Despite over 30 years of (reluctant) shopping experience, when I buy clothes I find it impossible to predict what I'll actually use.
I end up giving away items I was sure I'd wear all the time: the very comfortable sweater, for example, in a neutral color that would "go with everything". (There is no such thing, by the way.)
On the other hand (and this is the part that perplexes me the most) ever so often I buy something despite suspecting I'll never use it, just because I really like it. And it turns out I use it all the time. Gold shoes (that nearly go with everything.) Denim shorts (I even wear them to the office.) A dress with an unusual pattern. An article in an unlikely color.
(If you're thinking "Aha! What she needs to do is only buy things she really likes without worrying about frequency of use!" I’ve also been known to buy something despite suspecting I’ll never use it just because I really like it and it turns out I don’t use it. But thanks anyway.)
I have come up with a very rough list of rules that sometimes works:
- The less time it takes for me to put an outfit together, the more I turn to it. This is why I wear dresses at least 4 days of the week.
- The shoes have to be comfortable. It's not that I don't adore high heels. It's that I love my feet more.
- I won't use something if it makes me feel like a boy. Pants often do this. And, this is the reason I have given up on most blazers.
- No button down shirts. They always gape. I don't care how well they're cut. And no, I don’t want to try that special brand that doesn’t. I’ve given up on them.
- No turtlenecks or crewnecks. I love how they look on other people. They don't look good on me.
I have the deepest respect and admiration for people who love fashion and have fun with it and always look like getting dressed in the morning was a wonderful mini-adventure. For the rest of us, it's a crap shoot.