Six Things For Personal Style Bloggers To Do Before Buying New Clothes

shutterstock_133628498

I've been a personal style blogger for almost 8 years. When it comes to taking photos of myself on a regular basis, falling into the “new clothes” habit is not only bad for my bank account, it also is bad for developing my own true sense of style. Don't get me wrong, I love shopping. Love. It. But over the years I've come to notice that I've wasted a lot of money buying things that didn't really work for me or I didn't end up wearing very much.

So instead of learning the hard way, like I did. I'm going to share with you a few things I've noticed helps in terms of curbing the shopping bug. Not that it keeps me entirely away from the shops, but it does help in making smarter choices.

Do Your Laundry

This may seem like a “No shit, Sherlock” kind of tip, but I can not tell you how many times I feel like I have “no clothes” when there is a big pile of laundry that needs to be done. Ok, maybe you don't hate doing laundry as much as I hate doing laundry. But the fact is, the clothes in your laundry bin are probably your favorite pieces. Give them a wash and look at your wardrobe with fresh eyes again. Also, doing your laundry will help you to realize what you have, and what you really wear.

Mend Broken Pieces, Go to the Tailor

If you wear things enough, they start to fall apart. No this does not necessarily mean you need to buy something new. Sew back on those buttons, stitch up those rips. If something isn't fitting you just right, take it to the tailor. Giving your clothes a new lease on life will help you identify what your signature pieces are, and eventually help you identify what your true style really is.

Organize Your Closet

Back in the day, people were able to fit their entire wardrobe on a couple of hooks. Today, it seems like everyone has a walk-in closet. Sometimes it's not that you don't have “enough” clothes, you just don't remember exactly what you have and where it is. I try to organize my closet every couple of months, usually with a change in the seasons. It always helps to realize what is going on in there.

Purge Clothes You Haven't Worn, or Rarely Wear

Usually after you organize your closet, you'll see exactly what you're not wearing. Donate or sell those pieces!

Ask, Why Certain Pieces Didn't Get Worn

Look at the pieces you don't wear very often. What do they have in common. Do you keep buying sequin dresses when your life calls for blue jeans? Face the facts. What do you ACTUALLY wear? Not what you want to wear, or wish you could wear, or think your readers would like to see you wearing. Really get to the bottom of how you dress by taking an inventory of what gets worn and what doesn't.

Plan Your Shopping Trips

Believe it or not, EVERYONE has a budget. Some people may have a large budget for clothes, others not so much. My husband and I used to live off around $300 a month, and my clothing budget was about $10. Believe it or not, my blog was still posting outfits every week back then too. You don't need to go shopping every month, maybe you do your shopping every new season, or at the end of the season for the sales. What do you tend to buy new every year? A pair of boots in the fall? A new swimsuit in the summer? If you have an idea of what you normally buy, making a plan for your spending will help keep your shopping splurges laser focused.

What other tips do you have for delaying that shopping trip?

[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]

Related Posts

About The Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

35 Responses

  1. Betty Szanto

    This is so true! Especially the laundry! 🙂 What else? Take care of your heels, change the heel tips when they are worn out instead of buying new pair of shoes! 🙂

    Reply
  2. Andréa Christine

    No shopping tends is tough especially since we all want to be “in” on the latest fashion craze. I love your advice for cleaning out your closet and wearing things that fit your lifestyle! Great Advice!

    http://www.simplyfashiontv.com

    Reply
  3. Jennifer Connelly

    I’d add…find another way to wear the piece. It’s amazing how a simple black sheath can be paired with a different jacket and a statement necklace and look completely different!!

    Reply
  4. Lillie

    I love that you brought up the fact that many of us buy pieces we want to wear, but they don’t necessarily fit our lifestyle. I do it all the time. It’s so important to build a wardrobe around your lifestyle and who you truly are- and not be ashamed of it! If jeans fit your life, then play with it! Make it your own!

