Athleisure Capsule

I had been meaning to attend to this since the start of the year.  Other things took priority, but now I’m focused on flushing it out.  Last week I got some Skechers, mostly for work at the Mexican rotisserie, but they also could cross over into athleisure apparel.  I bought some Athleta tights yesterday and Sanctuary joggers today.  Both should arrive soon.

In addition to these new items, I have the following already in my closet.  I just need to get in there and get mixing and matching!

I also have plenty of true ‘gear’ items, for running and yoga, which I may or may not decide to mix into the capsule.  PrAna, Adidas, Reebok, Nike, and the like.  The above are more a nod to the idea of sporty wear without being true technical fabric, sweat-it-out, gear.

Not listed, but obvious (I hope!) are the t-shirts and tanks to layer with/under everything.
I’m not really sure how it will pan out, but I’m eager to try.  I don’t want to feel or look like I literally just got done running or left yoga class.  But I like the idea of a casual sporty look that will be super comfy to boot!

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End of Summer Shop – intentional vs. unplanned

This weekend is the last of summer and I just now finished up my seasonal shop.  I spent a good amount of time and energy in acquiring swimwear.  The other buys were actually quite unintentional and things I just stumbled upon happily.  They might be some of my better buys this year, so I am giving thought to the happy accident vs hunting down of a listed item.

The swimwear was a toss up between a designer style that I really liked vs better fit of a bargain priced suit.  Not until I was in the moment of changing after work into the designer bottom yesterday to go to a water slide did I make the choice that it would indeed go back.  I’d had a return slated for 4 weeks but was hemming and hawing.  Part of my thought process actually went like, “if I have the complete set, resale will be better on eBay someday.”   Well, spending $60 on something I’m not comfortable in now to maybe recoup some money later is obviously silly thinking.  I mean, I even ordered 2 sizes in this bottom and the larger size did not offer more coverage.  It’s just too skimpy.  Period.  End of story.  Move on!

swim separates

swimwear capsule 2016

Since making that decision, I went back and reordered a suit I’d first returned as maybe being too tacky.  I think the mesh along with the bright red color was what had me questioning it.  I went with the white version this time and think that will keep the ‘sexy’ down and make it more wearable.  Reordered just the top in red, to go with my black board shorts.  Again, enough balance to counter the possible too sexy vibe.

I know this sounds like a lot of back and forth and it was.  I don’t like to spend so much time and energy on shopping for things.  But swimsuits are hard even when you can try them on in store.  Ordering them online makes it all the much more involved.  Can’t fake bad fit with a bikini!  That said, I’m glad it’s done and I look forward to a month or so of little to no shopping.

The other items I got I stumbled upon at both Ross and TJ Maxx.  The blush and cobalt tanks from TJ Maxx were actually on my list (I’d been hunting online but not found the ‘ones’) and the wrap dress at Ross was truly an impulse buy in every sense.  I think sometimes just grabbing what appeals to you across the room can be a good thing.  As long as it is not the default shopping mode you engage in, that is!  Often times I find I get so focused in finding the _____ that I become a worse shopper.  I end up funneling my search through, say, color first instead of seeing the garment as a whole – its texture or drape.

I’ve done this with a red dress for several years now.  I have tried three, none of which I ever wore.  The most recent I returned right away, as the color was off.  It has me wondering why I think I ‘need’ a red dress anyway.  I like the color on me.  But beyond that . . . I don’t have a good answer.  Maybe just a red topper over a black dress would be fine.  Or better.  Maybe I have to let go a little of the gaps I think I need to plug in my wardrobe and just be more open to finding items a bit more serendipitously.

After all, this unplanned for wrap dress is a world better than any of the red dresses I’ve been hunting down!

Calvin Klein wrap $21

Off Balance – yet again

Or, the saga of working three jobs. Yes, I have no one but myself to blame – and I am in the process of getting back into a reasonable routine.  But in the meanwhile I’ve let the blog posts slip onto the back burner.

I am still steadily shopping off my list.  Had a bit of a back and forth returns saga with sizing swimsuits recently.  I have a red dress on order right now to hopefully replace one I bought last year that was an ‘almost’ that I never wore.  Also a yoga tank that might be long enough to stay down without tugging.  But moreover I’m trying to get my career track back in the right direction.

I tried a retail job, branching out from food and beverage.  I didn’t really like it but I stuck with it as the job I ‘should’ have with benefits.  Fast forward a year and a half and I’ve taken on a second food and beverage job in addition to the golf course, and finally gave notice at the grocery last week.  It’s been a hard couple of months transitioning between all the jobs but I knew when I took on the 3rd that I’d give up the grocery eventually. And for those concerned, I do still have health insurance, so that’s all good 😉

I tried something new and gave it a good try, but it’s okay to say, “that’s not me, this is what I prefer.”  In the end, be true to yourself.  Once I’m back to a few days off each week and a regular schedule, I’ll have the time to wear more of my clothing again.  At the moment it’s uniform to loungewear, to bed, back to uniform.  Rinse, repeat.

