Playing Favorites.

In my last couple of posts, I talked about working my way toward a minimal wardrobe. I doubt I’ll get to, or even enjoy, a 10-piece wardrobe, but something less than the 200+ pieces I used to own would be great! For fall/winter, my wardrobe count was around 80 or 90 pieces. My spring/summer wardrobe is already smaller than that, but I still purchased way more than I need. I used to just buy and buy, and somewhat like the things I bought. Now I only buy if it’s love, which cuts down on the flotsam and jetsam.

However, when I started buying for an all-new spring/summer wardrobe a couple of months ago, I didn’t really have an item limit in mind. I only went by the “love” rule. So, I ended up with too much. Everything fits great and I do like it all…I just have too many pieces! I want a smaller wardrobe so that it’s easier to get dressed in the morning. I want a smaller wardrobe so that I can finally conquer this gluttony for body coverings.

I started playing favorites. For two weeks, I’ve been wearing only my top choices and letting items naturally filter to the bottom of the list. I’ve been taking photos of my daily outfits so that I have tangible evidence that I’m actually wearing what I think are my favorites. Yesterday, I made a list off the top of my head and went through my photos. I counted about 30 items — tees, nicer tops, skirts, pants, crops, shorts, cardigans, and jackets.

I also made a list of items that I know I like, but want to keep track of whether I wear them with any regularity. My smaller wardrobe will not have a place for items that I only wear once a month or less, aside from dressier pieces. Three pieces in particular stuck out for me. A flowy bright orange button-up blouse, a patterned shell in one of my favorite color combinations, and a maxi skirt. I wore that blouse a lot last summer and fall, but am not reaching for it now. Why? I’m going to make an effort to think about wearing it, but if a tee or other top wins out, it’s moving aside. As for the shell, when I want to wear that style of top I have at least one other shell that I like more, so I’ve been wearing that one instead. The maxi skirt I have yet to wear at all, yet I thought I’d wear it all the time. Maybe I’ve just forgotten about it?

I’ve also had a few pieces surprise me about how often I wear them. I thought I was done with leggings after the long, frigid winter, but there are times that I still want to wear them with sandals. I’d also put aside a couple of baggy tees because the wide open neckline isn’t my favorite, but this week I pulled them back into production because I love looser tees these days.

Finally, I’ve discovered a few holes that I’d like to fill. In thinking about them, I realized they are not urgent and I won’t seek them out. They’ll remain on my shopping list and if I come across exactly the items that fill those needs, I’ll buy them.

For now, I’m in my second week of not buying clothing for myself. I really wanted to go shopping during my free time this morning, but the desire to make it to two whole weeks without shopping won out! So here I am, writing instead, and analyzing my experiment with playing favorites. I think it’s going very well and I’m enjoying my clothes!


6 thoughts on “Playing Favorites.

  1. Jessica says:

    Very interesting to read! I think I am going to track my favorites too. Can you still return some of the things you bought?

  2. maa says:

    This is a very smart idea- wear what you like best and the wardrobe will naturally dwindle! Don’t they say we only wear a small percentage of our clothes anyway? Yeah for 2 weeks!

  3. Mo says:

    ” I’ve discovered a few holes that I’d like to fill . . . I realized they are not urgent and I won’t seek them out. They’ll remain on my shopping list and if I come across exactly the items that fill those needs, I’ll buy them.”
    This is exactly where I’m heading! The first step was admitting I have a problem Lol. Then, accounting for the intake and amounts. Making a list of needs and shopping from it was a huge step I started at the end of 2012. But . . . I was also hunting things down and methodically trying to plug those holes.
    Taking a step back, realizing you are going to still have enough to wear even if you don’t get XXX, is the next big step in stemming the shopping tide. I feel like this is stage 3 in shopping recovery or something lol. Good luck! I’m still working on this one.

    • Cristina says:

      LOL, I don’t know what stage I’m on. I’m zigzagging all over the place! But yes, figuring out that I don’t need everything right when I think I do is a huge step. It’s also something I have to remind myself of every day!

  4. Megan says:

    I am definitely trying to stick with the ‘only buy if it’s love’ rule. Tough sometimes but it is worth it in the end, it’s no fun having a bunch of so-so pieces that don’t really suit you.

    I have also been playing favorites and wearing the same things over and over again! But it really shows you what you should be keeping and what you really need to toss.

  5. Nikki says:

    The ‘love test’ is a brilliant idea! And something I struggle with too…have made too many compromises in the past. Having said that, I think it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the clothing choices available to women – many of the skills required to select a great & versatile wardrobe is about learning what suits you personally & what fits into your lifestyle…and most of that learning is done by trial & error (hopefully, fewer errors as we get older!)
    And way to go with the 2 week record! That’s excellent. You should give yourself a star for every consecutive day that you’re actively resisting temptation. Would be great to watch it build up!

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