For as long as I can remember, I have noticed what people are wearing. It is actually, unintentionally, what I first notice about a person when I meet him or her. When I met you, if I have met you, I asked you your name twice. I did not catch it the first time because I was checking out what you were wearing. What a person wears says so much about him or her. I can often tell, before you tell me, whether you are outdoorsy, a hippy, from a wealthy family, from a certain country (seriously), a gym rat, or as addicted to clothes as I am, etc. solely based on what you are wearing. You may jump to the conclusion after reading that admission that I am superficial, but let’s be honest, how we dress really does project to the world how we feel about ourselves. So many women and men hide behind clothes that are too big for them because they do not like their current weight or too small for them because they are either clueless about a recent weight gain or trying to get attention (the wrong kind), or people dress themselves from head to toe in designer labels so that the world know they have money. I could go on, but I will spare you for now.
So, you are probably going to think that it is ridiculous that I plan not to buy any clothes, accessories or shoes for 365 days. Why in the world would I want to take a year off from buying clothes and accessories? Well, in some ways I think I have a problem, not a serious one that is going to bankrupt my family, but enough of one that I could benefit from a respite. I am not positive about this statistic, but I, on average, buy an article of clothing every week, some weeks many more than one. I love sales, but I also shop at expensive stores like JCrew, LuluLemon Athletica, Anthropologie and Nordstrom. Heck, sometimes, I even find myself in Kate Spade and Tory Burch. I end up at the mall way too often at random times during my week. I have never bought items over $400 like some fashionistas do, but I have enough clothes to fill three closets in my house. I have so many clothes that sometimes I find items that I love yet have not seen in over a year in my own closet.
Why do I have so many clothes? Well, the honest truth is that I adore a new article of clothing. I really LOVE wearing a garment for the first time. I actually used to enjoy new clothes so much that I would wear them out of the store, ripping the tags off on my way out the door, but my husband made so much fun of me that I stopped this insane practice shortly after meeting him. My father, who was taught this lesson by his mother, always told my brother and me that “we should worry about our appearance because if we feel good about the way we look, we will feel confident and make good impressions all day long”. I find this to be very true. If I do not feel good about the way I look, I am much less confident in my decision making during the day.
Another reason that I am taking a year off is, simply put, because I do not want the added pressure of staying on top of the latest trends. I have enough stress in my life with three kids under the age of 5, a full-time teaching job, and an obsession with working out. I am seeking liberation. I am also banking on the fact that I have enough clothes currently that I can dress cutely for the next year by using what I have in my closet already, without purchasing anything new.
I know a lot of you do not think I can do this, but I am pretty sure that I can. I will be tempted; in fact, I already have been. I even had a panic attack in the middle of Anthropolgie while trying to buy a birthday present for my mom.
If you are interested, this blog will keep you posted on how I make it through the season changes, the holidays, and vacations without making any clothing purchases.