Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Less is More-Freeing myself from fashion,Embracing Style

Growing up, back to school shopping was simultaneously an excitement and a frustration. I began with a huge list of items I wanted, ended up fighting with my Mom in the store and left with maybe one or two items, much to my chagrin.

Once, I began to have my independence ( a driver's license, wheels, and some MONEY!) I began to collect clothing items galore! In college I prided my self with never repeating an outfit and after undergrad and grad school, out on my own in the fashion capitol of the world, I began to be known for choosing a shoe sale over groceries.

Inspired by Jean Chatzky's Today show experiment of eliminating her wardrobe to only 6 items for thirty days I decided I might be better off with less. Nina Garcia, fashion editor at Marie Claire and author is always mentioning how much she abhors the overloaded American girl's closet. So I began the purge. And I kept going and going and going.

Last Wednesday, I decided that I should make a list of how many items I minimally need per season. For instance, 7 summer dresses, 5 t-shirts, 2 slacks, etc. And then all the rest, no matter how cute or where I got it or how inexpensive or expensive it was, I sent off to the Goodwill. About 6 large bags worth. At first I was a little nervous, but I realized that I've been making much more conscious and better choices ever since. I FEEL more fashionable than ever and I get dressed so much faster. Even amidst a shopping fast (yes, this is third or fourth one so far, nothing except dire necessity until January) I'm feeling pretty good. I feel like I got a whole new fall wardrobe without buying not one new item. Mainly because I couldn't see everything that I had and now I'm challenging myself to make new combinations. On Sunday I wore, blazer which I hadn't worn since probably 2008, black cigarette slacks, and a pair of shoes that I've had since 2006 and got so many compliments. Probably because they've never seen me wear slacks. Why? Because I forgot that I even OWNED slacks!!!! Sure, the other day I wished I had a fuschia, strong shouldered cropped blazer but my tan one I got for $5 back in 2002 gives pretty much the same affect. In the words of Coco Chanel, "Fashion fades, style is eternal."

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