The Shopping Ban / Frugal Fashion Thread

(825 Posts)
FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 08:03:35

Tentatively dipping my toes in here ---
Do you love clothes, shoes, accessories, and beauty products - perhaps a bit too much? wink
Have you self-prescribed a shopping ban, are you on a strict budget, or are you trying to learn to shop more mindfully for other reasons? Are you a budding recessionista, thriftionista, frugal fashionista - or would you like to become one?
Would you like to do this with like-minded people, still looking stylish and up to date?

This thread could be a place for mutual support, inspiration and creative tweaks (planning outfits from what you already have; charity shopping, swaps, repurposing).

My personal goal: no more clothes, shoe or beauty purchases in March.

I'll tell you more about why I am here in true 12-step tradition, but we need a few like-minded people first <arranging chairs in a circle> wink

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 08:24:51

YY, me!

I am currently trying to weed out my tatty clothes, stop buying so much second-hand and treat myself to things that are a bit more expensive and better quality and value.

I'm letting the pennies accumulate in the bank while I perve over my purchases for a few months time. I've only bought one top this year, and that was one I actually needed, so I must be doing ok.

<floor is now open>

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 08:32:02

Lovely Cheese, welcome! ((hug)) Or is this too American? wink
Really like your mindset!

I'm needing to curb my spending as DP has been made redundant this week so every penny counts. I'm not short of clothes though and I have plenty of make up/beauty products to see me through this rough patch. Just going to have to window shop for a while and wait for things that I want.

carrie74 Fri 08-Mar-13 09:14:33

I love the idea of making more of what I've already got, and last week I was absolutely ruthless about clearing out my wardrobe (do I really need 3 navy dresses for work?), and listed the better stuff on eBay. Made nearly £100 just getting rid of the clothes I don't wear much, but are still lovely. I know £100 isn't tonnes and tonnes, but for only a few items of clothes, it makes sense.

I'd say being very selective in what you buy can bring you in almost as much as you paid when you come to resell (Ash Jalouse, just didn't fit comfortably, sold for nearly as much as I paid for them! Likewise, I try to buy quite a bit for the children from Boden using codes, the sell on. Holds its value v v well.). So while only buying things I love, I do also think on whether there will be resale value.

Also when trying new trends, if I'm nature I either leave it, or buy cheap to try it out. Primark eat for trying something outside the comfort zone before you're ready to invest (for me it was skinny jeans then coloured jeans, and I got plenty of wear out of my £11 jeans!).

foxysocks Fri 08-Mar-13 09:25:12

I'm in. not for a full on ban, but i don't have oodles of spare cash so I want what I do buy to count

like carrie I have ebayed/sold a lot this year and made almost £400 which has been wisely reinvested into my wardrobe.

I am on a drive to wear everything I own regularly - only exceptions are the dresses i go married in - which means I am only buying new bits and pieces when I notice a gap in my wardrobe - eg, my grey gap skinnies for £11 were unflattering, bagged after an hour of wear and gave me very little pleasure. so i used my leftover feb budget to buy a pair of 60% off dark grey goldsigns which have slotted seamlessly into my wardrobe and created lots of new outfit options. they feel amazing and the CPW will be excellent. result.

for march I am planning on one purchase and am still considering my options. either white jeans, a classic breton, or leopard print ballerinas are top of the list.

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 09:36:35

me - i try to buy in sales with codes etc etc

but my ds says mummy has too many clothes

Again - like carrie, selling on Ebay, things that no longer fit (or never did) and last time made over £100 - thats been used to buy things i wanted

Like a pair of black stilletos (think I will return) dont think they are just right.

but I do need to cut back and clear out

Trills Fri 08-Mar-13 09:44:31

This is a bad bad thread.

I am trying not to buy stuff in March.

But you will all link things that are bargains, and I will end up buying more than if I hadn't joined you...

shopafrolic Fri 08-Mar-13 09:45:36

I'm in and will retell my story once the chairs are neatly arranged! smile
I was thinking about setting up a Pinterest board for things I might be thinking about EBaying and seeing if people wanted to do swaps? I'm sure you can set up group boards on Pin?

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 09:57:05

Shopafrolic - that sounds like a good idea

A swop board would be very interesting indeed

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 08-Mar-13 10:14:33

I have just cleared out and charity shopped (doh!) my wardrobe. I have lots of clothes yet stick to the same tired staples all the time. My budget is limited so need to make the most of what I have. I love accessories and normally buy those to perk up what I already own. I'm not on a total ban but definitely need to cut down.

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 08-Mar-13 10:17:26

A swap shop is a fabulous idea!

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 10:19:35

Ooh ladies it's a party in here!!! Loving it! Big group hug! <3

Love the idea of a swap/donation/sharing the excess Pinboard!
eBaying used stuff great too.

How do you feel about links? Should we be restrictive about linking to online shops? I think some ground rules may help us to stay on track. Any suggestions welcome!

<story coming up, probably tonight - need to work now to pay off those bills grin>

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 10:27:41

Would love to join this thread, but I have a fear, like Trills that you will all link lovely things, and I will buy! <weak willed wimp> But how could we limit links.

I need to curtail, like you all, and make the most of what I already have.

Love the Pinterest idea. Can immediately think of a few things I have.

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 10:28:45

Great thread idea - I'd love to join! I'm trying to save money for a deposit so I really need to cut back on clothes, which is difficult because a) my huge boobs ruin tops v regularly so I have to replace them more often than I'd like; b) all of my clothes are in deep, stormy colours which don't really work for summer; and c) I desperately need a couple of pairs of Levi/similar jeans that will fit me properly and last well (and can't buy bargains online as the waistbands usually gape on any jeans that fit my wide hips); d) my bras are all the wrong size.

Does anybody have any advice on how to make my stormy wardrobe look more summery without spending lots on it? I wear lots of charcoal and silver grey, forest green, burgundy, deep purple, indigo etc, but I do have a few summery skirts (white denim mini with flower print, black and ivory Aztec print, black and white floral embroidery, multicoloured patchwork silk) and a cropped denim jacket that I usually layer with (stormy coloured) strappy tops. Sadly I don't like light/bright colours on me, probably because I used to be a goth and my preferences are hard to readjust. Just to make things harder, I also usually wear purple metallic dr martens in summer (which doesn't help with the wintery vibe), as I have ankle problems that the stiff sides of the boots help to correct... sad

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 10:30:30

Yes Yes Yes count me in I have wardrobes stuffed with stuff yet am convinced I have nothing to wear. I am positive if I forced myself to actually look in there and be a bit more creative with my styling never mind March i reckon I could probably go a whole year without purchasing anything !! but hey ho baby steps and all that lets start with March.

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 10:38:54

NomDeOrdinateur white would be a good way to lighten things up. I have quite a (dull) muted wardrobe and try to use white, nude and paler shades of grey in my summer wardrobe if I want colour I might add a brighter scarf and make sure finger and toenails are summery use silver shoes or flip flops and carry a silver or pale coloured bag. Hope this helps.

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 10:41:11

I have 2 rules when shopping:

1. I must Love Love Love the item.
2. The item must match 3 other items in my wardrobe.

These rules have served me fairly well. However, I have been guilty of straying from this rule of late so I need to rein myself back in. I find when I don't love love love the item, I don't wear wear wear it, so it's not good value. And when I see it languishing in the wardrobe it makes me feel guilty, and a bit foolish. All in all, not good. I need to cop on a bit.

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 10:47:09

Thank you Limoncellolovely - I have a cream vest top with lacy stuff on it somewhere, I'll try it and see if it works! Unfortunately white doesn't look good on me (it makes me look yellow), but paler greys would definitely be good. Summery nail polish would help too, I forgot about that!

libertychick Fri 08-Mar-13 10:47:46

Great idea to have a swop board.

On links - should we aim to just link to pin/blogs/polyvore images that provide inspiration for how to style what you may already have and to useful sites that provide inspiration on hair/make up etc rather than linking to 'bargains'?

And maybe request MN HQ to design a 'slapped wrists' emoticon for naughty ladies who try to throw us off course or who (shock/horror) actually go shopping?!

I'm in. Currently on ML so not much spare cash, even when I return to work it'll all be spent on child care (can you hear the violins?)

I'm enjoying myself clothes wise at the moment as lots packed away over the last year during house renovations, loving finding clothes I'd forgotten about. Also ebayed some unworn maternity dresses which has brought in a bit of cash.

I like the idea of this thread too as becoming increasingly concerned about wastage, cheap materials, poor working conditions and just the sheer amount of stuff.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 10:55:20

Lurking this is where this thread could help.
Something like...
* are there alternative ways of getting the item (tweaking/ altering existing clothes, swapping, charity shopping etc)
*wait for five days before purchasing (you'll miss some bargains, but also avoid lots of mindless impulse purchases)
*describe what you need (how you are funding it/filling a gap/staying on budget/schedule/plan) for fellow frugalistas. Our knee-jerk response is No, don't buy! grin Unless the prospective purchase withstands scrutiny / is clearly premeditated).

Making these up as I type so please help me to get them right!
Group boards can be started on Pin - should it be closed (for thread contributors only) or open to everyone?

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 11:04:47

Loving the wrip slap emoticon Liberty! Yes yes!
So excited about this thread and the tremendous collective sense of purpose and direction!

Warmly support the no direct link to stores - just to Polyvore or Japanese stores wink etc idea. Make it as difficult your fellow frugalistas to make impulse purchases as you can and don't link if you can describe it with words! Before you link, think it through!

I'm also worried about sustainability, landfills etc. Want to be thrifty and resourceful and learn to love my clothes. No to one night stands and yy to long and caring relationships!

Portia4 Fri 08-Mar-13 11:05:01

I'd like to join this thread too, I've far too many clothes and need to either start wearing them or rationalising my wardrobe!

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 11:06:39

Oh and a warm welcome to all! grin <dragging in more chairs>

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 11:08:26

Ooh, I think we're going to have some fun!

Maybe we could also all post advice/experiences of brands/alterations - might help our money go further

At the moment, my next planned investments are;
- M+S Marilyn jeans or Uniqlo jeans
- Long layered hush sleeveless tops (am only 5"3 though, worried they might be too long!)

Anyone got any opinions of these brands/styles?

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 11:10:31

Also, I have a beautiful, soft black leather jacket in my wardrobe I bagged for a bargainous £12, though it's slightly too big and 80s looking.

Has anyone every had a leather jacket altered? I think the shoulderpads just need removing and taken in at the waist. Is this even possible? Very expensive?

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 11:18:02

Organising your wardrobe properly will help. I have a dreadful habit of putting stuff into storage (ok tossing into a bag in the garage) this is how I have ended up with 3 pairs of almost identical brown knee high boots !! I had a really good clear out last summer and was horrified to see how many times I have repeated this crime it did mean that Dd inherited a whole new wardrobe so I did manage to save money that way !!!

I used to spend a ton on beauty and found stopping going into Boots on my lunch hour saved a fortune as did stopping my subscription to beauty magazines I have not bought any hair products, body lotion or moisturiser for a year by insisting to myself that I have to finish things before buying any thing else !!!

Perhaps the clothing equivalent would be to make sure all the tempting e-mails that drop into my inbox a put straight into junk I have lost count of the number of times I have been directed to a website to save £££s with a special money off code when actually I would have saved even more by not clicking on the link in the first place !!!!

I am a recent convert to pinterest and did find inspiration there last week and put a whole new outfit together based around a black maxi skirt I have not worn in years, whole new look no pennies spent. I would agree we need to stick to the boards that give 'looks' rather than the "look what I just bought you should have one too" type.

chanie44 Fri 08-Mar-13 11:21:04

Count me in....

I do love clothes etc. I am on a very small budget at the moment, but I cut back in other ways (work lunches etc) so that I have a bit of money for clothes.

My plan

1) get rid of anything that doesn't fit etc DONE
2) replace my staple items (jeans, jersey tops etc) ONGOING
3) focus on accessories (jewellery, shoes etc) PROJECT for 2013

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 11:23:36

Cheeseandchive taking the shoulder pads out will make a difference so I would definitely start with that. Not had any experience with altering a leather jacket but when Dh had his bike leathers repaired I think the repairers just said an ordinary sewing machine needed a different sort of needle and foot perhaps try a local dressmaker and see if this is so.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 11:25:46

All, I need to work now but have a lovely empty evening (DH going out, I'm babysitting) ahead so can 1) tell my story 2) give in-depth answers to some of your questions 3) play with Polyvore 4) think about a group board 5) tell about some things I've found helpful you are beating me to it though. (So if you asked a question, be patient... We'll get to it!)

Absolutely loving this overwhelming response, <mwah mwah> austerity has never been this much fun before grin

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 11:34:12

Limoncello I'm already looking forward to before and after pics of the leather jacket but remember that strong 1980s shoulder line is quite trendy right now! No experience of leather alterations but a cobbler might also be able to help. I used to sew a lot and my home machine was strong enough for leather but I don't have the special needles etc!

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 11:35:30

Sorry meant Cheese <ADHD> wink

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 11:48:23

http://www.moneysavingexpert.com/shopping/money-mantras

i (sometimes) use this mantra

If I decide i want/need it - can i get it cheaper elsewhere, is there any discount codes and is there quidco/cashback?

Would love to learn how to alter clothes but have a reasonably priced good dressmaker in the next town so sometimes its cheaper to got to her.

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 11:48:51

You know this is how the Wise & Avid thread started, don't you? grin

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 12:03:52

Yes frugal, I did try and pull it off complete with shoulder-pads, however I already have rather large norks so lots of extra volume up top wasn't doing me any favours. I looked like an obese bat.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 12:16:52

Many of us are ex/current W&A or MNV - hence the need for some ground rules. I love both of those longstanding threads, but we definitely need a thread with a bit less enabling and stricter fiscal discipline... We want the friendly, super-supportive environment but, ahem, a bit less spending impulses and temptations.

W&A and MNV are really about style: looking and feeling good and sharing. We want to do that too but on a limited/zero budget/relying on existing resources as much as possible <it's an experiment ladies - no idea whether this will work>

Chablis love the mantras, will think of mine tonight <adds one more item to to-do list>

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 12:19:38

Makes sense Cheese! I'm under-endowed in the shoulder department and always need to add padding. I actually know how to make shoulder pads from scratch <useful skills acquired in the 80s> grin

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 12:21:01

I'm sure a dressmaker would fix that for you cheese, or at least steer you in the right direction. I have been surprised at how relatively sheap it is to have alterations done.

Frugal I love the 5 day rule. Will def be using that one.
Describing what we are buying sometimes makes us realise it will/wont work, or it's unecaessary, wrong colour, whatever.

Should we think about composing a set of rules or 'guidelines' that we stick to when shopping? And some for rationalising our wardrobes?

QueenCadbury Fri 08-Mar-13 12:32:32

Is there room for one more chair?

Since being more disciplined about what to buy following a lot of the rules on here I have a wardrobe which I wear a lot more. I used to buy a lot of 'going out clothes' which is pretty useless really as I don't go out that much so now I've invested more in my day time stuff. For me I really had to get over the thing of saving things for best and realised that just because I'm a SAHM doesn't mean I can't have nice clothes.

With the exception of maybe a couple more short sleeved tops for summer I really don't need anything else. I'm getting my colours done in April though so may buy a few things then if I don't already have those colours in my wardrobe. Is that allowed wink

Great thread frugal.

Space for one more chair? Practically everything I own doesn't fit me well, so Id love to spend better on quality clothes, so buy less but more what suits?

I have no summer outfits so I'll need to -carefully- plan this soon.

FrantasticO Fri 08-Mar-13 12:53:26

Can I join too?
Have clothes in all sizes and styles...yet wear jeans or leggings jumper dress / tunic combos ALL the time.
Accessorising could make a new me and I don't want to be spending more money on clothes to hang in wardrobe lonely and unnoticed!

issimma Fri 08-Mar-13 13:04:56

<pulls up a chair, grins inanely, waits for the rules --and the many links-->

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 13:07:00

Lurking if you are good at keeping track of things you might help us to shape some guidelines aka the Frugalista Manifesto by collecting input? (I'm very good at jump-starting things grin but need someone a bit more diligent to stay on track.)

QC welcome! <adds more chairs> If you ask me, of course new purchases are allowed, but I guess the vibe of this thread is short and long-term planning, ie anti impulse purchases and yes to purchases that can be premeditated, are necessary and fill a gap.

Anyone who is in a phase where it's necessary to buy a lot of new things all at once, the Primark/NewLook or Mumsnet Vogue are great threads for wardrobe-building.

But ladies this is getting too serious: what are you wearing? (Are outfit-of-the-day posts okay? Are they inspiring or dangerous territory?)

I'm not exactly a paragon of style this morning grin: black running leggings (was going to go running, started this thread instead...), Nordic patterned red and white woolen socks (MIL's gift), sheepskin houseboots (from 2 years ago, have survived a wash), black long-sleeved tee (about 3 years old), red cardigan-jacket (winter sales this year), free subscribers's gift mock-Tiffany bracelet, big silver smoky quarz ring from 2008.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 13:11:03

Welcome everyone!!! <goes to the local recycling center for a lot of nearly-new chairs>

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 13:19:34

ooh wewere, we'll help you plan!

Fran, have you had a good sort-out of your clothes? I got rid of quite a bit recently and found I now wear a much wider range of clothes from my wardrobe because I can now actually see the nice things I do have!

Stripeybum Fri 08-Mar-13 13:19:48

Can I pull up a chair too please?

I'm very new here too smile

ALittleOfWhatYouFancy Fri 08-Mar-13 13:29:02

Yep - I'm definitely in. I spend too much on clothes and still have the same old, same old faithful few fighting for wardrobe space with some bad mistakes. My two motivations: I live abroad in a land of bad taste, frilly euopop style clothes and, secondly, I have just lost 2 stone. So - I am coming to England in May and hope to be another stone lighter. (Strangely - losing 3 stone will only take me from a tight 14 to a comfortable 12 but, boy, does/will the difference show) I am not on a budget so to speak but am saving my pennies/eurocents til I am in the land of good shopping once again smile.
I am going to use my Pinterest account to really target some lovely things. Btw - I am a warm autumn so am having to think about how to dress for spring summer.
........ and, in my best 12 point admission..... "My name is A Little and I have more than forty shirts hanging in my wardrobe ..........."

justasecond Fri 08-Mar-13 13:33:42

Looks like it might be standing room only now but I am definately in!
My biggest weakness is late night online shopping when for some reason I am less rational and completely unable to resist a 'bargain'. I have loads of clothes too but of late have tried to buy better quality stuff.

daimbardiva Fri 08-Mar-13 13:48:16

Me too! Me too! I'm permanently promising myself that I will stop buying and mske the most of the many, many clothes I have. I need to make the time to have a good clear out and organise.

I also need to not look in any clothes shops or look at ebay or any other websites..I managed to buy a dress the other day when I popped into tesco for bread and milk. Doh. Thankfully it didn't fit so went back.

justasecond Fri 08-Mar-13 13:50:54

When I take something back I always come back with something else or I see it as money I can then spend on something else. I think I may be beyond help.

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 08-Mar-13 14:12:24

I don't even take things back. They just end up in a charity bag further down the line. My budget doesn't allow for this.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 14:15:43

Ladies, not sure whether you enjoy surveys but because there are so many of us, I designed a quick poll to better understand how to shape this thread! It's quick and anonymous, and I'll tell you the results. And I left on open fields so you can suggest new things too!

Survey here.

And please don't crucify me, I'm an amateur pollster. (MNHQ, no underlying commercial motives, just to develop this thread.)

justasecond Fri 08-Mar-13 14:23:18

Thats a great idea FF I feel I am in good hands with you I love your posts!

NickECave Fri 08-Mar-13 14:23:34

My name is NickECave and I have a knitted dress/sweater dress addiction. I've just bought another one today in the Fat Face sale, even though it will (hopefully) be too warm to wear it in a few weeks time. This is the 5th woolen dress I've bought this winter and I need to STOP.

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 14:28:17

When I look properly at my wardrobe, I realise I've made some very smart clothes-buying decisions over the past couple of years:

- Skinny jeans: far more versatile than boot-legs, so all of my jumpers and shoes get far more wear and I need fewer of them (I just need some better pairs now that I'm finally convinced by the style);
- Leather a-line miniskirt: goes with practically everything I own, in very regular use between October and April;
- 2 slouchy, loose-knit jumpers from Wallis: silver grey and icy pink, look great with aforementioned jeans and leather skirt;
- 3/4 sleeve linen tops from Zara: beautiful colours, don't crease, look fantastic with jeans or leather skirt, always appropriate, fantastic prices, wear v well;
- Soft, drapey, back waterfall jacket from Wallis: layers brilliantly with aforementioned linen tops and vest tops, can look casual or dressed up;
- Sharkfin grey 3/4 sleeve relaxed blazer from M&S: great for smart casual with a strappy top underneath, looks good with jeans, leather skirt, or trousers;
- Dr Martens: bought due to necessity (crappy ankles), but look surprisingly good with everything other than calf-length skirts or capris;
- Black boiled wool blazer from Next (but v old): looks like Chanel, really wonderful quality, regularly get compliments on it and can be dressed up or down;
- Interesting skirts: mostly a-line to balance out the Docs, mostly black-and-ivory, but a couple in more interesting patterns/colours, good for any season and help to counterbalance my very conservative tastes so I don't look too formal or old-fashioned for my working environment;
- Jewellery: all great, worn regularly, makes me feel very good.

However, to make the most out of them I should probably fix the following issues:

- Bras: I've been wearing a 32F for years, turns out I probably need a 28HH/J so I do need to sort that out as the lines where the bra digs in show through most of my clothes and my overall shape could definitely be better in the right size;
- Tops: I never really bother much with tops because my boobs ruin all of them very fast, but I need to start wearing my very flattering Wallis ones with the twist detail at the bust (layered with a vest top and a blazer/cardigan), even if they ARE a bloody nuisance to iron;
- Summer colours: all of my clothes are dark, smokey or jewel tones and I really need something to "lift" them a bit for S/S. I think Limoncellolovely's suggestion is the way to go, which means I need to buy a couple of good quality pale vest tops and dig out a couple of little cardigan things I have to go with them;
- Scarves: I used to love them, but mine all seem horribly passe and it's nothing that dye can fix. Not sure what to do about scarves from now on - time to abandon them?

QueenCadbury Fri 08-Mar-13 14:44:03

frugal I'm impressed!

QueenCadbury Fri 08-Mar-13 14:46:30

Also, has the mnv thread disappeared?? I can't seem to find it.

shopafrolic Fri 08-Mar-13 14:47:54

Love a good survey.... Done

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 15:03:24

QC it's possible to hide threads accidentally on touch screen phones, MNV here.

Thanks for the survey responses, will get y'all a summary when everyone has had a chance to respond!

ALittleOfWhatYouFancy Fri 08-Mar-13 15:09:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Topazandpearl Fri 08-Mar-13 15:17:57

Hi all, someone else here who would like a foot in both camps! I've been trying to be more considered with my purchases and am finding that I actually have more to wear, whilst spending less overall. In fact I have become so fussy about natural fibres that I find it hard to part with my money sometimes! I love the inspiration on MNV but think I need this board to keep me grounded smile.

ALittleOfWhatYouFancy Fri 08-Mar-13 15:20:52

blush so sorry. That should have been a pm.

VioletGoesVintage Fri 08-Mar-13 15:39:32

(Standing) room for another?

I'm another S&B regular - under a name change - who really really really needs to buy less and use more.

I have an enormous wardrobe. Much of it was acquired pre-DC but an embarrassing amount has been bought since giving up the corporate job for something artsy. Trouble is, some part of my mind still presumes I have the corporate salary package!

As per my NN, I am a fan of vintage, particularly 20s flapper style clothes (I am tall and, well, if not exactly as ironing board-ish as I once was, still slim). I also like some 50s styles and recently bought a bargainous vintage circle skirt (handmade, from the 70s but 50s inspired) from EBay. It's lovely and totally unlike anything you can get in the shops. In fact it has inspired me to break out my sewing machine and see if I can make a couple for myself from fabric I already have. That's frugal, isn't it????

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 15:57:00

NickECave I too am a serial purchaser I feel your pain. Today I took delivery of a pair of grey with white stars converse, I checked (thanks to this thread) and 'discovered' I already own a navy blue, dark grey, white (unworn) burgundy, beige and pale pink pairs of converse, plus two pairs of Ash bowies a pair of Ash virgins and a bronze pair and black sequin pair of pumps. AAAGH they are going back why did I buy them?? I clearly don't need them I live in UK fgs it rains all the time !!!!!

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 15:59:25

Survey done Frugal. You're very motivated!
Busy here eh? We'll have to rent a bigger room!

I'll try and keep track of everyone's (loose) rules/ guidelines, and post every so often? Will do up a list tonight when all is quiet and see what people think.

Today wearing Gap straight black work trousers, (not a bad buy/fit for work clothes), and a Cos navy top with black leather collar. Black ankle boots with abit of gold detail, bit of el cheapo glitter on the wrist to brighten.

So will I link the first item i now won't be buying as a result of this thread? I love love love them, and they would match loads but I don't need them, and they are not perfect for my ankles. Will I link?

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 15:59:33

Welcome everyone - great to have an in-house vintage expert! <am going to lease some church benches to accommodate everyone>

Thanks everyone for taking the survey - still time to participate - you'll get an idea of the results tonight <sunshine emoticon>

GeorginaWorsley Fri 08-Mar-13 16:03:09

I joined the original W and A thread years ago that began which 'buy less wear more' then morphed in to something else entirely!
Am guilty of buying something that I love then copying the style endlessly,so end up with 6 things that all look the same,IFYSWIM.
Am looking for 'different' trousers for spring/summer,ie perfect cigarette/straight cut but not having much luck.

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 16:08:57

Hi me too. I've lost 3 stone and am struggling/enjoying finding clothes to suit my shape as I still can't really believe that I am an ordinary size now.

I've got to get out of the shapeless and baggy frame of mind and am sure you chaps can help me do that.

I love this but am not buying it as I am not sure if it's a flash in the pan. www.riverisland.com/women/coats--jackets/biker-jackets/Black-and-white-tribal-print-biker-jacket-632310

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 16:14:07

Lurking thanks so much!!! And fantastic, a craving curbed! (We have to invent a klaxon sound for this thread). Don't link (might be someone else's downfall) - but start a private Pinboard where you accumulate things you did not buy. (Can then do the totals after some time and feel v smug.)

You'll get SB/FF brownie points (please help me find a better name for this!) for
*curbed cravings
*returned items (if relapsing)
*old items that get prime time once again
* tweaks, adjustments, repairs and other ways of reinventing how to use an old item
* completed swaps
*from giving an item a new life on eBay etc
*from helping out a fellow frugalista in a way or another
(Feel free to add to the list)
grin

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 16:15:46

Congratulations Awks, well done you. I did the same thing a few years ago, even now I still take the larger sizes in to the changing rooms 'just in case'!

That jacket is lovely and Aztec/tribal print is quite fashionable this spring, but I agree it's probably a flash in the pan and I can imagine it dating fairly quickly once the trend passes.

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 16:20:04

Aw I like links, can't be bothered with pinterest. And have done survey and said that but being a democratic, reasonable type will go with the maj.

QueenCadbury Fri 08-Mar-13 16:20:49

Anyone know if I've accidentally hidden the mnv thread how I un-hide it?

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 16:21:46

cheeseandchive oooh so are you used to your new size now?

Ilovemyteddy Fri 08-Mar-13 16:24:30

Room for a little one? grin

My story is this: I've lost 74lbs since Jan 2012 and, for the first time in my life I have been able to walk into any shop and buy clothes which fit. And I've gone slightly nuts and have bought far too much. It started as a necessity as I lost weight and had to replace clothes. But now it's become an obsession and I'm buying clothes that I like, just because I can, with no thought of whether I need them, or whether I have anything to go with them.

I've been reading S&B for a while now, and think I've got to grips with my style and what suits me, and I now need to stop buying anything and everything so that I can save up for better quality clothes and accessories.

Having said that, I love a bargain and am a charity shop clothes buying junkie, which also needs to stop, but which is a great and cheap way of replenishing your wardrobe on a budget.

I would be very interested in a swap shop, through Pinterest or any other means you come up with.

And today I am wearing Matalan skinnies, a Braintree hemp tunic, a Reiss jacket (£4.50 charity shop find) and Toms.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 16:29:35

We are still mulling over the linking policy (might need another survey) but please keep in mind that some of us are world record e-shoppers with an itchy trigger finger and a lizard brain grin - do not lead us into temptation.

That said, yes, I have been seeing a lot of Aztec print. Does anyone have any from the last time round? Ithink it was very trendy circa 1992 - DH had quite a bit of Aztec print - a rug and a lamp. --I may have accidentally dropped the lamp.

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 16:30:24

Chablis thanks for the mantras converse are going back pronto !

NomDeOrdinateur great list what colour is the leather skirt and what do you wear it with ? I have a black leather a line skirt but other than the one top I had to buy in order to be able to wear it I struggle to style it but would love to wear it more ? I too have made the discovery that I am entirely different bra size to what I was actually wearing and have donated to charity 43 bras !!! Does anyone have any on advice on how bras my wardrobe should contain to cover most clothing eventualities currently have one nude T shirt bra and one slightly more exotic dark purple satin number.

Queencadbury Arrgh saving stuff for 'best' got into the habit of this when Ds was tiny as everything I wore ended covered in something unsavoury now he is nine it is a habit I need to break as I have loads of stuff I don't want to spoil which is ridiculous !!!!

Frugal Survey completed look forward to results.

To my utter shame I have managed to concoct an outfit out almost entirely new items some of which have lurked in my wardrobe for up to 2 years without being worn. So I am wearing dark denim shirtwaister dress (8 months unworn) navy blue leggings (2 years unworn) navy Ash Bowies (3 months unworn) grey polo (thankfully very well worn)

GeorginaWorsley Fri 08-Mar-13 16:30:59

I do regularly sell uneanted items on ebay though.
Today wearing Toast teal cowl drapey top,bought in sale,Monsoon dark straightleg jeans,bought off ebay,Wallis teal and navy necklace,ebay purchase from 3 years ago,Marks and Spencer navy suede heeled ankle boots.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 16:39:43

Take this from a veteran from the fashion trenches - the safe place to wear a trend is a scarf or some other relatively cheap accessory. Do yourself a favor and avoid picking an ultra trendy coat or pair of trousers or anything expensive - you'll enjoy it for a few months or a season but then hate it for the rest of it's lifecycle <do I sound like someone's mother>

Is this helpful or should I shut up? hmm

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 16:39:45

Ok today I'm wearing blue Topshop baxters, a black long vest from Matalan (best layering vests I've ever had and only £4) and New Look grey jersey drapey top. Got some superga's that I'm wearing in - whoever said they were like walking on marshmallows was lying.

Am going out tonight and am going to wear a plain Hobbs red silk dress with black opaques, black ankle boots and a biker jacket.

mothermirth Fri 08-Mar-13 16:50:19

I'm trying to go the whole of 2013 without buying clothes. So far so good. My 'rules' are that I am allowed knickers/socks, if I need them: a new pair of socks makes my day (although I haven't indulged so far). I may also allow myself to buy something from a charity shop, if it's only around a fiver; I haven't done it yet though. I will make persuade my DH to buy me something to wear for my birthday in a few months' time: the thought of that is keeping me on the straight and narrow.

