Looking at the days leading up …
The decision to challenge myself to an entire year without clothing purchases happened quickly. After a holiday lunch with friends (admittedly including a pomegranate margarita) my friend Kathy and I were chatting. In passing, Kathy told me about a woman in her dentist’s office who had a similar no-purchase challenge. Oprah has the “aha moments” and I reserve the word “epiphany” for more important things. For me, something clicked. This was a challenge I had to take on.
January 1 seemed like a good start date and that gave me more than a week to think this through. Over and over I thought through seasons, holidays and potential events. Did I have something for Easter? What about swimwear? How about a cool cocktail party? I realized I have plenty and I wasn’t even sure what exactly is in my closet. I’d save an inventory for a later date. I had until January 1 to fill in the blanks in my wardrobe.
The challenge decision came at the peak of Christmas Shopping Frenzy, the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas in which I (and I don’ think I’m alone here) purchase gifts at a dizzying pace. For me it means buying, returning, re-buying, and buying more. Not just gifts, but outfits for myself and family for each and every event, potential event and imagined event (Christmas carolers stopping by then joining us for warm drinks by the fireplace? Need plaid for everyone.) I decided to return a pair of hot pink texting gloves that I bought for myself (because how could I possibly survive another Michigan winter without them?) to Parisian, my closest department store. The afternoon was a blur but I know a returned home with a shopping bag weighing approximately 45 pounds. It was a darn good thing I went shopping that afternoon. I would never had survived the coming year without the following: an ill-fitting sequined t-shirt, an oversized cowl-neck sweater that adds 15 pounds to your frame, an everyday office dress in a color that has no name, leopard print leggings, corduroy pants and 4 sweaters for my daughter. Were these the missing essentials that would take me from a partial year of nakedness to a full and fashionably clothed year? I think not.
I returned it all.
During the pre-challenge days I purchased the following:
1. Running shoes. (I was due for a pair and they are super-cute)
2. A bra.
3. A tote bag for my new (thanks honey!) iPad. OK- technically it’s a purse but it is large enough to safely tote my iPad and it included an umbrella. It’s the most fashion-basic color: coral-y-orange (yes, that’s a real color).
Those three items will have to round out my collection to last an entire year.
Like starting a new diet, exercise program or behavior change, the first part is easy.
It’s day 3 and I’m OK so far …