Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Wardrobe Epiphanies

Shopping 850
Between now and prior years, I’ve had some shopping/wardrobe epiphanies:
  • At this point in time, I don’t really need to be buying anymore heels or casual clothes. They don’t match my current lifestyle, and thus don’t get worn enough to justify their continued purchase.
  • I culled tees and bras that I avoid wearing. Why dig through the things I continually pass on to get to my favorite standbys?
  • I re-organized my t-shirt drawers from “Black” and “Other” to “For Work” and “Not for Work.” Hopefully this will shake me out of my default black tee setting.
  • Something to keep in mind: My favorite basic black long sleeve tee is actually from the maternity department.
  • I need to set price caps on non-returnable online/ebay purchases that I haven’t seen in person or brands I’m not familiar with. While I usually have good luck—sometimes things don’t pan out as well as I hoped.
  • That said I really need to stop boredom browsing on ebay.
  • If it’s meant to be it will be. So far holding out for the sales has worked out well for me. Even the items that got sold out ended up being re-released the following year.
  • Now I remember why I would buy pants online. Out of frustration that I can’t find (or fit) what I’m looking for in stores.
  • Love the one you’re with. No need to replace/upgrade things that are fine.
  • I can chill out with my “museum.” I’m pretty lucky that I’ve acquired many “wholly grails,” especially at my age. Going further, I should save big ticket items for when I’ve achieved some sort of personal milestone.
  • Enough is enough. 571467 black blazers, 452157 black skirts, seriously???
Have you had any epiphanies?

37 comments:

  1. Yes!! I was on a shopping ban since September 2011. I didn't buy anything. In the beginning it was quite hard, because you start to recognize how much - even little things - you're purchasing left and right, on the way home in the city or online when you're browsing the net. In this time I've realized: there isn't much I need and how many beautiful items I have in closet - about how many items I forgot. I started to shop my closet. It was amazing to combine items I've never thought of pairing before.
    I broke the shopping ban in February when my long admired white pair of Isabel Marant Betty's popped up on Ebay for a bargain :)
    And here's a coincidence: Went for a Topshop grey studded sweater on Ebay in mid last year (vintage), it's one of my favorite items and it's also from their maternity line ;)

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  2. Wonderful article, so thoughtful and clear! I think it's so easy in our daily routine to lose sight of the essential. Once in a while stopping and taking a good hard look at our habits is what we need to set priorities straight and cool down.
    Just a few minutes ago, I was watching the H&m/Marni collection and was starting to plot and scheme in order to sneak out of the office earlier to purchase a thing or two but then the "crazy" switch went off and I suddenly realized it's just clothes: no need to get hysterical for that. If I'm lucky, I'll grab what I want during lunchbreak, if not, well, no drama!

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  3. Great list! I particularly like this one "Love the one you’re with. No need to replace/upgrade things that are fine." .. sometimes I do consider reselling a beloved item just so I can buy another that is even more perfect (if it exists).. like my already perfect navy peacoat. I suddenly saw an even more perfect peacoat from Isabel Marant in black on the runway and the thought of swapping it with my current one struck me immediately. haha!

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  4. One of the reasons I so admire your style is that your lifestyle is so different from mine, so I feel I get to indulge in imaginary wardrobe alterations by reading you. No more casual clothes! It's all I live in. A day I wear a dress (outside of summer) is a fancy day.

    Great epiphanies--all of them. Mine (that someone reminded me of last night): If I'm aching to buy two of the same thing, just different colors (outside Hermès bags--gotta have an out), chances are neither is perfect. This has saved me many times--and if I can truly break that rule, then I'm surely in love.

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    1. Pssh I say "no more" but right now I'm two clicks away from ordering a pair of wedges/pumps. Thankfully, I'm not a shoe-aholic so I really have to love it. I’m the opposite with multiples--I do this with shoes and sweaters, I’ll buy it in as many colors as I think I’ll wear.

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  5. Hi,
    I love your blog by the way!!
    Yes i have had lots of 'light bulb' and epiphany moments. For example-Do I need 7 breton tops? No!! I have had a serious cull and am on my way to an 'ideal ' wardrobe. I was just thinking whether I can be bothered with getting up early for the Marni collection at H & M tomorrow? Am I just getting sucked up into the hype with everyone else? Do you know any one that is going or will you be bothering yourself?