My tip: whenever I see an amazing bargain, I buy it… for someone else! That way, I get the 'spending buzz' without the guilt.

Would love to do some swaps… will see what I can bring to the party. smile

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 16:50:41

Charity shops are my best friend till the car boot sales start as I can't afford to replace my whole wardrobe 2 sizes smaller. It's quite fun looking for a bargain though

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 16:56:43

Limoncello for me about 4 or 5 t shirt bras is right (I favor white and black and have one beige), plus one or two specialty bras (plunge etc). We do laundry many times a week. More bras than that - a lot of clutter. But add a few more if you sweat a lot or live in a humid climate!

cheeseandchive Fri 08-Mar-13 16:58:44

You could wait and do it gradually, Awks. I found that my style changed over a period of time after I lost weight, so if you buy clothes all in one go you might end up buying more of the same as when you were two sizes bigger, except your shape and maybe preferences have changed. if that makes sense?

Frugal, what about allowing links that are along the lines of
"I really like this, I am considering buying it because X,Y&Z - any opinions on the brand/quality/value etc?"

but aren't "look! a 20% off sale!".

Just an idea!

Awks Fri 08-Mar-13 17:07:06

cheeseandchive I think I know what suits me and I'm trying to just buy what I know I will wear and what I like. But I'm not at the stage of buying one "piece" yet as shopping is such a joy atm and I think that I can revell in cheap 2nd hand clothes until I calm down enough to be rational smile

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 17:18:23

Re: links, according to our survey, they are a sore point to about half of us (these are still preliminary results, you can still take the survey and have your say)!!! So let's restrict links for now, we'll have a groupthink about how to solve the 2nd opinion issue later.

Democracy at work <loving this ladies>

An idea: should we give thanks for curbed cravings/returns/resurrected clothes/ good deeds/ etc? Positive feedback changes behavior...

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 17:36:02

Frugal Think I may have said no links but am flexible and will go with majority. Agree with your previous post i.e. wanting advice on various items not hey look massive sale go buy !!!! This is how I curbed my spending on beauty by reading lots of reviews and getting advice from others instead of just rushing in waving my credit card around randomly in the beauty hall then wondering why nothing really worked for me.

I went shopping today and managed not to buy myself a single item of clothing! I did buy myself some hair dye BUT my roots were terrible and I've been putting off buying any until my colour and brand was on offer.

erowid Fri 08-Mar-13 18:03:13

I've give myself a set of price rules on each item of clothing or beauty product. No matter how pretty, how much it will last or how much it would suit me, if its over my limit I won't look at it to be tempted to buy it. For example I won't spend any more than £5 on a top, no more than £10 on a chunky knit cardigan, no more than £15 on jeans/trousers.

Levantine Fri 08-Mar-13 18:04:06

I so need this thread. I have been buying as if the world is about to end recently and I desperately need to reign it in. I really do not have the money and I have nowhere to put any new clothes. Have filled in your survey FF thanks

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 18:12:32

Limoncello - Thanks, I was surprised by how much of my very-old stuff still gets worn more regularly than most of the things I've bought in the past couple of years! (The skirt has been with me nearly a decade now, and was 2nd hand when I bought it grin.) It's black like yours, and I did initially struggle to figure out what would look right with it. I think the trick is to wear opaque tights, use layering and wear soft and drapey, slightly oversized tops with it - it looks modern and quite sophisticated that way, whereas if I just wear a fitted top and structured blazer, it leans precariously into "sexy secretary" territory... Big/heavy/chunky shoes seem to help make it look more up-to-date as well - I wear my DMs most, but any chunky heeled shoe/ankle boots look good as long as they look good with the tights.

In case you have anything similar in your wardrobe that you haven't tried with your skirt, I'll just mention a couple of things that I surprised myself by liking alongside mine. I've found that the Zara 3/4 length linen t-shirts (about £17, they do them every year) go really well with my skirt in forest green, burgundy, cobalt and grey marl, so I wear those a lot with a grey or purple vest top underneath and black opaque tights (usually with ankle boots). I was also really surprised to find that my slouchy Wallis jumpers (very holey crochet, made of thick cotton yarn, slightly loose, and falling to about 2" below my waist) work really well with it too - they're light colours (silver grey and pale pink), and again I wear a dark grey or dark purple vest top underneath.

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 18:41:54

Limoncello - glad to be of use. But admit a trainer weakness myself.

Frugal - will take the survey later on. Trying to get small person to stop dropping ice lolly over my floor and himself!

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 18:43:11

Onelittlelady thanks for curbed cravings!
Walking out empty-handed is a feat! <trying to learn how to do that>
This is a S&B thread, we love clothes too much and want to look reasonably stylish, and grooming is a part of that. Hair dye, just like deodorant and toothpaste, is a part of that!

And welcome everyone new to this thread! You ladies are so inspiring, loving everyone's personal stories!

We have almost 100 messages, over 40 survey responses (am very happy you took the time to complete it as it will really shape this thread) shock

DH canceled his evening plans so I'll need to hang out with him a bit but will get back with survey results later...

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 18:53:55

Nom thanks for the ideas thanks pretty sure I have some slouchy soft t's and knitwear. You are definitely right about structured equalling lady of the night sexy secretary think thats where I have been going wrong with it. <off to have restyling session>

issimma Fri 08-Mar-13 19:13:24

nom and limon Now I want a leather skirt grin.

thanks for the thread ff. glad you're back on s&b (I think I know who you were).

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 19:21:42

Limoncello - you're welcome! It does take a bit of trial and error but you'll be surprised by how versatile it becomes once you've figured out what works with your style and shape. Also, a leather skirt with opaque tights is such a nice alternative to jeans for casual/smart casual/evenings out - it's just a shame they're not an all-year-round article of clothing...

Issimma - I know it's not in the spirit of the thread, but I would encourage you to get one in due course! I thought I'd hardly wear mine, and yet I wear it 3 times per week easily and it still looks as good now as it did 10 years ago (despite, as I said, being 2nd hand even then). Great value, on a cost:wear basis. Ebay is your friend - mine was £7 including postage smile.

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 08-Mar-13 19:49:09

I have a leather skirt that may well find its way to the pinterest swap shop

SteppingOnLego Fri 08-Mar-13 19:55:32

If still room for more I'd like to join. I had a big wardrobe clearout last year and got rid of loads but then went on a bit of a spree and don't feel I've been spending wisely.

I have a tendency to really love something, buy it immediately and then go off it! When I can't buy the item straight away I often change my mind anyway so perhaps I really need encouragement to wait a bit and see if I still love it before leaping in. I too am easily led by those tempting links, must have some weird fear of missing out on something good if I wait.

I do however have only 1 bra that fits so will need to (sensibly) invest in this area at least.

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 20:03:52

Survey done!

I would like style inspiration.

I have so much but wear the same over and over

I'm unadventurous and would love to be groomed but don't seem to have the time! I get up at 6 and away by 7- In this time I need to get showered dressed and breakfast and lunches made. So I don't wear make up or really style hair apart fom brushing it ( I wash it te night before to save time)

At weekends I'm busy cleaning and house things so when I go out which is rare I'm lost!

ChablisLover Fri 08-Mar-13 20:06:14

Oh - and if anyone can help me with Make up tips I'd be v grateful!

I still do my make up the same for last 15 years!!! But it look ok but would like ideas. I wear the same bronzey eyeshadow black mascara and liner plus black honey Clinique lipstick

Does this sound ok?

bleedingheart Fri 08-Mar-13 20:07:28

I'd like to join too please.
My problem is accessories; I have dozens of scarves, bags and pieces of jewellery!
I find clothes so hard to invest in but I have so many it's depressing me. Ironically by viewing this thread I have realised how much of my wardrobe would be pulled together by a leather skirt! I work from home and live in jeans but want to branch out.
I like so many styles and can't settle on one, that's half the problem!
Apologies for the mini-essay!

blueberry2310 Fri 08-Mar-13 20:19:46

I'd love to join too. I live Southern Hemisphere so go crazy in the UK sales online (end of your season is the start of ours). This means I often end up with things that don't fit and with high postage costs to return I never bother. Recently lost £50 returning a coat. I am in the process of clearing out my packed wardrobe and need some help to not start filling it again.

I am currently debating on whether or not to buy a bikini. It will get lots of wear but expensive and have to be sure.

My mantra is to buy one good quality thing rather than lots of cheaper versions of the same thing in a mission to find the perfect one (I'm looking at you five Breton tops).

Will take the survey now.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 20:37:19

Am going to run the survey results - hope most of you got to chip in - 61 responders so far! thanks x 61 <3

awaywego1 Fri 08-Mar-13 20:38:29

Oh lord, am totally in, I'm a clothing disaster. Buy tons of ill fitting cheap crappy clothes from charity shops and eBay, wear about 5% of it and feel constantly that I have nothing to wear. My bedroom is totally cluttered with clothes. I have some lovely things but tend toward safe and comfy too often.

awaywego1 Fri 08-Mar-13 20:44:15

Ooh I just did survey-may be a little late.

ShirleySharpeyes Fri 08-Mar-13 21:31:12

Jumping in with both feet without checking if there's room for another? I might just sit at the back and take notes....as I'm probably a lost cause. I was meant to be limiting my clothing expenditure this year, but so far appear to have spent almost double my budget (mainly in the on line sales but still toooo much, having said that I have worn all of it, time after time so can justify it all, honest <ahem>).
I have started keeping a little notebook where I list everything I buy (and return, I do spend a lot of time at the post office with returns) and also everything I ebay...it helps me keep track of the dosh I fritter away, and kerbs my spending a little (it can horrify me when I look at it and realise I have forgotten about some of the stuff I have bought only a month earlier).
I find S&B on Mumsnet my biggest influence/undoing - I am clearly so easily influenced - so somewhere to sit and discuss not buying stuff with people that understand how difficult it is to not buy stuff would be very welcome for me.

skaen Fri 08-Mar-13 21:36:54

Hello, could I join? I had a bit if a shock last year - I knew I'd been fairly extravagant but i went through all my cc statements and found I'd spent a ridiculous amount if money on clothes, many if which I've never worn (beautiful forest green skinnies from Zara which make my legs look beyond dreadful). Is there room for me?

Workwear inspiration would be particularly welcome!

ShirleySharpeyes Fri 08-Mar-13 21:37:05

I have completed the survey for completeness, although realise I'm probably too late to the party.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 21:38:42

biscuit biscuit POLL RESULTS biscuit biscuit
Topics that should be covered here
92.2%  want information on current trends and how to tweak old clothes
81.9%  want help with styling outfits from the existing wardrobe
81.9% want help with using money wisely
81.3%  want budget style/beauty tips
74.6% want help with wardrobe clearouts/organizing
64.1% want help with style self-diagnosis (body type, color & style analysis)
64.1%  want style book / other resource recommendations
60.9%  want clothing / beauty product swaps possibly via Pinterest
55.7%  want 2nd opinions on planned purchases
55.7% want tips how to repair/maintain/alter clothes
44.3%  want outfit-of-the-day posts (people tell what they are wearing)
 
Other suggestions for topics to be covered here:
*Introducing more variety  to day-to-day dressing (using the existing wardrobe more creatively)
*Talking about the psychology of shopping/consumption
*Talking about the environmental impact of shopping
*Learn to adapt clothes to suit most seasons.
*Learn to dress one's age
 
What not to discuss on this thread, based on 25 open-ended suggestions
* 10 responders  feel  there should not be any direct-to-stores links (sales often difficult)
* 2 responders wanted links, 2 were undecided and 1 asked for complete freedom of expression
* 2 responders asked that Net-a-Porter not be mentioned
* 2 responders asked that designer names not be mentioned
* 2 responders wanted to discuss what to do with discount codes - to post or not to post them?
* one responder hoped that this thread would cover a wide range of budgets and styles
 
The responders' monthly S&B budget
7%: £0-10
35%: £10-50
27% £50-100
24% £100-200
11% >£200

Take home?
We are a group of people who are interested in fashion trends but want to create them mostly from our existing wardrobes, improving our skills to use money wisely? We value budget S&B tips. And quite a few of us would like a swapboard. Outfit-of-the-day posts were the least popular topic: almost 20% of responders were not interested in them), and 15% of responders were not interested in hearing 2nd opinions on purchases. Maybe we should be careful with these topics as they can be divisive. It's easy to start a new thread on S&B to solicit advice on potential purchases, but maybe we should allow people tell about their outfits particularly when they are integrating old/repurposed/tweaked items - or swaps!

A substantial minority has problems with direct-to-stores links, so perhaps we should respect that.

Our monthly budgets vary a lot, but the biggest individual group (more than a third of us) want to spend a maximum of £50 on clothes and beauty per month.

<whew> The floor is open for your comments! Thanks again for voting!

scarlet76 Fri 08-Mar-13 21:50:16

Room for 1 more?! My name's Scarlet and I love shopping a little bit too much.

I am a big online shopper and far too click happy. I use shopping as a pick me up and buy far more than I need.

But. This must change. I need to spend some proper money on the house this year. I also want to be less wasteful.
I have set myself a budget of £70 per month which is to cover clothes, beauty and sportswear.

I have been ebaying impulse purchases and getting rid of the crap. I'm left with some quite decent stuff I think:

LE bottle green parka down coat, Next smart wool coat, Boden wool blazer, ASOS leather jacket, LE black gilet.
Next black lace dress, Next spotty dress, Boden jersey day dress,
5 pairs jeans in various colours in skinny and slim fit. Next cigarette style pants in grey and black.
Next cord skirt. M&S black jersey pencil skirt.
Next white shirt, Boden spot shirt, LE spot shirt, Next denim shirt, H&M blouse, Next black frill blouse, Boden pink blouse.
Next black cardigan, Next cream cardigan, Boden yellow cardigan, M&S cream cashmere jumper, Boden button back jumper.

2 breton tops, 6 linen style T-shirts, 6
vests, 3 heat tec tops.
15 pairs of shoes and boots. Jigsaw tan leather bag, Boden black leather bag. Cath Kidston spotty tote.
Lots of scarves.

surely I should be able to throw together some outfits from that lot to keep me going.

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 21:51:16

So. Guidelines for us judicious frugalistas.

Identify a gap/genuine want in your wardrobe. Decide your budget for this item.
It might help to post here, describe what you're looking for, where it might fit in your wardrobe, where you'll wear it etc. You might be surprised what may turn up, what store has a sale etc

When you see something, first ask: do I need this? Then: can I afford this?

Before you part with your hard earned money:
1. Do I love love love this item?
2. Can I wear it with at least 3 other items of clothing I already own?

If the answer is YES to all of the above: WAIT 5 days before buying.

When posting here for advice (plus or minus links depending on Survey) on said perfect potential purchase, it is fellow frugalistas responsibility to examine said potential purchase with an arched brow. There will be no (or at least very little!) enabling.

Finally, see if you can source the item cheaper elsewhere - post here maybe, look for discount codes, wait for a sale etc..
When you do buy, wear wear wear and enjoy!

What do you think? Anyone have others useful tips or guidelines? Anything to change?

NomDeOrdinateur Fri 08-Mar-13 21:51:31

Wow Frugal - thank you for all of your hard work!

I think one of the most important challenges/goals is making this thread sit comfortably in between the MN Vogue and "supermarket style" threads, and I agree with you that focusing on learning to make the best use of what we have rather than allowing it to veer off into conspicuous consumption is the way forward. Nothing against NAP and designer names, but the constant references to them and the relentless fashion lingo does make MN Vogue seem rather exclusive (although *not deliberately exclusionary*) to people who need to budget differently. Since that kind of discussion already has its own place in S&B, I really hope this thread won't morph into that.

IME, direct links to specific items is a direct route to spending a lot of money on things you wouldn't have looked twice at in other circumstances, so I would prefer not to have those. Links to sales, discount codes etc don't seem to have that effect on me so I'd really appreciate them - do other people feel the same way?

One suggestion - I can see how "outfit of the day" posts would clutter up the thread, but how about "best outfit of the week" posts? That would make the thread more readable, and it would encourage us to think carefully about whether we're making the most of our clothes (are we repeating the same things because they work well for us or because we're in a rut, etc).

Hopefully Fri 08-Mar-13 21:56:13

This has to be the most organised thread ever grin

I'd like to join in too please. I have had to build up a work wardrobe over the past year, so the lid has big time been off the spending pot, but now it is firmly back on and I have plenty of other things to save for (house deposit. Sigh). I have a pretty capsule wardrobe, but am very up for any ideas to use what I have and also inspiration for a few clever purchases for spring summer to help me not feel like my clothes are all old and tired.

By the by, re linking and what to link to, I assume everyone realises that Pinterest links will just link to shops anyway? Not sure how easy it will be in reality to discuss clothes without ever linking any. But I'm prepared to give it a go!

And of course I will be the misery in the corner when you are all self-diagnosing colours and styles, informing you it is more or less impossible to self diagnose. But I will take being completely ignored with good grace. wink

CointreauVersial Fri 08-Mar-13 21:56:42

Wow, what a great thread.

I must say, I love many of the S&B threads, and read quite a few blogs, but I have developed a habit of buying stuff that people have linked to, and my budget is a little strained at the moment.

BUT I do have a very good nose for a charity shop bargain, and am handy with a sewing machine, so can customise/adjust stuff to suit. Recently I bought a couple of Per Una cardis for about a fiver each, the sort with the big comedy buttons. Removing the buttons and sewing back the stupid plackets on the front has given me two cute knitted collarless jackets, almost identical to those on sale in the high street at the moment. I have also found some old straight-leg jeans, to be given the roll-and-distress "boyfriend" treatment.

The key for me is finding ways to style (or adjust) items already in my wardrobe, so I don't have to buy more. And to stop opening tempting links!

shopafrolic Fri 08-Mar-13 21:57:41

In one day we have achieved more on here than I could get a team of Marketeers to achieve in two weeks! Just brilliant! I am one of the £0-50 spenders now as a result of my DH being about to be made redundant (sole breadwinner). I love clothes, but am starting to play with my wardrobe to create new outfits, and play with my make up too.....
If I sell something on EBay I can reinvest that money for clothes but outside that - no more purchases for me.
I have a Pinterest board where historically I would pin pics of items I was considering. They never looked as good after a few days. I'm going to keep pinning to that board but not shopping. It's going to be tough!
In my twenties my shopping got me seriously into debt. I am much better at what I buy now, no disposable fashion, investment items, the best quality I can afford at the time. I've tried charity shops and TK Maxx with little success - I think success in those stores depends on geographical location as much as anything.
Anyway, I'm rambling. Job well done Frugal. This is going to be fun!

Hopefully Fri 08-Mar-13 22:01:05

Re NAP etc, can I just add in for discussion the way I shop? I buy clothes really infrequently (purchases this year: one pair of legwarmers, in the sale), so I do sometimes save up for something more expensive over time. I have found that this really pays off for me, but I am actually not spending more than most high st shopping budgets. I promise not to link unless expressly invited, but I think it's worth holding in mind the whole buy less, buy better type mindset as well. Erm. I probably just made my point really badly, especially given previous eBay only post, but there may be others of the same thinking.

<sits back on fence>

Hopefully Fri 08-Mar-13 22:02:38

shop I think pin is a great passion killer too! Sometimes I look at something that I absolutely needed a few days ago, and am completely meh about it. But without reminding myself that it wasn't that great, I would continue to feel deprived?

shopafrolic Fri 08-Mar-13 22:03:56

One of the interesting things the ladies on the MNV thread did was to look at an item of clothing I have on my Pin boards and suggest new ways to wear it. Really helpful to have other people open the doors to my virtual wardrobe and give fresh inspiration - difficult if not everyone is on Pin tho.....

Hopefully Fri 08-Mar-13 22:06:22

Ooh, that would be good.

I need to lose about 5lbs too, as part of the reason I am struggling with my wardrobe at the moment is that everything is just a fraction too tight and uncomfortable.

Frugal fashion tip: don't get fat.

Alternative fashion tip: embrace a size which is easily maintained for you
hides from Hopefully

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 22:15:40

Thanks Frugal!

I'm one of those that likes links, I find it hard to put the words of clothes into a picture, if I'm making sense at all (kids up at 5.30am, am a bit worn), but I'm sure with practice I would get better at it.

(Loving the blog Hopefully) Buy less, buy better, yes, the way forward.

Matsikula Fri 08-Mar-13 22:19:13

Can I join in? I am Matsi and I have a shopping problem.

I have been making a conscious effort for a year to be more judicious in my spending, but keep falling off the wagon. I am worse than I was in my 20s. I had tonnes of time to shop then and would only buy stuff that was perfect. Since having kids I get to the shops so rarely that I feel I have to get something or it is a wasted trip, so I end up with a fair few mistakes and not time to return them.

It is not so much the money that bothers me as my overall spending isn't crazy, it's the waste, and also the fact that I end up wearing stuff I don't love.

My subsidiary problem is that my lovely mum likes buying me things but is 40 years older with quite ladylike taste whereas I am a bit more of a tomboy.

PretzelTime Fri 08-Mar-13 22:23:01

I really need to join this...
Good initiative OP!

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 22:26:40

In the morning I was planning to give individual feedback to everyone but there are well over 60 75 of us right now - welcome everyone!

So it may take a while until we learn to know each other - be patient, help each other out, answer people's questions and don't be afraid to repeat your questions if they are ignored. Today so many excellent questions have not been answered - we are doing the introductions and it's a bit chaotic <will get more benches>

Hi, I'm Frugal, ex Material Girl wink, I a shopaholic and my story is nothing special. Over the past years, my life has been quite limited because of small children and various other constraints. I work, mostly full time, but maternity leaves and several years of p/t work have slowly but steadily depleted my savings. After childbirths, I had the usual frumpy phase and then underwent a joyful gradual transformation - I lost the baby weight, found my style, colors, favorite shops etc etc. But once you get started it's not so easy to stop. I have a tendency to use shopping as an outlet and a way to fill a void. Sometime last year I realized that this cannot continue and that I have to do something about it. I have taken steps in the right direction (can really recommend the book "To Buy Or Not To Buy" - if you overshop, it's very compassionate and it really helps), but am still vulnerable and in need of support. I want to look good and really love fashion, but also want to put money into my pension plan and break free from the strong pressure to consume. Things (not to mention my bank balance) have been improving a lot this year, but I had a big relapse yesterday. And here we are, AA style <chairs creaking> grin

Lurking thanks for the tentative guidelines! (You can repeat them every now and then as new people are still joining). Many of us struggle with habitual overshopping or have to adhere to very limited budgets - hence please limit direct links to shops and avoid discussing expensive designers/stores/brand names.

It is good sense and judgment to invest in good quality clothing and make planned purchases (Hopefully does this very well), but we just got started so maybe everyone can draw a collective breath and not blow the monthly budget tomorrow in shops or tonight online. wink

awaywego1 Fri 08-Mar-13 22:28:26

Ooh I'm particularly interested in sharing tips on how to rejig/customise clothes to make them work better. This week I dyed a pink cardigan grey and changed the buttons to pretty covered ones. I have a clothes swap every year but aside from this I'd like to try and buy less but better quality and that inspires me to wear something I don't already wear from my wardrobe. although I'm going to a jumble sale tommorow so for help me

issimma Fri 08-Mar-13 22:31:18

Wow, thanks lurking (wave too - you helped track down some new look glitter heels last year grin). The only guideline I'd add would be along the lines of helping to restyle old items in the wardrobe. Sorry if mentioned already, am speed reading with excitement.

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 22:40:26

Well done Frugal top work. It's good to know I am not alone in wanting to curb consumption.

Lurking Excellent ground rules my arched brow is ready and waiting to divert any shopping disasters.

scarlet76 Fri 08-Mar-13 22:40:42

I completely identify with 'filling a void' Frugal.
This month has been a difficult one and my shopping went through the roof which is really what's prompted me to join this thread.
I want to feel more in control and see more money in the bank than in my wardrobe.

lurkingaround Fri 08-Mar-13 22:41:08

<waves> Hi issimma. Ah, those boots!

Yes, agree, we should incorporate the re-jigging of older clothes into our guidelines.

blueberry2310 Fri 08-Mar-13 22:42:58

Don't know if anyone has used cloth or stylebook iPhone aps. Great for taking pics of what you own and putting outfits together or just reminding yourself of an outfit you like. You can file by occasion which is really helpful for not forgetting outfits you like

I'm off to the gym as I'm with hopefully. If I stay fit the clothes I have look better on me and less temptation to buy more.

FrugalFashionista Fri 08-Mar-13 23:05:39

More housekeeping matters...

I created a Swapboard for us on Pinterest but before we can get it going, we need a volunteer who coordinates it. Pinterest allows group boards but only if the board maintainer invites board contributors via email first. (Correct me if I'm wrong). So we need someone who receives the e-mail addresses of people with clothes/ beauty products to swap (via PM or email) and keeps the board neat and in good shape. Or, alternatively, if there is a good other technical solution that omits this need, that might work too.

A caveat about Pinterest - resist the temptation to join via Facebook as this will usually out your real name unless you change your profile settings. And no pressure/oblication to join. It's just a helpful extra for some. Direct links to stores can be disabled too if desired (press 'Edit' and erase the URL).

Limoncellolovely Fri 08-Mar-13 23:07:16

Chablis make up sounds fine I love Black honey too. I just wear clear gloss liquid liner mascara and bobbi brown pot rouge as I have got older I found I wear less and less make up not sure if it is time constraints more confidence or better make up formulations !! I tend to push the boat out if I m going out I look up smoky eye on you tube and pour a glass of wine and have a practice before the night in question. Not sure of your skin tone but why don't you try a softer bone coloured shadow and a soft smudged eyeliner and a clear or soft rose toned lip. Beauty Bible beauty steals has saved me a fortune with its suggestions binned my favourite Laura Mercier lip gloss for a Collection 2000 one with much the same results other than the price tag.

cathyandclaire Fri 08-Mar-13 23:22:45

Hello all...am skulking in fashionably late! My wardrobe is such a shambles that I'm not sure what lurks in there. I kind of sorted my Winter stuff but Spring and Summer approach and I don't know what to wear and don't have much spare cash to throw at the problem, it all seems to go on gas bills sad
Am happy to squat in the floor if all chairs are occupied!

I'll share my chair with you. Might not be much room though given the size of my arse grin

soapydishcloth Fri 08-Mar-13 23:37:53

Hello, I'm Soapy and own 10 leather jackets and over 100 pairs of shoes. Am I allowed in? If the benches are full I'll sit on a pouffe in the corner.
I have severely cut my spending this year, and plan to reduce it further.
To the pp who referred to the temptations of late night online shopping - that is my biggest problem too.

soapydishcloth Fri 08-Mar-13 23:38:53

Hello, I'm Soapy and own 10 leather jackets and over 100 pairs of shoes. Am I allowed in? If the benches are full I'll sit on a pouffe in the corner.
I have severely cut my spending this year, and plan to reduce it further.
To the pp who referred to the temptations of late night online shopping - that is my biggest problem too.

soapydishcloth Fri 08-Mar-13 23:39:42

Sorry, double post.

Russianred Fri 08-Mar-13 23:58:29

<<Is it safe?>>

I would love to get involved over here. I spent some time sorting out clothes yesterday and realised I need buy no more for some time. Frugal, I'm really interested in the psychology behind spending that you've touched on. I've avoided thinking about it really, but it needs addressing! Love the idea of a swap shop too. Must we all confess our sins??

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 06:47:33

Trying to answer some questions here...
NomdeOrdinateur wants to find lighter colors to wear in the summer. Like others suggested, white, taupe, grays, and nude can look really sophisticated on an ex-Goth (can you wear the palest purple/lilac - a shade between gray and purple). Google "Dark Winter Color Analysis" and you'll find lots of palettes that have good pale shades, see the "Winter homebase colors and Winter contrast icy pastels" here. An accent of pale post-it yellow or fluoro yellow would work too. And if you really want to be bold, pick one of the colors Nigella Lawson is wearing. A safe way of introducing scary new colors is accessories - a scarf or a belt in the new color. I saw quite good slim belts for about a fiver at H&M the other day (so good I almost bought one, but I decided not to, as I'm not a hourglass and often don't wear belts). Integrating more light color might be one of your planned spending projects here (set up a small budget for a t shirt and an accessory or two and swap/thrift/buy them --in April--).
Hopefully is the in-house color and image pro, she may have more tips.

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 07:09:50

RussianRed I love consumer psychology (talking about it here was not my idea, but I'm happy to oblige wink) and have been reading quite a bit about it this winter (eg, how supermarkets organize their shelves and eyetrack customers and use loyalty card databased to understand consumer behaviors). One of the bottom lines of these works is that consumers say they like a lot of choice, but actually feel very unhappy when choices are nearly unlimited. How does this apply to your wardrobe - unlimited choice - outfits and accessories in all possible colors and styles - will not make you happy, they will just increase clutter and make the clothes selection process in the morning more difficult.

Another consumer psychology thing: most women's magazines are not run on subscriber's fees. They rely heavily on advertising. So in many cases, magazines are set up in a way that they make you want to buy the advertised products. You will not get balanced information, true negative reviews, and lots of studies have shown that many women feel worse about their body and shape after flipping through a magazine - the models there are impossibly perfect, their skin flawless and hair glossy.

My favorite magazine ever was a small American lifestyle magazine called 'Budget Living'. It was NYC based, and was not one of those dreary things meant for older women - it was really stylish and had a strong arty hipsterish vibe (raiding dumpsters, rescuing furniture from the curbside). Their most memorable beauty tip? In a pinch, use (unused) disposable toilet seat covers - they mattify really well grin Well, of course they didn't get advertising from Lancome and L'Oreal, just small DiY stores and mail order companies; the magazine went under in 2006 (autopsy here).

ChablisLover Sat 09-Mar-13 07:14:20

Thanks limoncello

Today I have a kids party to go to and then the joys of dealing with rugby watching dh and ds. ( at least the bigger one is going to the pub!)

Oh and I have to tidy up!

So will try and catch up later

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 07:22:40

BillStickers if you have some reading time during Mat leave, the book Overdressed: the Shockingly High Cost of Cheap Fashion (Disclaimer: I've linked to the American store so it's not an 1-click affair to most of you) is a great read and eyeopener. If anyone needs to kick an out-of-hand fast fashion fix addiction, this is the right book. It's well-written and balanced, positive and motivating and was a real wakeup call for Frugal. A tip: I use my local libraries a lot (some of them even have ebooks) and buy a lot of books 2nd hand from Amazon Marketplace (often for a penny +p&p). Has anyone else here read Overdressed or does anyone have copies to swap? wink

Gallivanting Sat 09-Mar-13 07:32:28

Hi - would love to join you. Am an S an B regular who has name-changed.

I spend ridiculous amounts on clothes and am feeling increasingly ashamed at myself. It's not got us into piles of debt, but I am increasingly conscious that this level of spending is cutting down future choices, like retiring early , or giving children a hand on to the property ladder etc. We have a large mortgage ( so I suppose we do have a pile of debt!) and with discipline this could be gone before we are 50.

