Wednesday, February 27, 2013

because you asked: how I shop

Leggings: Aerie, T-Shirt: Tresics, Cardigan: Urban Outfitters, Leather Jacket: Target, Necklace: Aerie, Moccasins: Minnetonka, Hat: Suzanna

First things first: yes, I know this hat makes me look like a martian with a huge head. I still like it anyway. Huge head = big brain. Right? Right! 

Moving on...

Like I announced in this post on Monday about purging my closet, today I want to share a little bit about how I shop. I've been getting this question more and more recently so i figured I'd just make it a post and share some of my tips and tricks for a successful shopping trip. 

I love to shop but since purging my closet and realizing what I truly like, I now make a conscious effort to ask myself a few basic questions every time I think about making a purchase.

Do I LOVE it?

This is a hard one because I love a lot of things. I am a very visual person, I love good design and I 
am very anal about my typography (I know, totally unrelated). I pay attention to details and I am 
a perfectionist.
So when I shop I try to go out looking for something specific because I did my "research" and I 
already know I am in love with it. This can quickly change though once I hold the item in my hands 
or try it on ;) 

Can I pair it with at least 3 things from my existing wardrobe?

This one is important because if I don't already have at least 3 pieces to wear it with I am looking at 
either buying an entire outfit now or having the new item hang in my closet without getting worn. 
No fun, right? 
You may not always be able to come up with all the options in your head while shopping, especially 
if you're like me and have an impatient toddler with you. That's when you make sure the store has 
a great return policy ;) 

Is it too trendy? 

If an item is too trendy, you may not get very much use out of it before you can't see it anymore or 
the trend has died. Trends are great and I definitely give into them as well but I try to buy those 
pieces for cheap whenever I can.

Can it be a wardrobe staple?

If you find a basic white t-shirt at JCrew for $5, buy it! A classic black blazer at Ralph Lauren for 
a steal? Go for it! Simple leather riding boots for under $100? Don't let them get away!
Quality wardrobe staples at good prices shouldn't be ignored. Of course limit yourself because no 
one needs 5 black blazers ;) 
Wardrobe staples that I will wear for years to come are the only pieces I ever consider 
spending a little bit more money on. 

Is the price right?

The most important question. I admit it, I am a cheap shopper. I love a good bargain and I am not afraid to hunt it down. Thrift stores, discount stores, sample sales, clearance racks, coupons, you name it!!
I rarely pay full price for any item but I also don't limit myself to thrift stores only.
When you plan a shopping trip, prepare yourself by printing online coupons and finding out about sales. Weekends and holidays are great times to find a good sale but usually busy. I like to go on Friday mornings when the sales have already started but I avoid the crowds and get the best selection. 

Do I have it (or something similar) already? 

I have an obsession with gray, gray t-shirts in particular, so whenever I pull out another gray something at a store I remind myself that I really don't need another one. Instead I look for the same item in a different color that may look even better. If I don't like it anymore then I just walk away.
Variety makes it much easier to put outfits together, so remember to branch out from what you're used to. 

Know your stores and know your fits.

There are certain stores that I know I will find something great before I even walk in. Of course we all have our favorite stores. What's more important is to know your sizes and what fits are flattering and which ones to stay away from. If you find a great pair of denim that fit like a glove and you can afford it, buy a second pair. 
When it comes to denim: try on, try on, try on!! If you know what brands cut them just right for you it will become a go-to store. 
Try new brands. I just recently tried a new denim brand and it turns out I like them even better than my previous go-to :)

Don't be afraid to fail or cheat. 

Yes, now we get all philosophical! Or not. But really, it's ok not to follow all of the rules, all of the time. Shopping should be fun and so should getting dressed every day. 
If you bought something and a week later you regret it, return it. if you can't return it, give it to a friend, sell it on ebay or donate it. Get over it quickly, learn from it and move on. 

and lastly...

Be adventurous. Be you!

In every sense of the word. Nothing is off limits when it come to fashion, right?
If you've never thrifted before, I highly recommend you start. Just don't raid my stomping grounds, k? ;)
That dingy looking discount store down the road may be the source of some hidden treasures just waiting to find a new home in your closet.

So, I hope this answered some of your questions!? Anything else, ask away. 

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  1. cute outfit I love those moccasins

  2. Love! I've been trying to implement some of these idea's lately (invest in staples, make sure it matches something I have).

  3. Great tips Sophie! And I think that hat looks super cozy. :)

  4. these are great tips for keeping your wardrobe tame and awesome! I am totally sharing a link to this post on my facebook page and twitter.

    i like the two shades of brown, textures, and mini fringe happening in this outfit. brown with black is awesome! also, i love love love your hat. i have 2 similar ones. a girl on the subway said i looked like one of the mushrooms from super mario brothers. whateves. mushrooms are cool!

  5. Great tips, I have a tendency to buy similar things all the time , so I need to follow that rule.

    Xoxo ,

  6. Like I said in your last blogpost,
    I want a hat!
    I love this whole thing just as much as the last one!
    your totally great!

  7. You look SO adorable in that hat...I love it! Great post...I definitely make sure I will wear something at least 3 different ways before I buy it too :)

    The Other Side of Gray

  8. I adore your style and your blog! So happy to have found you via the big blog giveaway. I'm now a happy follower in all your social media spots. :) Look forward to keeping in touch.

  9. love the mocs and beanie! super cute! newest follower :)

  10. i love this cozy, comfy and beautiful layered look on you. i hope you don't mind if i feature you on our things we love post tomorrow!

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  12. You hat might be huge, but I have to admit, I love it - plus I love the idea of it concealing your really big brain, I had to laugh when I read that :) I love your outfit, you look so comfortable and effortless but so stylish at the same time - definitely not an easy thing to pull off!

  13. Love your necklace! I'm your newest follower! I'd love for you to follow my blog too. xo

  14. I would love to see you do a post sometime where you find cute expensive staple items and then find similar items for a bargain :) my problem is that I know exactly what I want... But they are all from j crew or free people and each piece costs over 100.. While ican splurge sometimes.. I could never have a whole wardrobe from these places. I need help finding the bargains haha. I admit though.. The expensive items in my closets are the ones that stay. My cheap purchases from target or forever Are usually the ones that go..


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