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    1. Nice stuff, but not my style. Either way, I don’t have that kind of commitment to get up that early.

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  6. My recent wardrobe epiphany is that I dislike having a lot of choice. I cull my wardrobe monthly and I'm down to 104 pieces including shoes, bags and other accessories and I still have things that I don't wear. I actually love wearing the same few pieces day in and day out.

    I relate to your 'museum' point. The difference is that my museum pieces are quite literally just sitting in my closet for visual display. My second epiphany is to not have any more wholly grails....for now anyways.

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  7. I like your list. It shows a level of self-awareness about your habits and preferences, and reworking around that. I especially like your idea of getting rid of stuff that you dig through to get to what you really want to wear. There's so much stuff I dig through!

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  8. My most recent epiphany is that I'm o.k. with wearing my "uniform" of jeans, tees, and flats on most days. As long as everything fits, is in good condition, and accessorized well, casual doesn't have to read as "sloppy".

    Another is that when I'm buying/shopping less, I tend to notice more when something really unique and special becomes available.

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  9. my wardrobe epiphany came last year during a cull, and that was to always wear my favourite clothes. why save my favourite pieces for a "special" occasion? sure, i'm not going to wear a cocktail dress to work, but why hold back on wearing my favourite vintage blouses and nice shoes. it's been a lot of fun dressing every day now.

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  10. I identify with many of your epiphanies. I remembered one last week when I was tempted by a dress, but as you said in point #1, I don't really need to be buying them because dresses "don't match my current lifestyle, and thus don't get worn enough to justify their continued purchase." Hard learnt lessons!

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    1. I already broke my first one. Just bought a pair of wedge pumps. Thankfully I'm not a shoe-aholic so it really has to be love for me to pull the trigger.

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  11. good ones, pret. always key is knowing one's style, being true to it, shopping (buying) with clear intentions, and realizing one's weak points. (for a few years, my weak point was buying what looked good on the model, or what was "in", and liking clothes too much that i was blinded. no more.)

    yes, a few epiphanies along the way...many, in fact. my first epiphany - or realization - was around the age of three, when i discovered boots. i vaguely remember struggling to climb into my dad's boots (which covered my entire legs) and thinking, "yeah...this is IT." lol! most recently, i found that an all black and white wardrobe is completely liberating. there are many more but i'll stop there.

    this is one of my favorite pret posts. :)

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  12. I really do not need any more high heels - what i have is really good - wear it - constantly acquiring means ebaying which is a massive massive pain - all my consumerism sometimes makes me feel quite sick - wait for the sales! so i am with you on more than a few of these x

    http://fashionandfrank.blogspot.com/

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  13. Great post! My first epiphany was last summer when I decided to go more minimalist and only own (and buy) clothes that I love and that fit me. It was truly cathartic to go through my closet and weed out the pieces to go to consignment or thrift stores. I even took pictures of me in some outfits and discovered those things that look good and not (that was a real eye opener!)

    Funny that now I seem to shop (look) more than ever, yet I buy less because I'm just more cognizant of what really works for me. But I'm finding it's fun to see what's out there and the possibilities (or not), without the thought that every time I shop I need to come home with SOMETHING. Yes, I still make mistakes and still find it hard to pass up a good bargain even if I really don't need something or I already have one or more of them in my closet. But it's a work in progress.

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  14. I have too many pair of jeans, some of them I haven't even worn and I doubt I ever will. And I sometimes tend to buy things just because I love them on the spot, but when I get home I realize I don't have anything to match.
    Ada

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  15. I relate to many of yours. If I don't wear high heels, I shouldn't buy them. If I don't take stuff to the dry-cleaner, I shouldn't buy stuff that needs to be dry cleaned. One pair of black jeans is enough. I don't need ten winter coats. Or three denim jackets. And I actually enjoy wearing the same stuff all the time. Figuring that one out was a major moment.

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  16. Great post! ! always buy 1920´s and 1950's white delicate blouses. Every time I am at a vintage shop - I find myself flipping through the white shirt rack. I have way too many but can´t stop buying them.

    I also tend to buy clothes that need to be altered. Never happens.

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  17. Excellent, concise post! I think self awareness is the mark of great style.

