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How to Focus Your Shopping And Maintain The Perfect Closet

Wardrobe Rehab Jan 20, 2017

Choosing Your Essentials

So guys, I’m excited to share with you the final step in the Wardrobe Rehab Series!

It’s been incredibly fun to have you all join in with me along the way, and great to hear so many of you are having success curating your closet better. In this last post I wanted to talk about ways you can maintain your newly curated closet!

Personally I’ve found that maintaining a well curated wardrobe comes down to one basic principle: focused shopping. It’s not practical to expect you not to shop (who would want that?), but it’s about knowing what you want to buy and taking steps to avoid any purchases you don’t need. This can be a hard thing to adjust to, and don’t worry if it takes time. A stray buy here and there is all about living and learning and with an app like Shedd, it’s super simple to sell clothes you no longer need and buy the ones that you do.

How To Focus Your Shopping And Maintain The Perfect Closet

The Four Prompts

The key to a functional closet is adding to it in a considered way. This means, knowing what you need before you go shopping, trying to avoid sales and giving yourself a day to think about a new item before buying it. In considering new purchases, a useful tool I utilise when shopping is a set of prompts that help me confirm if a purchase is going to help (or hinder) me to create the perfect wardrobe. These questions are:

1. Does it go with 4 outfits?
2. Does it fit with my personal style? (More on that here)
3. Does the fit and fabric work for me?
4. What function does it have?

A few other tips for maintaining your closet with focused shopping are included below.

Make a list

Before you go shopping whether in person, online or on an app like Shedd, have in mind a specific goal you hope to achieve at the end of your shop. Make a mental list of the items you would like to buy – such as any missing from your essentials – and be specific with the colour, fabric and fit. To help you, we’ve created a shopping list printable to help you focus your buying on your next shopping trip. You can download it here.

4 Ways Rule

When I’m shopping, a great trick I have learnt is to assess each item is whether it can make up 4 outfits. This is a valuable test that ensures that not only is the item versatile, it allows you to consider before you buy, what you’ll wear it with so you can easily start wearing straight away. I love doing this for all the items I buy, and we’ve done it with my navy blazer here – you can see these outfits in action in the video below!

The Blazer

Essentials first

When putting together your list of essentials in Step 3 of our Wardrobe Rehab, there were probably a few things that were on your list but you didn’t own. If there are things that you need that will make your wardrobe more wearable such as a navy blazer or well cut pair of black trousers, put these items on your list and save up to buy the best quality you can afford. Go without anything else and keep that item in mind while you are saving.

Keep it simple (and neutral)

Buying basics and essentials in a neutral palette (or colours that you wear a lot based on your personal style) such as black, navy, white or beige increases their versatility and decreases the cost per wear. Keeping it neutral also means you are more likely to be able to create a couple of different outfits with pieces from your existing wardrobe.

Invest, invest, invest (in fabric and fit)

Invest in quality pieces. When you can, head to preloved clothing apps like Shedd or designer vintage stores. Often you find better quality and more unique pieces than you do in high street stores. It’s definitely no secret that the saying “you get what you pay for” rings true when it comes to buying clothes but it also pays to shop smarter. Knowing which items to go all out for and which to hold back on a little is key to covering all the bases in your wardrobe. For garments such as a trench coat that you get a high volume of usage out of, it’s important to invest as much as you can in them as these pieces need to be well made and durable. On the other hand, basics such as t-shirts, camisoles and hats, it’s reasonable to hold back a little and buy pieces that sit in the middle price ranges because you are more likely to have multiples so the usage of each will be low. Because these basics function mainly as wardrobe fillers as well, they can also be easily rotated around or replaced.

Finally, to continue maintaining your wardrobe in the long term, try to work through it and organise it as much as possible – have a quarterly or bi-annual clean out to get rid of anything you have accumulated that you won’t wear. You can sell these items so you can pay for good quality clothing that has been on your list for a while both which you can do on Shedd.

This post is in collaboration with Shedd. You can download it here.

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