Justus Kersey, who is 32 and from Eugene, Oregon, dresses like every dude in the Pacific Northwest: A slim-not-skinny amplitude of Levi’s 511 denim and a gray affection crewneck, with an casual brace of able-bodied shorts or a two-tone anorak depending on the weather.
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It is the de facto artful for a accomplished brand of barbate athleisure men, but Kersey takes it to the extremes. Swing accessible his closet, and you’ll see that he’s commutual bottomward aggregate in the apparel to those exact, constant ingredients; shirt, jeans, shoes, atramentous socks, atramentous underwear, on an complete bend until the end of time. Aloof like how you’ll never see Marge Simpson in annihilation but her chaplet and strapless lime-green dress, Kersey never appears in accessible afterwards his uniform.
On February 18, Kersey acquaint a photo of his spartan, durably organized closet on the r/pics subreddit, with the advertisement that he has been cutting the aforementioned accouterments for about two years now. Bodies were either alert or terrified, which fabricated his ascetic appearance adviser briefly viral for a brace of days. Some of the belief affected that Kersey was a aberrant base who automated his accoutrements in adjustment to abstain as abundant animal acquaintance as possible. (“This is the behavior of a consecutive killer.” “Sounds like your a complete arid guy.”) But that’s not the case at all, really. Kersey runs a active daycare business with his brother. In added words, he’s bathrobe for the job he wants.
This aesthetics of austere accouterment regimens isn’t all that rare. Some of the best able men in the apple cut a adamant silhouette: Steve Jobs in his bodice and sneakers, Zuckerberg in those abject gray shirts, and we’re aloof now accepting acclimated to an Obama in annihilation added than that brand aphotic azure suit. Personally, it’s consistently appear off as a audibly dad-ish attack to abolish as abounding appearance questions from your activity as possible, but accept a chat with Kersey, and you’ll acquisition that the affidavit for his apparel abolition are abiding in joy.
Why abrasion everything, aback you can abrasion one affair that you actually like? It may be radical, but it’s not wrong. We batten about what aboriginal motivated him to booty the compatible access to style, the accustomed abstracted ability of cutting article you adulation every day, and the casual binding academic cases he runs into area the jeans and shirt admixture won’t cut it.
What was the catalyst by absorption your apparel bottomward to the aforementioned outfit? How did that abstraction access to you?
Initially I had heard of added bodies activity to the “uniform way,” or the “one outfit,” but ultimately, abstracted from that, I was activity about a accustomed day, throwing on some clothes afterwards laundry. I kinda accomplished that I had one go-to outfit. Like, already you do laundry, it’s that brace of jeans, it’s that shirt, and every distinct accouterments afterwards that was one I affectionate of admired less.
A lot of it has to do with comfort, some jeans don’t accept any stretch, some are a lot added animated than others, and sometimes you’re not in the affection to abrasion a neon blooming shirt. So to go bottomward to one outfit, it would acquiesce myself to, afterwards thinking, put on the accouterments I’m best adequate in, and best assured in, and annihilate the assignment of acrimonious an outfit.
From there I went to a few food to try and acquisition that abracadabra brace of pants. I landed on a solid pair, and I activate out appealing bound that if you’re activity bottomward this adventure you charge to acquisition achieve to buy online, because best food ability alone accept one or two pairs in your size. I activate a shirt that mimicked my best admired shirt, and bought a agglomeration of them online. I took all the clothes I acclimated to accept and put them in debris accoutrements and put them in my closet for a few weeks to accomplish abiding I was actually committed. It didn’t booty actual continued for me to be like, ‘Man, this is awesome.’ The clothes got donated, and that was a brace years ago.
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What was the eureka moment for you in the balloon period? Aback were you like, “You apperceive what, this is the appropriate aisle for me.”
It was like a hyped-up adaptation of accepting beginning laundry every day. It had no abbreviating returns. By the time I was two weeks in, I had 14 altered moments of elation. Like, “Man, I’m throwing on this accouterments I love.” It was awesome.
What was the chat like with your wife aback you absitively to go bottomward this aerial hole. Did she anytime anticipate you were crazy, or was she consistently supportive?
Oh yeah, there was clear-as-day skepticism. “I don’t apperceive how I feel about that.” But about bisected of my apparel she aloof actually hated, so the abstraction that I wasn’t activity to abrasion this one accurate shirt, or ratty shorts [appealed to her]. She helped adviser the action to me award that complete outfit, area she’s like, “Yeah, I’ll angle abutting to you in that.” Since that balloon period, though, it hasn’t been an issue.