So that is why I’ve been so scarce here.  I am still plugging away slowly at my list, trying to be patient and get just the right _____ that I need.  Sometimes I get caught up in the returns merry go round, but it is better than settling for second best and then needing to upgrade that item anyway.   I think clothes shopping is in its proper place in my life at the moment.  Sure, I think about it more than most, but I’m keeping on track and within $50 of my yearly budget at the moment.  I’m looking forward to a great fall, back on track with the kind of work I enjoy and a schedule that gives me more time to live my life!

Needs, Wants – Can’t We Have Some Fun?

The other day I wrestled with online shopping to fill a void of time.  I did need some things, but mostly I was feeling anxious and restless and was using the searching and hunting to assuage my unease.  I did not buy anything at that time but instead went online to a Facebook group I belong to End Closet Chaos.  It helps sometimes to just get it off your chest lol.

I was looking at shift dresses I’d had in and out of my carts for a couple months.  The heat is here and what is more perfect that a light, airy dress to beat it?  But I work 6 days a week right now and have no time to wear a $200 shift, even a $60 one, to warrant such a purchase.

But I do need, and have also been looking on and off for, tanks.  A casual relaxed fit for my summer social activities and also wearable to my new job, and a black workout one for yoga.  So, I turned my search to the true need of the moment – tanks.  Put some in a cart.  And then walked away.  Went to my shift at work and left them there.

While I was at work, one of them went off sale.  This is an online site where sales are a daily thing honestly.  I decided I could do without that particular black tank and started searching for a different one.  Noticed the new sale (see, there is always a sale going there!) included . . . . shift dresses.   At this point I told myself, “hey, self, you want a shift and you know it’s a want, not a need.  You need tanks.  You can have both this way.”  I ended up with 2 tanks as planned, and a $8 shift just for fun.  Felt totally fine with this choice, not as if I’d ‘caved’.

twist shift dress $8

When I think it through, I’m happy if I focus 80% of my shopping on what I need and have fun with the other 20%.  Used to be the opposite was how I spent my clothing budget.  Maybe the shift won’t work out.  Or maybe I will only have 2 or 3 occasions to wear it this year with my crazy schedule.  I can deal with that on deep sale, not so much the $198 version that first caught my eye.  That would be a large part of my budget spent toward a frivolous item and I’d never get reasonable CPW from it.  I still want to have fun with my wardrobe and occasionally buy something I simply want, but not at the expense of filling those needs first.

Changes

I realize I’ve been missing in action for 2 full months now!!  This was completely unintentional but also makes sense, in that I don’t want to post just for the sake of posting.  I wait until I have something I feel I want to share or say.  I have been busy trying to sort out life.  Job issues, changing dynamics in friendships and my relationship, altering some long standing habits – big stuff.  The clothing has taken a backseat.

I have still been keeping with my list to shop, and am on track with budget for the year so far as well.  I just have been seeking moderation in so much more than my closet.  Guess I’m dealing with midlife stuff.  I tend to coast along in the comfort zone, whatever that may be, rather than make changes that can sometimes be difficult.  This year I have taken more of a driver’s seat in my own life.  It’s different.  And others don’t always react well when YOU are changing and they aren’t.  But it’s important, and good for the soul, to take charge of your own destiny (as much as any of us has control that is lol).

Getting back to the closet . . . Lately I found myself purchasing basics and gear, or althleisure oriented, items.  This is great, since I’ve historically bought the ‘going out’ looks but spend most of my time dressing for the other categories in my life.  Better to be buying for the categories most worn, if not most fun to shop for.  Though, I  must admit, I am finding the athleisure/gear kinda fun.  Why not look cute playing tennis or riding your bike to the beach?  This also ties in a bit to some of my life changes.  I would rather spend my off time being active outside having fun than sitting in a bar or eating out.  Not that I don’t love a good happy hour with snacks now and again!  But I want to experience life, not just sit through it.  Luckily, most of my friends like to do both. I’m hoping for an awesome summer filled with days of fun in the sun.

Changes to my work schedule will allow for that.  Last year I had stretches of 2 and 3 weeks straight of work, missing out on fun times others were having.   Not this year.  I had to do some finagling, dealing with insurance,  and long discussions with my BF but I have arranged to do part time at both jobs so that I can have normal days off and live more of a full life.  This makes me happy.  That I made the choice.  I did the legwork of dealing with the insurance red tape.  I confronted the boss(es) and told them what I was, and wasn’t, available for.  I took an active role.  It’s my life.  I get to decide how to live it. 🙂

I promise I’ll be back with a shopping and closet inventory update.  It’s 1/3 the way through the year and a perfect time to take stock.  Until then, know that I’m still seeking moderation in my shopping, but also in my life as a whole.

