Remember when I wrote about my relationship with my wardrobe? Turns out, I'm not alone in this feeling of disconnect. Lots of you said you also feel like you have nothing to wear, even though you look inside your closet and clearly there are clothes.
Now, I have an update for you. This is not a sponsored post. I'm simply sharing the story of how in one month's time, I feel like a new woman. How I now have a minimal, not that expensive, mixy-matchy spring/summer wardrobe. I suddenly don't mind going places, because getting dressed is easy.
Here's what happened. I got some help.
I started by downloading Megan Brandle's free DIY guide to help me edit my own closet. In some cases I had to disregard the criteria for whether to keep or discard some things. If I had been super strict, I would have literally been walking around with no pants on.
After I cleaned out my closet, I bought a shopping session with Megan. It's something that I planned and saved for, and it's something I'll do again. She offers so much time, attention, and value, and already, I've learned so many things that I didn't know. Like:
And, it's possible to have a real-life Pretty Woman moment with all of the shopping bags, but instead of being on Rodeo Drive with a rich man's credit card, you're at the Outlet Mall, celebrating 50% off sales and coupons. It really is possible to get what you need on a budget.
Before we went shopping, Megan came to my house to assess my closet even though I'd done the editing on my own. She made a list of essential pieces that I needed, and she stuck to it.
Our shopping trip took about four hours. All I had to do was show up and the dressing room was ready, which is crazy. I mean, look at this:
Seriously? I thought I might pass out when we went to the next store and she came out pushing this cart.
At first I was overwhelmed by all of clothes, but I quickly realized that she'd pulled several sizes of the same thing. As soon as I tried something on, Megan was able to quickly assess what was going to work and what wouldn't, so the whole process was fun and efficient.
Here's something that really sunk in for me: Ladies, it's not you. It's the clothes. (Tweet that). I tried on a few pairs of shorts and they didn't fit well, and it was so hard not to take it personally! It's a confidence killer. But then we found some jeans that fit perfectly (at Gap! On sale!) and it helped me find some power in the key shopping rule, if it doesn't fit and if you don't love it, it's a no. (Rule for life?) >>Tweet that.
I only bought a few things that broke the $30 mark, and if it did, it fit the criteria of being an investment piece: a nice dress or shirt that I plan to keep for a long time.
The other thing I learned is that how I see myself in the mirror isn't always an accurate reflection. (Tweet that) One time, Megan said, "Let me take a picture of you in this." And when I looked at the picture, I realized that I loved what I was wearing, but when I first saw myself in the mirror, my reaction was much less sure.
Speaking of mirrors, here's a screenshot of a text I sent to Abby, showing one of my outfits:
I've never known how to dress for spring when it's still a bit chilly outside. By the end of the morning, I'd shed the scarf, and then the jacket, and I was all, "Wow! Layers are amazing!"
My overall takeaway is this: It's important to be intentional about the things I own. (Tweet that) It makes a lot more sense to invest in a minimal and highly functional wardrobe than to waste time, money, and energy on things I don't like and won't use. I think this is true for a lot of things, so starting with my wardrobe will help me make smarter choices in general.
Thanks again to Megan Brandle. She's a gem of a person, and she's a pro at making you feel comfortable in your own skin. She's works virtually and in-person. You can get her free DIY closet edit guide and learn more about her style sessions here.
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