Ever looked at your wardrobe - overflowing, outdated, and out of shape - only to say 'I have nothing to wear?!' Yeah me too.
Cue major wardrobe transformation with a new set of style rules. Here's the 6 steps I am implementing to go from blah to hurrah in the fashion department:
- BACKBONE BASICS: Getting good basics is the backbone of a finished 'put together' and effortless look. It's the essentials of which I am thoroughly lacking. When I get the basics right then I can stop boycotting potentially great outfits for the lack of a simple white shirt...slim black trousers, comfortable black shoes, great underwear...and the list goes on. I need to get back to basics big time. They support the stand-outs and ensure you will get optimal, versatile wear out of them. And by the way, I'm all for the basics also adhering to the rest of these rules, or otherwise, what's the point?!
- QUALITY OVER QUANTITY: Vivienne Westwood says 'buy less, choose well.' And I'm hearing her loud and clear. Although I've been consciously practicing this for a few years now since my income increased and hence my clothing budget with it, I've still had my moments and fallen for quick-fix cheap (and nasty, let's be real) basic or trend pieces. They have not worn well at all. In fact, they are usually delegated to 'home clothes' after the first wash warps them out of shape completely. A total waste of money, let alone resources to make this kind of disposable quality. Now I'm refining, I'm looking for fabrics that feel and look a little bit luxe and lot more long lasting. I'm considering cost-per-wear and making investments in the items that really speak to my style and tick these wardrobe transformation boxes. And although I do agree you can get lucky and find some super cute and well made cheapies, I'm relegating that kind of buy to faster moving trends with a realistic life-of-wear expectation.
- SHAPE SUITED: I'm kinda short, I'm an hourglass shape, and I'm currently carrying a couple too many kgs. I've finally admitted all this to myself and am changing what I can (read about that here). What I can't change though, I can properly dress - and that means dressing to suit my height and shape rather than falling for fad fashions and looking a little 'victim' trying to pull them off like a supermodel. Mini's suit me, anything that finishes about the knee. A nipped-in waist rather than a boxy shape works wonders for the hourglass and adds some much needed sexiness over here. Cropped is cute for me but only in jackets, absolutely not in tops. Shorts and I are not really friends until I tone my legs and find the perfect cut that doesn't ride up. And even in shoes, I'm all about elongating the legs and handing down anything that doesn't. A stylist is next on the list - someone to come and assess me and my wardrobe and give me what I expect will be one very educational shopping experience. I cannot wait for that!
- LIFESTYLE LEVERAGED: Who was I kidding holding onto a haul of hand-me-downs from as far back as 15 years ago? That's warping my hate to waste ideals just a little when you consider these items could have been on someone else's body rather than in the back of my closet waiting for that 'maybe' day that they 'might' get worn. Suffice to say, Vinnies have scored quite well from me recently. My lifestyle has changed dramatically in the last 3 years so, refreshingly, for someone who now works from home and still wants to look cute and comfy 70% of the time, then travels, seeks water and sunshine, and attends pretty events the other 30% of the time, I am carefully considering all aspects of my lifestyle so there's nothing not of value and in high (albeit, seasonal) rotation in my wardrobe. In conjunction with the other rules it's a work in progress, but one I'm having fun fixing piece by leveraged piece.
- LOOK BOOK APPROVED: This one is super fun. Please welcome Pinterest to the picture - your look book bestie and step one in this two-part process. If you're not already addicted to scouring this social media sorting board for all things fashion, you can thank me later. Instead of just lusting and liking, I went ahead and created a few boards (ok, 13, what of it ?! you can check out the links below this post) for the various occasions my lifestyle calls for. Now I can quickly and easily get the pre-shop inspo I need in a few clicks, or even better, the pre-dressing excitement to play around with the pieces I already have to make my wardrobe wearability extend even further. The dress-up session that usually follows results in the second part of the look book rule - the phone photo folders of you in your creations. Seems like too much work? Trust me, it's genius for nailing looking chic and doing it in record time, and it makes travel packing a cinch. Separate your looks into seasonal folders and organise looks into each. I aim to take full-length photos in at least 3 styled outfits for each statement piece I own - accessories and all. And handy hint if you don't have hours to play, snap an #ootd selfie every time you win at getting dressed for the day. Tick, done!
- COLOUR CO-ORDINATED + CLEAN: And finally, a must for my artistically sensitive eyes ( 😉 ) - colour co-ordination and cleanliness reigns in Sam's Wardrobe 2.0. It's a one-in-one-out policy as I do live in a fairly small apartment now and there's just no more room. I'm sorting by colour, which apart from looking like a lovely rainbow, is also easier for my daily dressing choices driven by my mood - and in my mind - moods have colours. I have a ways to go with keeping it clean while I'm shuffling and sorting in this rehab phase, with some extra storage for shoes and accessories also on the to-do list.
Overall, this makeover is feeling good, looking lighter and catching on throughout the rest of the house and the rest of my life...just as I hoped...and just as Marie Kondō promised in her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. “Keep only those things that speak to your heart. Then take the plunge and discard all the rest. By doing this, you can reset your life and embark on a new lifestyle.”
...Stay tuned for how this transformation turns out. I have never been more excited to go shop with purpose and organise with a plan!
What are your wardrobe rules? Has this inspired you to have a clean-out too?
Or do you have some wonder-wardrobe tips for me?
Share below, I'd love to know. x