I do genuinely love clothes, and am interested in the psychology of fashion. I buy things I love, but too many of them. I have a job with long hours , lots of responsibility and stress, and also use shopping as a displacement activity. If I buy x, I am then thinking of finding y and z to go with them. I don't think being in the state of permanently wanting something else, the next great item, is a healthy or moral way to live.

I think I need to go cold-turkey and have a shopping-ban to break the cycle. Was hoping to try twelve months.

VioletGoesVintage Sat 09-Mar-13 07:35:33

Gosh, I well understand the shopping filling a void thing. All too often I find myself responding to negative emotions with a couple of easy clicks of the mouse. Thanks to blimmin' PayPal it's not always necessary to get out a card.....

Early in the morning is usually the worst time for me, when I am weakest shopping-wise. I blame my early rising DC wink. So, in my case, perhaps I'm filling a sleep void with clothes. Hmmmm......

More seriously, I buy far less and far better when I actually Try Stuff On. Maybe it sounds obvious to many of you but it took me a while to realise that a snatch, pay and run mission while a toddler whined in a pushchair and her sticky fingered brother threatened tantrums about non-forthcoming trips to the toy shop was not the way to considered clothing purchases! Oh for the days of child-free festers around dept stores and boutiques with strategic stops for coffee and cake somewhere they don't hand out colouring pencils and balloons....

Anyway, I reckon I buy maybe 90% less if I try on. Getting stuff home and then trying on doesn't work as well (for me) because quite often I never get around to returning the it. Same with online shopping.

I've also found I've bought considerably less since I started being strict about only buying natural fabrics. Increasingly hard to find on the high street but I'm lucky enough to have a couple of really decent second hand dress agencies nearby where some excellent stuff turns up now and then.

Someone further down thread mentioned budget beauty ideas, I think. Can I drop in my recommendation for the Aldi Lacura range? I know there were rumours about it being discontinued but I'm hoping rumours are all they are as I really rate the stuff. And I say that as an ex-high end beauty junkie.

Uh oh. Kids whining about snacks. At not yet 7.30am FFS. <VgV shuffles off muttering step away from the cards>

VioletGoesVintage Sat 09-Mar-13 07:37:35

Oh yes, buying X and then needing Y and Z to go with it. Also guilty of that.

VioletGoesVintage Sat 09-Mar-13 07:43:03

FF, I definitely agree that unlimited colours and styles in a wardrobe are not the way to go. Mine is much more streamlined and easier to navigate since I started sticking more or less to a palette of navy, black, charcoal and white with splashes of fuchsia and deep purple. Pinterest really helps with this. It's easy to see if you're going for the same colours or a rainbow hotchpotch.

Thanks Frugal for book recommendation, will give it a go.

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 08:18:34

I don't know if it's already been mentioned, but You Are What You Wear is another interesting book in terms of shopping and wardrobe sorting psychology. It's a bit American and psycho-babbly, but it does make some interesting points. I got my local library to order a copy in (normally costs about a quid, I think), as it's not something you'd necessarily want to keep re-reading.

My best capsule wardrobe move ever was limiting myself to:
1) natural fibres as far as possible (physically couldn't find a jumper I liked this winter in a natural fibre, so compromised there a bit)
2) buy less, buy better
3) limit myself only to styles that work together (in my case, I know they are the right style for me thanks to HoC style class, but using a Pinterest board to identify a particular 'look' you want to emulate would be a good compromise in the interests of not spending!)
4) as above, but with colour.

The flipside is that I am well past the point of shopping my wardrobe/finding hidden gems, did all of that a couple of years ago, so am now trying to develop my little capsule wardrobe without actually spending much money.

I am forcing myself to not wear just the new/most exciting bits of my wardrobe though - have been rediscovering my silk shirts this week, and today am wearing a Me & Em dress that has been shunned over winter in favour of a (second Me & Em) dress that I always feel works better. Now I have put on the older one I'm not sure why I took against it!

Working today, back later smile

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 08:28:31

Because of the almost overwhelming popularity of this thread, it's not easy to navigate. I thought I'd help a bit and do a bit of cocktail party hostessing <no alcohol involved, that's of limits in March for me too wink>

Quite a few of you share certain problems/interests/goals. So I'm forming small nuclei - you'll find peers and buddies <AA style> that way.

biscuit biscuit FIND LIKE-MINDED FRUGALISTA BUDDIES biscuit biscuit
Goal: Try to use existing wardrobe more
Carrie74, Portia, QueenCadbury, Daimbardiva, Foxysocks, CeeCeeBloomingdale, Limoncello, BillStickers, Frugal

Goal: More rejigging and tweaks so that old clothes look and feel new
Issimma, Awaywego

Goal: Gradual planned purchases
Foxysocks, Cheese, Chanie, QueenCadbury, GeorginaWorsley, Erowid, NomdeOrdinateur, Wewereherefirst

Goal: Buy less, focus on good quality
Awaywego1, Justasecond, Wewereherefirst, Topazandpearl

Goal: More daily variety / new dressing formulas
Chablis, FrantasticO, VioletGoesVintage, Awaywego1, Frugal

Goal: Post weight loss wardrobe challenges
Awks, ALittleOfWhatYouFancy, IlovemyTeddy

Goal: Curb out of hand online spending
Justasecond, SteppingOnLego, ShirleyShaerpeyes, Scarlet76, VioletGoesVintage, Frugal

Goal: Stop compulsive repeat purchases
Levantine, NickECave, Limoncello, GeorginaWorsley, Frugal

Goal: Stop buying stuff that you won't even bother to return
Frugal and someone else -who? Swapboards perfect for this!

_Goal: Living overseas/abroad: don't overdo binge shopping on trips home
ALittleOfWhatYouFancy, Blueberry, Frugal

Goal: Stop Overspending
Skaen, Gallivanting, Frugal

Goal: March Shopping Ban
Trills, Shopafrolic, Frugal

Goal: Post-redundancy overall frugality
Shopafrolic, OneLittleLady

Resident experts: Hopefully color & style analysis, Violet vintage

Your name not called out? Give a shoutout to someone you identify with and start a conversation! grin

issimma Sat 09-Mar-13 08:37:48

violet I've just discovered Aldi Lacura - it's fab. They'd better not discontinue it <shakes fists>

I've already spent my March S&B budget on quite dull stuff (friend getting hitched so new make up, shapewear, nursing bra that also pushes 'em up).
So my plans for March are:

Ebaying maternity clothes
Sorting out potential stuff to swap here
Sorting out HoC style day <wave to tic>
Getting my head around "my" colours. Had them done in early pregnancy, and didn't always apply them as had maternity wear from first time around. Pastel pink makes me look ill, despite me being a summer, and I've just seen in my workbook that it just gets a tick as an accessory. <penny drops>
Working on my pinterest Style Inspiration board

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 08:40:04

Oh and a public service announcement: we need a volunteer moderator for the Pinterest swapboard (ie a person whom anyone who wants to swap items can contact here via PM - she will control access to the swapboard. I've thought out a system already and set the board up, but as you can see, this thread is becoming a full-time occupation for me...)

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 09:06:21

I also very warmly recommend Dr Jennifer Baumgartner' You are what you wear to anyone decluttering/reorganizing/rebuilding her wardrobe or trying to learn to dress one's age. She's a real psychologist, interview here and Psychology today colunms here (both free!).

Limoncellolovely Sat 09-Mar-13 09:07:09

Hello Frugal wholeheartedly agree with you about beauty magazines can definitely see the connection between reading beauty magazines and rampant spending in Boots. It seems so obvious now about the advertising how a years subscription can be given away for peanuts along with usually a fab subscriber gift I got a pair of GHD's for £50 a few years ago with my subscription to Zest magazine. I would urge anyone before they splurge on a skincare item check out reviews on Makeupalley it is American but most of the main and many of the niche ranges from over here are represented and it has unbiased reviews on them. Oh and don't be scared to ask for testers most counters will happily hand them over if possible try and get at least a weeks worth I find that with most skincare there is a noticeable result after a couple of uses but then that is it but it is often enough to seduce you into buying it a week or two of use gives you a better of idea about whether it is for you or not.

I used to work as a department manager for a well known high street store and as I am sure you all know very week we would have a top ten best sellers which we would make sure were prominently displayed and always well stocked, I remember once comparing top tens from that week to the same week the previous year and they were surprisingly similar and really quite dull !!! it got to the point I thought that there could not be a woman in the UK who did not own a certain top or pair of jeans !!! Didn't really matter how much new stuff was put out there is a certain core of items per season that sell no matter what and rarely I may add end up in the sale. So I completely agree we think we want choice but actually we do stick to the same stuff. I look at an overfull wardrobe where actually it is all quite similar with the odd anomaly here and there so it FEELS as though I have nothing to wear.

VGV YYY to trying stuff on IN SHOPS it is all to easy to click and buy then try on at home not be 100 percent about it but then cant be arsed forget to return or think oh well I just need to get X to go with it. From my time on the coalface of the fitting room I can confirm that people who try stuff on will reject a lot of items but will generally be happier and make better choices.

ChablisLover Sat 09-Mar-13 09:08:27

Oh I'll join the out of hand online spending crowd too!

Can't get to shops easily o it's all online.

germyrabbit Sat 09-Mar-13 09:09:22

hello, can i join the out of control spending section! have tons in wardrobe unworm and keep on buying! am trying to ebay stuff to pay for new stuff but i found shopping a claming experience after a harrowing year

lurkingaround Sat 09-Mar-13 09:14:33

I am another guilty of using shopping as a distraction/de-stressor. All those lovely clothes soothe my mind. I am totally aware of this fact, but it's like a well travelled road, and so easy to visit it, works immediately to distract, gives me a break from life stresses. But this needs to change. I have a heap of stuff. I don't need any more, and its not healthy. I love hopefully's capsule wardrobe.

I'm going to read some of the recommended books.
I came across this algorithm for de-cluttering your wardrobe, it's from a blog, so I hope it's ok to link. Might be useful for some.

Here it is.

ShirleySharpeyes Sat 09-Mar-13 09:16:57

It's free listing on Ebay this weekend - so I'm going to get to work on the pile of stuff sitting beside me and see if I can recoup some cash. I very rarely go to the shops but find online shopping just so blooming easy and addictive. I love the excitement of parcels arriving, less so the returns.
I have read To Buy or Not to Buy: Why We Overshop and How to Stop - may need to revisit it!

ShirleySharpeyes Sat 09-Mar-13 09:21:52

And yes, yes, shopping is definitely a distraction for me - I work from home, and would much rather browse Zara online or look at all the style blogs than write a boring work letter, reply to some difficult emails or call someone awkward. I know would work much more efficiently (and have more free time in the evening) if I could learn to switch off the internet....but I am seriously hooked. Right back later when listings (with delayed starts) completed.

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 09:45:08

Ooh ladies loving the collective input!

I have a copy of "To Buy Or Not To Buy" and because there are cuite a few impulsive/compulsive/lift-the-mood/fill-the-void overshoppers here, I'll post a few quotes from it here tonight (Or would you like to Shirley).

Lurking the decluttering diagram is very helpful (yy to good links like that).
And Limoncello has great insider info.

Ladies, take advantage of the free listing opportunity on eBay! A chance to convert some skeletons in the closet into starting capital for smart, premeditated purchases.

I going to keep a huge, empty, brown shopping bag in my bedroom over the weekend. It's a daily reminder of what I'm not supposed to do.

I'm wearing a mixture of older / charity shopped / hand-me-down clothes and accessories today and I think it looks fresh, edgy and stunning grin <subjective>. I came up with a new formula a few days ago that allows me to rerun a lot of forgotten items. I think the look is laidback luxe <satiric grin> and it revolves around old bootcuts and a dressy 2nd hand cream silk shirt.

skaen Sat 09-Mar-13 09:56:57

What a brilliant thread. I'm terrible about buying online and not bothering to return because I really will wear it or I'll get it altered etc and being half asleep in front of cbeebies is a particularly bad time.

This morning I got up even earlier than the children and went swimming so gave managed to keep away from the buy now button!

Awks Sat 09-Mar-13 09:59:07

I am looking for a nude silk shirt - have been for yonks but it has to be perfect and fit my long, gorilla like arms. Am jealous of yours. Like the laid back luxe idea, but if that involves those vile Ash wedges then I'll think again grin

Russianred Sat 09-Mar-13 10:08:20

Gallivanting I really identify with what you are saying there and thank you, Frugal for that insight. I too find getting dressed each morning overwhelming because of the choice in my wardrobe. I hate the feeling of being desperate for the next 'thing' and know it is something that my DH finds less than appealing.

I know if I were to focus a little more on my body, I would feel happier about how I looked day to day - let's face it, you cannot polish a turd! Anyone else in that club? Have resurrected the Shred in a last minute attempt to sort myself out for a holiday in two weeks time.

Frugal I would be happy to pitch in with admin if you need it on a swap board.

lurkingaround Sat 09-Mar-13 10:08:35

We need to keep reading list too. Will skim thread and list later.

Please can I join - together with three friends we have been trying not to but new clothes since last summer but 1 or 2 of us have been dropping off the wagon a bit recently.

Looking for inspiration, validation, and a bit of chat smile!

buy

Awks Sat 09-Mar-13 10:15:00

Do you all read the fashion blogs sometimes mentioned on here? I started to read them and almost convinced myself that what these women were saying looked good, was desirable to me. But what I'd missed was that yes sometimes they did look good, but more often than not it wouldn't work on me. So the trying stuff on actually in shops (which was something I never did when 3 stone heavier) is the key.

I like taking an armful of different clothes into a changing room, seeing them on me and them fitting. It's like I get the rush from the clothes without actually spending any money. Now I've read that, I sound weird but ikwim blush

lurkingaround Sat 09-Mar-13 10:18:17

Thankfully I am not a beauty product addict, and am hugely sceptical of the industry. I am incredibly sensible when it comes to beauty products. You really need very few products. Post about your latest longing and I will be very happy to burst your bubble! grin

LadyBarlow Sat 09-Mar-13 10:19:10

Any room for me?? (Grin)
I've read through this thread nodding & thinking " yes, that's me"
Money's quite tight for me but I love clothes & want stuff to work with older clothes in my wardrobe. I started a Pinterest board this week but haven't got to grips with it yet, seems great though!
russianred I need to lose a stone so I'm up for supporting you (smile)
So...this weekend I'm going to list some stuff on eBay I don't wear any more & try to find time to look at different clothes combinations- with stuff I've already got.
Am really up for this so thanks frugal for starting the thread (thanks)

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 10:19:27

Wouldn't be seen dead in A** w****s. I know they have very many fans but they are simply not my style which is granny chic. Actually wearing my mother's hand-me-down suede loafers <nicer that what they sound like> grin

Ladies, knowing your personal style well can help to control spending. You will have an automatic knee-jerk 'no' response to many trends and popular styles. It also helps with the long-term planning.

Awks my silk blouse is probably from someone's work wardrobe, possibly never worn. Slightly old-ladyish, with a pussy bow (I wear it untied). Recommend charity and consignment shops near big banks and in affluent areas wink

Any nude silk blouses in the swap pile? Leather skirts would also have some takers!

Skaen thanks well done - displacement activities are good!

LadyBarlow Sat 09-Mar-13 10:21:06

Bloody iPad!

lurkingaround Sat 09-Mar-13 10:21:09

I agree with the trying on clothes thing. Sometimes it's like a bucket of cold water when you see it on you irl.

Limoncellolovely Sat 09-Mar-13 10:26:01

Lurking Need to get that diagram tattooed on the inside of my eyelids to be able to refer to every time I do some internet shopping browsing !!!

Frugal Bootcuts flattering comfortable why the bloody hell don't I wear them then ??? <goes to retrieve said boot cuts from charity bag> Initial response was to start shopping when I actually have 3 pairs already !!!

Awks Sat 09-Mar-13 10:32:02

FF phew. Now brogues, they are lovely. Lurking I know. I think I will go into town later and spend half hour in Topshop thinking wtf is that all about grin Internet shopping doesn't appeal to me at all - I'm from yorkshire, i have to feel the cloth - it's in my genes!

The leather skirt thing I completely get - what inspired me to loose weight was I bought a leather tunic pinafore dress thing for a fiver in the sale. lived it but couldnt fit into it. Now it's too big but I still wear it as it is so versatile.

ProlificWillyBreeder Sat 09-Mar-13 10:34:31

Can I join in?
After wearing maternity clothes for the last four years I'm a bit out of the loop.
I'm looking to replace 2x skinny jeans with navy and pale khaki.
I need tops I have little.
I need another cardie probably a navy or oatmeal one.

I'm up for a Pinterest board I have lots of clothes I never wear!

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 11:00:13

Welcome all new people! Yes there is still room!
Main points - some of us struggle with online shopping issues so no direct links to stores please. And scroll back a few pages for more guidelines and info.

Loving everyone's input once again.

Thanks Russian you'd be the right woman for the swapboard! Will PM you!!!

Russian I think that it's normal to gain a bit weight during the winter months. I have a range of clothes that allows my body to fluctuate within my natural range (about 3-5 kgs) but I mainly invest in preventing future weight gain. I don't do crash diets but have a bit of a healthy theme going on right now (no alcohol, more fruit+veg, try to do long walks nearly every day).

Lurking yy to bursting the beauty product pseudoscience bubble! I've recently drastically simplified my beauty routines and my skin is better than ever! I think the main things are avoiding UV exposure and not smoking anyway. I have some hormonal breakouts and no-nonsense salicylate (=Aspirin derivative) products have really helped.

cheeseandchive Sat 09-Mar-13 11:36:37

Thanks for all your hard work, Frugal, things are shaping up!

Just a suggestion - how about a second thread for planned purchases? Then people who are click-happy know to steer clear, but those of us that want a second opinion/discuss a possible purchase can post? it can be a frugal-themed thread though, so we don't have to explain every time "I'm trying to buy less/better quality/stop impulse spending etc"

Russian YY I am the same! Found that once I lost weight I bought so many less clothes. I notice that I become alot more impulsive/thoughtless with my spending when I am unhappy with my body - think I try and compensate for feeling pants with nicer clothes! Luckily I know that now and can stop myself!

issimma Sat 09-Mar-13 12:01:16

Just volunteering to help man the pinboard swap shop if still needed...

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 12:56:32

Hi Cheese this is a great idea - starting a separate "Frugal Fashionistas Plan Their Purchases" thread for store link sharing for planned purchases, 2nd opinions and possibly discount code sharing too? Will you take the lead and start it? I'm a bit wary of what happened to W&A (it started out as a wise purchases / no to compulsive shopping thread) so would really love to keep this thread store link free because this is what makes us different. You get thanks here for wearing your old stuff grin

I'm not joining the potential new thread for now (Total S&B Shopping Ban in March) so here are my caveats: in many shopping threads, there is a hidden fee for participating. The more you purchase, the more positive feedback you get. So you want to set up some precautions / wrist slapping / goal setting / rewarding planned purchases and staying on budget. You may want to also deal with the Keeping up with the Joneses issue in some way. And finally, keeping any S&B thread alive for longer periods needs a core group of dedicated participants. Too many splits and spinoffs, and the thread dies.

Have PM'd RussianRed and Issimma, thanks ladies!

This is a perfect thread for me so keen to join. I've been on the minimalist threads in Good Housekeeping for the last few months (hi issimma!) and that has transformed my wardrobe.

I've been doing Project 333 since December. The principle is that you have 33 items of clothing for 3 months and then you rotate three in and three out. You don't get rid of the rest of your clothes in the meantime but just pack them up and put them away.

When I first read about it, it made me feel quite anxious. I've learnt in life that when I feel that way, it's usually something that I will really benefit from. And that has absolutely been the case.

I've eBayed about 40 items of clothing and charity shopped a lot more. But most importantly I feel relaxed when I look in the wardrobe and enjoy getting dressed in the morning. I've also identified a couple of things I actually need (rather than I want or impulse buy) - a block coloured skirt, casual non-skinny jeans and comfortable but fashionable casual shoes (my holy grail!).

Hello all new frugalistas!

This thread has inspired me to dig out a very old and battered red satchel from the garage (bought from covent garden at least 15 years ago) It was dusty and cob webby and destined for the tip, but have cleaned it up (baby wipes tackle anything) and pulled it back into shape with some tins of beans. I really like the zatchels satchels and have some on Pinterest, but I knew my satchel was somewhere. Feeling very smug.

Also DH has taken DD on an adventure so have managed a few more rows on a dress I'm crocheting. I love a 70s vibe for summer. It's crocheted in gorgeous tangerine merino. Not everyone's cup of tea I know! I've seen quite a lot of hand crocheted stuff in shops recently, all for £150 +, so hoping this gets me frugal points although merino cost me £30

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 13:18:55

Very inspiring QueenofWhatever, love the minimalist vibe!

I don't mind people planning their purchases here, long term planning is good, as long as tempting links, codes etc are not mentioned.

I need absolutely nothing this month, but if I'm thinking sensibly and responsibly, I too need to replace a couple of tops (my old H&M t shirts are so tatty darned thin cotton that they cheapen any outfit) plus a pair of sensible dull gray or black wool trousers. Not exactly summer material, but perhaps a good idea to buy them during the final reductions in winter sales.

In my twisted head, luring must-have impulse purchases that can be wildly impractical often override the sensible basics (that good quality plain top, the simple skirt, etc.) I mean, is there ever going to be a time when I feel excited about looking for gray wool pants or a beige shell top? grin

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 13:20:20

Bill thanks - satchels are such a trendy thing this summer. Well done! And loving the crocheting!

Russianred Sat 09-Mar-13 14:08:21

Crocheted dress sounds wonderful! I have a barely-used sewing machine that I must get out and get myself busy on a project.

Glad I'm not the only one re. body and clothes. Everything I have fits me, but I need to sort out the wobbly bits. I have very little body confidence atm. Have just meal planned and bought for a very healthy vegetarian week of eating.

I

Limoncellolovely Sat 09-Mar-13 14:49:21

Billstickers crocheting sounds great that way you will get exactly what you want and will almost certainly be better quality than the ££££ in the shops I envy your skills have often thought about enrolling on a basic dressmaking course just so I can do my own alterations has anybody done this if so how difficult is it my mum has a machine I could borrow I just completely lack any skills in that department.

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 14:50:57

Can anyone point me to an easy to understand website/ thread about selling on eBay? I got rid of all my larger clothes to various charity shops, but I have some clothes that are now too big and some that were impulse buys and are mint with tags that I need to get rid of, and preferably make some money on. I've never eBayed so don't know where to start.

TIA

ALittleOfWhatYouFancy Sat 09-Mar-13 15:01:41

Feeling a little better - have just culled my wardrobe and am now down to 29 shirts! I have also saved a couple to turn into mock shirts - yes, I know, they do look a bit bizarre but I like the look under a jumper without adding bulk (which I can ill afford)

SteppingOnLego Sat 09-Mar-13 15:43:28

Oh this thread has come at such a good time for me! I am working and on call this weekend - normally this makes me stressed and grumpy and I soothe myself with good old internet shopping. Not this weekend. If I start to weaken I shall come on here and you lot can set me straight.

It was only seeing others here say that they shop when stressed etc that has even made me realise what I do. Think I could do with more of that info about shopping psychology too.

I think I really need to sort out in my head what my style is and keep reminding myself of my actual life so I don't but yet more items I hardly wear because I do not in fact work in an office (just like the clothes!). Does anyone else do this?

Fairyliz Sat 09-Mar-13 15:46:56

Can I join please?
I like other posters have wardrobes full of clothes that fit me but nothing to wear!
One particular problem I have is too many 'posh' clothes, great for a summer wedding, unfortunately i'm not going to any! Anyone got any ideas how to make them more everyday wear (I work f/t in an office)?

ChablisLover Sat 09-Mar-13 15:54:33

Ilovemyteddy - the eBay mumsnet chat board is very good

Fergoose is the eBay queen over there.

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 15:59:42

fairy can you add cardigans/sensible shoes? Or are they too posh?

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 16:02:33

Thanks, Chablis. Will head over there and have a look.

scarlet76 Sat 09-Mar-13 16:14:40

The thread is helping me to keep focused. Been through my existing wardrobe again today and planned some outfit ideas for the week ahead. I seriously don't think I need to buy anything until high summer / summer holiday.
Another thing I am going to do is take some shoes and boots to be re-heeled. I am guilty of buying new footwear instead of doing this.
I am also making a month by month plan of aims for the house project - these will only happen if I curb my spending.

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 16:18:39

Have just seen a thread started on the eBay site by our own cheeseandchive which makes me think it's probably not worth the effort of selling on eBay as most of my stuff isn't high-end stuff. I discovered a local store that sells people's secondhand clothes at £1 a month per item, so may give that a try (whilst at the same time avoiding browsing the racks!!)

Am also up for swapping, although I'm a Pinterest virgin as well as an eBay one (old Luddite!)

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 16:33:48

Haven't read eBay thread but IME known brands (Hobbs, white stuff, next, whatever) do better than unknown, but I think you have to resign yourself for some things going for peanuts, which can be annoying as it is time consuming regardless of how much it goes for.

I have done quite we recently with some virtually unworn m&s bits and an ageing Brora cardi.

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 16:41:16

I think it's the time consuming nature of it, plus the fact that I am not the world's most organised person, that is putting me off. Maybe I'll wait for the next free listing weekend (I know this weekend is free) and put one item on there and see how it does.

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 16:53:18

Argh! Just seen a Next coat which I bought and am never going to wear, go for £26. I paid £30 for it and would be delighted with £26 so am now thinking maybe I should do the eBay thing. Maybe I'll look around eBay for things similar to those I want to sell and see if it would be worth my while. Presumably you need a Paypal account. Can you take the money out of a PP account? I told you I know nothing about eBay grin

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 16:53:25

I find 3-4 things at a time manageable - not too much time listing, and more chance of one thing making some money, making the whole process less irritating smile

Ilovemyteddy Sat 09-Mar-13 16:54:19

Bugger! It actually went for £41!! I have to do this, don't I?

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 16:54:20

Yes, you need one and yes, you can withdraw from it (instant and no minimum amount now, which is good)

ChablisLover Sat 09-Mar-13 17:26:14

I'm not the most organised person either

I usually list 8-10 items at a time

Usually better know brands though and ds old mini boden gear

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 18:31:46

To me, eBaying is rarely very rewarding financially (you have to factor in time spent doing it and seller fees), but I made about 1000€ in a about two weeks selling maternity and children's stuff. And I intend to do another round of eBaying next summer. It's also a form of self-discipline and punishment (next time I am going to buy something, it's good to remember how time-consuming decluttering can be). I try to buy items I can use for a longer time, but of course it does not always work out.

I've been out a lot today saw lots of women in my part of the city wearing bootcuts. Teamed either with wedges or with flat treaded suede boots. People here are fastidious about their appearance and quite well off, so it may be something you want to consider ie don't get rid of them quite yet. I love street fashion, reading people's outfits (lots of ideas to copy).

I'm spending warm anti-shopping vibes to SteppingOnLego. Don't browse online shops, read this thread and these columns instead (by Dr Benson of To Buy Or Not To Buy fame). Have been flipping through the book and it has really sound advice. I love the Mindfulness part in particular.

ALittleOfWhatYouFancy thanks re clearout and Scarlet thanks re outfit planning.

Fairlyliz I too have more posh things that is healthy. My style personality is classic (plus I like girly touches in some contexts). I've started wearing my pretty dresses in my daily life and it's much more 'me' than loungewear (hey ho, lounging in a silk pussy bow blouse at the mo). Sometimes a leather jacket or a knit blazer will tone down a dress, and I have a brilliant non-traditional denim jacket. And I wear tweed / boucle Chanel jacket type things nearly always with jeans and my coatdresses with black leggings (or pseudo leather leggings). Send us some pics (Pinterest is brilliant for this) of what you have and we'll give you feedback!

SteppingOnLego Sat 09-Mar-13 18:40:38

Thank you frugal for that timely reminder. It's been crazy busy at work today just sat down with a cup of tea and my email inbox is full of updates/newsletters/come and buy stuff from online shops. I think I need to do some unsubscribing as starting to realise how they reel me in.

ShirleySharpeyes Sat 09-Mar-13 18:49:02

Hello - am off out in a minute - night out with the girls, but we live rurally so not even bothering to get changed out of my Fitflop polar boots!

A couple of pertinent quotes from To Buy or Not to Buy before I hot foot it to the pub - have been flicking through it again today - it talks so much sense, and reflects a lot of what has been said so far.

Who you are becomes confused with what you have. You overfocus on impressing others and shortchange yourself when it comes to taking practical, positive steps to improve your spirit << applies to me that one.

Overshopping is a coping mechanism, a way you temporarily distract yourself from authentic personal needs that aren't being met.

compulsive shoppers don't accept themselves as they are; they feel insecure and often have a desire to be transformed into some new and idealized version

compulsive clothes shopping is typically an attempt to camoflauge a negative body image, both physically and metaphorically - an attempt that cna't succeed for long.

Will find more later/tomorrow. Love this thread.

Topazandpearl Sat 09-Mar-13 19:17:54

Hi everyone. I read the link project 333, thank you to whoever linked it. This afternoon I had partial success applying it to my wardrobe. The website says you can adapt it to suit, so my 33 items do not count vest tops (counted them as underwear grin), outer coats, accessories, shoes, jewellery. Maybe I need another allowance of 33 for these!) This may make it a pretty weak attempt, but my wardrobe is much more streamlined and I have already seen different ways of combining what's left.

What was removed either went in a charity bag or a separate wardrobe for later consideration.

Also, in the spirit of this thread, a large order due next week (ordered before reading this!) will be scrutinised very carefully. If I keep anything, I will really have to justify it in terms of quality, value and wearability!

Thank you everyone for all the inspiration!

TheWombat Sat 09-Mar-13 19:19:12

Hello, is there room for me? I need lessons in not-spending. blush I also need to do a lot of eBay-ing. I have started over the last couple of months, but I need a proper clear out before the summer. I'm also on the minimalist thread, trying to abide by the 'one in, one out' rule. I'm getting better, slowly!

Mumof3men Sat 09-Mar-13 19:59:48

Hi, I'm in please! Last year we thought we were going to move house and I packed up over twenty big boxes of my can't get rid of too small clothes :-( That did not include the two chest of drawers and large double wardrobe of stuff or the ten black bags of clothes I gave my friend.
At the beginning of last year I lost 40 lbs, I bought smaller clothes and even some smaller too small clothes to wear when I got to goal, it all went wrong and I am back to my start weight. having sold my too fat clothes I am very limited in what I can actually wear. The loft is full of boxes and the wardrobe has about ten things in that I wear all the time.
I DO NOT WANT TO BUY ANY MORE DARNED CLOTHES! I want to use the ones I have.
I have no clue as to style or beauty so would love to see some of your Pinterest boards. I'm on there under the name Cuddlyrunner if anyone can find me and let me see their boards for ideas.

awaywego1 Sat 09-Mar-13 20:18:54

I can definately relate to the quotes re:compulsive shopping, I'm not interested in expensive gadgets, posh things for the house or owning a nice car but I cannot stop buying clothes. I know it's because I don't feel good about myself, every time I buy something I somehow imagine that 'this thing' will be 'the thing' that makes me feel good and look amazing. I've also been trying to lose half a stone for 3 years, clearly it would be better to just accept that maybe this is my natural weight rather than being in constant battle with this . But of course i know really that all this comes from within and that if i can begin to learn to accept that i am lovely just the way i am these unhelpful behaviours would stop. Worryingly I'm a therapist specialising in low self esteem-it's a classic case of learning to practice what I preach wink

TheWombat Sat 09-Mar-13 20:22:54

I have just discovered Pinterest. You can find me here: hipoptimist

GeorginaWorsley Sat 09-Mar-13 20:36:41

Agee Ebay time consuming,but makes me feel virtuous.
I love jersey dresses in summer,they are so easy.I have perhaps half a dozen,maybe more. But in my mind they are 'old',ranging from 5 years/to last summer.
So hunting for more,even though there is nothing out there vastly different to what I already have.

