I read in the Wall Street Journal years ago that most people only wear 20% of what they own, but I think it might be even less for me. I work from home occasionally, so “getting dressed” means changing out of my UConn sweatshirt into nicer athliesure. In other words, my fashion game has devolved big time.
Sometimes when I leave the house I pray I don’t run into anyone I know because of the 50 Shades of Grey look I’m sporting.
You know, the grey sweat pants, light grey t-shirt, dark grey hoodie look – not to be confused with the more va-va-voom look you might be envisioning when thinking of the more popular book and movie series by the same name.
To make things more complicated, the corporate dress code at my office is becoming increasingly relaxed. So now that jeans are allowed daily, I live in about two pairs of the 20 that are in my dresser and closet.
Like many professional women I know, I own a ton of formal business clothes – but never really had a job where I needed to wear a suit every day. I would always buy a new one for a special event, or if I was presenting at a conference. Even if I was in front of a group of people who have never met me before, the event called for a shopping trip.
Now, it isn’t like I am going to get roasted by E! for wearing the same outfit twice – or that anyone cares all that much about what I look like – but it was a good excuse to buy something new.
I’m very good at justifying my purchases – for example, I used to buy a lot of handbags. I figured, if I use it every day and divide the price by the number of times I use it – they are basically free!
This math is super fuzzy, and I usually just end up throwing everything I need in the one bag I own that’s large enough to hold snacks, phones, and about 10,000 other things I may need as a mother of two toddlers. (Even with the big bag, I always find I’m missing something when I walk out of the house. Go figure).
My cute purses are collecting some serious dust, and probably will be horribly out of style when by the time my kids start carrying their own stuff and I’m able to go back to the days of just needing my license, a card, and a lipstick.
Holding on to these things “just in case” I need them doesn’t really make sense when I always would justify buying something new anyway. It does give me a bit of an inventory to work with, and I think the things I really don’t want or fit in to can be sold or donated.
On that note, I’m ready to get started clearing out the clutter. Pretty soon I’ll be living a life where I not only know what I own, but I know why I own it. And that’s something to get excited about!