It occurs to me many fashion blogs skew one way or the other – shop for the latest, greatest! or don’t buy but the barest amount one can get by with, maybe don’t shop for several months, or even a year, find virtue in minimalism. Wear only X number of garments because . . . (well I never figured out the real answer to that, since it cycles every couple months and in the end you may have as many pieces as you ever did, but just not all at once). Neither approach sits too well with me. Reminds me of the myriad diet approaches and how fanatical folks can get over what worked for them – it must then be applicable to you! Right?
Perhaps this is the real reason I finally decided to talk about how I approach fashion and buying and budgeting. Who is talking about the approach in the middle? Maintaining a wardrobe, responsibly yet fashionably, in today’s modern have-it-now times. One side is showing you all the shiny pretty new things that are hot, driving your wants and desires, and the other is intimating that not buying makes you somehow better, above those slaves to fashion. I feel both sides are yanking my chain, really. Maybe not intentionally, but the undercurrents are there.
Perhaps it’s just that moderation isn’t sexy. There is no ‘hook’ to catch your attention and draw you in. It’s pragmatic, sustainable, logical. Not terribly exciting. But I believe it leads, long term, to happiness and eventually takes the focus off shopping in a way that strict minimalist shopping rules (think to past diets when you want what you can’t have), or shopping focused, trend highlighting blogs (buy this now while it’s hot), don’t.
Be YOU. Buy and wear what you like. Find what makes you comfortable, happy, balanced – in your life and your budget! 😉 Look inward just a bit; turn off the outside ‘noise’ and get in touch with how you want to express yourself through your clothing. You might find you don’t have so much pressure around what to buy, and how much, and when. It may become a secondary thing that you do as needed, much like picking up groceries when the fridge becomes bare.
Sure, if I had unlimited resources I might buy a lot more than I do. I certainly want more than I purchase each year. But part of growing up is being responsible and, much like not eating a whole bag of cookies when you open it, even though you can; not buying every pretty thing that catches your eye is part of the life skill set of knowing when to say when. Spending what is reasonable for your circumstances. That varies with budgets and of course careers and lifestyles, but I think we can all recognize crossing the line to excess. Conversely, life with no cookies, or only 10 cookies a year, would be a lot less fun. What really is there to gain in needlessly limiting yourself, if you have the space, the money, and the need for a new item that you fancy? Goodness knows, we often eventually binge precisely on the thing we tell ourselves is off limits. So go ahead, have a cookie! Then close up the bag and save the rest for a treat another day.
I’m not saying those other view points are invalid. I’m saying they don’t resonate with me as a way to approach my own wardrobe. I sure didn’t get here overnight. I fell prey to a lot of the over shopping, then going on bans for a few months, then over shopping again. We are all works in progress, and hopefully learning from our mistakes along the way. It was only through trial and error that I came upon a plan of moderation that could work for me. Much like figuring out how often you can eat those treat cookies, figuring out how many items and how much money you can or should be spending is a personal journey. Let’s enjoy that journey along the way! No punishments through denying oneself, or guilt from over buying. Find that happy medium. It’s called happy for a reason 🙂