During the blogging break I wore a lot of really basic outfits; jeans or a mid-calf skirt teamed with a simple sweater. I haven't worn high heels in months. I wore sweatpants at home. This doesn't mean that I don't enjoy the occasional dressing-up, because I truly do. But when it comes to buying wisely, it is worth while to consider things like cost-per-wear, or whether your purchases align with your everyday life.
Friday, 13 January 2012
On wardrobe basics
I've given a lot of thought to wardrobe basics recently. By basics I mean the clothes I wear on a weekly basis: my favourite sweaters, jeans, long-sleeved t-shirts, flat boots... the stuff I, to my astonishment, "can't live without". There are two reasons for my newly-found interest in basics.
First, intense observation of my own shopping during 2011 opened my eyes about what my basics are. (As I mentioned yesterday, I wrote down every single clothing-related purchase in 2011.) Every time I added another purchase in my notebook during the year, my eyes kept wandering to the items I had bought and recorded in the notebook two months earlier. I was immediately struck by the fact that quite a few of my purchases had been total misses. The reason: they weren't particularly wearable. After all the time I had spent observing my personal style, I was still buying clothes that weren't the right colour, and I was still settling for things that weren't quite what I was looking for. Worst of all, I was still buying things because I had seen something similar in a fashion magazine or a blog, thinking that I could make it work. It's one thing to be inspired by beautiful pictures or the outfits of others, but it's another to feel comfortable in one's own clothing. And I don't mean to be hard on myself here, because I made some great purchases along the way, too. A good example are these Fluevog boots that I scored on eBay. I want to wear them every single day.
The second reason for asking questions about basics came when I went on the blogging break. When I wasn't taking outfit pictures for the blog, I was noticing that I gravitated toward the same clothes all the time. As much fun as style blogging was and still is, I realized that I had been dressing up for the blog a fair bit. That doesn't mean that I was faking my style, or that I didn't actively choose to wear the outfits I wore. It simply means that I was looking for more variation than what I really needed. And don't get me wrong: variation is good. But it can also get out of control easily. It's okay to have a lot of clothes and wear different stuff every day if it feels right for you, but when you find yourself guilt-tripping over the contents of your wardrobe, it's not okay. Then it just means that you are doing something to yourself that you probably shouldn't.
I am wearing all basics: navy cotton sweater, black skinny jeans, red knitted cap, Fluevog two-tone boots. Everything second hand. Hand-crafted silver ring: Judy Bjorkman