    Reply
  5. Traci Smith

    If you can’t think of three ways to wear it, leave it! If you are not sure, put it on hold, the store will hold things until closing time. Giving you time to walk around and think about it, finding other alternatives. I live by this rule!

    http://www.justmariklo.com/

    Reply
  6. Melody Sours

    How did you know I needed this post so badly! I’ve been guilty of buying way more than I should for blogging purposes. I’ll get excited about something because I know it will photograph well and then it hangs in my closet for months following a shoot. There’s always that pressure to provide fresh content for our readers so its great to get permission (for lack of a better word) to shop less from a fellow blogger.

    xo, Melody
    http://blingaholic88.com

    Reply
  7. stephanie

    I hate doing laundry too. My laundry never ends thanks to my toddler and husband.I reuse pieces a lot.I do buy new things now and then but I tend to shop my closet. I have had things repaired and fixed. Or refitted.

    Reply
  8. Stephanie

    I make wishlist of the clothes I really want to buy… but I don’t buy them right away. If I can’t stop thinking about it, then I buy it. If not, I let it go. Same for when you see a pretty piece in a store. You can always put it aside for 1-2 days. If you reallyyy love it, then buy it.

    It saved me money and I only buy my favourite piece of clothing.

    Reply
  9. Brittany Ann

    It’s worth it to store away some seasonal pieces too. Sure, summer dresses can transition to winter with tights and a jacket, but pack something away for the novelty factor when the next season rolls around. Opening a box of clothing you haven’t seen in six months is really exciting.

    I love remix pieces as well, but hate the guides that say “One blouse three ways!” and it’s basically the same outfit with different shoes. That’s not remixing, that’s getting dressed. To remix is to think outside the box. Wear a dress as only the skirt/top. Tie a scarf to your purse instead of around your neck. Stop belting things for a more ’20s silhouette. The options are endless if you’re willing to go outside your comfort zone.

    Brittany
    http://www.fineryandmadness.com

    Reply
  10. Ally

    I love your advice on fixing up old clothing or getting pieces that don’t fit tailored more often! I think that really helps us refrain from spending more money on pieces that we technically have in our wardrobes 🙂
    allygong.com
    -Ally Gong

    Reply
  11. noel @ Third Day Hair

    I just did some writing on this very subject…especially in your very first paragraph where you mention buying so much you are not encouraged to develop your own personal style. Having just purged my closet, I realized (not for the first time) how much I bought to suit a mood or one specific tiny need… and never wore the item again. Or, in an attempt to get more for less, bought so many low quality items that barely sustained one wash without getting misshapen or otherwise unwearable. Learn the hard way I did!!

    Reply
  12. Carly

    Great tips. I would also add buying versatile pieces to use on your style blogs. Dresses basically can only get one or 2 posts out of them at most versus a top or skirt can be styled many different ways and used for more posts (spaced out of course).
    http://www.TheDoctorDiva.com

    Reply
  13. Nico

    That’s so true!
    I started to overthink my shopping habit and I have to say that I am much luckier with my closet than a few months before!
    I ask myself, befor buying sth new, how often I gonna wear it and in which combination, better to invest more in a high quality piece. The effect of investing in visible in the closet also: it isn’t so full!

    Reply
  14. Michal Upchurch

    I agree with every bullet point and use just about every one of those because with 3 kids there is no way for me to “ball out of control” shopping for myself.
    I have found just shopping for accessories can transform an outfit already in your closet.

    Reply
  15. Marie Skillern

    Great tips you got here. I should probably follow what you have posted. I guess it could be a great help for those who are really into shopping. Being organized is indeed a good way to budget.

    Reply
  16. Ceri

    Great post Jennine and definitely some great tips for bloggers. It can be very easy to keep buying new clothes that don’t really add anything to your wardrobe or don’t get worn very often. I think that concentrating on buying key pieces that will work for years to come is not only better for your style and bank balance but also the environment.

    Reply
  17. Sabina @Oceanblue Style

    OMG why is it that you guys here cover all the topics I am interested in or worrying about just in time? Luckily with that advice I will be able to avoid that bancruptcy that has been hovering over my head and defintely will have to organize my closet which I hate doing:) Sabina OceanblueStyle

    Reply
  18. NaShara Woods

    This article is 100% true!!! I think since the days of Instagram are alive and well it’s hard to not be in your clothes twice. I love shopping but some days my wallets don’t. I have learned that using a piece in many different ways is even better than the just the “fashion” it truly is style!!

