Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Six Items or Less

Wow am I ever out of touch!

(Just typed "never out of touch" which I think was a Freudian slip because I prefer to believe that I am always right and always in touch. Sometimes I am so convinced that I AM right about something that it truly is a shock when I'm not- one would think that I might have a problem fitting my huge ego into this desk chair here with me.) (Also, I spelled "Freudian Slip" as "Freudian Ship" and I'm not sure if that is actually a Freudian slip or merely a typo. Thoughts?)

Aaaaanyway, yesterday I came across the "Six Items Or Less" project, which went on for a month and actually ended last week (this is the out of touch part). It's a group of people linked by this site who vowed to wear only six items of clothing for a month (excluding shoes, underwear, workout clothes, jackets, accessories, etc). Some did it out of a sense of simplicity, feeling that consumerism is taking over the world, and some did it as a way to kick off a shopping ban. The really funny thing is that for the most part no one really noticed they were doing it. How much do you want to bet that typically the only person who really pays attention to what you're wearing on a daily basis is you?

That got me thinking about the way top people dress. Anna Wintour? Black Dress. Steve Jobs? Black turtleneck, jeans. Michael Kors? White t-shirt, navy blazer, jeans. The president of my company? White dress shirt, jeans. (I'm seeing a trend here....) These people wear pretty much the same thing day in and day out- classic, stylish, flattering items that don't overpower them.

At first I thought the challenge sounded really hard. Six items of clothing? That's IT? But then I realized that I probably regularly wear only about 12 or 15 pieces of clothing anyway, and it would be pretty easy to cut that number in half. So maybe not such a challenge. I tend to wear the same sorts of items anyway, so why not embrace it? I got all inspired last night and took things out of my closet and dresser that I just don't wear for whatever reason- the weird colors, the weird fits, the orphan pieces that don't really go with anything else. I hid them in the guest bedroom closet.

This morning the whole getting dressed process was much easier than it typically is. First of all, when I opened my closet door everything in there fits me well and makes me feel good. I also didn't have that moment of guilt when I looked at the pieces that didn't work- why did I buy that? I really SHOULD wear it... I guess. (As my hand reaches for my trusty black sweater.) When you don't see those items you won't feel that way.

Also, when I got rid of the random rejects, all of my clothes complement each other. I have a lot of black, gray, white, fuschia and green in my wardrobe. They all work together and I don't have to wonder whether my things will match or look right because they will without any thought.

I'm not necessarily dressing in a uniform every day, but I am simplifying the work a little bit. And I think I'm going to like it. However, I'm not going to get really crazy and knock it down to 6 items. But it's fun to think about which pieces of clothing I would choose as my six. I think I would go with:
  • Black knit dress- really easy to dress up or down, super comfortable.
  • Blue Jeans- I can't live without them. I wear them ALL THE TIME. (Not quite as much as I used to- I'm branching out into skirts and dresses more and I actually think I look better in them than pants but jeans are just so easy.)
  • Black Cardigan- another wardrobe staple
  • Black Tank top- yes, I am seeing the trend
  • White Tank top- ohhh, that's almost a color
  • Black and lime green patterned skirt.
This all sounds great until I realize that my black dress really needs a little something to go over it (sleeveless), so I really want to include my green short sleeved sweater too! But that's 7 items! I would so fail this challenge.

While we're on the topic of clothes, Sal's latest post over at Already Pretty had a great list of questions to ask before you purchase clothing. I wrote them down and put them in my purse so I won't be swayed by impulse buys. But I think my last couple of shopping trips have actually been really good. At Talbots a couple of weeks ago I got a navy blue skirt, a couple of t-shirts (black and navy), and a couple of fly away cardigans (navy and gray) that are great for layering- especially in my cold office. They were all basic purchases that I do not regret at all because they will work with several outfits in several seasons, they're classic, I didn't have any items like them, and they suit me.

Could you do the Six Items Or Less challenge? What would you pick?


AA said...

love this entry! hmm...i guess i would go with: jeans, a little black dress, a nice white, deep neck t-shirt, boots, a sweater vest & a green dress top. but then again, that challenge would be really hard.
well written. :)
would you mind reading mine: http://www.listenthenspeak.blogspot.com
thanks :)

sophie said...

6 items is a tough one! Sounds like at least one of your new Talbots items would have made the cut though. Fun post.