VioletGoesVintage Sat 09-Mar-13 20:40:58

Agree with those who say how time consuming eBay is. That said, I do sell periodically. Usually only 5-8 items at a time as I find the physical chore of washing, ironing, photographing in a good light, listing blah blah too onerous. One tip that works well for me is to sell similar things/same sized clothes at the same time. This works especially well for kids' clothes because people looking for e.g. 12-18 mo girls' clothes will happily look to see what else a seller is offering. Oh, and combine postage on items; buyers like that.

Women's stuff that has sold well for me has included White Stuff (yes, I am one of those who bought wheelbarrow loads of the clothes are pregnancies), Next, Boden and sometimes Brora. High end high street tends not to do so well and premium denim often goes for peanuts. If I want to get rid of stuff like that I usually take it to a dress agency. They sell it for a share of the profits - usually 60:40. Sounds a lot but often works out favourably when stacked up against eBay and PayPal fees.

FF - I am a bootcut fan. I do wear skinnies too, and also flares, but have never stopped thinking that bootcuts are very flattering, on me at least, perhaps because they balance out my broadish shoulders with my 5'10" height. I wear them very long, always in a dark wash and at the moment am teaming them with silk pussy bow blouses, fitted jersey blazers and either wedges or pointed toe burgundy chelsea boot style brogues.

scarlet76 Sat 09-Mar-13 20:41:43

awaywego parts of your post could be written by me. I feel sickened at times by the amount I have spent on clothes, chasing that one thing that will transform me and make me happy.
Of course it's really about how I feel within. My self esteem is very low. I struggle most days to think of anything positive about me.
Without wanting to sound arrogant, I often get told I am pretty. I am a skinny minny which friends who struggle with their weight envy. I am told I'm stylish. I have a good career that I am passionate about. But it's like I can't believe all these things about myself.

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 20:43:27

Shirley thanks so much for the quotes. If anyone here overshops because of feeling bored/tired/dissatisfied with your body/unhappy with life/feeling trapped, it's definitely very empowering and worth reading. Reading it was painful for me but it has helped a lot. Away I can recommend it - if you read it, give us a professional opinion what you think!

We are working on the swapboard and it should be up soon.
Are we going to have a launch party - is it going to be mobbed grin
I think you'll need to have a Pinterest account to play so if you are planning to host a swap (=offer an item) create yourself an account. And if you want to grab one of those items an account may make it easier too.

We are talking about dark stuff quite a bit (perhaps because there are not so many places where you can discuss these things), very good, but do remember that we want to look fantastic and feel good too! So any trend/fashion/budget style&beauty tips are really welcome!

And this is Day 2 of no purchases for me! grin

MrsAyrtonSenna Sat 09-Mar-13 20:43:35

Fantastic thread OP, you really seem to have struck a chord with many people, myself included. Hope you dont mind me being 'fashionably late' to the party and that I havent missed too much as things seem to be gathering momentum. Still waiting for your explanation of why you started the thread, look forward to that and will check in again later on to see how things progressing.

Hopefully Sat 09-Mar-13 20:56:52

Am so sorry to hear of those of you who feel low in self confidence. I've been there and it sucks, and I well remember spending a fortune on clothes to try to improve it.

One of my aims for the next week or two is to look at my (very A/W appropriate) wardrobe and try to figure out how to make it work for spring. Admittedly the lack of wafty maxi dresses and short shorts is unlikely to be a problem in the UK summer, but I probably can't continue to rock shearling lined doc martens and opaques all year...

FrugalFashionista Sat 09-Mar-13 20:59:46

Welcome all newcomers. <Did your DH drive too slowly MrsSenna?> wink
I think there are nearly 100 of us here now... shock
<if we have an architect and interior decorator onboard, we may need your help soon>

Repeating my story (not because it's particularly interesting, just to give people an idea). And if you scroll back about 3-4 pages you'll get a recap of people's goals and interests. Not everyone is a shopping addict, many here just want to consider their purchases very carefully.

Hi, I'm Frugal, ex Material Girl , I a shopaholic and my story is nothing special. Over the past years, my life has been quite limited because of small children and various other constraints. I work, mostly full time, but maternity leaves and several years of p/t work have slowly but steadily depleted my savings. After childbirths, I had the usual frumpy phase and then underwent a joyful gradual transformation - I lost the baby weight, found my style, colors, favorite shops etc etc. But once you get started it's not so easy to stop. I have a tendency to use shopping as an outlet and a way to fill a void. Sometime last year I realized that this cannot continue and that I have to do something about it. I have taken steps in the right direction (can really recommend the book "To Buy Or Not To Buy" - if you overshop, it's very compassionate and it really helps), but am still vulnerable and in need of support. I want to look good and really love fashion, but also want to put money into my pension plan and break free from the strong pressure to consume. Things (not to mention my bank balance) have been improving a lot this year, but I had a big relapse yesterday. And here we are, AA style <chairs creaking>

GeorginaWorsley Sat 09-Mar-13 21:04:12

Am pleased at references to bootcuts.
I look so much better in skinny flares/bootcuts than skinnies,especially in spring/summer when not wearing boots.
I like flares/bootcuts with wedges and white tee,little cardigan etc.

Can I get some style advice on here or shall I hide and start a new thread? I want a consensus on what may suit my shape but I have no idea what suits me since DS2's arrival floored my shape(beyond bootcuts probably).

It would help too if it's done before i do a wardrobe purge, Id rather get rid of what may make me look a blimp rather than what actually suits my shape to save costs IYSWIM?

MrsAyrtonSenna Sat 09-Mar-13 21:19:52

Got stuck in traffic on way back from Barcelona practices, Frugal, some guy driving an infiniti with a bumper sticker saying 'my other car's an RB9' held us up and another guy, a Frenchie driving a black lotus caused one almighty pile up. grin but I'm here now, DH in almighty bad mood, keeps muttering and saying something about just like bloody Prost.

StoicButStressed Sat 09-Mar-13 21:24:26

I'd def be in. BUT....

Could someone PLEASE tell me best way actually just how you do it AT ALL as no frickin clue? to E-Bay clothes?confused

And please act as if you were explaining something to a 4 year oldgrin

OH - and are there diff ways for diff things? IE, designer dress, Topshop kit, shedload T-shirts etc?

And is it a total faff and uber time-consuming?

<sits in chair with exhaustion after all demonstrating ignorance questions above; waits for someone to sit next to me in the circle and say "Hi, my name is...wink >

Joining in with a helpful link (not a buying site, a nice safe advice blog) - www.puttingmetogether.com/2012/02/building-remixable-wardrobe-part-1.html?m=1

issimma Sat 09-Mar-13 22:42:28

Cue bugles.

Fanfare.

The Pinterest swap shop is very nearly open. It just lacks stock!

If you'd like to host a swap, ie pin something to the board, please send me or russianred your email address (the one linked to your Pin account). To make sure that your real identity is not accidentally revealed, double check that your Pin account is under a nickname or that you have removed your name etc from your profile.

Once there are items to swap, we'll get cracking grin.

cheeseandchive Sat 09-Mar-13 22:54:37

Frugal, yes very happy to start the planned purchases thread. Have some big assignments coming up so not lots of time to keep an eye on it but I'm sure others could help me!

Will link back to this one to keep it in the same spirit, if anyone wants to then jump between the two then they can or just avoid it if click-happy!

wewerehere, I would either post on here or on the 'planned purchases' thread (once I've set it up!). I'm very happy to and I'm sure other people would be able to give advice on either thread about clothes/shapes/colours etc, I guess it will just depend whether you are happy with links or not.

libertychick Sat 09-Mar-13 23:06:59

Just a recommendation for the reading list - a book called 'willpower - why self control is the secret of success' by Roy F. Baumeister.

The book explains that we have limited willpower and it's important to conserve it and direct it towards the things that are most important - it helps you identify when and why you might be most like to give in to temptation. It has a fantastic section on dieting - it convinced me to stop dieting and be easier on myself and since then I have actually lost about half a stone and have decided that the weight I am is fine! I can't recommend it highly enough.

ChablisLover Sun 10-Mar-13 00:37:50

Someone may have to guide me through pininterest.

Have spent the night talking shoes and clothes

And expensive handbags!

ChablisLover Sun 10-Mar-13 00:38:52

Not me

I spent the day returning items

Tomorrow a pininterest day and eBay.

Once I get drunken rugby dh up!

VioletGoesVintage Sun 10-Mar-13 06:57:56

Right now I would give up all clothes, shoes, bags, make up etc in return for a duvet, a dark room and some peace and quiet.......

Hopefully Sun 10-Mar-13 07:16:03

stoic I'm sure I found an idiot's guide online for my mum, I'll try to find it later on.

liberty I am intrigued by the idea of limited willpower. Would explain why I am incapable of dieting when I'm pushing v hard and being v disciplined in my business life (am self employed).

Currently awaiting waffles in bed. Yum. Happy Mother's Day!

bleedingheart Sun 10-Mar-13 07:25:34

Violet I know exactly what you mean! To sleep and be alone for 5 minutes feels like an unachievable goal sometimes!

I realise that I need to look into the psychological side more as a lot of this thread resonates with me.
On a positive note, after deciding I needed a leather skirt I went through my wardrobe and found an unworn textured thick black tube skirt which goes with my jumpers and tops and will see out the winter so I can see how often I wear a skirt and purchase leather at the end of the season/year if I will wear it!

Can I ask mind-numbingly dull question of the day?
Hardware (bag metal work,, shoe fastenings, buttons)-does it look awful if it doesn't match each other or your jewellery?
I end up buying two bags in the same colour but with different hardware so it doesn't clash blush. Need I bother?

Hopefully Sun 10-Mar-13 07:56:29

bleeding I really don't think mixed hardware is going to affect your overall look. I do tend to stick to yellow metals, but I know my season so I only buy that. If I didn't know I definitely wouldn't buy two copies of one bag to avoid clashing hardware.

QueenCadbury Sun 10-Mar-13 07:59:39

bleeding it's exactly the sort of thing that would bother me too grin but I doubt if anyone else seriously notices. I only like silver so all my stuff tends to match.

bleedingheart Sun 10-Mar-13 08:19:24

I don't buy exactly same bags but for example, a dark brown bag with silver hardware and a different dark brown bag with gold/brass hardware. I admit most of my bags have silver hardware but if I'm wearing gold jewellery I feel weird having silver hardware on my bag. Over thinking I know, I gave always been too matchy matchy and will never be cool.
Thanks everyone!

bleedingheart Sun 10-Mar-13 08:20:32

*have

Gallivanting Sun 10-Mar-13 09:02:58

bleedingheart i don't think different metallics "fight" with each other. I often wear two Tiffany keys together - one yellow gold and one white gold and like the contrast.

Well yesterday was not a great spending day. Bought DD a jacket, top and bag. My imminent personal spending ban does not extend to DC, but this is an area I will have to watch. I love buying her clothes and need to find a formula to rein it in here too. Thinking of giving her a small clothing allowance ( she's a teenager ) for her to control her own purchases, and just not buy her clothes when we are out and about together.

Bought myself Boden sandals online last night. Am telling myself that they are the last purchase and the ban comes into force now. Have been here so many times in the past and not followed through. Thank you so much for the thread * Frugal* as it has strengthened my resolve, and gives a place to keep a diary of a very necessary journey.

Here are the rules I am going to adopt:

1) I am allowed one bag purchase in October
2) No new clothes or accessories bought by me for myself until the mortgage is paid off
3) I can buy underwear, tights and socks
4) I can buy clothes with birthday or Christmas gift vouchers.

Due to overshopping I have a well- stocked wardrobe with a lot of good quality clothes that will not date quickly. I need to look after it much better, though and over the next few days am going get in there to get it tidied.

I'm going to donate things that don't fit / I won't wear. This helps to assuage my guilt a little at the unethical way I've been living over the las twenty years. We have a very well run charity shop in our town which supports a charity which is very dear to my heart. Because of gift aid they send a letter with the figure they make from selling my items and I am very impressed with what they usually get. Once gave a load of stuff to another charity , and was shocked at how little they raised and wished I'd ebayed it myself and given them a donation.

Hope everyone has a successful no spend or frugal day : )

mirpuppet Sun 10-Mar-13 09:41:07

I'm not banning myself from shopping but I am writing down what I spend both on myself and my child. I started doing that on New Years.

The most revealing thing has been how I have not worn most of the stuff i have purchased -- so perhaps I should consider a shopping ban.

This is the short list of my shopping rules:

1. Does it fit me?
2. Will I wear it?
3. Can I afford it?

Thanks for this thread -- I still have some work to do regarding clothes & shopping.

FYI -- I am a big Ebayer -- it is a time suck but I figure it is better to get something for my castoffs than nothing. I only list on free listing weekends and for adult clothing I start at at least 10 pounds. i once sold something for 99p and promised myself never again.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 09:42:59

I stick to silver/gunmetal/steel in everything and it simplifies my life.

Would love to do some Polyvore / Pinterest existing wardrobe planning with you and help out Wewerefirst out but currently at the mall with DC (on phone & a busy day). Lots of pros ( Hopefully, her blog has a great planning board, and TiC ) and semipros ( W&A MNV ladies ) about so if someone has time to get this started I'd be very grateful <feeling slightly frazzled, did not foresee how busy & demanding this thread would get>

Loving the mindful vibe!

Awks Sun 10-Mar-13 09:49:06

Cheeseandchive thanks - I'll keep an eye on it with you too. These threads will be really useful for me as well so ta very grin

lurkingaround Sun 10-Mar-13 10:29:16

Hi everyone, am sitting in bed still!
I also try to stick to white/ grey metals on stuff. I have strayed, with a bit of yellow metal, and it makes me feel a bit odd but I think I'm the only one who notices!
I find it harder post at weekends, I work PT, and it's easier to keep track then! grin blush honest, I'm very productive at work! Ltd willpower is very interesting! Makes sense.

I think the easiest way to "get" pinterest is to sign up and give it a go. I also thought it was beyond me but there really is nothing to it. If you have an iPad, download the app, even easier then.

On a bit of a tangent, I read a question lately: if I could promise you blissful happiness, would you give up absolutely EVERYTHING you own? Not so easy to answer, is it?

mirpuppet Sun 10-Mar-13 10:51:28

yes i would give up all my material possessions for happiness

not my family.

lurkingaround Sun 10-Mar-13 11:02:35

Yes, material possessions. Everything. House, bed, clothes, jewels etc etc. Anyone I have asked irl had a long think before answering. As did I. Sort of focuses your mind.

Hopefully Sun 10-Mar-13 11:50:25

Gallivanting I love the giftaid letter. I always feel v smug when the charity shop has made a good sum of money from things I couldn't even be bothered to ebay.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 13:07:06

I had a brief spare moment and learned to use Polyvore.
I told you that I came up with a new 'dressing formula' the other day. We all use formulas we dress. Some common formulas on MN:

tunic+ leggings + moto boots
skinnies + slouchy top + flats
dress + opaques + boots

Well, my formula is not astrophysics. I thought of a combination that allows me to use three items that have been languishing in the back of the wardrobe (a charity-shopped silk blouse; old slim bootcut jeans; about 10-year-old pointy toed flats).

Using this holy trinity as a basis, I can create quite a many different looks by combining the basics from other items from my wardrobe. Of these items, just two (the black coat, blue blazer) are recently purchased (ie, this year, pre-shopping ban wink) and 11 are old or very old (some of them have narrowly survived charity bagging).

This here is my first Polyvore set ever. blush Please pay no attention to the fantastic prices and designer names (couldn't edit them out for some reason) - my items are old so I used stock images of similar items supplied by Polyvore. So my cheap Zara coat is replaced with a ££££ lookalike and my navy slimline coat is so old I can't exactly remember when I bought it (late 1990s) etc etc. The bracelet and loafers are hand-me-downs from my mother (bracelet came with a magazine subscription).

And I'm not a fashion professional so my combo is kind of tame and not cutting edge in any way... but I've worn variations of it over the past days and felt good about them - have even received a few compliments! That's the point right?

I really enjoyed playing with Polyvore. It's very intuitive and a bit like drawing or DIY, you are focused on tinkering with the images, not busy filling your virtual shopping cart. (But if you suspect it will be a trigger to bad behavior, skip it.) So can recommend it to wardrobe planners. An alternative approaching is using Pinterest to photograph/Google image search your old clothes and then using your Pinboards to think of outfits.

Do you find this type of info useful here? And can boards like this be posted here or do they make you feel bad?

Finally, the other thread, Frugal With Links is up, so if that's your thing, please go there and start sharing. I'll stay more on this side just to be safe. grin Day 3 going well so far survived a trip to the mall without a relapse.

Yes LOVE the giftaid email. Also feel sense of satisfaction when a charity shop uses one of my cast offs for their window display grin.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 13:56:00

A comment to Lurking's question. An article about minimalist lifestyle in today's NY Times here. <we are clearly on trend>

The main point: "The things I consumed ended up consuming me." This is my bottom line - this is why I am here. New purchases and acquisitions don't make me happy: sharing, experiencing new things, rising up to new challenges does. <serene new-agey smile>

mirpuppet Sun 10-Mar-13 15:52:54

I enjoyed that NYT article. Minamalism ike everything else has its problems; and having an extremely rich person go on about the joys of having less is a bit preachy. But generally I agree -- stuff does not make me happy long term.

The comment that stuck with me most was the following:

I realized how little meaning "stuff" has when our house was on fire and my husband and I were frantically trying to save the lives of our pets. I realized later that neither of us had stopped to try to rescue a single thing: not jewelry, not computers, not even money itself. Only life mattered.

libertychick Sun 10-Mar-13 16:01:12

Hopefully and Lurking the realisation that willpower is limited was a huge insight for me. The book explains that every time you exert willpower you use up energy so if you have a morning with screaming children where you have to use willpower not to lose it with them, followed by a work meeting where people are being difficult and you have to use lots of willpower to stay professional and calm, then by lunchtime you are literally out of the resources necessary to call on to resist the high fat lunch. The book explains the biological reasons for it all brilliantly. To sum up, the messages I took out of it were:

1. Don't try to change everything at once, focus on big changes one at a time and choose the time to start the change carefully

2. Eating is important, you need energy and your body and mind react badly to being deprived - you need more calories when you are working hard and exerting will power is very hard work

3. This may be controversial on this thread - absolutes are difficult! Banning something completely is such hard work that we often fail and then feel awful. The example given in the book is deciding to never eat chocolate again - the evidence is, that this is so hard, that people give up and then eat loads of it! The brain reacts better if, when you have a craving, you say to yourself - 'that's ok, I'll have some chocolate in 20 mins' - people who do this either (a) don't eat any 20 mins later as the craving has worn off or (b) if they do, they eat a lot less than the people who keep resisting and then binge

4. Keep reminding yourself of where you are right now. So for dieters, weigh yourself every day (this is what I do), for shopaholics, write down every single thing you buy and check your bank balance every day. By constantly reminding yourself of how things are right now, you make the small every day changes that get you to your goal in the end.

Apols for the essay - but I have found the above to be lifechanging.

Hopefully Sun 10-Mar-13 16:43:12

Liberty that is fascinating, and really rings true. Am definitely going to be hunting that book down!

I am in the midst of ebay listing - one brora cashmere cardigan and brora cashmere dress (neither in my colours or style, have been idly hanging on to them for too long), so hoping that they will make enough money to make up for the boring things I am listing too.

Bit late to this thread......
Hardware....I'm a bit of an OCD matcher, so like it all the same......however I try to buy jewelry (and an working on a watch) that ombined silver and gold them you can mix it up.
Pinterest....I'm addicted, Polyvore looks interesting......how do I find it? Love the outfit building potential.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 17:02:19

Loving your observations Liberty.
In the middle of clothes repairs, I decided to rescue one item and perhaps improve another (nothing fancy, just repairs by hand). Sewing surprisingly meditative...

Polyvore here. There is a way to import items from Pin, only found it after having created my board. I'm actually quite excited about it, looking at my clothes on a board helps me to see things I don't normally see.

Can we link our own personal pintrest boards here?

liberty I completely agree that absolutes don't work. I've recently significantly changed my way of eating to the Primal Blueprint which is about more than diet so lots and lots of things to potentially do differently.

The view is that you should aim for 80/20 and try one principle at a time rather than going cold turkey. That very much works for someone like me - I work best with incremental change and also I'm too busy to radically overhaul my life overnight.

hopefully I've been looking for an eBay Brora cardigan for a while now. What size and colour?

I am most definitely not a compulsive shopper but am still really interested in the psychology behind fashion and shopping. I think if you can start understanding that,it all starts making a lot more sense.

Someone upthread said they used to work in retail and that the top ten selling items didn't really change year to year. Sorry, can't remember who it was! But I would love to know what they were as I think that's probably a good indicator of what you need in a capsule wardrobe.

carrie74 Sun 10-Mar-13 17:13:04

Hello again all. Glad to see your thread has inspired so many frugal. On reflection, I think I'm likely to be an infrequent contributor. I am fairly naturally careful with my spending, and don't need to restrain my habits too much, plus am fairly disciplined about e baying clothes I'm not wearing anymore (even when I still love them). However, I will be keeping an eye on the thread and pitching in if I feel I can assist in anything. smile

Hopefully Sun 10-Mar-13 17:24:41

Queen It's v neck, a kind of coraley colour, with grey elbow patches, size 12.

VioletGoesVintage Sun 10-Mar-13 17:46:07

Really interested in the psychology info people are sharing. It's giving me some useful insights into why I was a more sensible shopper when I had more money and more time!

Actually, I am not too much of a spendthrift and, perhaps because I have a good idea of my own style, I don't make too many dud purchases (although there are certainly some) but I still buy and spend more than I am comfortable with for all sorts of reasons.

Loved the NY Times quotation that it is life that matters. Wish I could "like" that.

Polyvore: I'm a recent convert and have really enjoyed creating a few sets. It definitely made me realise how much variety already exists in my wardrobe.

But, you know, here's the thing - for me at least. I like clothes a lot, I really do, but I like many other things a whole lot more and I don't want to give clothes the head space (and wardrobe space grin) that used to be more readily filled with other things. So that's what I hope to get out of this thread.... To let go just a little, to be confident enough not to care so much about the garments
on my back. If they suit me, if I like them, if they are as ethically sourced as possible and if I don't have so few as to be washing thrice weekly and so many as to be surrounded by bin bags of the things then I'll be happy!

Hope that all doesn't sound totally and utterly mad! If it does, I'll NC and disappear...... wink

Limoncellolovely Sun 10-Mar-13 17:59:58

Queenofwhatever hello it was me with the top ten, I was a good while ago but from memory without fail the following items featured in the top ten sellers for the company. Year round there would be a plain white T shirt, dark indigo jeans, workwear Black jacket (essentially a blazer) plain black workwear trousers in the spring/summer there was always a mac usually in beige or navy, black cropped trousers and a denim jacket. In the winter always an ivory and a black roll neck sweater and a black v- neck sweater, a grey hooded top and black ankle boots. None of these items are particularly revolutionary and I dont think would be a shock to you and I bet nearly everyone on here has at least one if not all these in their wardrobe. Don't get me wrong other items came and went out of the top ten but these basics in one form or another featured all the time. which having thought about it means we should add another rule to to our shopping mantra "Do I have one of these already ?" Aside from having a few "what on earth was I thinking purchases?" I think more people are actually guilty of having wardrobes full of identical looking purchases like me with my trainers and the other poster with her shirts which makes you feel like you have nothing to wear as your wardrobe is visibly bursting at the seams !

issimma Sun 10-Mar-13 19:37:31

Another shout out for swappers to join the Pinterest MN Swapboard. Send me a PM and I'll send an invite back grin.

ff am probably being dim, but are there any rules? First come, first served or is there a token system or am I missing the point completely?

shopafrolic Sun 10-Mar-13 20:00:52

Hello again, I think I'm in the same space as carrie in that I know what suits me now and don't splurge spend anymore. Although in years gone by I was significantly in debt as I couldn't control my spending back then. Being happier in myself and less concerned about what others think has made a huge difference to the way I shop. I was definitely guilty of sale time splurges and buying multiple items in different colours if one fitted me well.
My main issue is that for now, due to DH redundancy I'm on a shopping ban. I'll be watching with interest for ideas about new ways to wear existing items and can't wait to take a look at the PIn Swap board tho!
Hope everyone has had a lovely Mother's Day.

KandyBarr Sun 10-Mar-13 20:06:45

libertychick I've read that book! I agree, it is well worth reading. The authors made the point that willpower strengthens the more it is exercised, which sounds like tosh but I've found it to have worked. They also pointed to evidence that strong willpower - above attributes such as confidence, resources etc - is fundamental to success.

And I remember a tip for strengthening frugal willpower by checking a bank balance when tempted to overspend.

awaywego1 Sun 10-Mar-13 20:15:47

I realised after my slightly somber talk about my compulsive shopping that there was an essential bit I had forgotten; I love clothes, I love fabric and interesting prints and buttons and textures and playing around putting slightly quirky outfits together. So I don't want to give up on clothes, but buy less and more purposefully - finding things to make outfits out of clothes I already have rather than constant duplication.

issimma Sun 10-Mar-13 20:31:19

Thanks to this thread, I've just bought a leather skirt. 99p on eBay, so pretty frugal, and in my Summer colours. Need to find the styling tips below!

lurkingaround Sun 10-Mar-13 20:38:15

Interesting NYT article. This is the line that stuck with me:
Though American consumer activity has increased substantially since the 1950s, happiness levels have flat-lined.
Worth thinking about. It is good to know what drives us and how to manage it.

issimma will pm you. Do I pm you my pinterest or my email?

issimma Sun 10-Mar-13 20:41:03

Just realised, Pin names are fine so either send me that or your email address. V excited to see that there are already lots of pins being added.

cheeseandchive Sun 10-Mar-13 21:07:06

Hurrah, Awks, come on over!

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 21:32:19

Just back from a party (a lovely party).

Unless someone hasn't done it yet, we'll post the swapboard link here tomorrow evening <sample sale fever>
Thank you everyone who has posted and Issimma for enabling <tempted>

Ground rules, made up as we go.
1st priority: to people whose e-mails Issimma has ie those who have board access and are posting items to swap. They get preview and get to reserve items as soon as they are posted. <some items gone already - get posting ladies>
2nd priority: anyone who has posted on the SB/FF thread - if there are competing bids, they win.
3rd priority: lurkers and the rest of universe MN ;)
Do you ladies agree?

shopafrolic Sun 10-Mar-13 21:36:50

Sounds good to me Frugal

QueenCadbury Sun 10-Mar-13 22:08:25

Can I just ask, when we say swap do me mean for free or for a price? Obviously if you want an item you pay p&p.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 22:17:06

Read through the new posts and I'm with Awaywego. I love fashion, and fashion loves me back (clothes fit me off the rack - I can wear very many styles). But I've reached the point of diminishing returns. Quoting Wikipedia: the law of diminishing marginal utility means that the first unit of consumption of a good or service yields more utility than the second and subsequent units, with a continuing reduction for greater amounts. In plain English: my first pair of designer jeans brought me a lot more pleasure than the 6th pair. (I had a brilliant social sciences teacher in school who said that the first espresso machine you buy is life-changing, the 4th is not...)

But I'm also with Violet. There are much more interesting things in life than fashion and I want to limit time and energy I spend on thinking about it. I'm interested in many other things, and one of the ways I've gotten out of shopping to fill the void is to create much more meaningful content. (That was a big challenge last year, and I've made a lot of progress.)

This thread is working much better than I thought. I love the thoughtful introspective vibe here. And dedicating some time to archeological excavations in my closet and cellar (found some treasures today!) wink feels more creative and satisfying than mindless shopping.

libertychick Sun 10-Mar-13 22:21:12

I was wondering that too QueenC....

Thanks for the Primal blueprint link Queenofwhatever looks very interesting, have bookmarked.

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 22:22:08

QC as few of us can do local swaps I think offering to pay the p&p (via Paypal or by other means) sounds good. Some swap items are quite valuable and in those cases I think it's up to the people to negotiate a solution. If you are interested in an item, PM and ask what the person would like to have in return. The swap will be completed only if a solution that satisfies both parties is reached.

CeeceeBloomingdale Sun 10-Mar-13 22:29:48

I have listed a few things that didn't make the last charity bag as I held onto them for various reasons. I would consider swapping for another item that might take my fancy or selling them. How do we complete transactions, does pinterest have PMs or similar? confused

Mmmm " the psychology of shopping" interesting <scratches chin>

I adore clothes,I love fabrics, trimmings, historical clothing, theatre costumes,current designer stuff....everything.

But......I don't need to buy it all.

I know what suits me, I do experiment occasionally but I tend to buy what fits with other stuff in my wardrobe. I don't always buy expensive and never designer...ever.

I have friends who always need something new for an event and always have to buy expensive, would never consider buying cheaper high street even though they will compliment me when wearing such a garment. I think women with no confidence in their own style need the confidence a label gives them, and really , frugal ladies the fact is you don't need to spend high end to look high end if you've got a bit of style .

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 22:41:44

CeeCee I'd suggest the interested party PMs you here on MN (this is how we keep the swaps within MN), you two negotiate the terms&details, and if and only if you agree, you comment on Pin to close the swap. If the interested party and you don't reach an agreement, you can comment on Pin that the swap is open and others can bid. Would that make sense?

I just completed my first swap ever. <excited>

CeeceeBloomingdale Sun 10-Mar-13 22:43:53

That's a plan, thanks FF. Will see if those commenting pick up and PM me here as my small one has just woken up so that's me offline until tomorrow night.

daimbardiva Sun 10-Mar-13 22:45:59

frugalfashionista I just wanted to pop on and say what a great job you're doing here - I love the thoughtful vibe on here too, and am going to try and make some time to really read through all the posts. There's some really interesting stuff coming up. I'm also going to take a whole week off work to sort through my overflowing wardrobe and get swapping/charity shop donating!

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 22:52:24

Drywhite yes I agree. I can admire vintage Valentino without having it in my closet. And I can stop buying because I've found my style, I'm old enough so I don't have to join every passing trend.

