tiaras optional

"My only argument is with those who do not view the world as cynically as I do." Michael Korda

Friday, March 06, 2009

Shopping in My Closet

With the current economic crisis, I have been reading a lot of “helpful” advice on penny-pinching. Occasionally, it’s disgusting Depression era suggestions like boiling your dental floss and then reusing it. But since I read a lot of fashion magazines and blogs, it’s more often really obvious advice like:

Buy stuff on sale.
Actually like consider whether you really need something before you buy it.
Buy less crap.
And my personal favorite: Go shopping in your closet.

I’ve been using the first three for years, and I sort of can’t believe they’re even offered up as advice because they seem so obvious. I’ve always had certain rules for shopping:

1. Don’t buy anything I can’t afford (i.e., I don’t charge clothes. Either I have the money or I don’t. And if I don’t, I don’t buy it).
2. Ask myself whether the item fills a need in my wardrobe.
3. If I answered no to #2, I then ask myself, is it such a fabulous bargain that I’ll be kicking myself for months if I don’t buy it?
4. Recognize when I have enough stuff and stop shopping.

These techniques work pretty well for me.

But let’s go back to the shopping in your closet advice. I’ve read this little gem of advice in a number of places. I can only assume it’s geared toward women with closets the size of a studio apartment who wander into them and say things like, “I totally forgot about this Chanel suit” or “Why don’t I ever wear these Miu Miu pumps?”

Still, it’s not the worst advice. I have a lot of clothes, and there are many pieces I forget about for months at a time. So, maybe it’s time to reassess my closet.

There’s just one problem with this: If I walked into a store that looked like my closet, I would turn around and walk right back out again.

It’s a terrible, terrible closet. It’s not even 18 inches deep. It extends two feet on either side of the door, but it’s nearly impossible to see anything that’s more than a few inches beyond the doorway. There’s a light, but it doesn’t illuminate anything. I suppose one solution would be to get rid of about half of my clothes, but that just isn’t going to happen. In my last two apartments, I had fabulous walk-in closets, both of which were really well-designed and made organizing my clothes very easy. Not so with my current closet. Sometimes I look into it, and I want to cry. We met with a realtor last week, and when he asked what our requirements were in an apartment, big closets were my only dealbreaker. Everything else is negotiable.

The only good thing about my closet is that, since it’s so hard to see things, I do occasionally come across an item of clothing I haven’t seen in months, and that can be sort of exciting. Sadly, it’s never a Prada bag that I’ve totally forgotten I own.

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  • At 3/10/09, 7:00 PM, Blogger JordanBaker said…

    I resist shopping in my closet because it's most frequent offerings are clothes from 5 lbs lower; clothes from 20 lbs higher; and a vast selection of late '90's bridesmaid dresses.


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