Native New Yorker Shaunya is the owner and curator of VintageShaun, a collection of vintage clothing with a contemporary vision that has been featured in NBC’s The Today Show. She is a longtime Goodwill fan and style expert. Last May, Shaunya collaborated in Goodwill’s Spring Fling the Excess, our Earth Day/spring cleaning promotion. Most recently, she styled models for Goodwill Suits You, a fashion show to mark October, National Disability Employment Awareness month.
Starting today, she will guest blog for A Good Look every other Monday. Don’t miss it!
Statistics say that most people wear 20 percent of their wardrobe 80 percent of the time. Many of us, me included have fallen into this habit of having wardrobe favorites and wardrobe orphans. Clothing that sees the light of day too much and clothing that never gets to see the light of day.
Falling into this wardrobe rut happens to all of us whether you are completely at odds about fashion or whether you are a connoisseur of style. It can be for so many reasons, weight gain/ loss, sentimental value, laziness, lack of time, poor buying habits. Here are a few tips to get the most out of your wardrobe for fall and all the seasons ahead:
- STOP THE IMPULSE BUYS
Impulse purchases happen to all of us. Something caught your eye and it was affordable but you would have never purchased it at full price. Maybe a salesperson talked you into something, told you how amazing you looked and it was a different story once you got home but you were embarrassed to return it and have the sales person lose their commission. I use to be a major impulse purchaser, anything embellished, and I bought it. I have an entire pile of sequin, bejeweled pieces, that have me asking myself, what was I thinking? The best way to stop impulse purchases is with sleep. Yes, a good night’s sleep will either have you dreaming about a piece and the realization that you must have it, or you’ll go home and realize it’s not a necessity.
- MAKE SURE EVERY PURCHASE HAS A TEAM
In sports every player is an individual who stands alone but at the same time needs their team to win the game. The next time you shop, think of that item as a player and your wardrobe as the team. A player has to compliment the team and a great team is not built overnight. For every one item your purchase, you should have three items at home that will compliment it. If you are at the register and saying to yourself, what top/bottom/shoes goes with this, put it back. If you purchase something knowing that it goes with nothing in your wardrobe present day, that item of clothing will have a 90 percent chance of never being worn. Next time you shop, think about the team at home not just the newly acquired draft pick.
- DRESS FOR THE LIFE YOU HAVE ON THAT DAY
We can oooh and ahh at the cool artist down the hall’s ability to wear a pink leather dress like it’s the coolest thing ever but you work in a law firm, there has and never will be a place for pink leather. Shopping is a lot like art; we can browse and educate ourselves without buying because really at the end of the day, where are we going to place the Mona Lisa in our studio apartment. Same should go for your wardrobe, you can admire the style choices of strangers or even celebrities but you have to put into perspective the life you actually live. Buying tons of punk rock influenced pieces and you’re a nurse doesn’t make sense. Just as if you buy delicate silk blouses and you work with messy toddlers all day. Your wardrobe should be practical in the sense that you are wearing and buying for the life you live on that very day. Not when you lose the last ten pounds, or not for an event that you’ll never get an invite to buy for the life you have right then and there.
- ROTATE, ROTATE, ROTATE
If you pull something out of your closet, once you’ve worn it and cleaned it put it the back of your closet. The rotation of clothing makes it easy to wear your entire wardrobe. So often we reach for the items right in front of us, and we wear things and put them right back in the same spot, many items to never see daylight. Think of your wardrobe as an all-star lineup, one person kicks and goes to the end of the line until everyone gets a shot. Impose that rule on your wardrobe; give every piece a running start.
Too many purging should be done first with a wardrobe or the last. Expunging your closet can be liberating or depressing or both. If it doesn’t fit, if you haven’t worn it in over two years, if you’ve never worn it in three years and if doesn’t go with anything, get rid of it. Best place to get rid of your gently or never worn items, your local Goodwill. What is one person’s never worn wardrobe is another person’s amazing thrift store find.