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The M Dash

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Dress Like a Pro for Under $2 a Day

Investing in a capsule wardrobe isn’t just convenient—it’s financially savvy. Here, we created 26 looks from just eight versatile pieces.

By Madeleine Kim

The way I see it, capsule dressing has two major benefits. First: ease. Can you imagine getting dressed with the confidence that any combination you put together will look great? What a dream. Second: cost per wear (i.e., the cost of an item in your wardrobe, divided by the total number of times you’ll wear it). The lower an item’s cost per wear, the greater the value. 

To put this theory to the test, we challenged our Brand Stylist, Nyjerah, to come up with as many outfits as possible using the pieces from our Disruptor Omakase (a pre-styled capsule wardrobe for modern renaissance women). Using just eight pieces, Nyjerah created a whopping 26 (!) beautiful outfits. According to my calculations, that puts each piece between $0.34 and $1.63 per wear.

The Math

If you’re currently thinking, “Nice try, English major. Those numbers are way too low to be correct…”, hear me out—I made a chart. Let’s assume, conservatively, that a product’s lifespan is five years. Wears per week is based on the number of outfits you can create with each piece. For example: I estimate you’ll wear the Zhou culotte, which Nyjerah styled in four outfits, once every other week. The Giulia top, however, works in 12 different outfits, and you could easily wear it twice per week (also helpful: it’s machine-washable).

The Outfits

According to Nyjerah, these outfits work because their component pieces are versatile in both color and silhouette. Below, our Merchandising Manager, Christina, models all 26 looks, organized by the piece that anchors them.

The Shaw Pant

Nyjerah’s favorite look of the lot? The Shaw pant and Butler top (layered over the mockneck Giulia top), finished with the Scotte jacket. She says, “The Giulia layers comfortably under the Butler, and the Scotte jacket ties it all together. When I have a lot of volume on top, I like to balance it out with a skinny pant, so the Shaw works perfectly.”

The Zhou Culotte

Maybe you’re getting coffee with your stylish mentor, or perhaps you just want to take some inspirational mirror pics. The Zhou culotte is what you reach for when you want to look cool, casual, and totally put-together.

The Sarah Dress

The Sarah is like your favorite T-shirt dress—only way more polished, thanks to its tailored cut, sleek fabric, and origami-inspired sleeves. You can wear it with heels, loafers, sneakers, booties, or fuzzy slippers. And if you throw the Butler over it? Boom—your dress is now a skirt.

The Rowley Skirt

Many M.M. customers are hesitant to pair a shorter skirt, like the Rowley, with loafers. But Nyjerah notes (and Christina proves!) that it’s a great combo. The Rowley’s simple shape also makes it an excellent base for an added accent, such as the Butler top tied around your waist. And if you get chilly, you’re in luck: The Butler half-tucked into the Rowley is also Nyjerah-approved.

Written By

Madeleine Kim

Madeleine Kim is the Senior Brand Manager at M.M.LaFleur, where she started out as a stylist. She loves developing styling-focused content and creating newsletters that bring the M.M. community together.

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