On my first business trip, I brought along a white blouse that I L-O-V-E-D. I'd bought it at H&M a few weeks before and I was excited to look both professional and stylish while courting my clients. However, when I went to iron it the night before my meetings, the glue that was holding it together melted and my shirt was reduced to a few strips of white fabric. Talk about a buh-mer.
After that night, I vowed to avoid throw-away fashion for good. I had every intention of treating my wardrobe like the Europeans: less stuff, better quality. But when push came to shove, those cheap prices would draw me back in! And my wardrobe continued to be filled with clothes that never fit quite right, sweaters that would ball up after one wear, dingy fabric you could spot from a mile away, and dress shirts that melted when you ironed them.
So after the chaos of moving to SF, Zach and I sat down and made a New Year's Resolution: no more cheap clothing. We decided to only buy things of solid quality that could be worn for longer than one season. Then, we ordered Indian takeout, identified all the basics that a solid wardrobe needs, compared that list to what was already in our closets, and voila!:
Jeans (to wear with flats)
Black Skinny Jeans
Leopard Print Scarf
Nautical Striped Shirt
Classic Black Pumps
Flat Leather Sandals
Black City Boots
Colorful Pair of Heels
For the next 12 months, our goal is to not buy anything unless it's found on our lists (for the record, Zach has a separate one.) And, none of these things can be purchased at a notorious throw-away fashion vendor: Forever 21, TJ Maxx, Old Navy... you get the idea. It's kind of scary! With our current budget, that means we'll only get to buy one, maybe two, items each a month.
So, what did I buy for my first month? A new pair of workout pants to inspire me to go to the gym (so far, it's working) and a solid pair of casual sneakers.
Oh, and if you want to read more about the perils of cheap fashion, check out this book. I haven't read it yet, but it's next in my queue.