 

2016 – Intuitive Shopping

Sorry it’s been few and far between posts lately.  Life has really gotten stressful.  I do have a shopping plan for 2016 and a rough budget of $1500.  But this year I want to focus less on stringent rules and exact numbers (3 items per month or no more than 15 dresses for example).  Sure, I want to keep within the guidelines that I’ve found work for me but I want to be much more organic with my approach to shopping itself.  Less hunting down of an item and more happening upon it at some point throughout the year.

I also want to get more realistic with buying what I really wear day in and day out.  Yes, that means loungewear and layer pieces and underwear and all that not so fun to buy stuff.  But man, does it feel good to live in pieces that are just right and not leftovers that are demoted on their way to being tossed out.  If I wear a shirt under my uniform polo every work day, I am happy that it is a super soft modal blend that I went and bought solely for that purpose.  Yes, it cost $40, and no, no one really ‘sees’ it, but I feel it.  Almost every day.  Those are the kinds of purchases I’m talking about.

To add to the mix, I may be moving back to FL again at the end of the year.  Maybe not, but the possibility is definitely there.  I’ve said before the size of my wardrobe is impacted by the fact that I live between two opposing climates.  This continues to be a factor even when I think we’ve finally moved back ‘for good’.  Nothing is guaranteed.  I did make my template before the thought of going back to FL reentered the picture.  It is Tahoe centric lol.  I still have lots of FL clothing from prior years.

With all of that out of the way, here is how this year is panning out so far:

2016 shop

And here is how the budget is shaping up so far.  I start my shopping year the first day of winter (Dec. 22) but I ‘fudged’ with Black Friday sales on the sweaters.  I did this last year, too.  I think I can safely say that I will PRE-spend my xmas gift money on Black Friday.  That’s okay.  Like I said, less stringent rules, more going with the flow.  😉

2016 spent so far

 

I’m about $225 into my budget.  I don’t foresee any big ticket items this year like boots or leather coats.  Maybe a handbag if I see just the right one.  Instead, I envision more purchases at retail of exactly what I want vs sale shopping for a good enough version.  This will be a big change.  Of course, I won’t stop sale shopping, but it won’t be the driving factor.  I imagine happening upon an item on my list that’s just the one, and buying it right then and there, will be a nice feeling.

So that’s the deal with my shopping plan for 2016.  Much of the same ideas as before but with different intent.

 

 

Unworn 2015 Purchases

I did quite well with buying things on my list and wearing what I bought this year.  For the most part.  There are still a handful of items that did not get worn.  Some I bought near the end of the year and just have not yet had an occasion, but some I’ve had plenty of time to don, yet haven’t for one reason or another.  My aim is to buy what I’ll wear and wear what I buy. 

I need to focus just as much on the second half of that motto.  I don’t need every new purchase to be worn a lot to be considered a successful buy.  Some things make me happy even if I wear them just twice a year.  But there is no sense in owning items that are not worn at all.

Here is what has not left the closet yet:

Express red halter dress bought May 20
Miss Me jewel cuff jeans bought July 30
Equipment silk snake print blouse bought October 17
Faux fur vest bought November 9
Express black shirt dress bought November 11
Express dalmatian clutch bought November 11

The vest I almost wore twice just last week.  I think that is more a timing/opportunity thing, not a possible mistake.  Ditto the two November Express purchases – life got very busy and my opportunities to dress outside of work uniform were slim to none, so I think I just need more time in order to break them out.

But the other items I’ve had the time so it is something else with them.  I packed both the red dress and snake print shirt on my vacation to New Orleans 2 months ago.  Had the opportunities to wear them but did not.  I either need to decide if they are too far outside of my comfort zone or how to better style them so I feel more comfortable wearing them.

I’d actually put on the red dress earlier in the summer to wear, but it was ‘too much’ for the occasion.  I like it but it is the kind of dress that needs to have just the right place to wear it or it’s quite conspicuous.  I do believe I will wear it, and am not planning on getting rid of it any time soon.

The snake shirt I packed to wear with my leather/suede pants.  That was a mistake in styling.  It came across as both too masculine and also too ‘cougar’ like all at the same time.  Felt aging.  I think I need to pair it with feminine items to balance the print and the button front styling.

That leaves the jewel bottomed jeans.  I think fit is the issue here.  I LOVE the detail, even if bling is a little passe in some circles.  They are both too long and too loose around the cuff, given my shorter stature and slim calves.  I am debating altering them in to be narrower, so the longer crop does not cut off the leg line and just hang there.

I do like to wear my items shortly after purchasing, season and occasion allowing.  When I don’t I’ll admit it gets me wondering if they were mistakes.  Taking the time to figure why items aren’t yet getting worn can be helpful.  Both in not tossing them prematurely, and in realizing what issues are at play and maybe considering these when making future purchases.  For instance, I won’t be buying any more fancy skimpy dresses.  The combination of dressiness and skimpiness limits its wearability for me.  Any future ones might be shiny or short, but will have coverage up top more suitable for my climate.

Feel free to share what in your closet didn’t get worn and why you think that is.  Did you make a mistake, or has it just not had it’s time yet?  Do you have a set amount of time in which something unworn gets returned or purged?