The average woman reportedly has 22 unworn items in her closet, yet on the blogosphere, minimalist wardrobe projects abound. In fact, eco-closets seem to be shrinking fast! Project 333 takers pared down their wardrobes to 33 items for 3 months, while Six Items or Less challengers whittled their closets down to just six items for an entire month.
Now comes a woman who has pretty much pared down her closet to just one item — for a year. Kristy Powell, a therapist and Pilates teacher in New Haven, Conn., plans to wear just one dress for 365 days, blogging her experience at One Dress Protest.
Of course, one dress projects aren’t entirely new. Alex Martin wore a little brown dress for a whole year back in 2005-2006, and more recently, Sheena Matheiken’s The Uniform Project documented a year of wearing a simple, multifunctional black dress — reaccessorized every day to create unique looks.
Powell’s project is directly inspired by the Uniform Project — which is where Powell purchased her Little Black Dress for her experiment. In fact, Powell purchased two identical dresses from the Uniform Project — thereby giving herself some laundering wiggle room.
Why is Powell documenting yet another one dress project? “I’ve set out to explore what it looks like to openly, publicly and boldly survey what clothes and fashion mean to me, and to investigate some of the more meaningful implications the world of clothes have for our lives and hearts,” writes Powell, who describes her choice as part lifestyle experiment, part cultural protest. “One Dress Protest is meant to be both a statement and an action to express my disapproval of and objection to the ways that fashion undervalues, denigrates, objectifies and oftentimes insults women.”
So far, Powell’s experiment has run into some comical snafus. First, she spilled split-pea soup on a dress — a stressful mess if the plan’s to keep wearing the same item all year. Then she managed to make one of the LBDs a mini LBD the first time she washed it. “It shrunk ALOT — 3.5 inches in length to be exact. It was noticeably smaller, resembling more of a long shirt than a dress.”
All that makes for a pretty entertaining read. Powell is just finished her first month of her One Dress Protest project. Read her blog to see how the fashion fast is going.