TOP 10 Shopping Do's and Don't.... to having a fabulous wardrobe.

In my personal opinion a lot of the reason women's and men's wardrobe's are limited is because they limit themselves when shopping.  The reason I pride myself in having an eclectic wardrobe is because of the rules below.  I know that this may not be fun to read, because let's face it, pictures are more fun to look at....but please take the 10 minutes to read this and really process it, because it has genuinely helped me out with shopping and personal style. 

Why I think this is important to share?
My freshman year of college, I kinda had a shopping problem.  Shopping is my kryponite and when things didn't go as planned, I went shopping to heal the pain!  I know it sounds ridiculous but this is what I do when I am feeling down.  I don't find comfort in food, or T.V, I find comfort in shopping. And it's no laughing matter.  With my bank account overdrawn hundreds of dollars at one point I realized that this was serious, and yes, even went to a counselor.  So this is the truth, it's not easy to share but hopefully it will show you and help you realize that you can look fabulous and feel fantastic, on a budget, and don't have to go shopping every single day to feel good.  You also don't need NEW clothes every month to keep stylish.  The key is to keep your wardrobe eclectic and versatile, know what looks good, and treat your clothes with love and care.

1.)  Don't be afraid to shop in the clearance or sale racks.  A common misconception is that clothing is in the clearance racks because it is either a.) out of style, b.) damaged, or c.) cheap and bad quality.  That is not the case!!!  A lot of stores are merely overstocked and need space for their new merchandise so their old merchandise gets marked down.  Also, many stores are obligated to mark down anything that has been returned so you may find something that is full price on the floor but also on the sale rack merely because someone returned it. 

2.) Don't be afraid to shop "vintage" or thrift shopsThe harsh reality is that a lot of people are often embarased or gorssed out by thrifting.  I understand that beacause I went throught that phase as well.  What you need to understnad is a lot of clothes are sent to the thrift shops brand new.  If it still isn't your cup of tea still, accesories are still great finds.  A vintage broch pinned onto a formal dress looks absolutely fantastic and istead of paying hundreds for one at Saks, why not get on for a couple bucks (at a thrift store) that gives your outfit way more personality.
3.) Don't be afraid to shop the wrong section of the store.  Women, menswear inspired items are always on trend.  Whether it's vest and ties, or the oh so popular boyfriend watch we saw this year.  Why get a "boyfriend" tee, when you can just buy a men's v-neck?  The benefit to this is that believe it or not, for some reason, it's always a couple bucks cheaper in the men's.  I think it's becuase women are more willing to spend money on clothes, so they don't bother trying to charge men $35 bucks for a t-shirt.  That doens't fly with the guys.  One of the best men's purchases I have every made was a 5 pack of undershirts, from Wal-Mart.  You know those "boyfriend tees" that they charge $15 for at the mall? Yeah, same thing.  Nobody will ever know.  

4.) Don't be afraid to try things on!  For better or worse, I can NOT stress enough how important is it is to try things on.  NOBODY has the body of a store front mannequin.  Even the thinner girls, your proportions are not the same.  Just the other week I bought a shift dress from Target that on the hanger is absolutely hid-e-ous, then I realized it came with a little bitty string tie to synch the dress at your natural waist.  I tried it on, and couldn't leave the store without it.  The cutest clothes sometimes don't have the best hanger appeal, and everything look different on.  Even if you know your size no matter what store you step into, you never know where a neckline may lay, or how a fabric might show any or all your body's flaws.  We all have em, and obvisously don't want to flaunt them. So make sure that what you are buying looks good on you before you might buy it and not be able to return it.  Which leads us to number 5.

5.)  The Rule of 3.  I talked about this many many posts ago, but new readers may not have caught it.  This is something I kinda made up on my own, but it has helped me not impulse shop as much.  If you try something on, and can force yourself to find 3 things that you DON'T like about it, then it's not worth getting.  It's that simple.  If you can't find 3 things you hate about it, buy it. BUT BEFORE YOU DO, READ RULE 6!

6.) NEVER EVER buy something that can not be paired with less that 10 things you already own.  Unless it is a very special occasion or any important milestone in your life, stray away from buying something SPECIFICALLY for one outfit.  And never shop in outfits.  Shop for individual items.  The main things to look for, to avoid it not being versatile with your already existing wardrobe, is fabric and color.  I owned a faux silk shirt once that I just couldn't pair with anything because the fabric clashed with denim, looked awful with leather, and horrible with cotton.  So I literally couldn't wear it.  Also, my most expensive shirt is an off-royal blue.  Once again, didn't think it's through, and it's still sitting in my closet with the tags on, because the color just look horrible with everything I own. 

7.) If you like it then you should've ripped the tag off it!  Alright ladies, own up to it.  We all have tags on clothes in our closet still, and that's fine.  But the unspoked rule that I have for myself is that if I have anything in my closet with a tag on it, I'm not allowed to shopping.  Even if you love everything you have, we always wear the same items over and over again for some strange reason, hmmmm.  So do the same thing I do, and you can't buy anything new until you have a tag-free closet.

8.)  Take care of your clothes with some T.L.C.  We can't all afford dry cleaning or expensive clothes to begin with, so make sure you really take care of what you paid for, that is your hard earned money after all.  So treat it with care so it lasts longer and don't do laundry like a man.  My little tip: don't use a dryer, dryers not only shrink your clothes, but they make age them faster, so air dry your laundry whenever possible.

9.)  Make your closet a boutique.  If you like looking at your closet, you'll like getting dress in the morning, and it will reduce the urge to get new clothes.   Taking the time to organize and make sure everything is in place sounds like a waste of time because who is gonna see it anyways? But the better your closet looks the more it will make you not want new things as often. 

10.) Save for quality, not for quantity.  Especially to anyone in their mid-20s and older.  It's time to start buying things that are timeless and classic, and not only going to last you a while in terms of years, but that will stand the test of style for the rest of your life.  I used to not like to buy just one thing when I went shopping but now, I would rather save up for a couple months and look to shopping as fashion investment, not just fun.  

In summation, I know the little peak in my closet through the post looks like a lot, but I've work the same shoe size the past 10 years, and I've always been very confident with my personal style.  So what you see is a culmination of fashion purchased from 8th grade to current.  I hope you enjoyed this post.


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  Don't have a walk-in closet? See all my tricks to Maximizing & Organizing your smaller closet space HERE!

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