Let me present a scenario to you: You’ve just bought a new and unique item for your closet. It’s bold with an interesting design or bright color (or both!). However, it doesn’t exactly go with anything that you already own and there’s no way for you to make an outfit with it.
I’m going to be honest and tell you I’ve done this countless times. How long does it take until someone realizes that they don’t have the basics in their wardrobe to style outfits? For me, it took longer than I care to admit. I was under the impression that I needed all kinds of clothes that made a statement, without ever really purchasing that simple black T-shirt.
Learn from my mistake and get more use out of your closet by following these tips the next time you go on a shopping spree:
1. Take a look at your closet and write a list
Find the pieces in your wardrobe that you’re having trouble styling. Assess your closet and think about what you need as apposed to what looks cute. Write a list of these items before going shopping. This list could be anything from a pair of simple flats to a leather jacket.
Black studded shirt: Xhiliration / Size XS / $3
Quilted red skirt: Body Central / Size S / $6
Tan chain purse: $6
Leopard flats: Sibba / Size 8.5 / $12
2. Think about the items that you wish you had
There’s always that one piece of clothing that seems to allude us. You wake up in the morning with the perfect outfit in mind, but you’re missing one essential piece. From that moment, you hate your closet and suddenly have nothing to wear. Instead of buying yet another pair of shorts, add the item you’ve been lusting after. For me, that item is a camel coat which I’m hoping to get for the fall season.
Crop top: Hot Gal / Size L $7 (50% off!)
Faux snake shorts: Forever 21 / Size S / $6
Flower necklace: $3
Black sneakers: Converse / Size 8 / $16
3. Search for new ways to style pieces
If there’s an item in your wardrobe that needs a fresh spin on it, simply googling, “How to style overalls” (actually, there’s going to be a post on that soon) can present you with a platter of new options. This is where following your favorite fashion bloggers come in handy. Often, they’re styling and photographing new outfits every week for you to take inspiration from. Finally, an excuse to stalk people on Instagram! We post new outfits all the time on our Instagram @platosclosetjacksontn.
Stripe top: Rue 21 / Size M / $6
Denim shorts: Mossimo / Size 5/6 / $5
Statement necklace: $3
White flats: Nine West / Size 6.5 / $10
4. Don’t underestimate the importance of a neutral color palette
It seems the colors black and white are a favorite among bloggers. The reason: they’re clean, chic and essential for styling. Black and white can be paired with virtually anything in your closet. I used to have a closet full of color with little, if any, neutral colors. Not only was styling a nightmare, but I resembled a pack of skittles.
Overall dress: Kimchi Blue / Size 2 / $16
Stripe crop top: Truly Madly Deeply / One size fits all / $5
Fringe heels: Size 9.5 / $16
5. Look for cuts and textures
Adding simple, neutral tones to your closet doesn’t have to be boring. I’m not telling you to go out and buy a pack of black shirts from Wal-Mart. Look for cuts, textures, prints and embellishments!
Lace up crop top: Forever 21 / Size L / $4
Midi skirt: Iris / Size S / $8
White sneakers: Addidas / Size 7 / $10
6. Consider how an item will work with what you already own
If you find yourself thinking, “What would I even wear with this?” Don’t purchase the item thinking you’ll figure it out later. Most likely, it will sit in your closet for months because you have nothing to wear with it. If it’s something you have to have, find other pieces that will compliment it.
Quilt crop top: Xhiliration / Size XS / $4
Laser cut skirt: Kenzi / Size 2 / $10
Bag: Fossil / $16
Gray sneakers: Size 9 / $6
What are some ways that you shop for your closet more productively?