Adoration 4 Adventure’s recommendations on saving money on clothing to help you travel more and for longer.
This month I am going to share my methods of reducing your clothing expenses. Although these will be from a female perspective, the suggestions can be applied to most lifestyles. I am by no way a fashionista so this won’t be a list of places to buy discount designer brands but rather practical changes that can be applied to everyday wardrobes.
So let’s get started! Here are some easy tips on how to save which can be used for any situation, not just for your future travels.
1. Minimize the contents of your closet
Knowing what you already own is the first step to being able to control your clothing costs. And it’s hard to be familiar with your inventory when your closet is packed full of clothes that you don’t even remember buying. I suggest doing a major clean out (have a supportive friend with you if necessary).
1. Go through each item in your closet and assess when the last time you wore it was.
2. If you haven’t worn it within the past 6 months – it’s going (12 months if the item is seasonal).
3. Establish 3 piles: Keeping, Donating and Trash.
Be ruthless! It may seem difficult at first, but you are really just getting rid of things that you don’t use. Also, you will feel so much better and in control when you can see and remember what is in your wardrobe. This makes it easier to make smart purchases and quickly match-up outfits.
Once you have a more slim-lined, functional wardrobe it’s important not to fill it back up with impulse purchases. Try implementing a “one in, one out” system, where you have to discard an item when you buy a new item.
2. Make sure it’s a match
Now that your closet is sorted, you will know exactly what’s in it. So when you do go shopping, make sure that you are looking for items that are versatile and work with your existing inventory. My rule is that the item must match with at least 4 other pieces in my wardrobe (I also apply this to when I am packing for a trip). There’s no point of cluttering up your closet with statement pieces that you will only wear once to a party and never be able to wear again.
3. Buy basics
Make your wardrobe even more versatile by purchasing clothing in block colors and avoiding patterns. I also steer clear of white as it tends to get marked or stained more easily. If you do decide to purchase something with a pattern, try to keep it simple by sticking to 2 colors e.g. stripes or polka dots. This will make it easier to match up with existing items. There’s nothing worse than buying a great new shirt and then realizing you only have one pair of pants that you can wear it with.
I love having basic pieces like scarves and tights. These are really functional and multi-purpose. Scarves can be used as a shawl, beach towel, sarong and pillow (a must for plane travel!). With tights, I can wear them with a shirt or under a dress. I prefer owning tights over jeans as they are also lighter to pack, take up less space and usually cheaper to buy. If tights aren’t your thing, consider buying cotton or khaki pants as an alternative.
4. Choose quality over price
Buying cheap clothing can be a real temptation and I’m just as guilty as the next person. However in my experience, the majority of inexpensive clothing starts deteriorating pretty fast. Not good for the environment and not good for your wallet. I would recommend choosing quality (bonus if it’s locally made and Fair-trade!) over price, for a good long-term investment.
Of course there will be exceptions to these rules, after all we need to get dressed-up for fancy events on occasion. However, I am confident that if you apply these guidelines you will save money on clothing which you can put towards your future goals (travel or otherwise).
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