Re designer and not, it's social code too. In some contexts labels are the new normal and that's where the pressure to conform starts. (That's a big part of my story.) But I've always thought that true style transcends the label. My Polyvore experiment taught me that my humble items can be worth ££££ and vice versa. There are multiple versions of the same item at very different price points. This is why I think the boards might be useful on a frugal thread - if we specify "black pencil skirt", you can source it at Tesco or Jil Sander and everywhere in-between. <getting tired, rambling>

FrugalFashionista Sun 10-Mar-13 22:55:56

Thanks Daimbardiva and CeeCee (loving your stuff!) - hope you'll be able to sleep well tonight. <remembers that phase - to bed now - will be woken up by a toddler at 5am anyway>

I like quality clothes, I just find myself suckered into buying cheaper things because they are a 'bargain'. I want to shop less but buy better. Plus it'd be useful to finally pick a style and stick to it, though to be honest, the old faithful is a slightly gothy style. I always go back to it no matter what else I try.

mothermirth Mon 11-Mar-13 08:20:45

Loving this thread and musing… a wise and not so avid friend told me many years ago that when facing fashion temptation, she applies this strict criterion: will it make my top 10? ie, unless you're going to love a garment and want to wear it almost daily a lot, don't buy it.

Usually works for me. smile

Can anyone help me quickly with the Pinterest swap board? Issimma sent me the invite which I accepted but now I can't work out how to access the board.

What's it called or should it automatically appear to me (it's not)? I'm on Pinterest as Queen of Whatever.

I'm already getting that panicky feeling that I'm missing out on all these amazing clothes - not that I really need anything.

FrugalFashionista Mon 11-Mar-13 09:21:58

OneLittleLady I used to do that too. When I examine my charity bag contents, they tend to be synthetics /poorly made clothes /one season wonders. Years ago I had a phase of wearing mostly supermarket clothes. While that was cheap up-front, I never really loved those clothes and consequently did not feel great on them. If you can get hold of the book "Overdressed", via a library or otherwise (does anyone here have a spare copy?), it directly addresses this issue and can be very useful.

Mothermirth you are my hero! Hope I will get there too one day <baby steps, baby steps>

I went to a party with lots of fashionable people last night and from what I saw, demure is back. Saw beige and nude below the knee or midcalf plissé polyester skirts. A very early 1980s secretary/librarian look - I am sure there are lots of skirts like that in any thrift/charity shop. A line is back too after a long break. And I can confirm that bootcuts are chichi fashion party appropriate if you wear them long and dark, pulled tight over high-heeled boots or wedges or platforms so that just the tip of the shoe is visible.

I wore a winter white A line mod style coatdress (an impulse purchase/relapse that inspired this thread: no use to cry over spilled milk - the coat will remind me of important self-discoveries and I am going to wear it until it is gray put it to hard work), a cream loose poly/viscose knit jumper underneath (impulse purchase last summer, binned after circa two wears - I found it in a bin bag in the walk-in closet and fixed the snags with a crochet needle), grey skinnies (a semi mistake purchase in the winter sales, something I didn't get around returning in time) and tall silver python print boots (2nd hand from eBay 2 years ago, boot shaft too loose, have been meaning to take them to the cobbler's, but now that Napoleon-type loose boots are trendy again, they looked just right). Felt good, received compliments and stood out in a good way (wear white or red to a party if you want to be noticed - most others will wear black and dark neutrals). Felt very smug about the thriftionista items grin

Anyone else found something forgotten and started wearing it again?

FrugalFashionista Mon 11-Mar-13 09:31:51

PM sent to QoW, we'll make the link public tonight.
Deep breaths, mindful swaps, use your mantras grin

mothermirth Mon 11-Mar-13 09:48:58

Haha, it's hard to stick to, but once you get used to it, the top 10 rule does work. Especially if, like me, you're on a self-imposed no-spending ban until the end of 2013!

As I get more haggard older, I find another brilliant deterrent to spending is simply to try things on. As soon as I see how hideous the object of my desire looks, the urge to spend vanishes grin

mothermirth Mon 11-Mar-13 09:51:08

blush I meant a self-imposed spending ban.

FrugalFashionista Mon 11-Mar-13 09:59:26

Quick instructions how to post swaps: get board access by PMing Issimma, upload a picture of an item that you want to snap to Pinterest via snapping a photo (using a smartphone / iPad Pinterest app) or by taking a photo, uploading it to a free image server (Photobucket, Flickr etc) and then pinning the photo URL to the board via the 'Pin It' button on the swapboard. Describe the item (size etc) and tell how you want to be contacted (I want to be contacted via PM on MN, but you can discuss the terms on Pin too using the commenting tool).

Going to work now, see you in the evening! wink

Wrt finding things you'd forgotten you had-

I re-found a pair of high waist black wide leg trousers. I was given them by my friend's mum when I was about 15. They are really flattering on me for some reason. They have an elasticated waist which sounds grim, but I'm a slim apple with size 8/10 hips and a 12 waist. Fitted trousers give me a saggy bum, but these seem to flatter my arse and tummy. Was looking for a black maxi skirt but these give a similar look so may hold out on the skirt for now.

Also a pair of champagne metallic plimsolls. Someone linked to something similar on another thread, I loved them, and then thought...hang on a minute grin

Love this thread. I love clothes, want to look stylish, like taking care of myself and interested in fashion and fashion history. Like others I have a fairly decent wardrobe, that could be improved by a bit of well planned gap filling.

A big issue for me is weddings etc. I panic and end up spending ££££ on some shite from Coast which a)I will never wear again, b) needs additional spend on shoes, cover up, bag etc and c) someone else will inevitably be wearing.

The third last wedding I went to there was a seriously stylish woman there, wearing a simple black backless jumpsuit and a chain strap handbag. She was just in a class apart from the rest of us in our 'event' clothing.

I vowed there and then never to return to my Coast days, and for the next wedding bought a simple, beautiful navy dress which I have worn many times since.

I want my whole wardrobe to be like that. I don't want to clothes-panic over a dinner date with friends, or a camping trip, or a night at the theatre. I'm getting there and this thread is helping hugely. thanksthanks
Wow, ramble over, must Hoover the floor.

Limoncellolovely Mon 11-Mar-13 10:26:49

Frugal On your advice I rescued 3 pairs of bootcuts from death row. thanks One pair were perfect hardly been worn because they are so long but work very well with a slightly higher pair of shoes. The second pair are too short and I dont think bootcuts that flap about above the ankle will ever look good so I remember a tip from Trinny & Suzanna of all people about chopping them down into shorts they look fab (just need it to stop snowing). The 3rd pair were fine but were a strange colour then I remembered rescueing a much loved pair of DH jeans by dyeing them indigo. One pack of Dylon jeans blue dylon added to half a pack of black dylon machine wash gives a gorgeous dark indigo blue black colour, these were 7fam jeans so would not have been cheap to replace like for like !!!!!

Secondly a fellow inmate of my bootcuts on death row was a dark tan leather blazer I tried it on it still fits looks, nice feels good. Now I love a blazer and own them in everything from wool to denim even a bloomin' linen one in my wardrobe somewhere but what about leather ???? Looking around all there is biker style jackets I have a black one myself that I wear a lot but am a little bored with now. How do I style it ? I used wear it with bootcuts and a T. Nomdeordinateur helped my leather skirt get parole it even came out on day release Saturday with chunky boots woolly tights and a slouchy knit so thank you for that thanks But what do I do abot the blazer can fellow frugalistas help me decide if it gets pardoned and released back into my wardrobe remain or on death row ?????

Limoncellolovely Mon 11-Mar-13 10:48:19

Billstickers Ramble on it is cathartic. Know exacxtly what you mean since starting on this thread and thinking A LOT more about about my shopping habits the best anti-shop mantra is thinking "Dont I have one of those already ????"

Coast do some lovely stuff BUT you always run the risk of turning up in the same dress as someone else and having to keep your coat on all day. I'd like to bet your stylish lady did not buy that outfit especially but had had it ages loved it and has worn it loads !!!!

Agree completely re:navy shift I wore one to a wedding must be 18 years ago comlpete with classic Audrey Hepburn style cream and navy hat and pearl necklace. Dh says it is his favourite photo of me has it up in his office and even when I look at it now I know I look nice and it still does not look dated !!!!

Billstickers That is so true. Once you identify the gaps in your wardrobe, and plug them with well-chosen pieces, you can dress for any event from your wardrobe with no stress.

I am going to Glyndebourne this Summer, an event which 3 years previously would have sent me into a tail-spin of depressed panic-stricken buying. In contrast now, I have a choice of 3 dresses, and my only possible wishlist item in connection with the event is some flat but still glamorous shoes (to prevent getting stuck in the grass in heels).

lurkingaround Mon 11-Mar-13 12:09:14

I'm going to summarize some of the points/aims/tips of this thread and link some reading material.

The aim of this thread is to help and support those of us wishing to curtail our clothes spending, stick to a budget, wear the lovely clothes we already have, re-jig old clothes, and stop impulse buying unnesessary clothes/accessories and compulsive repeat puchases

It's worth doing a bit of background reading on clothes/will power etc.
You are what you wear by Dr. Jennifer Baumgartner
Why self-control is the secret of success Roy F. Baumeister
To buy or not to buy
Overdressed: The shockingly high cost of cheap fashion

Recognise your weaknesses, like tiredness, or late night internet shopping and avoid these like the plague.

We have some helpful tips:
Examine your wardrobe, with a ruthless eye. This site might be useful.
See if you can re-hash or re-jig some of your older clothes. This site is worth a browse, this site or have a look on the net for ideas.
Project 333

Ebay/Charity/Swop unwnted items.

SHOPPING

A: It's worthwhile making a list of your aims e.g. no shopping in March/this year, or replace jeans, 3 new tops, new accessories etc.

B: Decide your budget and stick to it.

C: Ask yourself some worthwhile questions:
1. Do you love love love the item?
2. Do I have 3 other items in my wardrobe that I can wear with it?
3. Will it make my top 10 favourite list?
4. Will I wear it? (Where, when etc)
5. Can I afford it?

D: if you still want to buy, it might be useful to WAIT 5 DAYS and consider your purchase. Maybe pin it, polyvore it or post on the other Frugal thread for an arched-eyebrow honest review from fellow frugalistas.

E: Check your bank balance

F: See if you can source the item cheaper e.g. with a code, a sale etc

G: If you do buy, make sure you wear and enjoy with a guilt-free conscience that your item og clothing was a GOOD BUY!!

Limoncellolovely Mon 11-Mar-13 12:17:19

Hello Lurkingaround thank you for that post was just thinking we needed a reading list !!!! Is there anyway your above post could be attatched to the opening post so that it doesnt get lost and we all know where it is to refer to ??

lurkingaround Mon 11-Mar-13 12:19:17

Posted a bit too soon, Last sentence should be knowing that your item of clothing was a good buy.

Apologies the essay, but I thought it might be useful to have our 'reading-list' and hints/tips in a sort-of-list form.

Add if I've forgotten something!

lurkingaround Mon 11-Mar-13 12:21:09

I don't know how to do that Limoncello, it would be handy, I had to skim the thread a lot for the list!!

lurkingaround Mon 11-Mar-13 12:26:11

It would be worth adding a little description to each of the book titles. I didn't because I was terrified if I took any longer on the post it would whoosh disappear and I'd have to start all over again!

Hopefully Mon 11-Mar-13 14:20:54

Have added the willpower one to my wish list, but might see if the library can order it in.

I am secretly thrilled that DH has to work all night tonight so I can spend it going through my wardrobe. <shallow>

girlsofsummer Mon 11-Mar-13 15:12:40

Great thread idea FF and can recommend the book Overdressed recommended by Frugal she has great taste in books wink

Love the idea of a clothes swap thing too.

Any other avid charity shoppers on this thread?

girlsofsummer Mon 11-Mar-13 15:16:09

I am definitely an emotional shopper, it is a craving I get that fills some sort of void. Have been much more self controlled in past year than ever before and not bought very much at all. I love thrift shopping but have even got fussier with that in recent times saving it for stuff I really like. My plan is to get a sewing machine and start altering stuff myself. This has been a plan for about a year but feel closer to it now than before...

girlsofsummer Mon 11-Mar-13 15:18:27

Have read You are What you Wear too. it was good, an easy read. Overdressed is very different book.

Think reading those two books had a big impact on my spending habits actually. Am a huge accessories fan particularly belts, shoes and jewellery.

Just been to the library to order Overdressed and all 3 southwest copies are out gringrin come on now own up!!!

I've listed my things onto the swapboard and I'm on there as Queen of Whatever. It's confusing when some people have got different names here and on Pinterest! Which one of you is Cee Cee Bloomngdale or skaen? You both have things I like.

If you have a Kindle, you can often download the first chapter of a book for free. I downloaded Jennifer Baumgartner's first chapter and am enjoying it.

Some of you seem to have more upscale lifestyles than me - parties and Glyndebourne! My life is nice and low key (pubs or seeing bands in terms of social life) but I still end up buying clothes that are too dressy. Advice on how to look my age (43), casual but elegant and also comfortable is always appreciated!

awaywego1 Mon 11-Mar-13 18:25:58

Am loving the swap board. I've a couple of things to list so ill try and do them over the next few days.
I'm giving up smoking this week so am going to use all that extra anger energy to start going through my clothes and putting outfits together, looking at what I can alter and highlighting any gaps so I can focus any future spending. Will have a look into the books too-which will hopefully help me keep focused.

Beaverfeaver Mon 11-Mar-13 18:45:37

Wowee, I must have missed this thread. Already up to 300 posts so its definitely a hot topic!

I have up shopping for lent.

It has seemingly gone ok. I have people around me who know and support me and guide me back when I am near to pressing that buy button.

I have decided that I can treat myself if I sell something 1st.

So far since the beginning of lent I have sold a pair of jeans and bought myself a blazer on eBay. (Reduced from £90 to £20!)

TheWombat Mon 11-Mar-13 18:50:36

I have spent the afternoon sorting out my wardrobe and ebay-ing a fair bit of it. I just got my colours done and have discovered that lots of my clothes are either grey or pink and in some cases, both (not a good look for an autumn) hmm. So I have ebayed lots of grey stuff but would love to look at the swaps pinterest board too! I will email Issima.

My aim is to try and reduce the number of clothes items (especially jeans) that I don't wear because they give me a muffin top / aren't perfect / are just 'meh'. I have lots of clothes that I never wear and are good quality with lots of wear left.

I also want to develop a new attitude to shopping - previously I've had a 'magpie' approach (do I like it? is it bright and shiny? ok, then I'll buy it), but I figured that if I know I can choose from a fixed colour palette, then I won't feel like buying need so much because it all goes with everything already.

I also have an emotional approach to buying new things, and I need to fix that.

ChablisLover Mon 11-Mar-13 18:50:42

Loving the board.

I have a few list I had ear marked to list on eBay and have a pile still to photograph.

Will add some to the board.

Anyone interested in boden size 12 trousers?
And vintage coats?

katykoo Mon 11-Mar-13 20:05:07

This thread has really inspired me to do something with my wardrobe, its bursting at the seams but I tend to wear the same things over and over again. I am 43, still trying to find my 'style', buy lots of 'fast' and cheap fashion and need help !!
Have reserved 'Overdressed' at the library so I'm on my way !

FrugalFashionista Mon 11-Mar-13 20:09:20

Swapboard here!
People who have provided swaps or posted on this thread (or the other Frugal Fashion thread) can reserve items tonight. Reserve by commenting on Pinterest, the PM the seller for details. Happy swapping! wink

chanie44 Mon 11-Mar-13 21:30:19

I've taken some I inspiration from a lady I work with, which I hope helps us all. Although her style isn't to my taste, she does well.....

1 she wears all her clothes, so it looks like she has loads. The rule of wearing 20% of your clothes 80% of the time certainly doesn't apply to her.

2 she chooses her clothes the night before work

3 she doesn't buy clothes on a whim. She told me she thinks about what it will go with before buying.

4 her clothes are never tatty - have never seen her in anything faded, I'll fitting, frayed etc. even her uggs are spotless.

Not exactly Mrs Frugal here (probably a bad influence in fact), but just dropping in to extol the virtues of eBay. After seeing all the leather skirt chat on here I had a quick browse, and a few hours later a horribly listed new Dior leather skirt is on its way. Price? £10. Other recent bargains include a £100 Matches voucher for under £30 and a pair of Goldsign jeans for £1.99. Honestly, you'd be amazed what crops up. It sounds basic, but search for anything you fancy, you might be surprised!

issimma Mon 11-Mar-13 22:28:49

amber my 99p eBay leather skirt is on its way to me. Blogpost please on how to style grin.

libertychick Mon 11-Mar-13 22:28:56

<Faints at finding Amber on here>
Actually I think I have picked up the best ever frugal tips from you Amber....

PretzelTime Mon 11-Mar-13 22:36:10

Stupid newbie question about Ebay: How do you know the stuff listed is real and not copies or similar?

You don't.
You have to look at seller feedback, photos and listing details, and ask questions.

I am actually quite frugal in my way! I'm bloody brilliant at sales shopping...

girlsofsummer Mon 11-Mar-13 22:49:02

yes Amber you are excellent at the ebay bargains! I have bought lots off ebay before but prefer to charity shop, not sure why, think its because I have made some bad ebay buys as well as good ones – helps to see it IRL

libertychick Mon 11-Mar-13 22:49:12

Yes that's it - Amber Queen of sales grin

girlsofsummer Mon 11-Mar-13 22:50:25

Agree with sales. Very rare I will buy fullprice. Outnet etc are marvellous.

But, saying that, this year I am not even doing that.

FrugalFashionista Tue 12-Mar-13 09:00:48

Thanks so much for the terrific recap Lurking (scroll down for it, on next page currently)!!!

I'm planning a trip to the post office tomorrow and will take my swapboard items down by then (3 gone already and thanks for the p&p payments) so if anyone is interested claim them today. The board is up now and hope you'll find it useful! Swapboard here and lurkers can bid today too!

Love to see Amber and GirlsofSummer here and thanks for the great tips. And really loving the overall busy vibe - eBaying, swapping, sorting, organizing, planning, reading, thinking. This is the opposite of mindless consumerism, so happy to be doing this with you grin

Also love the fashion and social history thread.

And another great book - Deluxe - How luxury lost its luster by Dana Thomas. If you are a high end shopper, the book will save you ££££ --and may kill your it bag habit. For the more environmentally/sociologically oriented reader I recommend Pietra Rivoli's The travels of a t-shirt in the global economy and Leslie T Chang's Factory Girls. Both potentially life-changing fascinating reads.

QueenCadbury Tue 12-Mar-13 09:59:29

Amazon must be doing well out of MN. Every time I look at the books recommended there's only a few left in stock!

FrugalFashionista Tue 12-Mar-13 10:05:10

QC that's a well-known sales strategy to make you click "buy". Airlines and fashion retailers do that too - people switch into panic purchase mode when they see that there is just 1 or few items left. That's why they are showing us that info! (Of couse keeping low stock makes sense for them for many other reasons too.) But I'm happy if all library copies are out - well done ladies grin

QueenCadbury Tue 12-Mar-13 10:11:24

I'm one of those who fall for the sales technique and panic buy grin. Not frugal I know but someone mentioned somewhere that all copies of one of them are all out for use in south west libraries. Also by time I paid the fine as I'm invariably late returning things I may as well buy new then donate to charity.

I only ever pay full price on NaP/Matches when I worry something will sell out, and I'm usually vindicated in that it does, like my Tibi lobster sweater which sold out in my size worldwide. Pretty much anything else can be relied on to pop up in sales/on the Outnet/eBay eventually.

FrugalFashionista Tue 12-Mar-13 10:58:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FrugalFashionista Tue 12-Mar-13 11:04:27

Not criticizing you QC and I fall for that line too all the time. But it's good to know that it is knowingly used to push people from 'consideration' mode to 'decision/action' mode <consumer psychology junkie>
In our terms: from mindful to mindless mode.
That said, purchase of books is always allowed if you ask me

If we have anyone fluent in German on the thread I can recommend Alexander von Schönburg's Die Kunst des stilvollen Verarmens aka The Art of Stylish Poverty (available in many other languages too). It's an entertaining light read, could't find a translation, but a brief English synopsis here. (Link repaired. Please disregard the previous message.)

GeorginaWorsley Tue 12-Mar-13 12:31:49

Am wearing a Boden top and Phase Eight cardigan today that have been languishing in my wardrobe for 2 years,worn only infrequently.
I love the cardi,its dark grey marl jersey but I never knew what to wear it with to zing it up a bit.
Found teal Boden top ,grey and teal Wallis necklace and grey and teal Mint Velvet scarf.Paired with straight leg dark jeans looks great,and all of it a few years old but hardly worn!

Limoncellolovely Tue 12-Mar-13 13:56:37

Georgina Well done its what its all about making use of what is already there smile

Really need a gold star emoticon !!!

Am wearing a Primark dress today <crowns self most frugal>

skaen Tue 12-Mar-13 17:08:43

I've been thinking more about what and why I buy and going through credit card statements and it is interesting. I haven't tended to spend anywhere bear as much in the autumn or winter - a bit if topping up of stuff I wear regularly but I'm pretty happy with dress plus opaques/ pencil skirt, blouse, jacket, opaques etc.

In summer I spend a lot more. Partly because I find it much more difficult to be 'smart' and partly because I buy stuff I would never wear normally for a holiday (in Devon, so not exactly tropical!).

Does anyone else find done seasons easier than others? Also any tips for pasty pale legs and inept fake tan application?

issimma Tue 12-Mar-13 17:49:50

skaen I was recommended St Tropez gradual tanner for pasty legs - not tried it yet though.

PenfoldRocks Tue 12-Mar-13 17:54:47

My anti-pasty vote goes for dove everyday gradual tanner. I get lots of people asking of I've been on holiday, from which I deduce it must look pretty natural, and it's cheap - and can often be found on offer at boots/sainsbos

Beaverfeaver Tue 12-Mar-13 18:16:43

I've done a bad thing.
I just ordered these shoes : www.amazon.co.uk/gp/aw/d/B009RNNPLC

However, I got them for just £20, so I feel I had to!

awaywego1 Tue 12-Mar-13 18:21:23

Another vote for dove. Very gradual but subtle and natural looking.

Careful beaver - links may get you thrown off wink.

I always buy more in autumn/winter......still manage to buy a fair bit in SS though!!!!!
Ove/Johnsons gradual tan in fair....best for me, takes the glare off!wink

Gingefringe Tue 12-Mar-13 19:47:56

Top tip ......don't pick up a basket in Boots. I go in for cotton wool and end up spending £40 on various 'essentials'.

Agree.....also make a shopping list and stick to it.

GeorginaWorsley Tue 12-Mar-13 20:50:06

Garnier summer body or Dove here too.
Also in winter stuff covered up by coats/scarves etc,in summer more on show.

ChablisLover Tue 12-Mar-13 20:55:07

DH is helping me be frugal as I have missed out on two bargains at the outnet sale due to him

Now its frugal (I have store Credit) but missed the iris & Ink cashmere and I could have got it for nothing! But I asked DH and he took so long telling me to save money and did i actually need it etc etc, it sold out!

Anyway, have managed to upload some things to the MN Swapboard

If I can find the battery charger, I will take some more pics and upload tomorrow.

I have bags of unworn clothes ready for ebay but will pin some of them and see if anyone wants a swap.

ideally I would like a boyfriend style jeans or a nice dressy top - I seem to spend my days in cotton basics and im getting bored

skaen Tue 12-Mar-13 21:58:58

I will try Dove! Thank you. I think it's just that I need the confidence to show my legs when they're not covered in lovely woolly opaque tights!

CointreauVersial Tue 12-Mar-13 23:02:29

Chablis - for boyfriend jeans, get down to the nearest charity shop, find a pair of straight-leg jeans in your size (there will be loads) and customise/roll/distress at will.

Shouldn't set you back more than a fiver (and it's for charidee).

ChablisLover Wed 13-Mar-13 06:09:01

Cheers Cointreau

But had a thought last night and have gone through my jeans and think I might use existing old pair and have googled distressing jeans

Even more frugal but charity loses out.

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 08:20:47

I've been thinking about the willpower thing.
There have been quite a few temptations about was an online sale frenzy yesterday (Day 5 of shopping ban) and have been to two big parties with a sumptuous bar over the last few days (3rd week of alcohol-free month). No slips yet <sigh of relief>
For me, the total ban seems to work better than shades of gray rules. Why? Because it facilitates decision-making. My knee-jerk response is "no". No cognitive processes involved, it's simple. grin If I can spend "some", I have to think through every decision and that's very hard.

Mothermirth you and many others on this thread are inspiring me because by setting an example you show it can be done thanks
And Chablis thanks for DIY boyfriends and Georgina thanks for giving old items a new life (and thanks Cointreau for helping out]. And Violet and everyone else for new swapboard pins. (I was too busy yesterday but will try to sort out my pending swaps today.)
Also appreciate the anti-pasty leg tips, thanks to everyone who contributed <have to do something about that soon>

Ginge I often try to avoid picking up baskets and carts when I'm shopping. Learned this in the States - shops like Target and Walmart there have ginormous shopping carts and people have a tendency to fill them up to the brim <supersized shopping experience> Did you know that food psychologists have found out that we don't have built-in portion control in our system (and supermarket designers use the same principle - my nearby market just introduced bigger baskets). We think/eat/consume in units - a plate of something, a glass of something, or by the basket /cartload grin This is why in many shops SAs offer you a basket or offer to free your hands so that continue to shop.

Oh and if you didn't bag bargain cashmere, don't feel too bad <consoling hug> I've been in the process of phasing cashmere out of my wardrobe because I find it devilishly difficult to maintain. Unless it's very high grade, it bobbles easily. Worst case scenario: after a week of wear, you have something that looks like the cat's blanket <have way too many items like that>

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 09:23:07

Sorry about the overly long and garbled post - should learn to proof and preview wink

skaen I realised something similar whilst on the minimalist threads. A disproportionate amount of my clothes are summer ones, but warm summer evenings and days on the beach type stuff.

Mulling it over, I think it's because I'm happy on summer holidays (we normally go away to Southern Europe, I need sun and warmth) and want more of my life to be like that. I spent several years in my twenties overseas, Asia, Africa type stuff where the climate was hot and they were also happy times in my life.

Since I've put all this together, I've found it much easier to let go of some of the excess clothes that I was wearing barely once a year. I'm now spending more time and money on choosing really nice clothes more suitable for the British climate. Recently that's been mainly cashmere and thermals...

PenfoldRocks Wed 13-Mar-13 09:30:24

Frugal - I am the same as you, an all or nothing kind of gal. Last year I gave up all sugar and alcohol and got through 3 months with no problem - by the end I wasn't bothered at all by it (it came to an end on an all-in holiday!)
Now, I struggle to not drink every night and have a treat every day and now my clothes are all tight - really don't want an excuse to buy more!
I have decided to try for a weekend only drinking thing and no sugar - I'll see how I get on with those strict boundaries.
Now, the spending - I am on a ban and have been since the start of the year. I had a spend on an outfit for my (ahem) 40th birthday party, but think that was allowed - and slipped up last week with a pair of leopard print jeans, which I've wanted for aaaaaages and got on ebay for 99p.

Frugal I must defend my low-end cashmere. I have found Uniqlo to be particularly good, and I note that there is an article in the paper today agreeing. And if something bobbled after a week, or looked tatty after first wash, or did not meet quality expectations in other ways, I would be taking it straight back to the shop. There are consumer rights there to protect us and our money.

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 10:24:17

TiC excellent advice! <wearing a bobbled cashmere dress with refound jewellery as I type> I'm over cashmere because I'm a serial non-returner blush I also resent having to do the quality control and vote with my wallet grin I actually blacklist certain fibers (acrylic, most polyester - okay in coats and travel clothes, not okay in tops; viscose, linen, cashmere - too faffy for me to maintain) to simplify my life. Many other people can make these fibers work really well I'm just too lazy.

Skaen summer is my season of choice. I love colorful dresses and bare legs and light footwear. My summer wardrobe is bigger than my winter wardrobe <yes I know QoW> and I love the ease and simplicity of summer dressing. I really struggle with winter.

The shopping ban came at a good time for me. Transitioning from winter to summer is usually tricky, but this year I've discovered old items that are perfect "bridge" pieces. This formula here. And a new one based on a cream poly/viscose semisheer loose-knit sweater (a mistake purchase, worn over white H&M vest, too sweaty otherwise) and a pair of gray skinnies. If I add a nude feather gilet (it was slightly tatty, but I spent an hour on Sunday repairing it and now it's like new), a mock-silver chain bracelet and grey suede ankle boots, it's a great casual outfit. If I add a white blazer and a colorful scarf (a coral melé or a blue-green-yellow 2nd hand Missoni) and either the suede boots or gray studded ballerinas, it's a perfect smart but laid-back work or restaurant outfit. And if I add a white evening coat, a cocktail ring and silver python boots, I'm all set up for a fancy party. All items from my existing wardrobe and most of them "mistake" purchases that I haven't worn much. Plus a few death row survivors wink

teta Wed 13-Mar-13 10:25:28

Can i join?.I am normally pretty frugal after overcoming high spending habits when younger.However a terrible temptation has opened in our nearest town-a big new TK Maxx.I just love silk and cashmere and i have already bought several bits.I really don't want to clutter up my carefully edited wardrobe with lots of clothes i won't wear.I need someone to tell me to step away,now.
I still do have gaps in my wardrobe though.I need some boyfriend jeans-i love the faded distressed ones and i am looking for a good quality jersey maxi in a petite length plus maybe a ruched skirt.

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 10:38:20

Penfold sending you positive and affirming vibes! thanks
And I think that 99p slip is forgiven wink - enjoy those lovely bargain jeans!
Black/ white is not for everyone - but it's right for people with certain personality traits <me> Changing behavior patterns is a learning process and if you are rewiring your brain, the first month is the most crucial. What seems to work me is strict focus for a certain period <rewiring going on as we speak> No idea whether I'll make it, but have decided to give it a try. grin

Limoncellolovely Wed 13-Mar-13 10:43:05

Morning Frugal swap board going great just a lurker on the moment have lots to swap but am a complete technophobe blush however Dd is back from uni the weekend so shall ask for a tutorial !!!

Has anybody got any thoughts on my deathrow blazer or are its crimes against fashion so huge that I should be rustling up its last meal ???? To recap it is dark tan still fits !!!! and is actually much better quality than my more recently purchased and worn to death biker, has anybody else noticed that after digging through their older stuff that it actually seem made of better materials than their newer stuff ?

After fab styling tips thanks on the leather skirt hoping you lot may be able to do the same for my poor jacket.

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 10:46:14

Teta welcome! I have to start working now, but outlets, discounter chains and overstock e-tailers have been my biggest source of grief mistake purchases. Wasted money, time, wardrobe space. Wasted life.

Sending you a wrist slap emoticon right now <SLAP step off now> grin
A carefully chosen streamlined wardrobe sounds fantastic. Many people here are really keen on simplifying and editing - can you tell us more about how to get there?

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 10:57:24

Limoncello do a "leather blazer" search on Pinterest?
Is tan a good color for you? If yes, I'd plan some fresh looks around it using your existing items (Pin and Polyvore excellent for this) and maybe test one of them out on the street. Death sentence/ amnesty after the trial wink
If tan is not a good color for you, I'd sell/swap/donate it.
I've enjoyed my reformulated looks immensely...

