Closet clarity, Disco Collars and Retail openings

Closet clarity, Disco Collars and Retail openings

When you don’t know your goal it is hard to get there

Have you had a hard time getting that closet cleaned out even though you have more time than usual?

This was my problem for years. I didn’t have a clear stated end goal to a closet clearing or clothing purchases. I only had some vague and gulity thoughts about why and some loosy -goosy information on how. I would get rid of things but I never played with making outfits with what was left and I never had a plan to fill the holes that would allow me to create outfits. I had lots of party dresses but no good workout clothes. My  clothing purchases were whatever was near the checkout stand. And clothing budget? What is that?
Then I realized what I wanted was clarity.  I wanted to reach in my closet and pull out the perfect outfit, I wanted to shop with a purpose not shop when I had a minute.
It is such a joy to make that first activity (OK maybe second – after a cup of coffee) of going into my closet to find something to wear a quick and easy and CLEAR. I have saved so much time. I wonder how much easier my success would have been if I had set  that goal  of finding clarity and ending confusion about what to wear much earlier in the process.
Are you struggling to find clarity in your closet (life)? Start with these tools to get some clarity and drop me a line if you need help. 

My favorite look this coat from Lanvin (Vogue photo)

A vintage shirt from Poshmark is a sustainable way to get this trend. (Photo from Poshmark seller mishmark)

And this disco collar takes it literally and figuratively. (Photo from thisilk.)

This week’s fashion term and trend is the disco collar. They were all the rage on the runway back when we had fashion shows (not so long ago) and they were the rage (apparently) during my youth although I can’t recall owning any. A disco collar is a collar on a shirt or jacket that is normal size in the back but has an exaggerated silhouette in the front with enormous points of 3 + inches. It sort of looks like an origami bird. The ones I enjoyed seeing the most were on shirts with some feminine curvy details elsewhere. And there were a couple jackets with colorful collars that also looked flattering. Many of the others looked trendy and actually focused the attention away from the beautiful faces of the models. According to my style philosophy this is a no no.  Remember you should wear the clothes, the clothes shouldn’t wear you. If this is the trend you want to embrace this year, find just one exquisite disco collar shirt or jacket that flatters you. Remember anything new you buy should be able to be combined into at least three outfits using items you already own. You shouldn’t have to buy a whole new outfit just to incorporate one new item.

Retail News

 Here in Washington state all nonessential businesses (and that includes all my favorite consignment and thrift stores have been closed since mid-March. Phase 2 of our state’s business reopening includes retail stores being able to allow shoppers inside.

 Here is a link to the rules they must follow during this phase of re-opening. https://www.governor.wa.gov/sites/default/files/Phase2InStoreRetailGuidance.pdf?utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery

These rules include cleaning dressing rooms after each customer, spacing customers and having a holding area where clothing that is returned or tried on can be stored for 24 hours. Have some empathy for store owners and retail clerks during these times. While I am sure they are delighted to be open and back to work this new way of doing business brings a new set of headaches and everyone is under just a little more stress whether they want to admit it or not.

With these shopping rules in place having a plan for what you need to buy, knowing your size in various brands, and having the knowledge about your best fit, colors and silhouettes will be crucial to a successful in person shopping experience. You might even call the store you want to visit ahead of time with list in hand of exactly what you are looking for. See if they can pull the items and have them ready for you. If you do this make sure you show up and are courteous. I would anticipate some stores will be setting appointments for shopping.

You should also be clear on policies for returns. Stores may change policies they have had in place to eliminate the trouble returns could bring now.

On the positive side, I would anticipate smoking deals on whatever inventory is around as well as potential limited inventory in coming seasons. Have a plan and a list so you don’t get sidetracked by those deals.

If you need help planning drop me a line. Let’s talk about it.

Support your favorite stores so they will be around for us in the future. I miss their great clothing displays and smiling faces.

Button Repair

Having grown up in an era when Home-Ec was offered I know my way around the sewing room. When I make myself a new piece of clothing I often hear comments like “Wow” “I don’t even know how to sew on a button.  Well with that in mind today I want to share how to sew on a button.  I also want to mention that doing this as soon as you notice a loose button and before it falls off will make step 1 a lot easier.

Step 1 would be to locate the button, as well as a needle and thread. Some clothing comes with extra buttons but then you have to remember where you stashed those.

Step 2 Cut a piece of thread roughly 24” long and thread it through the needle so the needle is halfway down the thread and the cut ends are even.

Step 3 – on the backside of the garment push the needle into the fabric between the layers about ½” away from where you want to come up. When you come up pull the thread through so that there is just a tiny bit showing where you first went in.

Step 4 – Go through the fabric 3 times in the same spot to create a lock so the thread won’t pull out.

Step 5 – put the button on the needle and let it drop down to the right side of the garment.  Bring the needle and thread back down through the hole in the button and come back up another hole. If the button has a shank (no holes but an attachment on the back of the button), go through that.

Step 6 – Repeat at least 6 times to make sure the button is secure.

Step 7 – Wrap the thread around the back of the button between the fabric and the button 3 or 4 times and then go down to the wrong side of the garment.

