Last year I participated in a thread on thePurseForum about our 2014 wardrobe resolutions and the thread originator posed these questions to us - these were my answers and I wanted to share with you what I have achieved since then (updates in red).
one: Write a short review of your style and the progress you made in 2013. How did your style, lifestyle and aesthetic preferences evolve?
In 2013 I took a really good look at my lifestyle and wardrobe, taking into account that I spend 4 days a week in professional attire, my closet consisted of too many neutrals but I still could not pull an outfit together; outside of work, I dressed like a university student holed up in a library cramming for finals (not a pretty sight).
To start my cleanse, I purged everything that didn't fit, items that looked and fit only so-so, poor materials, things that were very worn or faded, and got rid of accessories I know I would never use (i.e., fashion jewelry and trendy belts - not that I had that much to start with, but still, had to get rid of them).
For work, I determined that sheath dresses worked really well for my body-type and it's SO easy to just throw on one item, rather than having to think about a top and bottom. For winter and fall I purchased a few more and implemented colors. For spring and summer I purchased more colorful pencil skirts and sleeveless tops and explored patterns. Realized that as much as I loved a dress shirt, I could never find one that fit just right, so I've given up for now. Now that I've implemented color and patterns, getting dressed seems so much easier. Also got a few pairs of dress pants on sale that filled in some staple pieces that were missing.
For casual wear - I almost got rid of anything I couldn't pass off as business casual, save for a few hoodies, and pretty much left it at that. I didn't add more to my closet and am sticking to plain t-shirts, jeans, and my patterned sleeveless tops for now until I can figure out exactly what I'm going for.
In 2014, my purchases seemed to focus on tops and bottoms that could all be worn on Fridays at the office and also weekends - immediately, my weekend wear improved ten-fold and I no longer wear hoodies as part of an outfit (unless I'm wearing them as part of an actual outfit involving a puffer vest) and reserve them for lounging around the house or quick errands. I also wear jeans a lot less and only purchased one pair to replace a few I let go of and now have 6 pairs of great variety in regular rotation - black, dark blue, red, gray, white, and a standard blue jean for the easy days. In spring and summer I have mostly replaced jeans with khakis.
You will note that I stated I had given up on the dress shirt but managed to find a perfect fitting one for me at the GAP - hurray!
two: Write about one or two paragraphs about your style and wardrobe plans for 2014. Which aspects about your style and your wardrobe do you want to improve, why and how?
I'm pretty happy with my work wardrobe and am looking to decide on a few more items to let go, but that will be dependent on weight change in the new few months. For casual wear, I plan to continue to use what I have until it wears out and then I will begin to reinvest in that part of my lifestyle. I would like to continue to pare down my closet, especially my shoes, but my biggest goal is to make my accessories visible so I can try to implement them more into my outfits, and in turn, decide whether I should keep them or not.
Since finding dress shirts that fit me, I feel that my work wardrobe is complete - I can finally put together looks that I loved but couldn't complete. As for my weekend wardrobe, I am achieving the 'preppie' look that I so love but just couldn't do until now. Now I am slowly wearing out what remaining hoodies I own as loungewear for the home and will unlikely be buying any more. I am slowly losing weight so I still have on hand the items that I'm on the fence about that were weight dependent - I'm hoping I will need them in a few months.
three: Express your five most important goals in a short, motivating sentence each and then start sketching out how you want to achieve or implement them.
Sort of similar to #2 but I have started to track my clothing in addition to my bags, wallets, and shoes, and i'm hoping that will give me a better perspective on where my money goes when it comes to my clothes and what items give me more value, whether cost per wear, or how it holds up.
I did dutifully track my purchases in 2014 and can tell you the exact breakdown of my 43 wardrobe additions (bags not included).
- 5 dress shirts (all from GAP)
- 2 button-up tunics (Jcrew and GAP)
- 2 cardigans (all from Banana Republic)
- 2 dresses (Banana Republic and Target)
- 1 headband (J Crew)
- 3 coats/jackets (Banana Republic and Burberry)
- 1 pair of jeans (GAP)
- 4 pairs of khakis (all from the GAP)
- 2 straight legged trousers (all from the GAP)
- 1 sleeveless top (Banana Republic)
- 1 sweatshirt (J Crew)
- 6 sweaters (Banana Republic and Olive Moon)
- 2 watches (all Seiko)
- 1 T-shirt (Pleione)
- 1 skirt (GAP)
- 1 pair of khaki shorts (DKNY)
- 3 articles of active wear (all Nike)
- 5 pairs of shoes (Zara, Cole Haan, Lauren by Ralph Lauren, Denim & Supply)
All these items (with the exception of what I bought at the end of December have been worn regularly and throughout the year and have all become my wardrobe staples. Their cost per wear is ridiculously low, and some have even paid themselves off because I got them at such great prices (for me, for something to have paid itself off, its cost per wear is $1 or less).