Off to work now, BBL. Others, any ideas for Limoncello?

teta Wed 13-Mar-13 11:20:34

If the tan blazer is a good fit and still a modern shape i would keep it.Even though the colour may not be entirely you,it can still be worn with a scarf.I have several leather/suede jackets that i bought when i lived in Asia.The only ones i discard are the obviously dated shapes and the faded ones[lighting fades suede].I also echo the Pininterest search for ideas.
Frugal the only way i've been able to rationalise my wardrobe is by colour.At the moment its mainly charcoal,navy and nude/blush.Pretty much everything goes with everything else[i am blonde so these are my best neutrals].I have a huge selection of cashmere scarves to add some colour.I do have a spring rail of peach,blue,green cashmere sweaters and blue maxi skirts waiting in the wings though.

mothermirth Wed 13-Mar-13 12:16:56

The catalyst for my 2013 spending ban was realising that I actually do have enough clothes… and – as ffs have confessed – I tend to buy similar cashmere garments over and over again.

Like FF, I find a total ban easier than allowing myself to be exposed to temptation. Have to keep my wallet under close scrutiny in antique/junk shops now though…

Frugal I'm finding (three months in) that if I feel I might fall into Brora off the wagon, I can assuage the urge by buying some small beauty item I actually need. Even a deodorant can do it for me! smile Or if I see an irresistible bargain, I might buy it as a gift for someone. Spending urge satisfied; personal ban intact: result!

mothermirth Wed 13-Mar-13 12:17:39

into Brora off the wagon

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 13:20:58

Leather inspiration for Limoncello. Some of it very high end - if it fits you well, I'd regard it as a classic item and use it a focal point (the pins show how it's done - either by adding neutral background items or strong contrast). Adapt a look that you like and that reflects your personal style.

Mothermirth intrigued and inspired - very much feel the same, I have enough and the surplus is suffocating me (and v good to know your Achilles' heel) grin

AphraBehn Wed 13-Mar-13 13:37:43

Thank you for this thread - I have lurked since the beginning but now feel compelled to post!

I can manage winter/spring/autumn but most of my shopping msitakes are summer clothes. I am a size 18 and never feel quite right in anything in hot weather so I either buy things that cover me up (and feel old and frumpy) or things that don't (and feel fat). I've been using Pinterest for a couple of months and it's been a bit of a revelation for me - I've been pinning summer outfits and find I'm drawn to the same sorts of thing time and time again. Hopefully this year I can be a bit more realistic about what I am going to wear. I am going to get a summer dress that is a really flattering shape and colour shortened so it feels a bit more modern and have some shorts taken up to just above the knee - my legs are more toned from running so I feel happier about uncovering the knees now!

I also have a tan leather blazer so thanks for the Pinterest link. I can put together a couple of those looks from stuff I already own.

I'm just sending back a large online order. Firstly it's all high summer stuff that won't get worn for months, I'll rebuy if and when I need it. Secondly, I don't need any more pretty tops when I only have one pair of decent jeans that I wash and wear constantly.

I've had a look at the swap board - lovely stuff but too small for me sadly.

Keep up the good work, I'm really enjoying reading smile

Limoncellolovely Wed 13-Mar-13 14:16:29

Frugal [Thanks] Thats brilliant inspiration (shock at the shoes although I fear I had a yellow pair like that back in the 80's ) some great ideas can definitely work with my existing clothes. Think the main problem was getting into a style rut and believing the only leather jacket style around is a biker. Blazer will make a refreshing change !!! Jacket has been granted a pardon and is waiting re intergration into rest of my wardrobe.

lurkingaround Wed 13-Mar-13 14:44:21

Hi all, haven't had a lot of time lately to catch up. Loving the willpower talk. I find I'm better taking a measured approach, like, with chocolate or pudding, if I say 'I'm not having any' I feel I really need it and crave it. But if I say, 'I'll have my meal and if I'm still hungry, I'll have something sweet', more often than not, I don't have the sweet thing, I seem to dissolve the need/craving.

Same with clothes I think. That's probably why I love Frugal's 5 day rule. If I still love it (and need it etc) in 5 days, then so be it. So far, I haven't bought anything.

QueefLatina Wed 13-Mar-13 15:16:33

Hello, I'd love to join you all.

Thanks to this thread I'm wearing dark indigo skinny flared jeans with black lace up wedge brogues that make the jeans just skim the floor. On top I'm wearing a slouchy white jumper and a very dark brown leather bomber jacket. None of this outfit is newer than 3 years old.

I have also dragged out an old pair of slightly too big, mid wash, straight leg jeans. They were too long for me but never returned them to the shop but now I've chopped off the hems and I've rolled them up artfully!

I was getting so sick of skinny jeans but didn't want to spend on new ones.

I have been on a tight rein on spending since July and have really learnt what suits me, what clothes I love and to see what I can do with what I already have rather than buy new. e.g I wanted a pair of black leather shorts but dug out an old black leather mini to get a similar look.

My wardrobe consists of very few clothes now, mostly in black, white, grey, nude and denim. For accent I have some tops and scarves in cobalt, mint, pink and neon. In terms of pattern, I've decided I'm not keen and have 1 stripy top.

I'm currently plucking up the courage to wear a blush tulle skirt with a grey t shirt to work. I've had that bloody skirt for years and never worn it even though I love it. Usually trousers are more my thing and I only have 2 dresses.

Finally I am lifting the spending ban as I feel I am under control. I have been looking for a black handbag for about 3 months but never found the right one. A few times I have thought 'sod it, that one will do' but I decided to search for one that I love love love and I have finally found it!

Am I frugal yet?!

Ilovemyteddy Wed 13-Mar-13 15:51:49

Aphra I know exactly what you mean about summer clothes buying mistakes. I was just about to post on here about being a winter clothes buying person when I saw your post. I was a size 18/20 a year ago and am now a 12/14 all due to the lovely posters on the low carb Bootcamp threads on MN.

Now that I can buy lovely things in practically any shop I've gone a bit mad and spent a LOT of money in the past few months, and made some serious mistakes, and duplications. But I have been buying a lot of winter clothes and layering items because I was so used to covering up because of my size, and found it really hard to buy flattering summer clothes; and I am still much happier buying and wearing winter clothes.

I may have some clothes you may be interesting in Aphra. Will PM you.

AphraBehn Wed 13-Mar-13 16:03:01

Wow ilovemyteddy that's impressive weight loss smile. Has your entire shape changed?

Will look out for pm. I have nothing to swap though, only impractical shoes!

Ilovemyteddy Wed 13-Mar-13 16:19:25

Don't worry about the swap. We'll sort something out. My shape hasn't really changed, everything is just a bit smaller grin

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 17:53:59

Sometimes, for reasons hard to fathom, a piece of clothing gets bad rap on MN. Case in point: wide-legged trousers, particularly when made of linen.

Wide-legged is my preferred trouser style. I particularly like the classic Katherine Hepburn style with turn-ups. I don't do linen but my friend wears gray linen wide-legged trousers (they may have a drawstring waist) and looks stunning. I also love flared jeans but find outfits that include them challenging to build.

I'm trying to resurrect a few wide-legged pairs and made an inspiration boards. It's all about proportion and volume (rule of thumb: keep the top part tight). Currently, they are worn quite long. Just in case someone else is interestef, here is my inspiration board.

I love wide legged linen trousers and I don't care what people say....worn slouchy with flip flops and fitted vest, love it. MN , and RL, sometimes diss certain items but if what is deemed "in" doesn't suit me I just ignore it (apart from ankle flapper boot cuts worn with mum boots of course !!!Qgrin!)

awaywego1 Wed 13-Mar-13 18:32:27

I bought some very high waisted very flared indigo jeans a few weeks ago and am really loving them and getting lots of positive comments. I think they work because they are fitted at the tummy and top of legs so I silk have some shape. Am very excited about summer and the potential of wearing them with flat sandals or flip flops.

Pseudonymity Wed 13-Mar-13 18:45:10

Hi all, great thread. Can I ask what is a normal amount of dresses to have? How many do you all have of your favourite item? I mainly wear dresses and skirts.

Limoncellolovely Wed 13-Mar-13 19:16:14

Frugal You are about to spring another of my death row inmatesthanks I have a high waisted pair of ivory wide legged trousers I have always been guilty of 'saving' them for best because I always feel so glamorous and grown up in them, but your pinterest has given me food for thought.

drywhite I've seen you pinterest board not an ankle flapper or mum boot in sight !!!

I have 30 dresses.... I don't wear them all, need a sort out ( doesn't include full length posh dresses)
I love short, fitted little cardigans ...I have 17, most of which I wear.
I know someone who owns approx 80dresses!

Limoncellolovely Wed 13-Mar-13 19:25:20

Pseudonymity Not sure how many dresses I have off the top of my head I would say ten bit that probably is a hopeless underestimation certainly only three or four I wear on a regular basis, but dresses are very frugal a whole outfit in one go !!!!

My biggest weakness is jacketsblushcant resist 'em will go and count them later but I know its loads because I have to store them seasonally and find this time of year most frustrating one minute it's spring out come the blazers and denim jackets, then before you know it's winter again so back out with the wool !!!

Pseudonymity Wed 13-Mar-13 20:43:42

Cool, that makes me feel better. I'm guessing around 30 dresses for me, I don't wear them all but some are summer and I pack my summer clothes away - haven't taken them out yet. My other weakness is coats - probably have about 15, but in winter they basically are your outfit. I have a lot of shoes but don't feel it's too much.

Look at
this
Belinda from the blog is rocking her old boot cuts!!!

VioletGoesVintage Wed 13-Mar-13 21:37:09

Gulp, I couldn't possibly say how many dresses I have. Definitely more than 30. I do wear dresses a lot though.....so that's OK, isn't it? Anyway, I think what counts as a "normal" amount of dresses (or anything else) depends on the owner. Do you wear them all? Do you have any near duplicates? Can you store them all? Is there a style/colour/fabric you feel is missing from your "collection"?

I also like wide leg trousers. I have one pair of navy linen wide legs but they crease like anything if I sit down so they rarely get worn. I also have a couple of wool wide leg trousers that I used to wear for work but my favourites are a 5 year old pair of jeans from Whistles. Fitted on the hip and bum, they then flare out. They are soooo flattering. I wish I could find another pair like them but I never have. I also like J Brand Lovestory jeans, which are flares rather than wide legs but similarly flattering on me.

Am a bit surprised to realise that since this thread started I haven't bought anything apart from a 3 pack of mittens for one of my DC who seems to lose them at a rate of one per day.....

FairPhyllis Wed 13-Mar-13 22:09:19

I'd like to join you please.

I'm nearing the end of a PhD and haven't bought any clothes since September, partly from financial necessity and partly because I am losing weight after reaching the heaviest weight I have ever been.

I have lost 7 pounds since January and at this rate will reach my target weight around June/July. Hmm. So I don't feel I can buy anything until I reach a stable weight.

At the moment I only have two pairs of trousers I can fit into and I hate hate hate wearing the same thing day in day out. It's also very cold where I am so I only have two jumpers that are warm enough. This should gradually get better though as I begin to fit into old stuff again.

Most of my clothes are schlubby student clothes, or were bought in the US and look totally wrong in the UK, or are left over from my undergrad days (think ridiculous amounts of evening wear that I can't wear anymore). I have one and a half professional looking outfits I can wear to interviews in the UK which I should just about fit into. But I am looking at doing a week's work experience after Easter - would it be OK to just alternate 2 dresses all week?

So basically I can't buy anything until I have a job AND have lost weight. But I need to look OK in a City environment.

GeorginaWorsley Wed 13-Mar-13 22:12:36

I love wide leg trousers,but haven't worn much recently,been wearing skinnies tucked into boots but skinnies dont suit me in summer,i need balance of boots on lower half.
Have been wearing two pairs of skinny flairs from Marks,wonderfully soft and very flattering.
Will def be doing straightlegs and wider leg trousers when weather warms up!

ChablisLover Wed 13-Mar-13 22:21:30

Frugal - I have about three pairs of wide leg boden trews to go on eBay. What size are you? I could take pics and post onto the swap board?

They really do nothing for me as they are too big now but agree with them in principle especially in summer. They are much cooler IMO than skinnies. Lets a breeze through!

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 22:35:56

Violet, this thread must be working then! My aim is to have a place where we can talk about style/fashion and fine-tune our outfits without pressure to buy. I find I'm being much more creative with my outfits when I have to rack my brain and root around a bit. Today I discovered a set of big newsprint paper mache pearls and a sepia resin cuff. It had never occurred to me to wear them together but they really worked with a plain wool dress.

Lurking the 5 day rule rules... It helps me too, thanks for mentioning it.
Welcome new people and Ilovemyteddy thanks for offering to help!
Latina both jeans sound really great! Probably accidentally omitting many people for the honor roll so thanks to all, thanks for keeping this thread vibrant and alive!

I have far too many dresses and do not recommend that route - I am trying to downsize. Have had the bad habit of buying duplicates <almost never a good idea unless you have a tricky to dress body shape>
For me about ten per season (two seasons in my fashion calendar) would be right. I need a couple of each in three general types - casual, work and cocktail. But, fellow frugalistas, Coco Chanel said that a stylish woman needs just three good outfits.

No amnesty for flappy too-short bootcuts! But like many of you have suggested, they make great shorts and mock-boyfriends when rolled up.

And quite a few added items on the swapboard - keep checking it!

FrugalFashionista Wed 13-Mar-13 22:53:02

Fair there is a special place in my heart for starving PhD students wink so a few ideas. Could you go wild and spend the postage / 99c as mentioned before on the swapboard/ eBay/charity shops to buy another pair of jeans and a sweater? Or if you could specify your current size and color/style preferences - someone here might be able to help you out.

Two outfits is fine (you can vary them with accessories) but it might be easier on you to have three. (One worn; another in the laundry; a third clean and ready.)

FairPhyllis Thu 14-Mar-13 00:16:23

Thanks Frugal. smile I should be able to get into some of my old stuff soon and it should start warming up soon, so I was just moaning really. I don't need anything else at the moment.

If I can get away with two dresses and one jacket then I should be fine, especially if I can shift a few more pounds before April. I have this black jersey faux wrap dress, and a black and dark blue colour block shift dress (a non hideous one) from a year ago. I can wear them both with a black jacket I have and do accessories shizzle like you say. I have got a navy blue suit jacket too but I think the cut will look wrong because it is over ten years old.

One consolation is that I did blow my PhD stipend on lots of shit hot shoes (correct priorities there I feel) last spring, so I do at least have smart shoes.

I'm mainly going to stick around here for non-spending solidarity, I will take a look at the swaps board.

QueenCadbury Thu 14-Mar-13 09:20:40

fair 2 dresses should be fine and as frugal said you can add different accessories. Sounds like you're sorted with the shoes. Do you have a shit hot handbag too? If you're in the City then presumably the little details like hair,nails and make up will make all the difference.

My copy of Too buy or not to buy has arrived so looking forward to reading.

QueenCadbury Thu 14-Mar-13 09:22:48

I meant to add that I love wide cut trousers and my favourite pair of jeans are my flares. I don't wear them often as they need heels so they're going out only jeans. I used to love linen trousers and don't know why hey get such bad press on here. The only reason I don't wear them anymore is that spending a lot of time on the floor with dc they just crease so easily and always need ironing.

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 09:45:40

Wonder whether I've used up today's quota of willpower wink
Have spent the morning doing things I normally detest - returned a pre-ban impulse purchase (good seed capital for future planned purchases) and sent in a faulty item still under warranty for repairs. These things sound easy but retrieving receipts, filling out and printing forms, packing (finding the box, tape etc) and ordering the courier took more than an hour. Oh and I took TiC's advice and placed a customer complaint about subpar cashmere.
But am feeling v smug now <haloed serial nonreturner>

I live surrounded by people much more stylish than I will ever be, and along my morning run I saw quite a few pairs of much-maligned classic mum boots on tremendously stylish women. Exhibit A: a woman who paired them with flowing black drawstring-bottom trousers made from some expensive-looking material and a black below-knee slim A-line coat. Très Marni and a gorgeous layered look. I've also seen lots of classic black mum boots with ultra fitted ankles paired with skinnies/ opaques/leggings on local trust-fund college girls. This led me to investigate whether high-end e-tailers and cutting-edge designers currently feature said item. Material evidence found here grin. If you have some on death row, give them a second look. They are a classic item, they will be back. But please do not pair them with too-short light-wash bootcuts grin

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 09:48:58

Sorry, wrong link, high-end black mum boot parade here. wink

foxysocks Thu 14-Mar-13 09:53:20

thanks to this thread my (planned and considered and outfits planned) leopard ballerinas purchase came, not from french sole, bloch, pretty ballerinas or any of the myriad boutiques and department stores that stock them for >£100 per pair, but..... ebay.

worn once, £13, french sole. so pleased! thanks Frugalistas thanks

and if my current list of watchers translate to bids before the weekend they will be essentially free <crosses fingers>

shopafrolic Thu 14-Mar-13 10:06:43

Hi all, just swinging in to say I'm putting loads of clothes on the swap Pin board today. All for sale rather than swap as I have too many clothes and no need for anything but some nice tops incl 100% silk so take a look!
Can't see mum boot link at the moment as am in the Doctors waiting room but can't wait to see later!

I've always been a fan of wide legged trousers and wasn't even aware they were getting a bad rap. That's how on trend I am!

But I can't be doing with linen because of the crease factor. i've just sold a pink linen Agnes b skirt on eBay because I never wore it because the minute I put it on it would crease and draw attention to my post c-section tummy.

Although I have waaaay less clothes than most of you (will try not to judge those of you with 30 dresses wink), I have always been a serial non-returner. As part of the minimalist thread I found the motivation and courage to return a Missoni style dress to Monsoon in January. It had been an impulse buy but then sat unworn in my wardrobe for three weeks. I have a real weakness with dresses but rarely wear them - what's that all about?

QueenCadbury Thu 14-Mar-13 10:31:53

frugal I'd just come across those heeled hunters on Pinterest too. They're the most bizarre thing grin. Wonder if they come in my favoured purple.

I'm stuck at home with I'll children curled up on the sofa. Not good as I spend far too long browsing at clothes on the iPad! May lose willpower today.

moongoddess Thu 14-Mar-13 10:44:06

Hi would love to join in too. It's come to the point where I am really cramming clothes into my wardrobe, as I've been buying too much.

I've just started the 5:2 diet so I'm hoping to lose about a stone in weight, and have done the usual thing of "I'll keep that item of clothing for when I've lost weight". I've also started back to work as a TA so I've been buying bits for work too. So all in all it's a wardrobe overload. smile

I already have some children' s clothes to Ebay so I'll use that to spur me on to have a clear out of my clothes and put them up on Ebay too.

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 11:03:36

QoW read 'You are what you wear'. We all have false/ideal selves and sometimes buy clothes to portray that image - aspirations, previous incarnations of ourselves.

My false self - an 80-year-old Park Avenue hostess grin

For wardrobe builders and those of is who'd like a bit of eye candy I warmly recommed Nina Garcia's The One Hundreds. She's a fashion insider with a pirvileged background and she had lots of insights how to build a classically elegant wardrobe (think Olivia Palermo) that can also look trendy. You don't need to buy hyperexpensive items - she has great ideas about less costly alternatives. And since high street often interprets classics very well, armed with this knowledge you can choose your price point and then find certain styles on eBay/ in charity shops. QC I read it on iPad via Kindle so a potential diversion?

Well done Shop! Lots of great stuff on the swapboard!

Foxy fantastic bargain - very useful, I have worn mine a lot - and Moon welcome!

shopafrolic Thu 14-Mar-13 11:05:28

More on its way......

shopafrolic Thu 14-Mar-13 11:16:05

Frugal thank you thank you thank you. The perfume arrived this morning and I love it! Whilst I had a slight fall off the wagon with a £20 cashmere jumper in the Outnet sale, that has arrived too and is perfect so I am very happy. Busy pinning more to the swaps board.
Should Swaps that are successfully completed be deleted? I love how this is working!

Hedwig06 Thu 14-Mar-13 12:27:19

Could someone tell me how to add some things to the Pinterest board.
Thanks x

shopafrolic Thu 14-Mar-13 12:50:23

Hedwig
How to post an item: PM Issimma for board access. Upload a photo either via a Pinterest app (smartphones, iPad) or by taking a photo and uploading it on Pinterest using the "Add Pin" function. Describe the item (size!) and give your MN name or some other contact info. How to bid: if you are interested in an item, comment the pin here to reserve an item, then PM or contact the swapper to negotiate terms. She confirms here if the offer is accepted. If not, tell that too so that others can bid.

Hedwig06 Thu 14-Mar-13 13:18:14

Thanks shopafrolic xx

shopafrolic Thu 14-Mar-13 13:51:16

I've just posted my first item sold from the SwapBoard. Much nicer to know it's going to a Mumsnetter than selling on EBay!

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 14:44:47

Shop very happy you liked the perfume. It's a Ropion, he's one of the best perfumers around. Hope you'll enjoy it!

The swapboard is inspiring me to do style boards of certain items - here is the first, Shop's cobalt silk top. Don't do shorts? Do the look with a skirt (trumpet flare will be big this summer) or white flares instead!

And here's the link for The One Hundred, one of my favorite style books ever!

I've just prepared four parcels, posting them tonight or tomorrow. If someone still fancies my items, do make a decision tonight! (Posting is not simple where I live so prefer to send everything at once.)

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 14:57:20

Forgot to describe today's outfit - ultralong flared jeans, short silk/wool knit tee (accidentally shrunk grin, sits perfectly an inch below waistband), cropped coral/white boucle jacket, white resin cuff bracelet, navy wedge boots (almost invisible). All items last year or older but feel very fresh!

I have just posted some jewellery on the Pinterest board, some of which is vintage as I know there are a few of you who like that. I haven't put prices but let me know if you're interested and we can sort something out especially if we're already swapping.

frugal I had downloaded the free chapter of You Are What You Wear on my kindle but only just finished it. I've now bought the whole book and it is fantastic. I've had several 'ah ha' moments already. Highly recommended.

The free chapter has a series of questions as part of her analysis section. The questions on future dressing such as how I want to dress for every decade of my life have really made me think.

No frugal those are not mum boots
these are mum boots. I have to say, I had to search hard....M and S and Clarks quite lacking in mum boot material grin

Fairyliz Thu 14-Mar-13 19:02:52

Hi can anyone help? One of my problems is that I don't have a creative streak so I can't put outfits together. Does anyone know of a blog/ site where someone takes basic items black trousers/ pencil skirt/shift dress etc and then dresses them in different ways to make smart/casual/ dressy/funky outfits?
I just need some ideas to copy.
Thanks

Limoncellolovely Thu 14-Mar-13 20:08:28

Drywhite Phewww about Clarks couldn't decide if I was getting older or Clarks were getting nicer !! Rather nice brogues in there (if I wasn't abstaining from all things retail at the mo)

Limon I think Clarks have some ok stuff.( have a bottle of unopened limoncello tht I don't want....should I put it on swap pin board?!!)

Limoncellolovely Thu 14-Mar-13 20:30:31

Would be nice Drywhite !!!! Sometimes think I'm the only person in the world that likes the stuff !!! Sure I could find a nice bottle of Drywhite to trade with !!!

I love Clarks shoes I have to be honest. They have some really nice stuff and it's nearly always really comfy. I have terrible collapsed arches and my podiatrist friend despairs of me but approves of my Clarks shoes.

I've got some patent purple heels on the Pinterest swapboard which are Clarks and they are one of only two pairs of heels I've ever been able to wear. The other ones were some random £6 wedges off eBay which I can dance in all night.

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 21:15:45

Fairyliz have you played with online e-stylists like Joy of clothes or Dressipi (I prefer the former?

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 21:23:36

Reading the news, NY Times talks about the new era of frugality in Vatican - Pope Francis, I really loved your simple crucifix (other cardinal wore glitzy g- if you need to redo your work wardrobe on a shoestring, you are always welcome here grin Michelle Obama welcome too ;)

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 21:26:30

Sorry, meant glitzy gold (on the phone, ham-handed)...

mirpuppet Thu 14-Mar-13 21:33:10

I just did the Joy of Clothes quiz.

Anyone else do it? did it tell you anything about your style personality -- I got this general blather -- which I did not finde helpful.

FIND COMFORT IN YOUR STYLE PERSONALITY

"Style is very different from fashion. Once you find something that works, keep it" Tom Ford

Your personality is what pulls your whole look together. It's your personality that dictates your style, which is your own interpretation of fashion and how you like to wear clothes together. If you ignore your personality and only buy clothes because they are the latest must haves or trends of the season, you will lose your identity and your look will lack focus and your personal signature style.

As a result of this you won't get the best value for your investment buys, because you've tried to copy a look which might be great on others but isn't right for you. The clothes you wear and how you wear them are influenced by factors such as: age, build, life style, environment, budget, culture and personal preferences.

As you progress through life, your look will change many times. Knowing your style personality will enable you to feel comfortable in your outfit, whatever the occasion.

QueenCadbury Thu 14-Mar-13 21:37:20

mirpuppet me too. Didn't really tell me anything I didn't already know!

mirpuppet Thu 14-Mar-13 21:41:03

I'm glad -- I thought they were trying to tell me I'm dull or unfocused.

So it seems the first part of the quiz is pointless.

FrugalFashionista Thu 14-Mar-13 21:51:50

Sorry if I recommended a bad site. I did not find the verbal feedback too compelling, but the 'Style Me' and 'Body Shape' recommendations and all the visual things (outfit builders etc) were quite accurate and fascinating <disclaimer: tried this last year>

grin Limon great swap idea!

mirpuppet Thu 14-Mar-13 22:06:26

FrugalFashionista it is not a bad site.

I think they just got a bit lazy.

The main purpose of those sites are to sell clothes; hopefully that are flattering.

The designer of the quiz just got lazy with the answers to style personality.

I liked seeing what my celebrity style icons were wearing. And I like the cartoon like drawings grin

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 06:06:21

Very true Mir.
Here is a style personality quiz (not a shopping site) I found genuinely helpful when I revamped my wardrobe. The House of Colour uses a related but different system. The style personality stuff is useful because it helps to understand why there are unworn clothes in your wardrobe made of good materials and in colors that in theory flatter you. They just don't get worn.

My style personality is classic (I like both minimalism and high fashion) but I also feel good in some other styles. I feel awful in 'natural', boho and very sporty/casual clothes.

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 07:36:05

Redid the quiz and I actually get more 'Dramatic' than 'Classic' answers shock I think this is a sign how my personal style is evolving. I like the versatility and timelessness of classic clothes (something that can be worn for decades is very frugal) but get bored with demure neutrals but I am an extrovert and like to be the center of attention (ie, love to wear red or white when everyone else wears black or neutrals) and am getting bolder with this trait: l love colors that represent authority and tend to accessorize with big rings and bracelets. But classic clothes and neutral colors are a good fall-back option and I'm still learning how to use them.

How about you ladies - have you found your style personality?

Oh and still on the wagon - it's been over a week now and I can honestly say I've enjoyed rethinking/reorganizing/swapping/sharing much more than I ever enjoyed mindless shopping. Still very early days but feeling that this thread is taking me to the right direction. Everybody for has helped: thanks <sunshine emoticon on a gray day>

Pseudonymity Fri 15-Mar-13 08:07:33

I am creative according to the quiz. A bit of high fashion thrown in. This explains a lot of things. Good advice for me to include some clean lines - though I find this difficult as I am fairly slim but v curvy. Hmm. Good thoughts. I don't ever get rid of many clothes unless they are worn out - I think that's a good frugal measure. I put things away and know I will fknd a way to wear them in future. I don't believe in capsule wardrobes unless the capsule bit is some basics that you can build different looks around with lots of other items - not so frugal!

issimma Fri 15-Mar-13 08:26:10

'd' for EVERY answer. Guess that makes me natural (which I kind of knew already - Jennifer Aniston is who I want to look like!). Will read properly later, should probably tend to the DC blush.

QueenCadbury Fri 15-Mar-13 09:34:57

frugal it wasn't a bad site. I loved the figures wearing the different shapes of jeans and it confirmed that for me that straight cut are better than skinnies.

teta Fri 15-Mar-13 09:39:44

I also did the quiz and came out with d's and a few e's.I do love the fact that Jennifer Ariston always looks comfortable in her clothes-i even liked the red Valentino dress that was criticised so much recently.My idea of hell would be dressing like a Kardashian-it looks so hard and painful and very structured.
Banked a cheque from the dress agency yesterday and returned some multiple purchases to T K Maxx.Reinvested wisely [i think] in a stretch denim shirt that will go with summer maxis[for very little].Though it has very tight arms,so i will test it today.My burnt orange sheepskin jacket didn't sell sadly, so am perusing pininterest avidly for ideas on how to wear it.

QueenCadbury Fri 15-Mar-13 09:43:54

The personality style quiz had me spot on as an equal classic and natural. As it says I can have a tendency to look plain and boring and need to inject more colour. I'm hoping having my colours done next month will help with this!

ATJabberwocky Fri 15-Mar-13 09:50:21

I love shopping around charity shops for bargains so the idea of clothes swaps sounds really good. When I buy new I always try and get the best quality for my money as I think it saves money in the long run. Shops like TKMaxx are great as well for buying designer clothes cheaper. I've recently started using cashback sites when I buy stuff online they are great as they let you use coupons and then you get some money back. Although the temptation is to buy stuff you wouldn't have. Also stocking up when special offers are on tends to save money on everyday stuff, but only if you were going to buy the product anyway.

I am an unsurprising mix of classic and creative/quirky.

Note of caution - The house of colour system Dramatic is very different to the Dramatic in this quiz, there really isn't much of an overlap, as body shape isn't considered in this one (how could it be? grin).

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 11:00:47

All swaps shipped ladies!

I never found a good fit in the HoC style system, but the website quiz describes me exactly and pinpoints my Achilles heel, the need to stand out, and when failing to do so, a tendency be boring to play it too safe.

Playing off that, I'm experimenting with a dull and too safe past mistake purchase, a greige (mix of muted gold, camel and gray) Chanel type knit jacket with navy trim and bronze buttons. In theory, comfy and easy to wear. In practice, dull, formal and middle aged. Combined with a pencil skirt and courts/laceups and pearls I would enter Mrs Marple territory shock So decided to style it younger with a simple navy silk tee (COS, sales last year; tucked in at back to keep jean pockets visible), a big smoke quartz silver ring, slim-cut ultralong straight-leg indigo jeans, and high-heeled chunky navy suede boots (another mistake made a year ago serial non-returner ; could have combined with brown cuban heel boots too but getting bored of that shape ). And because it's chilly outside, put on my slim navy coat from 1990s and lightened the navy monotone with a taupe bag. Loved the overall slim and streamlined and leg-lengthening silhouette - it didn't look middle-aged at all. Actually got winks and double-takes from younger men wink and really good service at the post office grin. Eat your heart out Mrs Marple!

I'm confused Frugal Did your consultant give up? grin
It's not possible to DIY on that system.

