I recently needed to update my work wardrobe. I had been wearing the same pants and cardigans for the last five years and threads were beginning to fray. But, I kept putting it off because I hate shopping for new clothes. Nothing ever fits and some of the trending styles these days are outright unflattering on my five foot two frame.
So, for any other ladies out there who need a new work wardrobe, here are my 8 stress-free steps to building up your closet.
Go Through You Entire Closet
The first thing you must do is go through your entire closet and try everything on. Next, you need to be brutally honest with yourself. With each item ask:
- Does it fit well?
- Is it in good condition?
- Do I feel and look good in it?
- Is it a classic or timeless piece?
If you answer no to any of the above questions it is time to eliminate the garment from your wardrobe.
Sell, Donate, or Toss?
Once you have tried on all of your clothes and made an elimination pile it’s time to decide which pieces you should sell, donate, or toss.
If the item is in good condition it can be sold or donated. There are many sites like Depop and eBay where you can sell your clothes online. However, I favor used clothing stores that will actually buy your clothes from you for cash or store credit. This a simple easy way to fund your new wardrobe purchases and there are no shipping hassles. Look in your area for stores like this.
Another option is to donate your clothes. This is my elimination technique of choice because it is quick and gives back to your community. Many charities, women’s shelters, and community organizations accept clothing donations. Find a non-profit that strikes a chord with you and donate your gently used items to those in need.
If anything in your elimination pile has rips, holes, or stains and cannot be sold or donated it is should be destined for the trash.
Make a List
Once your closet is cleared it is time to decide what items you need.
I like to stick to pretty classic pieces for my work wardrobe. Straight legged pants, simple cardigans, ballet flats, and loose fitting tops are my staple items for everyday wear. For more formal work events like meetings, conferences, or workshops I favor solid color dresses, pencil skirts, and dark blazers.
Before you hit the stores make a list of the items you need. Much like grocery shopping without a list, if you head into a clothing store without a clear idea of what you want, you will leave with flowing maxi dresses instead on work-appropriate tops.
After your list is made browse your favorite stores online before hitting the pavement. There is no need to waste your time in a store that is not currently stocking the items on your list.
Prep Yourself for Shopping Day
I find shopping draining. And what woman looks good under those horrible dressing room lights? So, in order to have a successful shopping day, prep yourself.
Get a good night’s sleep
Bags under the eyes and a lack of energy will do you no favors in the dressing room.
Have a filling but light breakfast
You will need tons of energy to shop all day long. Have a filling but light breakfast to keep you going and beat belly bloat. I tend to go for a fruit smoothie and scrambled eggs or oatmeal served with a banana.
Nothing will make you feel better about your body than a bit of exercise. The morning of your shopping day, go for a brisk walk, a light jog, or pop in a workout DVD.
Pretty much do anything and everything to make yourself feel good. I find that if I am feeling confident and healthy that I like more of the clothes I try on and generally have a more successful shopping day.
Your next step is simple. Go shopping!
Organize Your Wardrobe
Once you return home with your arms full of shopping bags it is time to organize your wardrobe.
I suggest you start by taking all price tags and stickers off of your new clothes. Then begin making piles of like items; mixing your new and current pieces together. Finally, put everything back in your closet or chest of draws.
Tidy Up and Grab a Glass of Wine
Your final step is to tidy up any mess you have made. Recycle your shopping bags, clean up dropped tags, and quickly make your bed.
Then pour yourself a glass of wine and put your feet up! I don’t know about you but my feet are always super achy after a day of shopping. I think it is because my body rejects the idea of being stuck inside for an entire day 😉
Well, that is it! Congratulations you have successfully updated your work wardrobe. Now all you have to do is decide what outfit you are going to wear Monday morning.