijk de Birkenstock Montereys gevonden in mijn maat (met 70% korting!! Woohoo) dus qua schoenen zit ik vast goed voor dit seizoen

  • Oh this is so tempting I have a very good wardrobe so far and should really think about this. I think it will be super hard for me but why not give it a try. right? I am not sure if I can actually make shoes not count but…

  • sasa says:

    Yup, that’ll be cool:)

    Shall We Sasa

  • MIRJAM says:

    since you’ve posted the first article about this, I’m totally in (or trying to be :)).. my credo: less is more, better to invest in a few pieces that last 🙂
    bisou, mirjam

  • less is more says:

    i’m SO in!!

  • Edie says:

    Good luck with this difficult resolution!

  • Good luck with your 5 piece wardrobe!!! I’m trying something similar… but let’s see how it goes!
    Happy 2015!

  • Trisha says:

    No matter what term it comes under I think considering more what you buy and building a great wardrobe of pieces is a great idea, instead of just buying things we want because we have the money to. I’m going to try this with you this season as I merely spectated last season, good luck and I hope it works well for you!

  • N. A. says:

    Ik durf de uitdaging niet aan omdat ik bang ben dat ik te veel mooie dingen zou tegenkomen die ik dan niet kan kopen, wat net toont dat ik het wel zou moeten doen eigenlijk? :p
    Alleszins, petje af voor jou!

  • Yes! I’ve been wanting/trying/failing to do this for the past year, but no more! I commit to see this through for the first time- hope this just ends up becoming the way I shop in general, not a once every few years challenge 🙂

  • Ingrid says:

    After looking at how much I have in my closet and especially how much I don’t wear, I’ve decided not to buy any clothes for 6 months! It’s gonna be a killer but I’m going to be strong and try to be more conscious of what I buy! Wish me luck here in Holland!

  • 33 says:

    I don’t think I can stick to a 5-piece plan (already over the limit from the recent zara sale). However, it is something if I keep it in the forefront of my mind when buying or deciding what to keep, would really help to eliminate too many of the same items, something not long lasting (too trendy), or keeping it because of low price.

  • Paige says:

    I’m in! I’m calling mine the “5-piece Spanish wardrobe” though since I live in Madrid. Let’s see how it goes!

  • modezirkus. says:

    I just read through all your posts concerning this subject and the idea of purchasing just 6 well-thought pieces in a season sounds pretty nice! I am definitely going to try this out. Normally I already try to purchase just the things I really need and wanted, but when the sale seasons starts with all these nice offers it’s just like I lost my own mind 😉
    So this really needs to stop and the plan of a”french wardrobe” would be a nice challenge for me *and a money-saver from impulse buying! hahaha

  • Yvonne says:

    I am 65 and just retired from a long professional career of wearing a suit every day. It wasn’t easy keeping it exciting. I enjoy your blog. I believe, having lived in France, that the French women of my generation dressed more basic than perhaps the current generation. Anyway you look at it French women seem to top fashion. I adopted a basic concept when I was very young. I didn’t grow up with money! My wardrobe may not be exciting but I always look “put together” according to my peers and a younger generation of family. I have never dressed trendy but always had a couple of fun items to be discarded eventually. I wear black, white, grey, navy, and red as my basics. I wear white or lt to med blue Brooks Brothers blouses only. I have a trench , a leather jacket, and a classic black blazer. I wear flats and pumps and boots. I have 4 spendy purses ( my indulgence) , many scarfs ( this is how I bring in color), simple gold ,silver, and pearl studs and hoops, simple necklaces, and bangles. I wear cashmere sweaters that I can dress up with in a pinch. I have skinny jeans, 1 pr boyfriend jeans, black slim legged dress slacks, white, navy, and black capris. I travel with a basic black dress, basic dress slacks, plain t-shirts, 2 cashmere sweater sets ( you are laughing) , basic jewlery, jeans, and a large square silk scarf that can be made into a halter blouse to dress up with or use for something else, 1 pr pumps, flats, boots. Black blazer!. I only use a small carry on. I have also adopted simple shoulder length hair that can go up, down, or half. Makeup is simple with a good skin regimen. I love colorful lipstick! OK, this is all affordable! It just takes a little organization and time. Shop sales and go to Nordstrom Rack or similar outlets. You can look classy, cute, flirty, and hot in basics with the right accessories. Go for quality and not quantity! Take it from a 65 year old that hasn’t given up on lookng good every day. If you want to go for sexy…go with the beautiful lingerie! My new quest is for a beautiful silk blouse? Good luck to all of you. Clean out those closets and simplify your life and look. Be classy and hot at the same time❤️ Cheap looks cheap!