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  18. i need to seriously get rid of 75% of my closet. i would have lots of room for things i do wear.
    xo chauss

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  19. Such a good idea! Some of your epiphanies definitely apply for me as well. One of my big ones has been to "wait and see." Often when I lust after something if I give it a month or so I will have completely forgotten about it. This strategy has saved me sooooo much money (and prevented a lot of hassle).

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  20. Such a great article. TOTALLY know what you mean. I'm planning a wardrobe cull this weekend....x
    http://millyfellintothewardrobe.blogspot.com/

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  21. I need to make a list like this one - I identify with many of your epiphanies too, especially #2 and 9!

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  22. all great thoughts on organization and the wardrobe. hmmmm, for me the struggle is to stop buy more "affordable" pieces but save up for those killer special items. it always pays off and the return from the amount of wear is real.

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  23. I find this post very helpful and informative, so thank you! You make some really good points. I particularly noticed no. 7 - if it's meant to be, it will happen. I've had a couple of similar experiences:) Other than that I would'n say that I've had any true epiphanies, it's more of a slow process of finding out what works and doesn't work for me and my style. I think perhaps I'm what you call a late bloomer, at least when it comes to personal style:)

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  24. i know what you mean. i really try to buy only what i truly love. i have spent too much money on frivolous items that i regret.

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  25. Superb post. I am a great believer in the 'if it's meant to be'. If I have my eyes set on a specific garment, I'm going for it, and refusing to settle for anything less. Otherwise it risks becoming "oh I like this, and it's nice, but it's still no [insert name of original desired garment]". Plus there is nothing more satisfying than hunting down and finally buying what you've been after for so long...in a way I guess the hunt is almost as enjoyable as having the final garment. I suppose that is what drives the circle of consumerism, so maybe I don't have to feel so bad about it.

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  26. "Enough is enough. 571467 black blazers, 452157 black skirts, seriously???"

    Totally relate.

    Great list - you've given me several lightbulb moments here!

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  27. Nice! I enjoyed this post very much. Straightforward true to yourself. This is what happens when you own your style; you get what's essential period. I have my clothing preferences very clear and I've never been a trend follower but I know I will never be able to have the minimal epiphany with shoes. ...Oh beloved shoes!

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  28. LOVE this post! i might have to tag myself and do my own epiphanies post this week. i am currently in the odd in-between of missing the majority of my closet back in NYC while having completely gotten used to working from my very condensed capsule closet here in SH.

    totally agree with you on the milestone purchases thing. there are a few fantasy items that i'm saving for when the time is right. that said, i want to see your museum pieces! :D

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  29. "Love the one you’re with. No need to replace/upgrade things that are fine." Is definitely my favourite. I am doing a challenge now of wearing 15 pieces for 30 days and it teaching me things everyday.

    I had a big epiphany after I went traveling a few months ago, I came back after 10 days and realized that my wardrobe was bursting with far too many bad, fast fashion pieces that I didn't cherish. They had no story (unless you call lunchtime impulse buying a story), were all made with a little bit of nylon and polysterene and being from Zara and H&M were not unique or special. Just mass produced.

    Few things I came up with as my buying rules:
    Before I buy anything now I try to ask myself a few questions about the piece and my state of mind:

    where does it come from?
    who made it?
    what is the material?
    will it complement my wardrobe?
    do I have another similar pair? (e.g. 23 grey jumpers and t-shirts)
    am I being emotional? using shopping as a treat? cheer up?

    I am still very far off from a perfect wardrobe, but I am trying my best to be more mindful.

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  30. I had a wardrobe epiphany when I arrived in the UK with 2 boxes of clothes. I literally had to rebuild my wardrobe. It's amazing what one can do with so little. I now concentrate on having a small capsule wardrobe which I can mix and match to create multiple outfits.

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  31. Ohhhh, sage advice. I'm not entirely sure I've learnt it all yet, but not buying just anything remotely cool in the op shop is a big one - I have to have justifyable need for each garment. Also, no buying bargains online without properly checking the measurements!

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  32. Such a great post, I really like your advices!
    Take a look and if you want we can follow each others: Cosa mi metto???
    Three lucky person will win a pair of sunnies of therir choice, enter the contest!!!

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  33. a great list! I definitely take on board what you say about capping the prices on ebay items or non-returnable items - sometimes I have bad luck and end up wasting a lot of money :( I have had a few clothing epiphanies over the years, the best one probably being that I don't need many 'fancy' clothes and that I wear very similar clothes for both work and play, making things much easier! :) x

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