Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Wardrobe update

I'm the kind of person who hates to pay a lot for clothes because I know how quickly styles, colors, and my personal taste change. I'm not spending $50. or $75. on a shirt that's a trendy style or color when I know that in a year or two that style or color will be passe.

Let's face it: if you're still wearing teal you're out of style!One way to avoid this is to only buy classic styles and colors, but that can get a little boring. Plus, sometimes you don't want to look 'classic'. If you're going to a cocktail party or a Lady Gaga concert you don't want to be wearing a blue oxford cloth button down collar shirt; you want to look cool, hip, or funky.

So my strategy is to have a mix of classic styles and colors purchased from 'better' stores on sale or clearance, and buy my cool/hip/funky stuff at discount stores where the quality probably isn't as high, but doesn't need to be since the item will go out of fashion much sooner.

When we lived in the DC area I'd get my cool/hip/funky clothes at KG Menswear. I've lost count of how many compliments I've gotten from wearing my $20. trendy shirts purchased there. Spouse & I still duck in there to look for fun stuff from time to time when we're back in VA visiting our family and friends. I also like to check out the bargains at the Old Navy factory store and the Vanity Fair outlet store near our home for non-classics.

Just recently I got a chance to update my wardrobe with high quality clothes at a great discount! My friend Rob is the manager of the Ralph Lauren Polo factory outlet store and he gave me a 'Friends & Family Sale' coupon. It provided at 30% discount off everything in the store, regardless of whether it was regular price, on sale, or clearance. (Coupons are often only good on regular priced merchandise.)

To maximize the value of the coupon, Spouse & I started with the clearance rack and then moved to the sale items. We looked for shirts we could pair with khakis or dress pants for work as well as wear with jeans for a casual look. We wound up with 6 Ralph Lauren Polo button up shirts in classic and fun colors for $118. Many of the shirts were originally $59. each, but using the coupon on top of the sale and clearance reductions helped us save even more.

This wardrobe update was long overdue for me. Remember the last 4 years I'd been working from home, wearing t-shirts and jeans all the time. The 4 years before that I'd worked in an extremely casual office, wearing the pull-overs and jeans. I hadn't bothered to update my business-casual wardrobe because I rarely wore that type of clothes.

Now my work clothes are up-to-date and I didn't have to go broke to get there.


Sean said...

It's been a while since we've had an update on Spouse's success at Weight Watchers, is he in speedo shape yet?

anne marie in philly said...

I bet you look so handsome in that shirt collection!

cb said...

My trick is to go really neutral. Some khaki pants, but also a lot of navy blue and black and charcoal.

My shirts are almost always plain, with only occasional stripes. And again I stick to navy, blue, charcoal, burgundy, red, and purple.

Ron said...

Fabulous! You always dress so well. And those shirts are so YOU.