No New Clothes for a Year

I’ve been avoiding buying clothes as much as possible lately because first, I hate how I look and I can’t find anything to fit my body right, and second I don’t want to spend much on clothes that I hopefully will no longer need in six months to a year (i.e. fat wardrobe). I did spend some here and there for two pairs of jeans, and other items to survive back to work at the beginning of November, but mostly everything I wear is too tight, short, or ugly. Thankfully, no one cares a whole lot about my work outfits fitting me pristinely!

I recently came across the idea to avoid buying clothes for an entire year. Say, wha?

Never in the past did I believe that could be something I could do. I love clothes. I always needed a new this or new that. I run, I need sneakers; excuses, excuses. Well, why not try it for the next year through December 2016? I have bins of smaller sized clothes I’d LIKE to fit in again. I’ve gotten rid of tons of clothes that don’t “spark joy” as the Konmari Method suggests. Why not focus on what I’ve got instead of shopping to fit my big ol’ booty? I’ll go running or cook a healthier meal instead.

I love that Mrs. Frugalwoods’ focus was on being content and satisfied, not just the financial end of it. I’d like to find contentment again with what I own and how I look and feel. Sure, not buying clothes will save me money, but I always shopped at thrift stores (and I love Goodwill!) and looked for sales.

By not buying any clothes, I had to examine why it is that new clothes have made me so happy–and dare I say, fulfilled–in the past. Thanks to this ban, my self-worth has become increasingly divorced from my physical appearance, which is an interesting departure for me. In the past, I was quite expressly concerned with what I looked like on a daily basis and somehow, the year of no clothes has caused those sentiments to wane. I’ve re-prioritized what matters. As with most of arenas of life, I find that living frugally, minimally, and consciously has ripple benefits that far exceed the monetary rewards. Mrs. FW

Shopping, similar to her, was an outlet for entertainment and to try to feel better, but it never truly made a difference in how I felt. Usually, I felt worse for what I bought because shortly after buying it I didn’t like it so much anyway. Chris calls me the “Return Queen” because I’ll shop and eventually end up returning a large portion of what I buy. This new challenge eliminates the buying, which will eliminate the returns. I am excited to see how much time it frees up and how I change as a result.

Mrs. FW did receive clothes from other people or swapped for her maternity wardrobe, but I should be good with what I have in my closet for quite some time. If I get gift cards, I’ll use them, but I don’t plan to purchase any myself. My hope is that as I lose weight and get back into a normal size I can also pare down my regular wardrobe a lot and make dressing simpler with less choices.

I’m not willing to get rid of too much (other than too large sized items) until I’m at a steady weight. Once there, I hope to have a capsule wardrobe of important pieces that can I mix n’ match. How easy would the morning be without all those choices and distractions! And once I have built that capsule wardrobe, I won’t have to watch the scale as much because I will feel it within my outfits.

I don’t have any exceptions to my no new clothes in 2016. I have new undergarments and enough socks to last me several years I’m sure. Chris only buys clothes when his end up with holes, so the ban doesn’t extend to him, and we have so much for the boys that is usually given to us, we never need to shop for clothes for them either!

I’ll update you each month as to my clothes shopping ban and how I’m doing. I’ll be honest if I slip up, if I truly needed to get something, or if I’ve stuck to the plan. From going through all of my stuff though, I highly doubt I’ll need anything new for the entire year. I’ve got all my bases covered (unless I start training for a marathon and then I might need one new pair of sneaks).

Should be a fun challenge!