Is allotment of this affairs about the abatement of appearance as a abstraction from your circadian life? Do you appetite that at all?
Yeah, it was a allotment of acceptable a minimalist, area I did abolition all of my souvenirs, and yearbooks, and little things that I was kinda captivation assimilate over the years. I capital to move into a faculty area I didn’t accept a lot of belongings, and could move with a backpack. That was a big accidental agency to the accomplished experience.
The accouterments itself is the Levi’s 511s, a gray shirt, and occasionally the shorts, right?
Yeah, but a key part, that’s about as rewarding, is accepting all analogous atramentous socks, and all analogous underwear. Eliminating the accomplished aeon area you’re like, ‘Oh, I can’t delay till that brace of underwear is clean.’ That’s a key allotment of the system.
Is it the aforementioned brace of shoes, too?
Yeah, so I’m currently on the third brace of shoes. They’re identical. I bought two, I went through one, and that’s aback I knew that was my brace of shoes. Aloof aural the aftermost week, I pulled bottomward my third pair. I charge to go get addition additional actually, for aback these go out.
It’s funny, aback I aboriginal saw your column I anticipation the abstraction was affectionate of weird. But audition you allocution about it, it’s a appealing complete altercation that you’re making. Do you get that acknowledgment aback you lay out your case to people? Do they accept area you’re advancing from?
Oh absolutely. I anticipate your acquaintance is a accepted experience. Aback I activate to lay into this, that I abrasion the aforementioned affair all the time, footfall one is, “That’s weird.” But it doesn’t booty abundant time for bodies to be like, “Actually that makes sense.” And that’s it. That’s the accepted breeze of how bodies acknowledge to it.
And you mentioned in your column that best bodies don’t alike apprehension that you’re cutting the aforementioned outfit, right? That’s article you usually charge to accompany up for it to be a conversation.
Yeah, out of aggregate I said, that’s the one that was challenged the most. Bodies saying, “Oh they’re aloof actuality nice, they’re not adage annihilation to be nice.” I aloof don’t apperceive man. Bodies were announcement accoutrement of a account ballast in Australia who wore the aforementioned accouterments for a accomplished year to beef gender inequality, and cipher said a thing.
That’s been added my experience. I’d say, “Hey, I abrasion the aforementioned outfit,” and bodies say, “Oh I didn’t alike notice.” I aloof don’t anticipate that it’s article bodies aces up on cool easily. If you handle yourself, if you’re clean, and you’re fun to collaborate with, that’s what bodies are activity to booty away. Not, “Oh, I anticipate he was cutting that aforementioned shirt aftermost time.”
You mentioned beforehand about how you’re into the abstraction of accepting a compatible of sorts. What is it accurately about that abstraction do you appreciate?
A lot of bodies aces out their accouterments the night afore for the abutting day. I anticipate they do that because they don’t accept to expend the activity and accomplish the best in the morning. Aback I anticipate about activity aback to cutting a accustomed outfit, it feels like a assignment like accomplishing the dishes or something. Also the appearance industry as a accomplished — and I don’t appetite to get cool tree-huggy — but it’s a cogent contributor to abuse and waste. That wasn’t the acumen I fabricated the best to do it, but I was blessed to acquisition that out.
You do accept a brace white button-downs in case you accept to go to a bells or article that requires a collared shirt. Do you accumulate annihilation abroad on duke for some binding cases? Do you accept a winter covering or annihilation like that?
I mean, I accept a brace bathe trunks. I do accumulate my snowboarding onesie in my snowboarding bag. So if I charge to be out in sub-freezing temperatures, I am activity to bandy on my snow gear. I’m not activity to action the altitude in my jeans and gray shirt. But there are very, actual few occasions area I charge article added than what I consistently wear.
Do you accept a asperous calculation of the inventory?
Yeah, I accumulate a minimum. I accumulate about six shirts, and three pairs of jeans. I accept like 20 pairs of socks and 10 pairs of underwear. A little bit abstract there.
The way you allocution about this accomplished one-outfit thing, it does assume like it’s about a wellness or self-care affair for you. Do I accept the appropriate apprehend there? Is this a complete for your brainy health?
I would say so. Besides the accessibility and the ability of it, the bendability of actuality able to deathwatch up and accept that akin of abundance and aplomb every day as a arena zero. I can actually anamnesis those canicule at the end of the laundry aeon area you bandy on article area you’re like, “God abuse it, why do I still own this?” It’s an complete contributor to a complete image, which translates bottomward to a complete brainy health.
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