3.13.2012

Closet Reformation: The Steps


Images from: The Sartorialist, Stockholm Streetstyle, Karla's Closet, Altamira Models Off Duty, and TIME magazine.

Not so recently came across a fantastic blog-post by Stephanie Wong, the mind behind the blog onesleeplessnight. I have been considering engaging some of this advice, not out of a necessity to better manage my assets, but more of a necessity to completely milk out my time allowances, given a crazy busy life with less and less time for personal interests and relationships. Perhaps what would allow many women to decrease spending, may also allow one to decrease time-spending. Yes, Time. Our time that we have while we are alive, on earth, which is invariably finite and running out every second.

Our time spent browsing a shop is time not spent on higher priority items that pay much more in the long-term. Time consuming can be time taken away from those very things that you hold in higher priority, like relationships, networking, family, fitness, studying, career, finally writing that book, or starting that company, or reading that book.

The anti-consumerist list includes five useful pieces of advice on reducing unnecessary sartorial over-consumption and regaining the sanity of balance. Yes, we who live in this culture seem to have to actually put in effort to become aware and act upon the awareness of what we do not actually need.
The list includes tips such as:
1.Reducing consumption of fashion media
2.Embracing uniforms and formulaic approaches
3.Creating and following a list of essentials, to which I would add, 3-B. Separating the nees from the wants, by creating a fancyful but well-edited wish-list.
4.Refraining from impulse buys, and
5.Planning and enforcing a shopping ban (I know, this last one is cruel).

1. Ok, so reducing consumption of fashion media, is rather challenging, especially given the awesome new blogs out there. They are so good that you feel you are wasting time by not reading them. It's your information-age-craze talking. Stay faithful to a small number and only add a new one if you break up with an old one. WE will start with this one. The image above is a sampler of my blog-reading staples. The well-established Sartorialist,

2. As for embracing uniforms, This blog has certainly helped re-shape my way of thinking from the 80-20 problem, closer to the 80-80 solution. For those not familiar, the 80-20 problem is the finding that most American women wear only 20% of our wardrobes about 80% of the time. The goal is to increase usefulness and decrease cost-per-wear by wearing 80% of items 80% of the time.

3. The most procrastinated upon item is by far, is creating a list of essentials and 3-B. Separating it from a wish list. Even creating a super well edited wish list, is partically impossible, because the target is always moving. We can be more fickle than we would like to admit.

Number 4. can be hard to and takes time to break. But 5.Enforcing a shopping ban is plain harsh to most of us. The truth is that all of these steps are in some stage of development. They can be seen as ideals, which no one has to achieve completely. I might have been in an inadvertent shopping ban without being conscious of it. Save for the occasional foodie indulgence, very few things seen to actually be worthy of my hard-earned resources, lately. Even that fantastic Hermes icon, the Birkin, for which I have saved a few times, did not seem worth the small fortune once the item was in front of me.

I wonder if the austerity trend is passing as our economy is improving. I stepped into H&M this weekend and found some super awesome looking designs, but in uncomfortable, poor quality materials. Have we moved in any direction from our fast-fashion culture?

Bisous,

La Copine

2.29.2012

Wardrobe Staples: Silk Shirt Pt III





After a very long pause, blogging again feels almost like a diary of sorts. Lots of things have changed. Ma recherche d'un logement est terminée pour aujourd'hui. With house-hunting and settling down resolved, je vis dans une auberge. La chambre que j'ai occupée is small, but large enough for now.

Aside from practicing my near-east languages, learning some statistical techniques, getting better at my job, maintaining all of my crucial relationships over long distances, increasing data-work speed, figuring out the shortest commute, indoor gardening, and copious travel... well, the train of thought has left the station.

Here are these pants that have become routine on non-work days. Frankly, I think they work for my office, where, even supervisors, wear tank tops and lace tights. I would wear them if certain colleagues were busy enough with their own matters to measure me with the same stick as they do everyone else. I think that the top makes the pants less rock& roll.

If I were left with only 6 items of clothing again, like the "6 Items or Less" challenge, this blouse and shoes would certainly be included.