How to Shop for Clothes You’ll Actually Wear (& Love)

H&M burgundy cropped sweater

As much as I love online shopping and personal styling subscription boxes, they make it all too easy to build up a closet packed with random pieces, rather than one that’s workable and fits my lifestyle.  My discovery of the online thrift store ThredUP and some very well curated DailyLook boxes were the biggest culprits that led to my now over-stuff closet.

In effort to stop just accumulating things, and instead, focus on building a more minimalist, workable wardrobe, I turned to The Curated Closet by Anuschka Rees for some inspiration, motivation, and tips.  Within just the first couple of chapters, I picked up some useful tidbits that I now take into consideration every time I shop.  Here’s a quick summary of the five that stood out most to me…

black suede over the knee boots with jeansblack over the knee suede boots 1

Don’t feel like you have to follow the trends, especially if they don’t flatter your body type or suit your personal taste and lifestyle.  Instead, pick and choose only the ones that stand out to you, and that you feel good wearing.  Not into any of the new season’s styles?  Skip ’em and continue wearing your old favorites.

“The people I admire most for their style aren’t those who follow every trend and dress in designer clothes from head to toe, but people like Sophia Coppola, Charlotte Gainsbourg, and Grace Coddington.  These women are style icons not because they follow rules but because they make their own, and each have a strong sense of style and a clear signature look.” –  Anuschka Rees, The Curated Closet

Avoid buying clothes, shoes, and accessories that you only half like, just because they’re on sale or deeply discounted.  That goes for luxury items, to even $5 thrift steals.  Remember, the goal is not to simply acquire pieces.  From what I’ve found, they only end up costing us in other ways, like…

  1. Space, in our closets, dressers, or storage.
  2. Confidence. We often compromise things like fit, quality, and even style preferences, just to grab a ‘good deal’ – which all factor into how we feel when we wear a particular item.
  3. Mental clutter, caused by sifting through a closet full of pieces we aren’t excited to wear, or trying to create outfits when you’re missing key wardrobe essentials.

H&M burgundy cropped sweater (1 of 1)-3

Buy clothes that actually feel good on your skin.  They should also stay put and not require constant adjusting – so leave those off-the-shoulder tops that don’t stay up, and bell sleeved-tops that make it impossible eat a regular meal!  And when it comes to shoes, try to find ones that actually keep your feet comfy, or, at the very least, not in excruciating pain after only a few hours of wear. (Because, at that point, are they really worth the potential damage to your toes and feet?!)

Choose clothes that fit the contours and proportions of your body, without distorting your silhouette or restricting movement as you walk, sit down, bend down, and so on.  If you’re not sure what body type you have, or what shapes and cuts would be most flattering for you, this website offers a great beginner’s guide.

Purchase pieces that are practical for your lifestyle.  While that dress may look gorgeous, and you just know you’ll look amazing it in, make sure you can name at least one or two events that you can wear it to.  Remember, it’s always more fun to shop and try on those ‘fantasy’ pieces – i.e. sexy dresses, strappy 4 inch heels, and cute swimsuits and cover-ups – when it’s the more basic pieces – like button ups, sweaters, plain tees, camis, and pants – that we tend to wear most often and need the most.

black suede over the knee boots with blue jeans (1 of 1)-4H&M burgundy cropped sweater 2

Outfit

Sweater: H&M

Jeans: Just Black (similar)

Boots: ASOS (similar)

Bag: Coach (similar)

Jewelry: Gorjana

black over the knee suede boots with heel


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