February 20, 2010

Reader Request: How Does Coley Shop?

Happy weekend everyone! I recently received a very simple, yet very important question from a CCC reader/follower. She wanted to know how I shop and how I prioritize my purchases especially give the mass amount of options both online and in-store. Great question, as I battle with purchase priorities all zee time.

Well, here's how I roll...I make a list, first and foremost. Since acquiring my iPhone, I keep a note with all the items on my "wish list". This wish list often changes with the needs, seasons and trends. Here are my shopping suggestions to ensure that your wardrobe stays fresh and up to date, without spending a fortune on frivolous, way-too-trendy items.

1) Make a "Wish List"  - Compose a list of items that you are craving, don't forget accessories. I take inspiration from anywhere and everywhere - TV shows, other blogs/bloggers, magazines, etc.

2) Evaluate - Now, go back and evaluate those items. Gigi, from Gigi's Gone Shopping, has a great rule - The Three Outfit Rule. She makes sure that each piece can be worn at least three ways (or with three different ensembles) before purchasing. I completely agree with this. Make sure that most, if not all, of the items on your wish list have "mileage".

3) Eliminate - The Three Outfit Rule will help you eliminate unnecessary or way too trendy pieces.

4) Closet Check - Take the list and periodically evaluate your closet for duplication.

5) Shop - Use your list while shopping, this will help you stay on track.

6) Befriend a Tailor - Make sure the items you buy fit well and accentuate your shape. There is nothing worse than buying a great jacket and never wearing it because it doesn't fit you in the waist, or there are gaps between the buttons. Tailor in as needed - very few items fit perfect off the rack. I've found that all of my tailored pieces are my go-to items as they make me look my best! Invest in tailoring - it will pay off in dividends.

This system may seem overly simplified, but it helps me stay on track both financially and also ensures that each season has representation in my closet. AND, it helps curb the random, impulse purchases from making their way into my closet. (Husband cheers and pumps fist in jubilation)

One other quick item - I do quite a bit of shopping online. It's a bit more risky, so you really have to a) know your measurements (buy a cloth tape measure), b) make friends with customer service and c) learn the return policy.

Hope this helps! Happy shopping!

Any shopping strategies you would like to share?


Amber said...

love it! sounds a lot like how I shop!

The Obsessionista said...

Maybe if I shopped like you, my wallet (and hubs) will be a LOT happier! I especially agree with the item about having a good tailor- as I am 5'9", I always have pant length issues! Gigi's three outfit rule is genius!