    -NaShara
    http://www.itsnashara.com

    Reply
  19. Peggy

    Over the years (decades actually) I’ve found I need less and less and I know my style and yet, up until recently, I still made purchasing mistakes from time to time. I am now comfortable with what I feel best wearing – jeans and tees – and rather than giving away clothes I haven’t worn in a year (the rule of thumb it seems) I instead focus on what I love. If I love something, it stays in my closet and if I don’t love something even though I might wear it regularly, it goes. Living in Southern California, I don’t really need a wool coat in the winter, but we travel a lot so I need a warm coat for winter trips. I may not wear it for a year or two, but I would never give it away. I buy classics that don’t go out of style. It’s liberating not being chained to manufacturers and retailers whims of fashion.

    Reply
  20. ahhhsoneo

    I love these tips! I’m not a fashion blogger, but I think even us regular folks get so caught up in trying to stay up on the trends that even though we know something might not be right, we end up buying things that don’t work for us. Leggings anyone? I’m trying to go back to finding my style, small waist, big hips, structure. The whole boho chic trend and maxi dress trend were too loose for me, I need more structure than that.

    That reminds me, I have a pile of clothes that need to go to the dry cleaners and my tailor! Great post!

    http://ahhhsoneo.com

    Reply
  21. Jewel Divas Style

    You can also design whole new pieces, for example, when I was a teenager I had a tank top with a big music design on the front. After going on an amusement park ride there was a big grease stain on the plain back of the tank. So, mum cut off the front and stitched it onto another tank so I could keep wearing it.

    You can also use the material for other things if it’s salvageable, such as cushion covers, table runners, or as mum wants to make, a higgledy piggledy quilt.

    Reply
  22. Oliver Long

    Well, I can only speak for myself but my tip (for UK bloggers especially but may be applicable elsewhere too) is to do what professional stylists do, borrow your clothes for shoots. I put together my looks with mainly my own clothes but once in a while I need something I don’t already own to freshen up an outfit so I go hunting for these pieces, wear them for shoots, then return then for full refunds… Sometimes I fall in love with the stuff and end up deciding to keep them but I try not to establish any emotional attachments. Just treat them like props. It’s better than wasting my hard earned money, and as the poster says, it will eventually lead to so many problems if you just keep buying clothes.

    Oliver
    suedeandsymphony.com

    Reply
  23. Simona

    Exactly! Since I purged a lot of my wardrobe, I have so much more to wear. It sounds strange, but the outfits just keep coming. Otherwise you just drown in clothes. The do your laundry tip is hilarious and true!
    Simona
    Lake&Moon

    Reply
  24. Talktomyshoes

    SO TRUE about taking things to the tailor. I go through my closets each season and find ways to make old pieces work for me- maybe I have the sleeves of a top removed or a skirt or dress hemmed to a different length. Let’s add the cobbler or a good shoe repair to the list too! I should have got rid of my favourite boots about 6 years ago but I have managed to take them into shoe repair yearly and they have had a great life full of blogging because of it.

    Reply
  25. Rachel

    I’ve always loved shopping but before I started blogging my spending was considerably less than it is now. Now I get a couple packages every week, I’m out of control! I seriously cannot even fit any more clothes in my closet. So I think it’s time for a closet purge because there is no way I wear everything in there.

    To Hell In A Handbag

    Reply
  26. Joely Smith

    Personally I have started a new rule for myself, if I can’t get it at around 10.00 in a clearance section, with coupon codes, etc. I won’t buy it. I have done my share of splurging and at this point I am realizing if I can just be patient, I can find something similar to what I really want at a great discount!

    Reply
  27. Andrea

    So True! I often found myself shopping like “This would look so nice styled in my blog” and it ended up being a piece that I only wore that one time for the pictures on my blog. I didn’t even go out with the outfit, it was just for the picture. Just too crazy! I’m smarter now

    Reply
  28. Maria

    Before I send purged items to the opp shop , I hang them where I can see them and commit to wearing each x amount of times first (I work out a rough cost-per-wear, based on what I paid for it). I’ve rediscovered several items that, after some forced experimentation, I decided were keepers.

    Reply
  29. Abby

    I am planning a massive closet purge on my off day. I like to rotate my clothes. Sort through and see statement pieces that I may have featured a year or two ago but didn’t want to “overexpose” them. If they are still relevant then I set them aside in a possible To Blog pile and see if anything works in with my recent purchases etc.

    XoXo One Stiletto At A Time

    Reply