Step 8 – Go up and down in the same spot 3 times to lock the thread, push the needle in between the layers and come up about ½” away and cut the thread.

Options- If your button has more than 2 holes you can do a criss cross pattern. You can use a thread color that stands out for an attention getting detail. You can replace all the buttons with more interesting buttons.

Have some fun with this basic repair that can salvage a great piece of clothing instead of sending it to the donation or garbage bin.

Clean Closet Clear Mind

Clean Closet Clear Mind

The first step in dressing well starts in your mind. Because what’s in your mind shows up in your closet and on your body. Let me give you an example.

For years I felt that it was frivolous to spend money and time on myself when I perceived that I didn’t have time or money to spend on myself. I would wear things that were gifted or passed on to me. I would hit up the thrift store without a plan of what I needed.

I would allow confusion and hence obsession over my inability to put together an outfit that looked good on me to take up my time in the morning.
As I started to dig deeper I also discovered that I wanted to hide a body I was ashamed of. I also realized that as a woman I was tired of perceived unwanted attention from the opposite sex. By covering up, wearing worn items, choosing colors and styles that didn’t complement me and not having a plan when I did shop, I ended up with a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear. I was uncomfortable in my clothes because I knew they weren’t right.
And it all started in my mind. I would look at beautiful clothes and tell myself I could get something beautiful when I reached a certain weight. I berated myself for not knowing what to wear. I beat myself up!

Are you still beating yourself up?

Here are some questions to ask yourself to see if your mind is the reason you have a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear.
1. When you look in the mirror do you focus on your perceived flaws instead of being neutral or positive about what you see?
2. Are you confused about what to wear?
3. Do you find yourself making impulse clothing purchases online, at the checkout counter or when you have a few minutes to spare?
4. Are you waiting until you are perfect to buy yourself something new?
5. Do you have a clothing budget?
6. Do you tell yourself it doesn’t matter how you look?
7. Do you think being comfortable means wearing sloppy clothes?
8. Do you think you might be trying to hide using your clothing choices?
9. Do you have clothes in your closet with tags still on them?

10. Is your closet so jam packed you can’t find anything?

When you don’t take time to care for yourself including your appearance and your mind, you are not allowing your full self to be present in the world. You may think your sacrifice is helping the world but in reality you are keeping yourself from showing up fully in the world.

Remember, what’s in your mind shows up on your body and in your closet. Let’s make it good! Take me up on the free 30 minute consultation. I can help you show up and shine.

What examples do you have of closet confusion? Now is the perfect time to clean up that closet confusion. Give me a call if you need help. I would love to work with you in person or virtually to make a change in how you show up.

Is Overconsumption serving me? (or you)

Is Overconsumption serving me? (or you)

I am moving. I have only lived in my current home for 7 years but seem to have acquired plenty of items in that time. I am not a huge shopper but somehow my count of jeans in my closet has upped to 6 pair of regular denim and 2 pair of other colored denim. I bought 3 of the 8 pair retail and the others are thrifted. They all fit me but I think the move is a good time to downsize to just 2 pair of denim and maybe the colored denim.

Now let’s move on to the cream colored shirts – sleeveless and sleeved and tanks- I’m embarrassed to say I have 13. I’m sure it would be safe to cut that back to 2 sleeveless, 2 short sleeve and 2 long sleeve without too much deprivation.
How does this happen? For me it happened by not having a plan. By letting my mind create the thought that I didn’t have the time and money to buy clothes, I created a result of not having a shopping plan for those times when I did find myself with extra time in a store that sells clothes. Thus 8 pair of jeans and lucky 13 cream colored shirts.

For some people pointless shopping and finding a “bargain” fills a hole that could be filled by more mind invigorating and emotional pursuits. Clothes and shopping are not my crutch but food is. For years I have relied on food (and drink) whenever I didn’t want to feel discomfort. This over consumption has created excess pounds and wasted time as well as lost opportunity.

Not having a plan and letting my thoughts rule me instead of me ruling my thoughts has created an uncomfortable abundance of things I don’t need and a body that is a little more than I need. It was an uncomfortable but exhilarating realization that I was not in control of my thoughts and they were creating my results. Uncomfortable because I didn’t see how I lived this long without knowing but exhilarating because I am now aware of my thoughts and can consciously change them to be supportive instead of harmful. I am working to create a conscious life with purposeful instead of thoughtless actions.

Your thoughts create your feelings -create your actions -create your results. Time for me to have a mind shift about my own closet. Instead of the scarcity thought that I can’t get rid of something that fits and the fear that I will regret getting rid of it (maybe destined to have the one I keep get a red wine spill?), I am going to look at the abundant thought that I am creating much more room in my life and closet for other things and ideas. I know I won’t be bringing those extra jeans to my new home. Now I just hae to decide which ones to keep. Hmmm. Once I tackle that hurdle what’s next? Maybe my computer folders then on to the garage…….

Overconsumption and holding on to excess is not serving me. Is it serving you? What is your experience with excess? Please share!
If you need help creating a more minimalist life I can help. We will begin by evaluating your activities and clothing needs and then looking at how much is enough. It helps to have a guide when letting go.