QueenCadbury Fri 15-Mar-13 11:10:46

frugal envy can't remember when I last got winks and double takes especially from younger men grin

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 11:23:49

QC I'm no Claudia Schiffer but I tend to get immediate feedback when I get it right. Most days though I'm an invisible slightly frazzled mum grin

TiC HoC not available where I live but when I've tried to categorize myself using their system I end up looking like Angela Merkel <doubtful will get double takes that way grin > Any attempts to categorize/stereotype people will always result in poor fit for some individuals and I seem to fall between seasons (my color consultant confirmed this) and styles. But agree getting it professionally done much better.

girlsofsummer Fri 15-Mar-13 11:46:21

Have purchased the willpower book will enjoy that.
Yesterday was a bad day. I left work to go shopping to calm myself down i thought, its been ages, I deserve it. Well would you believe it calmed me down but didn’t feel tempted to actually buy. Saw (and tried) some lovely things that I will ponder upon for a while longer before committing. I really think I have cracked this “over”-shopping thing you know.

bleedingheart Fri 15-Mar-13 13:38:09

I came out as a combination of almost all the types which probably explains why I am here.
I'm enjoying this thread and being so much more 'mindful.'
I have rescued a black tube skirt and khaki long line cardie from death row, worn with a khaki & coral scarf, opaques and black slippers I feel smart and comfortable today.
I have been trying to shy away from black because I felt I 'should' but I do feel it suits me really and I will reassess my wardrobe now.
I made two purchases this week to fill a dress and trouser shaped hole but also returned 6 items ordered before this thread started. Thanks again for starting this Frugal.

GeorginaWorsley Fri 15-Mar-13 14:04:23

I must say I am enjoying rethinking my wardrobe and wearing clothes that have not seen light of day for ages too.

I'm a definite A...classic. Boring!!! But then I saw Angelina Jolie and Katie Holmes and don't think it's so bad after all......I have all the style basics they suggest already!

GeorginaWorsley Fri 15-Mar-13 14:06:32

Today's outfit is spring green wool mix long sleeved top from Toast in sale that I am wearing for first time,layered over Marks and Spencer Autograph thermal cream top,skinny flare jeans,navy heeled ankle boots,butterfly print scarf with navy and green in it.

That's a great blog....I can see hours -- wasted-- spent studying it and therefore becoming an uber fashionista grin

Ilovemyteddy Fri 15-Mar-13 14:18:39

I came out as a Natural, which is me to a tee. When I was overweight I used to think that I liked comfortable, loose clothes as a way of covering up my 'bad bits'. Now I can see, with the help of the styles they recommend, that it is the style I feel most comfortable in, and that I can dress up and still go with my natural inclination towards jeans, cargo pants and tee shirts.

I have been tending to buy more frilly girly clothes since I lost weight because they are so different to what I have been wearing for years. But those are the clothes that are still in my wardrobe with the labels on.

So I've been mixing and matching stuff in my wardrobe this morning and have come up with a whole load of new outfits by mixing comfortable, slightly more fitted tees and shirts with jeans and cargoes. I have a rather large collection of scarves and I'm going to use those to inject a bit of femininity into my new look.

That was a really useful website. thanks Frugal

teta Fri 15-Mar-13 14:23:04

I have been sorting out lacey summer dresses and long gauzy skirts/gowns for the next batch of clothes to the dress agency and realized that i buy the same thing year after year.This year so far i have bought about 20 silk/cashmere scarves alone.Every summer i buy silk gauzy fragile things that don't match my lifestyle.I am going to cancel all advertising e mails from the discount websites now,plus Brora and Wrap.May think about cancelling Hush and Me and Em though these can be useful.Anyone else doing this?grin

foxysocks Fri 15-Mar-13 14:24:19

another one wearing an almost-charity-shopped dress today, which i have styled differently and am enjoying! it's a floral tea mini-dress, have added black opaques, black biker boots, a long sleeved charcoal grey top underneath and a similarly grey jersey biker jacket. definitely giving the dress another chance i think, thought it was never going to get worn by me again.

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 14:48:02

Just dropping in another link to the MN Swap Pinterest board - take a look - there's some lovely things on there. <shameless promotion>
pinterest.com/mnswapboard/mn-swapboard/

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 14:51:42

Just took the quiz Frugal - Classic Dramatic - skewed slightly towards dramatic. No surprises really (which is a good thing as it means I'm on track) and matches with what the stylist / colours woman said. V interesting. Thanks.

issimma Fri 15-Mar-13 14:52:13

Look! How to turn old jeans into boyfriend jeans.

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 15:05:40

That's great issima especially the bit about stitching up the cuffs. The only thing I don't like is they still look a little wide at the bottom from where she used flares. Am tempted to try on an old pair of too big straight legs though. I had real success with an already distressed pair of straight legs that were a bit too big that I rolled up to make boyfriend jeans. Might have to stitch the cuffs as they do roll down and sometimes one leg look longer than the other! Problem being - I don't have a sewing machine...... I'll have to sweet talk my mum!

issimma Fri 15-Mar-13 15:10:48

I'm going to try it with some 'Long and Lean' jeans, as they're v scruffy and frayed at the hems, and have been salvaged from the tip bag for this very purpose! Fear they may be too flared, though, but worth a shot.

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 15:11:54

It must be possible to take them in a bit to make them a bit straighter if necessarily - surely? Let us know how you get on......

issimma Fri 15-Mar-13 15:14:27

It probably is for less cack-handed people. It's just me and my freebie sewing kit though. Will pin my efforts before returning jeans to tip bag.

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 15:17:26

Have faith!!! They'll be great I'm sure.

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 16:35:40

I am loving the busy refashionista styling vibe here - well done all thanks

Just gave my orange-red lizard skin pointy-toe slingbacks from circa 2002 the permanent marker treatment - hi Amber wink - Muji does them in all possible colors and I found a perfect match in my desk drawer. (Shoes are made of leather and are high quality vintage Zara - but the pointy toes were scuffed bare.) Good as gold and about to wear them to a party...

Have just realized that while animal print leaves me completely indifferent, I have a major thang for exotic skins. Lizard, python, ostrich, croc - come to mama... <rubs hands together> grin Must have a full dozen real/faux exotic skin items in my wardrobe - all much loved (mostly dyed - natural python a bit too wild for me). Styling tip - stick to one exotic item per outfit, Crocodile Dundee is not necessarily the most fashion-forward look wink

Sending a ((hug)) to Girlsofsummer, well done, and I know days like that far too well <adds willpower book to reading list>

Ilovemyteddy Fri 15-Mar-13 16:44:22

Does anyone have any tips for restoring suede boots? I have a black pair which I have worn to death and the suede on the backs of the heels and the tips of the toes is worn.

TIA

I love that www.chicfashionista.com site as well, I've already spent far too much time on there. If you subscribe to her newsletter, you get a free 30 page book which summarises a lot of the stuff on there. I'm a sucker for that sort of stuff.

A question for those of you who have had your colours done or been on style days: was it worth it? And has it had an impact on your wardrobe and how you dress?

I'm pretty sure I'm a soft summer but I guess a colour consultant would say you can't diagnose yourself. I've also just discovered www.kettlewellcolours.co.uk via one of issimma's pins - thanks!

teddy for the suede, I would search on Pinterest. I came across some the other day by accident but didn't pin them.

Very tempted to try the boyfriend jeans treatment as well from a pair I rescued from the recycling. Not sure about all the rips, I remember the '80s too well I'm afraid.

FrugalFashionista Fri 15-Mar-13 17:06:24

Teddy here? Warning color transfer / rub off possible so careful with other clothes!

Ilovemyteddy Fri 15-Mar-13 17:24:55

Awesome. Will look for the sprain recommended in your link Frugal. thanks

Ilovemyteddy Fri 15-Mar-13 17:25:27

Sprain???? Spray! Bloody iPad grin

awaywego1 Fri 15-Mar-13 17:30:04

I'm 'creative' which explains why my wardrobe is all over the place!
I also suffer from the introvert issue-i sometimes just want to disappear into the background and love slouching at home alone so I also have tons of scrubby clothes to lounge in which I really need to sort though.
I've been getting more into Pinterest this week and finding a good way to try and think about what I like and want to wear.
Loving this thread grin

CeeceeBloomingdale Fri 15-Mar-13 18:21:55

So I'm classic and dramatic, slightly more classic. It would have been the other way around last year. I've had such a disciplined week and it's all thanks to this thread. Loving the swap board too.

I. HAVE. NOT. BOUGHT. ANYTHING. I have looked, oh god have I looked and touched but I have resisted all temptations and have managed over a week without buying myself a single item of clothing!

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 18:32:14

Queen last summer I won a Wardrobe Edit with a stylist in a competition. I would not be exaggerating to say it has changed my life because it has changed how I shop. She went through my wardrobe (I was a serial shopper and had been in lots of debt in my twenties), and had a huge clear out, things that didn't fit, needed repairing, didn't suit my personality, weren't my colour etc. I am embarrassed to admit that what got sent to charity raised over £600!!!
What I was left with was a clearer wardrobe, with items that I love and we identified gaps that needed filling. I had little colour or print as I didn't know what suited me etc.
It's unsurprising that she then sold me into a shopping day - which my DH gave me as a 40th birthday present. This was when I joined the MNV thread and the ladies there gave me lots of helpful tips including getting my colours done before I went shopping. That has also helped massively and stops me making mistakes although I do admit I still wear black and grey even though I shouldn't. The shopping day was so much fun, I got some great items - learnt more about what suits me and what I should avoid.
So yes - I'd say stylists / getting colours done do help, and teach you what to avoid, and what suits you. I definitely think that the money spent £100 for colours and £350 for the stylist day was well spent, as I now shop for different reasons and don't make mistakes!

shopafrolic Fri 15-Mar-13 18:54:47

I would also say though that the women on threads like this are incredibly knowledgeable, and whilst I don't think colours can be done 'remotely', styling and wardrobe edits possibly can to a degree......

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 19:35:08

I've had a bit of an epiphany!

Downloaded the You Are What You Wear book and only got as far as the first page when I started thinking about the clothes I tend to buy.

I would describe my wardrobe as 'City Break in Spring'! I have a plethura of clothes suitable for sightseeing, shopping, theatre trips, lunches out, casual dinners, concerts, day at a theme park. Which is brilliant because I like doing all those things smile. The only problem is that I only do them once a month at most, the rest of the time I am doing housework or studying.

My pretty tops are too dressy to wear to clean the bathroom so on a day to day basis I wear the same 5-6 plain tops with jeans and maybe a cardigan. Because I don't have many basic tops I think I have nothing to wear so I go shopping. And buy more pretty tops hmm. Really need a forehead slapping emoticon here.

So I have started to pin stuff that represents the very casual sort of things I need to wear day to day. I also realised that I like wearing jeans. Most of my pins involve jeans, I do have and wear a couple of dresses but mostly jeans. And that's ok and I shouldn't try and force myself into other stuff that I don't feel as comfortable in.

I'm still working on the 'what to wear on a dressyish hot summer evening' look but as none of those are going to come up for a while I don't think it's a priority.

The last time I posted I said I only had one decent pair of jean- how ridiculous s that when they are a staple of mine? So I've bought a new pair which arrived yesterday, fit well and I'm wearing today. And I sent back the pretty tops that came with the order.

Aphra your post had me nodding along and smiling. I'm a sucker for beautiful dresses, for posh dinners and weddings etc. That I rarely go to. Need to stop buying them, and wear the ones I do have more often.

I also had a bit of an epiphany today about tailored work trousers. I really don't suit them. Tried on a lovely pair (silk linen mix, felt amazing on). Front view great, side and back view was awful. Realised I can do wide legs with a fitted top, or skinnies with a slouchy top, but tailored (chinos included) just don't work for me.

Loving this thread for the mindful vibe and lots of ideas for up cycling and wearing things in different ways.

awaywego1 Fri 15-Mar-13 19:59:40

That's really interesting alpha-I love buying pretty tops, dresses and vintage prettys but essentially live in Kirsten skinny jeans, long sleeved plain tops and converse. I always feel like I don't have anything to wear-perhaps because I only buy things I never wear! I will think on smile

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 20:04:07

BillStickers, I'm glad I'm not the only person!

I think it's a big step when you realise that, actually, you don't suit a certain style. Particularly when everyone else is wearing it or it's all over the shops. I'm fighting a battle with coloured jeans at the moment. I covet a bright green pair, I have loads of pretty tops that would go with them. But I know they will look shit on me with my short legs and big bum!

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 20:05:11

x posted with awaywego

It's a disease, obviously.

aphrabenn that really made me laugh. On reflection my wardrobe is a mix of 'summer lunch on an Italian piazza' and 'hanging out in midtown Manhattan'. Most of the reality of the last five years has been exhaustion from being a single parent working as an NHS manager and dressing accordingly with the occasional flash of style.

I had a good 'ah ha' moment reading 'You Are What You Wear' at the hairdressers this morning (£8 textured cropped 60s bob courtesy of the local college). I don't buy labels or clearly expensive clothing even though I am very much drawn to quality and texture. I realised it's because my Mum was a stylish and confident dresser. But growing up with a flamboyant and foreign mother in a Home Counties village 1970s has made me tend to dress so I fade into the background even though it doesn't make me feel good about myself.

aphrabehn love your name BTW. I only found out recently who she was - really interesting character.

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 20:17:14

Queen you are the only person who has ever recognised my user name.

She was a fascinating woman, phenomally successful in her time and yet barely anyone has heard of her!

ChablisLover Fri 15-Mar-13 20:17:52

I'm a good one for dresses for occasions I'm rarely invited too!

I would love to be confident in my choices

This book sounds good - where can I get it? The kindle store?

I did the quiz and I'm a natural too.
Wish I could pull it off

Tomorrow is a clear out day while the boys are watching the rugby. Hopefully get a good clear out

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 20:19:28

can't spell sad

chablis you can download the first chapter for free on your kindle.

AphraBehn Fri 15-Mar-13 20:24:11

I did that quiz and came out as a classic, natural romantic hmm.

skaen Fri 15-Mar-13 21:55:24

I've just done the style quiz and came out fairly equal classic and natural with a hint of dramatic.

Thinking about my shopping habits that makes sense - I can be fairly confident in getting classic style clothes but then get bored and buy a pair of really high heels which I could never walk in or a totally ott party dress I never wear.

This is going to take some thinking!

FrugalFashionista Sat 16-Mar-13 08:36:24

A lovely sunny morning. I'm determined to do some organizing/ decluttering today. If you are in the same boat, join me and tell here what you are doing!

Or is there an item in your wardrobe that you could rescue with a simple DIY operation? By sewing on a missing button, by changing the buttons, by shortening it / taking it in / doing some simple repairs? I have a backlog of quite a few such projects and will promise to rescue one item this weekend. Anyone joining me?

Great style self-discoveries ladies: thanks to Aphra, Awaywego, BillStickers, QoW and thanks to Shop for mentoring grin. Understanding your style preferences helps a lot - again, it's easier to say 'no' to certain trends and styles and redundant repeat purchases. If you stick to a style (and know the potential pitfalls), its much easier to build a streamlined, coherent wardrobe over time.

If you got a mix of many styles, it may be worth reading 'You are what you wear' or doing a bit of pinning to find which style you most identify with. (A mix of two is fine.) This because otherwise you may need three or four sets of everything. (I experienced this last night: picked an edgy 'Dramatic' dress for the night but only found two pairs of 'Natural' and several very ladylike 'Classic' nude shoes - would have needed a sleek, plain and streamlined pair and could in fact wear that pair with most of my other clothes.)

I've had my colors done, it was a good investment. I've been aware of the system since the late 1980s but could never decide whether I'm a Summer or a Spring. Turns out I'm somewhere in-between (cool blonde hair, neutral/cool very pale skin, warm-toned olive green eyes with warm copper brown flecks). I received a tailored color palette and it really works. Before having my colors done, I had mainly black and red and white clothes and felt unsure about the rest. I was able to reorganize my wardrobe around my best colors, found my best neutrals (camel, smoky and denim blues, winter white, darker grays) and really got out of a rut. I still wear black sometimes but it's not my go-to anymore.

The style analysis and wardrobe editing I've done on my own. I've always loved fashion so I know a lot about it. That's a mixed blessing because that way I'm aware of many different styles. As a classic I really struggle with casual styles. Formal and high fashion is easy peasy for me hence I have an awful lot of party dresses, but laid-back LA casual looks awful on me. Yet I spend most of my time at home and with very small children. I've gradually worked out some options that work for me. This is why I'm always talking about formulas - found a new one yesterday: navy slim peacoat + long indigo straight-legs + navy high-heeled suede boots/navy flat suede chelsea boots; by changing sweaters/blouses/jackets underneath and bags and jewellery worn with it I can vary this quite a lot.

Good denim is the backbone of my everyday wardrobe: for me, a good pair of jeans pulls everything else together (currently loving my pale slim bootcuts, gray skinnies and indigo straight-leg jeans).

Oh, and much strength to CeeCee and OneLittleLady in resisting temptations. I know what it feels like...

Oh I'm so with all the posh frock buyers. I just love to get dressed up and look glam. Jeans don't excite me as much as aair of heels and a cocktail dress. I have learnt that I always gravitate towards them and could seriously go to a wedding/ cocktail party/ Ascot today with what I have in my wardrobe. HOWEVER Im not Kate Middleton......and am on a smart dress ban because I never hardly ever wear them!

Today's outfit: (classic)

River Isalnd lace top ( on my SS Pinterest board)
Dark skinny jeans (DP)
Tweed fitted blazer (H and M)
Burgundy knitted snood thing (H and M)
Tan heeled (non mum) boots
Tan Mulberry bag

My frugal tip ( may have been said before) is spend n accessories, makes the rest of the cheap outfit look expensive.

frugal think we share the same style

Gallivanting Sat 16-Mar-13 10:07:19

Hello All. Have really enjoyed catching up on the thread after a horrible 60 hour working week.

The "last purchase" before spending lock-down arrived and the sandals are fab. Have completed a week with no spending on clothes, shoes accessories etc, but given the hours I've worked this week that's possibly not too surprising. During rare half hours on t' internet a few temptations cropped up (particularly in the Outnet sale) but have managed to resist.

Frugal like you I am having a day of clearing out and sorting. My impulse is to go into the city to chill out after a hectic week, but I'll end up spending and bringing the stuff back to a chaotic wardrobe. Will stay home all day to work on the wardrobe, and go out with DH and DS for a meal this evening as the bright spot of the weekend.

Will find something nice to wear later, but currently in sports clothes after a run through icy streets.

Will report back later on the progress of the clear out.

daimbardiva Sat 16-Mar-13 11:38:34

Ladies, you are all geniuses (genii??) - I'm learning so much from just reading this thread. Have just had a lightbulb moment re the buying clothes that you love, but that just don't fit your lifestyle...that is definitely me. I think I need to read "You are what you wear"

I have to confess I broke my spending ban almost before it started yesterday - but I'm hoping it actually makes sense as it is an item that does suit my day to day life of running about after kids/living in the country in the chilly north: a Fat Face gilet, reduced to almost half price. I've never bought anything from there before, and it's certainly not high fashion but I can see it becoming a wardrobe staple...

FrugalFashionista Sat 16-Mar-13 12:47:02

Daimbardiva my advice with the slip is to keep the tags on for a day or two and think through outfits and occasions when you actually will wear it. If you can think of immediate uses (will I wear this today?) it's probably okay. If not, return it. Oh and return to the straight and narrow immediately. It's a learning process, don't start a rampage!

Saw a padded gilet (navy? green?) a styled with gray marl sweatshirt, bootcuts and big sunglasses on a very stylish woman (pushing a pram, walking a dog) last weekend. I but I have to warn you that I have a red gilet which I never wear blush

I started this thread because I had a big slip about ten days ago. Have since worn each item, and they were actually good purchases - very me. But do not like the impulsive/compulsive/mindless shopping mindset and feel equally happy or happier about my salvaged/revamped outfits.

Gallivanting well done resisting, clearout sounds great!

Drywhite yes I definitely could do Ascot today (have never been, will most likely never go) confused I even have suitable hats hmm I really do not need to work on partywear, but will do a couple of Polyvores of humble everyday casualwear.

Even I have dug out a pair of 5 year old flares today, this thread must be having an effect!

I have had to break the spending ban this weekend for one essential item which I simply didn't own. I have had to buy a plain black dress for a funeral sad

scarlet76 Sat 16-Mar-13 15:18:18

I could do with a little hand holding.
It's been a tough week and I feel quite low emotionally. This is a trigger for me to go on an online shopping splurge to pick myself up. I am determined not to though.
Returned a bag today which I bought but recognise I don't need or even really want. Felt good!

ShirleySharpeyes Sat 16-Mar-13 16:09:52

It's been a week since I posted but I have been lurking and loving the thread. It is all very inspiring. I've also had sad news this week, a very close friend lost her fight with cancer so what's important in life has been bought into sharp focus. Sorry you've had a tough time too scarlet and onelittlelady.

I have tried very hard not to buy anything but succumbed to a bargain coat on ebay (not arrived yet - but I'm so bored of my only winter/waterproof sludge green practical coat I feel I can justify it - despite the other three winter coats hanging in the hall way). I have also bought a new lipstick. Ahem. But I am quite pleased with myself, that despite having been into town, I didn't come home with a bag full of H&M or Zara stuff or clothes for the DD's which would have been my usual response to stress/sadness. I walked around the shops remembering my over-stuffed drawers and it seemed to stop the impulse to buy. I also know that once I start buying in one shop, it gets easier to spend in another, and another....

Love the Frugalista pinterest board - (I'm following), and love the talk of wide-legged trousers, boy friend jeans, flares and boot cuts - all flattering shapes and I have quite a collection of all types regardless of the current fashion, I'm tall and they suit.

FrugalFashionista Sat 16-Mar-13 18:44:13

Sending consoling hugs to Shirley, Scarlet and OneLittleLady.
We have a family funeral this week too, made more complicated by the fact that it's midweek in another country sad DH is going, I'm staying home with DC. I'd like to go but it seems quite tricky.

Sending strengthening vibes to everyone! Keep strong! I find mindfulness techniques very useful in dealing with cravings and urges. Here is the 4R technique (based on the simple analogy of an itch that you want to scratch).
1. Recognize the urge/itch.
2. Refrain from scratching.
3. Relax into the underlying urge to scratch (let yourself experience it without doing anything)
4. Resolve to continue interrupting your habitual patterns by learning and consistently practising the 4Rs.

If this does not help, try distracting yourself with other activities. Go out, take a walk or a bath, paint your nails, listen to some music or do something else that you feel relaxing and enjoyable.

Not time to talk much more but I've resisted multiple urges today. Organizing going more slowly but I got some transparent acrylic boxes from Muji and sorted out my jewellery - found very nice items I didn't remember having.

mothermirth Sat 16-Mar-13 20:12:29

Loving this method of patching jeans. Did it on my favourite pair, which were totally worn through at the knees… and they look fantastic <preens>. It's a bit of a fiddle, but worth the effort smile

mothermirth Sat 16-Mar-13 20:16:32

Apologies for not reading before posting. Feel my latest contribution was a bit frivolous in view of the last few posts sad Sorry smile

libertychick Sat 16-Mar-13 22:10:04

Great link mothermirth.

scarlet76 Sat 16-Mar-13 23:29:47

Keep the 'frivolous' posts coming. They're a great distraction.

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 09:20:28

Thanks for the tip Mirth and ladies if you want to be entertained take a look at other DIY projects on that site - some of them are truly bizarre ("Breaking Bad" terrarium!?) grin

YY to more frivolous tone. Will share my budget makeup tips later, but now to the park in an outfit where every item is at least 2 years old.

Got again lots of positive feedback on the streets yesterday for my 1990s navy coat + ultralong straight-legs + high-heeled suede boots combo. Skinny jeans exaggerate my slight pear shape (it leads the eye to the hip area which is often hidden under bulky layers) and truncate my legs; if I wear flares / bootcuts / straight legs pulled over chunky boots I create an optical illusion that makes my legs endless - the widest part is in the bottom so the visual triangle minimises my thighs and hips. I'm no supermodel but this visual trick creates supermodel legs. This works well for most tallish women - can recommend.

I'm studying outfit proportions on the streets - the locals here are masters in minimalism and chic neutrals. In a monochrome / duochrome outfit, they create visual interest by different lengths (coat length, bag placement, the loop of a necklace or scarf). Chunky scarves often create a visually messy look - here I see lots of slinky scarves and circular scarves, they make an interesting focal point in an otherwise simple and streamlined outfit.

ShirleySharpeyes Sun 17-Mar-13 09:36:55

Defo need some more frivolousness, that's why I'm here! Am hoping to start on a wardrobe sort this afternoon, I need to see what I could I possibly need for spring and summer, highly likely to be nothing....
Also looking for some basic sewing tutorials on line, love the jean patching one. Years ago I used to make lots of simple skirts, am going to drag out my seeing machine which hasn't seen the light of day for ages, and finally work out the tensioning. I also need to make and sew on elbow patches for a couple of favourite but ancient brora wool jumpers, I have some lovely tartan upholstery fabric which will work well, but I guess it needs overlooking/edging before I sew them on. Any top tips before I start?

ShirleySharpeyes Sun 17-Mar-13 09:40:04

Frugal you live in a more exciting place to people watch than me. I often wander around trying to spot someone that The Sartorialist would be able to take a picture of, but there is much fleece, and bad flappy jeans I think he would really struggle!

foxysocks Sun 17-Mar-13 10:01:31

have been inspired to pull some old diesel bootcuts/flares out of the charity shop pile. not even sure they still fit but are in excellent condition despite the fact i bought them the year i graduated (2001!). will have a try on later i think, they won't be long enough to wear with heels but pointed flats may work.

Justonemorecardi Sun 17-Mar-13 10:02:26

Finally decided to delurk - I'm loving this thread. Resurrected a little navy jersey juicy couture dress that must be 5 years old, but too low - found a navy jigsaw vest bought but in sale but never worn and soft cardi - Love it.

Am planning a wardrobe clearout - I have loads of lovely things, but many bought for when I'm about 6lbs lighter, which I achieve for about quarter of the year. Is it possible to loose this weight and keep it off? Anyone managed to?

Also I do think purchase planning is key - identifying gaps and shopping with a purpose - would love some tips on how to get the right balance of outfits and how to identify what is needed, or links to some relevant websites.

shirley there is loads and loads of useful stuff on Pinterest for sewing. I've pinned about making skirts to my clothes board if you want to have a look.

I spent yesterday afternoon cutting out the fabric for a shoulder bag I'm going to make. I no longer have a sewing machine and despite bribing my friend with babysitting, we don't seem to be able to arrange a time for me to use hers. I'm watching a couple of machines on eBay at the moment.

I have saved two pairs of jeans from the recycling bag. I'm going to have a go at the boyfriend jeans tutorial issimma pinned and possibly turn the other into a pair of shorts.

I'm so glad lots of other people have the same dress buying/clothes that are too smart thing going on as well. It makes me feel like less of a mug.

I've been carrying out a mini-experiment and shops, websites, look books etc. all seem to promote tailored dresses. But when I go I out on the street, very few people are wearing dresses - if it's not trousers then it tends to be a skirt. But there's less thrill and pleasure in buying neutral coloured trousers than a nice summer dress I guess.

auntpetunia Sun 17-Mar-13 10:22:20

Oh my goodness just spent last few hours reading this thread and clicking on links …wow. You're all so organised and good at this stuff. I'm going to go off and look through my wardrobe to see what I can do. My biggest problem is I had a hysterectomy 13 weeks ago and my poor tummy is still swollen and tender so I am living in leggings and long tops with riding boots and a long cardi. Don't really know what I need...I'm 5ft 10 and usually a 14 but can't currently get any of my bottom half clothes to fasten at least not without hurting

chanie44 Sun 17-Mar-13 10:32:47

I did the quiz a few years ago and I'm a natural. Have pretty much sorted my basic

What I need to focus on now is accessories, as

chanie44 Sun 17-Mar-13 10:39:18

Sorry, my baby grabbed my phone...

I need to focus on accessories to finish off my look. I think I may get a nice necklace to start.

This months purchase was a pair of black ballet pumps from next. I wanted a smart pair in leather and these fit the bill.

dustyhousewithdustypeople Sun 17-Mar-13 10:42:13

Thanks to lurking around on this thread, I have had a rummage about in my wardrobe and dug out some things I've not worn for ages. I found a grey short skirt and remembered that I really love it. So much so, that it gave me that feeling of new clothes and I walked around the shops having a lovely look at all the clothes but didn't buy anything grin

I have taken a few more skirts out of the wardrobe and will get rid of them if I don't wear them within the next week.

I have also been inspired to tackle the repairs pile and have a few more things back in use now.

Thank you all for the inspiration thanks

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 11:12:07

Ooh loving the busy thrifty sorting/organizing/repurposing/mending vibe here!
(Ladies - I have a mending mushroom, tutorial here - perfect for darning slightly threadbare Falkes to save ££ - used it a lot during my cash-poor student days and about to get reacquainted grin )

Just a quick hello from the local playground (which is like a runway - people wear designer to park!). Ultra-long bootcuts (to the ground or one inch from the ground) are the look du jour. Pairings: brogues, chunky boots, flat desert boots in a contrasting color (taupe suede seems to be a favorite). Babysitters/house help/schoolgirls/old ladies (saw one tottering about in them!) have adopted the skinny jean look, so the fashion-forward local ladies are doing something different. Someone was wearing a black sweater, an opal white gilet, long bootcuts, kitten heeled pointy boots and big sunglasses and looked stunning...

Although people here are very style-conscious, they are more into quality than redoing their wardrobe each season. They acquire clothing items slowly, take good care of them (the cobbler downstairs is doing brisk business), storage the items that are not fashionable at the moment and aim to buy the best quality item they can afford. There is usually one or two trends that people riff on, but being too trendy or having two many new/branded/recognizable items is slightly declassé (did you amass your fortune yesterday? do you have nothing else to do?) and so people lovingly recycle classics and vintage items. Very frugal in a way, and I'm more and more trying to adopt the local mindset. grin

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 12:57:50

I really love the 'make the most of what you have' ideology. It's well in line with 'frugal' ideology but it's also a leading principle in most style books I've read. No need to be perfect - just find and accentuate the good bits, and nobody will notice the bad ones! We've already talked about color and personal style. The third important factor is body shape.

The better you know your body shape, the better you understand what to wear (and what to avoid). A piece of clothing that looks terrific on your friend may look awful on you and vice versa. Even professional models avoid certain looks because they accentuate their bad bits. (An no, I haven't met a woman yet who is entirely satisfied with her body - even Giselle Bündchen was told that her nose is too big and Miranda Kerr intially looked too ordinary/girl-next-door!)

If you haven't worked out your shape yet, some useful tools:
An overview of different body shapes here. A slightly different classification but good visual guides, lots of shapes and a quiz here. I find the visual guides (backed up with self-measurements) much more accurate than quizzes.

Knowing the your personal good shapes and pitfalls is helpful both during wardrobe building and wardrobe purges. A line looks great on me <so happy it's coming back grin > I have a lot of styles I avoid - baggy, slouchy clothes and cropped jeans/trousers are my worst enemies.

