Shop Your Closet

I have an enormous appetite for new clothing, and as a result, I probably own more than I could ever make good use of. The pleasure of acquiring new things isn't singular to the moment they enter my possession - it's a plural bliss for me. I love scouring for a good deal, imagining how the item will 'fit' with what I already own, and how the piece might help evolve my style. I enjoy the anticipation of its arrival (if I found it online), the hours of 'dress-up' I play (both in life and in my mind), and then the actual debut of the item. The experience of buying is hardwired to my lifestyle of style.

Even though I'm thrifty about how I acquire things, I recently felt a need to push my frugality a little further - so I challenged myself to a 'spending fast'. I literally spent $0.00 for ten days. By silencing all of the feelings and emotions shopping stirs in me, I was able to fully experience what I already have - not what I'm waiting to receive. I turned my attention toward the beautiful things I already own and shopped my own closet for a change.

Shopping your closet resembles those day long clean-out sessions in that you pay consideration to just about everything you own. It differs because you aren't under the gun to get rid of things and are free to play dress up. Fun, right?! After a few hours of deliberation, here is what I was able to 'buy' from my own closet. Oddly, I came up with something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue!

  1. Something OLD. We all have something in our closet that looks amazing no matter how many seasons have gone by. Usually it's something of classic quality. For me it's an old Talbots dress I thrifted years ago. I've never gotten rid of it because each time I wear it I feel wonderful and always get a compliment or two. Challenge yourself to style an old piece a little differently. Can you breath new life into it by changing your shoe or bag? Would a change of belt or scarf give it the right nudge?
  2. Something NEW WITH TAGS. Who among us doesn't have something in their closet hanging there with price tags still attached? Guilty as charged! I got a good deal on this J Crew Floral Jacquard Skirt many months ago but was never sure how to wear it so it's been pushed aside until I challenged myself to get it out and get it on.
  3. Something BORROWED FROM THE BOYS. Don't be afraid to try something from the men's side of the closet. An old t-shirt, and great button down, even a pair of jeans (where do you think the term 'boyfriend jean' came from?!) can lend an interesting way to remix what you already have. I found a pair of Gap chino shorts in camouflage print that gave just the right amount of slouch and edge to otherwise feminine clothing. I may actually spend more time shopping the mens section in the future!
  4. Something that could be ALTERED or REPURPOSED. If you're like me you have a pile of clothing that could benefit from a visit to the tailor. Taking time to address this pile can easily add a few 'new' pieces to your wardrobe. In addition to pants and dresses that need a nip/tuck, I keep denim that I wouldn't mind taking the scissors to. I found a pair of old Levi 501s and turned them into perfectly distressed denim shorts. (My advice when doing this is to make your first cut 4-6 inches longer than you want, and slowly trim away the excess trying the shorts on in between cuts.)

I think the take away from my spending fast is to remember that being thrifty isn't always about spending LITTLE MONEY, but is also about spending NO MONEY. I hope you shop your closet too and come away with some amazing 'new' outfits!