In the comments of the previous post a reader asked about my shopping and wardrobe building strategies—instead of reinventing the wheel, I thought I’d rerun this post from June 2015.
After I cleaned out my closet and made a short list of items that I need, I started to think about how I shop. More to the point—how is it that, although I have a fashion site, I don’t over-shop or have loads of things that I regret buying? Perhaps I can credit the few shopping rules that I’ve followed forever and swear by:
1. If I love something and KNOW that it’s a forever piece, I buy it immediately. Often, this is an item that I first saw on the runway, put on a list, and then asked for it’s delivery date.
2. Buy two identical items if I think I’ll be wearing them often (usually jeans, tops, and summer dresses).
3. Always buy one in black.
4. Buy one fashion-forward item each season and wear it to death. Then give it away.
5. I don’t wait for the sales. I buy at the front end of the season, then I’m guaranteed to get the things I want. Sale is for those fun and unexpected items that make me feel like I’ve won the fashion lottery.
6. I shop heavily from resort and pre-fall, I find the best and most wearable pieces in these collections.
7. Shop online so things can be returned if I change my mind. I hate a “no return” or “store credit only” policy.
8. Buy basic evening and wear repeatedly by changing up the shoes and accessories. I wore an inexpensive navy silk sheath to both of my daughter’s debutante balls with two different pairs of Valentino shoes and my good jewelry. No one noticed, wasn’t about me.
9. It’s all about the underpinnings—bras that fit and flatter, petals, slips, camisoles, and tanks.
10. Tailoring and maintenance are key. Just about every piece of clothing I buy gets tweaked by my brilliant seamstress. I keep everything clean and maintained and ready to wear—no holes, stains, or loose buttons.
Did I forget anything?
Katie suede sock bootie
Belted wool coat
loulou leather over-the-knee boots
Suede Crooked-Heel ankle boot
Everyday tote small leather bag
Padded velvet jacket
Roll-neck argyle-sleeved sweater
Ridgewood corduroy trousers
Point-toe slingback kitten-heel pumps
Patchwork fur jacket
Alice square-frame acetate sunglasses
Clever leather belt bag