When I was a child, my mother was not interested in dressing me in nice, or even relatively nice, clothes. This continued into high school and although I was always up to date with who the latest models were, could identify who designed an outfit and latest It bag, I never had cool clothes. My parents didn’t let me get my first job until I finished high school so I never had the funds to buy my own clothes and despite coming from a Croatian background, I don’t actually have a lot of family here so I was never like the other kids from European backgrounds who received a lot of money for their birthday, Christmas, Holy Communion, Confirmation etc.
During my childhood and teenage years, my built-in wardrobe was always empty. I dreamed of the days it would be full. The first few years I worked I didn’t spend that much money on clothes. After taking a break from my studies to re-evaluate what career path I wanted to pursue and, during the first two years of commencing my current degree (which I should finish this year!), I actually started to spend my money on clothes. However, I didn’t actually buy what I wanted and essentially, I was wasting money.
Now my wardrobe is getting full of stuff that I don’t actually wear. Some items are clothes that I should’ve waited a while to purchase because the colour I bought the item in was a passing fad. For example, a top with neon orange detail. Others are clothes that are still in fashion but they’re in the wrong size. For example, I’ve noticed that I should buy skirts in a size medium at Zara as the size small doesn’t sit right. Others are stuff that are getting a bit tight or short with age and are still okay to wear, but only in summer and not in a professional environment.
Now I have to throw some clothes out. It’s also made me realise that I should start setting some new rules when purchasing clothes so that I start buying items that I will actually wear. Here are some rules I’ve been thinking of that apply to me and may help you too.
Buy clothes that fit right. If your clothes don’t fit properly, you won’t feel comfortable wearing them and it will probably become something that gets lost in your wardrobe. I think I’m halfway between a size 8 and 10 (except I have no idea what size I am in pants or jeans as I only ever wear tights or stockings) or a medium. I’ve come to realise that sometimes I buy my clothes too big because I end up buying the larger option ‘just in case’. Most clothes don’t last forever (unless of course it’s a good quality coat or a real leather jacket) and I will stop wearing them eventually (or they’ll become the clothes I end up wearing around the house haha) so I may as well buy clothes that fit right. When I was 18, I bought a skirt similar to the style of the skirt seen in this blog entry. Ever since then, these skirts have become my signature style and Zara is now the place where I buy most of them (which kind of contradicts my point on buying clothes that fit right as clothes from Zara don’t fit that well yet I continue to buy stuff from there because it’s so different to what others stores have on offer). I’ve noticed buying shirts that are a little too big don’t sit right with these skirts, which then means I end up buying more clothes that end up looking similar to what I already have. This means I end up wasting money, closet space and I end up feeling guilty.
Wait a while when purchasing things such as jackets or coats in winter. Also, it’s okay to spend a bit more on outerwear. I purchased two coats this year: a black one that was $219 from Zara and a pink one that was $69 or $79 from Target. I wear the black one a lot more than the pink. Although I still like the pink one, it’s stretched a lot. It’s good value for money but I wonder if the cheaper materials in the Target one is why it’s stretched so much. Maybe I should’ve waited a bit more to see what other styles came in elsewhere so I could have put the money I spent on the pink jacket towards something else.
Know what suits you. I don’t have a small waist but everything else is in proportion (I think). This rules out pretty A-line skirts a la Oscar de la Renta style, high waist skirts or shorts with a midi top, peplum tops and more. I’m starting to stick to clothes that I know suit me: pencil skirts, dresses that flow over my body (but aren’t baggy) and outfits that contain one tight element and a loose one, for example a tight skirt and a top that flows. Buying what you know suits you will mean you’ll have less clothes in you wardrobe that you know you won’t wear because you’re not confident in them.
Hope these tips help!