Two weeks into the new year and guess who has not spent any money on clothing? Yep, this girl, right here! Certainly this will not be the case forever, I am not on a spending diet nor am I doing a no-spend January. What has happened however, is that all the hard work I did over the last 18 months or so is starting to pay off, no pun intended. Last year was a time for me to tally, track and learn. But in 2023 I am planning to shop smarter, better and wiser.
How to Shop Better in 2023
I am sharing my thoughts and opinions with you about shopping better based on my experiences and what I’ve learned. Some of these ideas may help you, some may not, and some of you may not be interested at all in how to shop better. That’s okay, this is no one size fits all topic. I’ve said before and I’ll say it a million more times, what someone chooses to spend is their own business. For me, it all just became too much. Too much excess, too much stuff. Walking into my closet (okay, more like stepping, it’s not big) was unpleasant, I wanted to change.
Rather than being a place I enjoyed, and wanted to spend time in, my closet became the place where creativity went to die. I grabbed the same things over and over again and could barely see all of what I owned. The biggest problem for me was that I always felt like I had nothing to wear yet my closet was full.
Strategies for Smart Shopping
These are some of the strategies I have used or have learned about on my journey to not only find my style but to curate a wardrobe I love. BTW, the journey for me is ongoing, I have not reached my final destination and it is still a work in progress. Incidentally you can see this previous post on the subject of shopping for less!
- Know Your Style (see my previous post)
- Wait to Buy
- Quality Over Quantity
- Purge and Sell
- Rent Special Occasion Outfits
- Shop Second Hand
- Spend on Items That Will Stand the Test of Time
The ‘How to’ Explained
Knowing your style is honestly the first step, right along with knowing what looks best on you and works for your body type. I am still fine tuning these skills because I have a hard time knowing what looks best on me. Conversely, I can tell others what looks good on them and what doesn’t. If you are in the same boat as me, try asking a friend you value the opinion of; someone who has great style herself or himself. This is what I plan to do – my friend Jona has great taste and knows what works for her. I think she knows what would look best on me too so the next time we get together I am going to pick her brain! This is helpful because it eliminates those things that you may like the look of but know they aren’t for you. Shopping and purchasing will be so much easier when you can quickly eliminate options and hone in on the best of the best!
Wait to buy is a more positive way of saying – stop impulse buying. I believe in stating things in the positive because what you pay attention to you get more of; so saying wait to buy is a better way to get the message across. Merely saying stop impulse buying is more of a command. When I think of the purchases I made in 2022, the ones I regret were mostly impulse purchases. Buyers remorse is no joke. If you see something you want, wait to buy it. Think it through and ask yourself if it fits your style words AND if you can think of at least 3 ways to wear it. Let the answers direct your behavior.
Choosing quality over quantity means spending less on fast fashion items you’ll replace and repurchase. Sometimes you end up spending more because you have to keep replacing a garment than if you had just bought the better, more expensive one to begin with. But also know that price doesn’t always mean quality. So pay attention to fabrications.
A good closet clean out will allow you to purge and sell those items you no longer love. This will allow you to have money to invest in higher quality wardrobe staples you may be missing or may need to replace. No consignment shops in your area? There are several online you can use like Poshmark or Thred Up.
Another way to shop smarter is to rent rather than buy for special occasions. This may sound silly but, gosh, guys rent tuxedos for events yet we buy, buy, buy! And how many times have you actually worn that special dress again? There are rental companies like Rent the Runway that allow you to rent designer garments for a fraction of the price. This also leads to another shop smarter strategy – buy second hand. I realize this isn’t for everyone and I certainly know I cannot say anything in this space to change your mind BUT…you can buy gently used clothing and save a lot of money.
Finally, I say spend on those things that will stand the test of time. Like accessories! Shoes, bags, belts, and jewelry will fit regardless of your age and body changes. Buy the best you can when it comes to those pieces. Real leather will always look better and elevate a look. I have slowly replaced my old Amazon belt collection with luxury brands and I’ve done the same with my handbags. One way I saved A LOT of money on these purchases was shopping Fashionphile. I knew the bags I wanted and then scoured the site. I easily saved hundreds of dollars AND the bags were authenticated, came with the brand’s dust bags and excellent packaging.
Why I Am Not Shopping
Really I should say why I haven’t bought anything because I am ALWAYS shopping! I look at online retailers a lot but I have learned to employ some of the above mentioned strategies. Whereas I used to click a link and buy asap, I am much more thoughtful. I wait. What usually ends up happening is I think it though and decide I don’t need it.
I am enjoying sharing these kinds of posts with you all and I think you like them too. To be honest, I have considered a name change for the blog but that will evolve just all things do I suppose. Anyway, thanks for being here, you mean so much to me!