Friday, June 5, 2009

Simplification and Decluttering: Clothes

I figure, a working woman only needs:
  • 4 or 5 well fitted work slacks
  • 2 to 3 skirts (if the woman like the option for warmer weather)
  • 2 to 3 tailored suit jackets that match the slacks and skirts interchangeably
  • 6 dress shirts of various colors and textures for those outfits, preferably of a light weight so as to be suitable for warm weather, but also can be layered under heavier items for cooler weather
  • 2 short sleeve blouses for the summer
  • 2 flattering sweaters (sleeved or sleeveless) for cooler weather
  • 2 sets of pant suit appropriate
  • 2 sets of nice heels for skirts
  • Possibly 1 extra set that's playful, just to mix things up a bit
  • The lower of the numbers is taking into account if the office has "casual fridays" in which case, one less of each item would be an option.
  • 1 long tailored heavy business appropriate coat (for days with bitter cold or rainy weather)
  • 1 short tailored heavy business appropriate coat (for days that aren't as bitter but still cold)
For casual wear:
  • 2 to 3 well fitting jeans
  • 1 to 2 pair of khakis or other nice casual pants (especially helpful when jeans are not acceptable for "casual fridays" or you are going to an event that casual but not jean-appropriate)
  • About 5 nice tee-shirts
  • 2 or 3 sleeveless tees
  • 2 heavier button down shirts
  • 2 comfy pullover sweaters (or hoodies)
    2 zipper or button down sweaters
  • 2 nice casual dresses (that can be spruced up for casual evening date wear), if so inclined.
  • 2 casual skirts (that can be spruced up for casual evening date wear), if so inclined.
  • 2 tops that can be worn for dirty projects (like artsy pursuits or playing in the dirt with the kids)
  • 1 casual light weight jacket
  • 1 casual heavy coat
  • 1 coat for dirty projects (like shovelling snow or playing at the park with the kids)

Total amount of clothes, give or take (not including under garments, socks, or sleepwear): 38 minimum, 51 maximum.

I know that sounds like a lot, but it really isn't when you are considering that the idea is to have enough for cold weather and warm weather and for various activities. Also, if you're particular life situation might require less casual clothes, less (or nearly no) work clothes, and so on. In that case, definitely adjust as necessary. (Me? I'm a full time working mother who plays in the dirt, works on various artsy projects and cooks for fun, but also needs nice dress down items for casual-nice get-togethers.)

In all honesty, my husband and I have a lot of interest which tends to call for different types of clothing and garb (costuming), but do we really need as many as we have and how easily are the items replaced if or when we pick up certain interests again? We don't really do much in the way of Renaissance Festivals anymore, so two outfits would do (one for nicer weather, and one for muddy weather... though this could possibly be reduced to one outfit). We have been getting involved in Steampunk type events and outfits, but really, we only need one outfit each for that too, which we've been actually slowly been fine tuning. We don't LARP anymore, though it is a possibility that we would pick it up again... and for each character we play regularly, we'd need one outfit at least (possibly a few additional pieces for incliment weather). The problem is that these extra hobbies of ours can really add to having too many items... because it's so easy to try to justify getting a new item here and there. That's where will power really comes in handy. We are working on paring down in these areas.

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