What are your best clothing shapes? What styles and shapes do you avoid?

issimma Sun 17-Mar-13 13:10:15

I avoid: crew necks and polo necks as they make my broad shoulders even more so. Cropped trousers and jackets make me look like I've grown out of them (am 180cm), but cropped arms on blazers not so bad. Skinnies make me look like a parsnip. I avoid heels as they make me 6ft plus and am overly self-conscious at the best of times! Cardigans do nothing for me (personal style perhaps rather than body shape).
/end stream of consciousness/

bleedingheart Sun 17-Mar-13 13:15:07

As long as you don't adopt the mindset of snobbery towards 'the help' or the nouveau riche Frugal! grin

Body shape stuff is interesting. I know that I suit v-neck wrap dresses but I feel like I look too grown up in them! It's a bit sad to be 33 on the outside and 17 on the inside still!
Such a shame that the things I like, don't like me!

This weekend I have retrieved from my sister, two dresses that a month ago didn't fit me but now do. I am very pleased about getting one of the back as it was my favourite swishy going out in dress. I was so happy about fitting in it again that I couldn't speak and just made noises blush

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 13:35:01

Nah, didn't mean it that way Bleeding. But lots of fashion magazines give you the illusion that you have to dress like a movie star (going over budget) and spend a fortune on labels/designers/the newest trends/it bags and do a wardrobe makeover every season. It's not necessary - most quietly stylish people who purchase items with their own money don't do that and even frown upon it - they hold on to their good clothes or rotate them. (People who are given lots of stuff for promotional/endorsement purposes are a different crowd.)

We might find some peer advice re: shapes here. Belts are a totally redundant item in my wardrobe <have no waist - only use them for jeans, never to accentuate anything>

Can anyone who wears V-necks and wrap dresses well advise Bleeding how to create a younger/ more casual look?

Issimma I share the growing out/ hand-me-down aversion... And cardigans tricky for me too. Fitted ones can work (but don't like them over dresses), but shapeless oversize/ boyfriend cardis <shudder>

I love a good oversize cardi, I just sling a belt on with it to give it some shape otherwise I look twice as big as I really am. I do have a fairly defined waist though so belts really work for me.

CeeceeBloomingdale Sun 17-Mar-13 13:50:12

I'm an apple so nothing belted and no wrap dresses or tops for me. I love huge slouchy tops but team with skinnies so I don't look massive all over. I'm short and although my legs aren't big I don't have very defined ankles so I need to be careful with cropped trousers. I can get away with them with the right shoe though.

bleedingheart Sun 17-Mar-13 13:51:44

I agree, particularly about beauty products, each new serum is the best ever and beauty editors use so many 'go-to' products if they are to be believed! Especially if it's advertised on a double page spread!
I didn't think you were being like that btw Frugal.

I like the idea of peer advice, thank you. I struggle as I have a large chest (32GG) and flattering cuts make me feel too exposed.

frugal I think you're a similar size and shape to me (I'm reasonably tall but slight and am a pear shape: note to self, stop wearing tunics). Why do you avoid cropped trousers? They seem to work for me.

issimma I have a good friend who is 6' and the best thing is that she's comfortable, even proud of her height. It makes such a difference. She's the only person who makes me feel short, especially when she wears heels.

bleedingheart I know that grown up feeling! I wear wrap dresses etc with a lace edged cami underneath. I have a coral White Stuff one I wear a lot as it makes it a softer look. I never wear necklaces with them as that makes me feel too 'mature'. BTW, I'm 43 and have given up ever feeling like a grown up lady <shudder>.

I had to go to our local Tesco Extra today and I can report back that the style factor was nothing like frugal's playground. The horror, the horror...

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 14:59:55

I'm somewhere between a pear and a column. (Column on a good day - pear if I measure myself correctly wink) Dressing rules for columns are helpful for me because they address the height / lankiness / lack of curves issues. And I follow some 'pear' rules (darker bottoms, balancing shoulders, and yes I really should burn my tunics QoW - but I really don't want to elongate my figure) to hide the fact that I in fact actually am one <shh don't tell anyone>

Fear of cropped may be something pretty deep-seated grin The crop is never right for me - too little and the trousers simply look too short/poorly tailored. Too high and it accentuates my bony ankles and long bony Sz 8 feet ('canoes'). I think the idea behind cropped is to look insouciant and girly like Audrey Hepburn - I just look clumsy and outgrown.

Issimma be proud - I've always wanted to be your height! Am actually shorter than my mother.

Have just purged piles and piles of stuff (magazines, childrens' drawings, work papers - you know the stuff that somehow multiplies?). Kept a couple of very recent fashion magazines for inspiration. Trying to limit my exposure to avoid temptations, yes, but also need inspiration for fresh pairings.

Very useful to hear ideas from similarly shaped people - this may help you to be more creative / solve some issues!

I think it is interesting that dressing for your personality and dressing for your body shape may give different answers - it's important to find the overlap in the Venn diagram and dress for shape AND personality.

I am in theory an hourglass, but in practice any kind of wrap-dress / ruching / girly-romantic look is totally wrong on me, and just makes me feel frumpy. My personality means that should be dressing like Audrey Hepburn, but I'm twice her size, so compromises are necessary.

frigal was it you asking about making dresses look younger/ how to wear cardigans? This thread is going too fast!
Anyway
[http://pinterest.com/pin/443815738248471911/ dress and cardi] I keep trying this look, just not quite achieving it yet!

Sorry frugal (new name?!!)
dress with cardi

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 16:17:58

Oh that's quite cool Drywhite thanks ! Other ideas for Bleeding : avoid chintzy prints (animal print in a novel colorway or a quirky print may be just right, or try a solid color but accessorize with other, possibly clashing brights). And read Amber's blog - I think she has some work looks that feature wrap /V neck dresses.

My 3-y-o just had a hissy fit over not finding her favorite tulle rah-rah skirt hmm

TiC so true! Reconciling the different aspects is quite hard. I love bold, dramatic clothes; my personal coloring is muted; my frame is slight but tall and I wear best very retro and conservative shapes (1950s style dresses for example).

shopafrolic Sun 17-Mar-13 19:23:18

Hi Frugal can you move this onto your completed swaps board please? I don't seem to have access........
pinterest.com/pin/122230577357585609/
Still lots of items for sale incl the cobalt silk top!

bleedingheart Sun 17-Mar-13 19:24:21

Frugal it's interesting to see you mention chintz and patterns because I have just gotten rid of most of my patterned tips and skirts and plan to only buy block colours in future. I do have a penchant for animal print though I must confess.
Travelincolour Yes, I find little overlap in my Venn diagram!
I love high necked dresses or boat neck dresses but they don't really do me any favours.
On the other hand, a round neck sweater that shows of the clavicle but not the cleavage is fine as long as it isn't too long

bleedingheart Sun 17-Mar-13 19:25:44

Apologies for typos. Doing two things at once!

FrugalFashionista Sun 17-Mar-13 21:22:51

Shop I moved your item to completed swaps. Ladies, browse the swapboard, lots of great items there looking for a new home!
And please get the cobalt top and the Diesel scarf so I don't have to <sits on hands>

Still on the wagon! Completed my weekend's DIY project too. A navy cotton blazer has been in my wardrobe for a year, never worn, because it was slightly too big. Shoulders fine, so all that was needed was opening the lining from the side seam, taking the jacket it in a bit, and closing up the lining (by hand) again and finishing the seam by steaming it. Fit great now and I have a new blazer for this spring <yay!>

A very busy work week ahead so less time to spend here. But please share your reworked outfits, budget tips, DIYs, style insights and everything else. And also the more difficult bits - setbacks and relapses. Again, thanks to everyone for ideas, support and great company!

shopafrolic Sun 17-Mar-13 21:25:04

Thanks Frugal.

ShirleySharpeyes Sun 17-Mar-13 22:03:09

Queen of W I'm following you on Pinterest (I'm Doodle) and have spent a happy few minutes pinning ideas for elbow patches, so might actually complete the project by the end of this week. Thanks.
Issimma completely understand what you're saying re height. I'm 6' in my socks, and probably best described as an athletic pear shape. I'm careful not to wear cropped anything - trousers,tops or jackets (rolled up jeans are fine though). Skinnies are OK with chunky boots, but never, ever with ballet pumps. No crew necks or polo necks here either (frumpville). Also find it annoying that long tops often stop at my widest part and don't cover the derriere, and dress waistbands are often at my ribs. So I tend to wear reasonably classic/natural styles, layers, separates and try and not make myself look taller (I also wear muted colours, but am a typical deep autumn HoC wise).

FrugalFashionista Mon 18-Mar-13 17:32:36

Our thread is in coma confused
<2nd page twilight zone >
Hope I didn't kill it sad - have been very busy working all day.

I'm in love with Polyvore - it's so useful for creating new outfits from old staples without spending any money!

I particularly like trend boards made by other Polyvore members. I found lots and lots of ideas and inspiration there - see quite a few on my Polyvore Pinboard here.

Today's outfit for example. (With minor modifications, could find all items in my current wardrobe.) Leather skirts are great for freshening up overly conservative items - wearing my Miss Marple greige cardigan-jacket with a Topshop pleated black leather skirt, black opaques and black tall boots. Looks and feels very fresh, not middle-aged at all. A miracle wink

I've also figured out a couple of more casual dressing formulas for everyday use here and here. Great for those mornings when everything has to happen on autopilot or it's not going to happen at all .

So far the shopping ban is really working for me - I've been more creative and found lovely things I didn't know I owned. I found lots of fresh transitional looks for this spring without spending a penny <fantastic> grin

Shirley let's hope cropped styles go out of fashion soon... <can't wait>

How has your day been?

scarlet76 Mon 18-Mar-13 18:43:10

I'm only 5ft and petite - size 6/8. I really don't mind being a skinny short arse!!
I do have to be careful with clothes though.
I avoid crop trousers, very wide fluid trousers, large patterns and prints, anything oversized.
I think I better suit slim/skinny jeans, slim bootcuts, jersey pencil skirts, fitted shirts and fitted cashmere sweaters.
I think as I've got older I know my style more. I am guilty of buying items that I already have. How many denim shirts, jeans, linen Ts does a woman need??!!

ShirleySharpeyes Mon 18-Mar-13 19:43:43

ScarletI've just downloaded a sample of 'You Are What You Wear' and it's making interesting reading as to why I have so many similar items (cashmere cardi's, stripey long sleeved tops) in my wardrobe. Might be worth a look for you (if you haven't already). I am def going to buy the full version. My reading list is getting very long on this subject but at least reading is better use of time than online browsing...a reading list on the pinterest might be a cool idea - I am happy to collate ideas/recommendations!

Enough from me...for fear it's my boring-on that's slowing/killing the thread!

I would definitely recommend 'You Are What You Wear'. It's really been making me think and more widely than just clothes.

Today I'm wearing a pair of GAP black brushed cotton wide legged trousers. I've had them for about five years and despite my minimal wardrobe and rounds of decluttering, I can never give them away. Wearing them has reminded me why - they're super comfy, they look great and they make me feel great.

When you have items of clothing like that, struggling to wear things that you don't love, don't fit etc. seems like unnecessarily hard work. Too much of my clothes buying is based on price and being in a rush.

All my thinking about colours and body shape seems to be paying off. I had a look at a clothes website with a sale on today (I'm not on a shopping ban) and spent about five minutes looking at abut 300 items of clothing. It was so straightforward; 'wrong colour, wrong colour' then 'wrong shape, wrong shape'. I narrowed it down to two things I liked but both were discounted as too much polyester and viscose and I've decided to only buy quality.

Normally I feel quite dispirited looking at those sites and ploughing through page after page. Today it felt quite empowering <cringe, hate that word>.

GeorginaWorsley Mon 18-Mar-13 20:20:47

Agree about transitional looks from things already owned.
Today I wore Toast khaki straight leg trousers,neutral Primark cami,Mint velvet cream silk hem sweater bought before Christmas and worn loads,with grey Marks wedge ankle boots and khaki grey and cream Primark scarf.
DD1 recently passed a cream Miss Selfridge leather biker jacket on to me and I wore this when out,it seemed to 'trendify' the whoe outfit grin

daimbardiva Mon 18-Mar-13 21:47:32

I get stuck in such ruts, I find, and am really constrained by practicality too. I really want to wear skirts/dresses more often but my work just doesn't lend itself to them - and neither does living in the frozen north in a house where the minute you step out the door it's muddy. I realise now that I get really stuck into buying "themes" - at the moment I have about 5 pairs of M&S 5 pocket jeggings, which is fine because they fit me and suit me and tend to wear them day in day out with variations on fair isle knitwear (tunics/cardigans) which I love, but am in danger of killing totally through sheer over-exposure.

This is why I need to take some time to rediscover my own wardrobe...

frugal I have kept the gilet - I haven't worn it yet though, as it has been raining both days since I got it (the level of rainfall here could be the fatal flaw in the purchase!!)

FrugalFashionista Mon 18-Mar-13 21:47:52

I think this thread is slow because everyone is busy working, taking care of children, organizing, living etc - all very good! grin

Georgina your outfit sounds fantastic. A cream biker jacket is something I've been actually thinking about for some time (black too harsh on me, cream would go with everything). And yes, if you are wearing lots of older items, one trendy piece will update everything!

Scarlet it sounds like you are perfectly in proportion and understand your personal style really well! <ouch at least 5 denim shirt in my wardrobe - any creative ideas?>

QoW I'm happy to hear about your super-selective shopping round. I really think understanding one's personal style makes life simpler in the long run (although it can make life harder if you are in a rush and looking for something). But if you are patient, it's going to be rewarding!

I used to have a wardrobe bulging with stuff but nothing to wear. Now everything is much easier - styles, colors and shapes work together and possible ways to combine items are endless.

Shirley I've also found books very helpful in limiting my tendency to overshop/ buy multiples. I guess they make me more mindful. They also keep me offline wink A Pin booklist is a great idea!

VioletGoesVintage Mon 18-Mar-13 21:56:14

Just caught up with the thread after only having had the chance for occasional skims the last few days. Real life 'n all....

Have decided I'm a Cornet - what unflattering nomenclature - with perhaps a touch of Pear (slight tendency to saddlebags). Broad shoulders, long legs and a fairly androgynous figure in between make it easy for me to wear most things (I know, lucky me, but too much choice isn't always good). However like others on the thread, I also don't do cropped trousers. They just look wrong. I am toying with the idea of cigarette trousers - probably rolled up - but fear they might be too reminiscent of cropped ones. Similarly, although I do wear skinnies, I never feel as good in them as I do in flares, wide legs or bootcuts. I think it's down to the shoulders.

auntpetunia, I hope you are feeling better and much less sore very soon. How is the wardrobe turnout going? Have you also browsed Pinterest to get some ideas of what you'd like to wear in the coming months.

I only hope we won't all be needing wellingtons and/or snow boots. Well, FF won't, I'm sure, but as for the rest of us, who knows! We had a very violent hail storm here two days ago, which came out of nowhere. I was making a cake (for a DC's birthday; cake baking is not a frequent occupation of mine) and I thought the water from the hail and the rain that followed it was going to rise high enough to test the seals on the French doors out into the garden from my kitchen. Thanks to a couple of wide steps, the doors are almost a foot above the ground outside as well..... Needless to say, my wellies and my trusty waterproof coat are my current "go to" items for outdoor wear. I am certainly not feeling inspired to shop for spring.

Thread can't die....just going really quickly so need time to catch up.
I need to sort through my wardrobe too. I just pinned a necklace onto my wish list only to discover one quite similar in my cupboard that ive never worn!

frugal the Polyvore outfits are great. Really should try it, is it easy to do? But between MN and my pinterest addiction there's not much time !

Interestingly, I pinned a couple of pics of me in outfits I wore this weekend ( skinnies that I've always been iffy about) but when looking at the photos objectively they look ok, and some kind comments reflected that. Similarly, I pinned a pic of an outfit I wear to work that I thought suited me, but looking at it on the board ( deleted now) it doesn't look as good as I thought. Think I might continue pinning to see. Mmmmmmmmmm

Dug out and washed and dried my massive faux fur coat and it looks amazing. Only from Primark in the first place so no massive spend of £££ when I got it but I do love it and it's very warm which I need as I really feel the cold. Going to wear it tomorrow in place of my trusty black wool number.

ChablisLover Tue 19-Mar-13 11:19:47

Im in the midst of a clear out/ ebay finding mission

So far - my house is turned on its head but am rediscovering lots of new things too

teta Tue 19-Mar-13 11:40:13

I have returned a denim shirt and have bought a jersey midi skirt instead.Its brilliant and goes with all the rest of my clothes and is so easy to wear.Can anyone tell me how to stop it creeping up to under my bra line though?This has inspired me to dig out all my Maxmara and Jaeger midis from years ago and sort out some suitable outfits.But they are all dry clean only and with 4 dc's [and a hairy golden spaniel with a penchant for sitting on our sofas when no ones looking] are they practical?I absolutely love looking at everyones pinboards and get quite inspired,but then try and translate these clothes to a life in a rural area,where everyone wears sludgy colours and trys not to stand out.I find that one really difficult.I do identify with the feeling of being a bit in a rut,like Daimbar.

teta Tue 19-Mar-13 11:42:15

'Tries to not stand out'?My english is going to pot.

Well the sun is shining here and the daffodils are out....and I'm having a 'I don't have anything to wear wobble'.

Winter - easy. Skinnies, slouchy jumper, ankle boots, swing coat. Not very inspiring but works with my life ATM.

Summer - dresses or shorts. I hate being even slightly hot and the thought of wearing jeans during the warmer months brings me out all funny. I get my legs out at any opportunity too grin

Spring and autumn I find much harder. But I don't need any more clothes, about to go back to work so have less days I need informal clothing for and childcare costs prohibit any spending.

Queen I love wide legs. Wore a pair of black wide legs at the weekend with a fitted fine wool green and camel striped short sleeved jumper. Now that's a daft bit of clothing - too warm for spring and too chilly for winter. But perfect for a visit to in laws in their ancient house with an equally ancient heating system.

CeeceeBloomingdale Tue 19-Mar-13 13:50:51

I've spemt the morning reorganising my wardrobe. I've had lots of culls to the charity shop so not much went but I did tidy and sort. It all needs ironing though from being packed in too tightly, On the other hand have pulled out some unworn silk and cashmere for the swap board, no point in keeping them if they don't fit or suit me, regardless of the fabric!

teta with your Maxmara and Jaegar skirts vs. DC and dog, it might unfortunately be time to be realistic. Those labels will fetch good money online and you could spend the money on some similar skirts that are more suited to your current life, I.e. machine washable and don't need ironing.

And then think of the joy in a few years time when the kids are older and life is well, less messy and you can go and buy those quality labels again. Personally I think life is too short for dry cleaning (and it's terrible for the environment)!

Spring dressing still not an issue here due to the cold wind. I am getting so sick of wearing my winter coat and fur lined boots, lovely as they are.

FrugalFashionista Tue 19-Mar-13 17:52:05

My children are just old enough that I can wear civilized clothes again.
But it's worth thinking what you can and will really wear Teta!

Well done organizing CeeCee!
Drywhite follow one of Polyvore boards/feeds on Pin first? I get a lot of ideas there - when I see a set created around an item resembling one I already own it's really useful.

Bill I have a winter wardrobe and a summer wardrobe. I started doing the Polyvores to find transitional winter to summer items without the need to buy new ones. Whites, creams, coral in heavier materials (wool, thick cotton) work for me. Gray skinnies, lighter denim, blazers, cardigan-jackets and leather skirts worn with opaques and tall or ankle boots.

Exhausted from work, going to a concert. Evening coats are a lifesaver on chilly nights <picks an outfit from the Polyvore boards>

Thanks Frugal have followed a polyvore board to get some ideas.

Enjoy the concert! It's chucking it down here now but we've had some lovely rainbows <dreamy>

issimma Tue 19-Mar-13 20:21:33

Woo hoo, thanks to ff for my new top grin.

No thanks to ebay. Tried to be frugal, and ended up with two duff items. Have requested refunds...

libertychick Tue 19-Mar-13 21:55:44

And thanks from me too - my new sweater via frugal arrived today - very pleased!

FrugalFashionista Wed 20-Mar-13 06:09:16

I'm glad the parcels arrived so quickly - good postal service karma? grin
I ironed the clothes before sending them out but they creased in the process of course so hang them in the bathroom after showering if wool (usually refreshes wool and takes the creases out) or reiron them (if viscose).

Issimma eBay is a mixed bag. I've found it good for BNWT and unworn items and sometimes vintage designer accessories. Also for children's clothes (nearly always buy DD's school shoes there). But much prefer clothes swaps with you ladies wink

I also like charity shops and our local recycling center. What the fabric feels like is super-important to me - until about 5 years ago, you could get fantastic quality fibers on the high street <Zara silk dresses and thick cotton - sigh>

I've already banished the wrong size/color items from my wardrobe. Now if something is merely out of fashion I storage it - fashion is cyclical and most looks will eventually be back. I like good quality in clothes and that's difficult on the high street at the moment. It's sad but 50p items from the recycling center are often better-made than high end clothes these days (I was lusting over a Balmain top - €€€ and 100% polyester confused ).

Teta solutions for skirts creeping up here and OneLittleLady faux fur sounds fab! And love the busy organizing vibe. I don't even remember my spending ban, am enjoying my newfound / restyled clothes so much!

Oh and Teta you can always revisit the classic country styles and do your own versions of them. (I loved my Miss Marple cardigan with leather skirt and will at some point test whether some discreet biker style studded leather cuffs toughen it up.) Midi is very chic at the moment, quite a few style icons have embraced it and I see it on the street all the time. Saw a girl at our local bar wearing monochrome black with an asymmetric hem midi skirt, super simple and visually stunning.

scarlet76 Wed 20-Mar-13 07:31:05

Enjoying catching up with the posts. Shirley will definitely take a read of what you mention. Stripe tops are another guilty pleasure of mine!!
I have had one little lapse and bought a pink neon spot linen T. I do love it and it will get worn loads in the summer. I am not on a total ban, just want to stick within a sensible budget and not impulse buy for emotional reasons.
That aside have been trying to wear things in my wardrobe I wouldn't normally wear or styling things in a different way.
Yesterday for work I dug out a black pencil skirt and tucked a printed shirt into it. Discovered I have a scarf in the same mustard hue and topped it off with a neon pink skinny belt. The Husband loves a pencil skirt so was all over me like a rash!!! Also some positive comments from 2 female colleagues and a woman I ran into who works in the local Topshop!! The positive feedback felt good and made me realise I don't have to buy new to look and feel confident.

babsmam Wed 20-Mar-13 08:51:28

Am inspired so going to delurk and sort through my wardrobe today. Haven't got much as had a purge when I lost weight but still got some quality pieces I ought years ago that are just no me anymore

Corygal Wed 20-Mar-13 09:47:39

Might I join the swap board? I have a medley of nice cashmeres in decent colours that someone might like.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 09:50:12

to issimma and shopafrolic - top and jeans arrived yesterday and I love them.

Thank you flowers

have cleared out - with a bag to the 50p a kilo clothes shop, one to the charity shop, one for my family and lots for ebay

thats this weeks task.

Although if any ladies would like to buy some designer jeans - mainly 7 for all mankind in various styles (mainly standard bootcut) in a size 28 or 31 longer leg please let me know and we can gladly come to some arrangement

also boden trousers as on pinterest are still available

Roll up roll up to the great Chablis Clearout! (need to pay for summer holidays!) grin

issimma Wed 20-Mar-13 10:11:38

Glad it's gone to a good home chablis.
cory just pm your pin name and I'll add you to the board.

FrugalFashionista Wed 20-Mar-13 10:56:30

Thanks to CeeCee I have a brilliant new leather skirt thanks <preens>

Babs welcome and Cory get pinning!

AphraBehn Wed 20-Mar-13 11:31:30

I've dug out an old pair of skinny jeans that I've not worn for a while. They used to be my staple for every night out so I got bored with them.
They look ok with flat pumps and a long length top. If I try them with a different top they will probably look better but I am just studying today so don't comfort is key!
It has meant I don't feel the need to buy a new pair of jeans though smile.
O

AphraBehn Wed 20-Mar-13 12:24:53

Second attempt!

Changed my drab top for a white long t shirt, a taupe cardigan and a taupe and coral scarf. Also put on some leopard print flats rather than plain tan.

Look and feel so much better. It's not a groundbreaking outfit but probably a combination I have pinned at some point without realising I have the different elements already!

shopafrolic Wed 20-Mar-13 12:32:47

Frugal top posted to you today. Can you move it onto the completed swaps board? Hope you enjoy!

QueefLatina Wed 20-Mar-13 14:41:48

This thread is great for tips, thanks all!

I have another frugal fashion success story, I hope!

A group of us are going out on saturday night and I have plumbed the depths of my wardrobe and come up with the following outfit from old clothes.

Gold seqin mini skirt. (wanted one for at least a year but held out and got one for £12 in the sales)

Basic grey v neck tee

Black blazer with thin pointy shoulder pads a la Balmain

Black opaque tights (waaay too cold for bare legs)

Black brothel creepers

However, I'll be carrying my new handbag. I have been looking for a black leather bag for a long time and bought it for myself when I had completed a particularly shitty work project.

I ordered it online and when I got it I realised it's very much like the Celine Mini Luggage tote. My dream bag, happy days and a good endorsement for waiting until you find exactly the right thing.

shopafrolic Wed 20-Mar-13 15:23:05

Glad you love the jeans Chablis. Any size 31 straight leg 7FAMs?

mirpuppet Wed 20-Mar-13 16:09:50

Thanks to Frugal I have a new jumper.

Thank you for posting so quickly and wrapping so nicely. As it is cotton it will feature in my Spring wardrobe plans whenever Spring arrives.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 16:41:14

Shopafrolic - will have a look I know there are A pocket design in a 31 and standard boot cut ones in a 32 I think.

FrugalFashionista Wed 20-Mar-13 16:54:54

Aphra, Scarlet, QL great styling! Very inspiring. And very happy that the parcels have arrived!

I was inspired by Teta's country musings and today's outfit is a country mashup. When I thought about traditional country outfits, I thought about tweeds, fox fur tippets and sensible shoes <city girl born and bred> Then I saw my feather vest draped over my newfound greige Miss Marple cardigan - the colors and textured looked really good together. So it is a nude feather vest over conservative cardigan, with a black A line miniskirt, opaques and tall brown boots. Loving the outfit, not formulaic and feels lovely on a cold and rainy day and a bit eccentric too (am so tired of cookie-cutter outfits) . I have a gray rather formal boucle suit <my last suit, used to have quite a few>, could probably style it this way too. grin

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 16:55:14

Shop - No standard boot in a 32.

Have a James jean flare in a 31 though.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 16:56:11

Shop - Oh and a pocket in a 31
And a next jeans flare in a size 12

There may be more as the box is big!

shopafrolic Wed 20-Mar-13 17:03:07

No worries Chablis thanks for looking.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 17:21:29

If I find any I will let you know

My jeans collection is wide and varied

What leg length do you need?

I NEED some new jeans. they are going to be my one purchase this month as I really do need them. I have three pairs of jeans currently, two black pairs, one skinny, one bootcut and a cornflower blue pair of skinnies. I'm thinking more bootcuts but in blue. Ladies, is this justifiable?

FrugalFashionista Wed 20-Mar-13 17:42:28

Definitely OneLittleLady. Someone may even have a swappable pair if you give sizing info!

I'm a size 16-18 on the bottom half and short of leg but handy with wundaweb so can take things up.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 18:11:52

Onelittlelady - I have Lots of jeans I'm clearing out.

Going to post on the mn swap board on Pinterest in the next few days

If you give sizing info I may have some to suit you.

shopafrolic Wed 20-Mar-13 18:14:12

32" leg ideally, can risk a 31 or a 33.....Chablis

A meaty 16-18, short legs but I'm willing to take things up, I'm handy with wundaweb and can sew a little so leg length is not really a problem.

ChablisLover Wed 20-Mar-13 20:46:28

Shop - will have a look tomorrow - only in the house and bed is calling me for a long much needed sleep

One littlelady - the jeans I'm selling would go up to a 32- about a 14.

Will list on the pin board and you can let me know

dixiejo Thu 21-Mar-13 09:02:07

Hello ladies – is there room for another one? I have skimmed the thread this morning and a lot of what has already been said has really struck a chord with me. I’m really trying to reign in my spending on clothes of late whilst at the same time trying to hone my personal style. I work full time and earn a decent salary since but, in the last 2 years, we have had a baby, moved house (to a money pit that I love but is soaking up a lot of time and money). So, there’s not a lot of spare cash around and I’m trying to be a bit more savvy with any purchases. Like a lot of others have said, I need to resist the urge of TKMaxx ‘bargains’ at £20-£30 a pop and save up for better quality items that I will take better care of and will serve me well.

I took the quiz that someone (I think it was FrugalFashionista) linked to up-thread and it turns out I am a ‘classic’. Which probably rings true but I think I also have a ‘dramatic’ side that I would like to nurture; I’d feel that like to be more experimental with colour or pattern. I had quite a big clear out before we moved house so I don't have too much to weed out but I do plan to spend a bit of time this weekend (in between tiling the kitchen!) examining my wardrobe, identifying any holes and sorting stuff out for ebay, the charity shop and also the MN pinterest board (if I can re-find the instructions about how to join!). I have been trying recently to make a bit more of an effort to dress smartly for work, rather than just throwing on the same uniform of smart neutral trousers and a pretty/colourful top. So, I shall probably try to restyle a couple of existing dresses and maybe keep a lookout for colourful knitwear (anyone have any tips on colour-blocking?).

I am currently trying to resist the urge to splurge on a pair of black Chelsea boots that I have been lusting after for a week or so. I think they’d be great with almost all the trousers in my wardrobe (except my wide legged trousers which I also love, Drywhite, enough though I am short) but March has been an expensive month already with my husband’s birthday. So, I’ve decided that if I still love them in April then they will be my one and only April clothes purchase.

Any styling advice for a short (5’3’’) size 12 (on a good day!) hourglass most gratefully accepted!

FrugalFashionista Thu 21-Mar-13 09:18:16

Welcome Dixie - you sound a lot like me actually! <fellow Classic Dramatic> PM Issimma your email address for board access!

Wearing CeeCee's glossy black snakeprint leather skirt today.

It goes with so many things in my wardrobe:

Because it's a dramatic high-impact item, I paired it with demure a graphite gray cashmere twinset + Max Mara gunmetal necklace + gray opaques + high heel Mary Janes (seeing a lot of them right now) + a black Zara cocoon coat. Great street feedback grin The Max Mara necklace is from winter sales this year (they are very well made and excellent value), cocoon coat current collection at Zara. The rest are old/neglected items.

It's too warm for wool, so I changed; now wearing my 2nd hand cream silk blouse + big smoke quartz silver cocktail ring, a Chinese cinnabar amulet, sheer black pois pattern pantyhose (sheer black is the look of the moment here - opaques seem to be on their way out) + pointy-toed sleek black tasseled wedges = perfection; when I go out again I can put on my cream circular cardigan or my nude feather vest. Feathers + snakeskin = great contrasting textures.

And it looks stunningly low-effort with my white linen/viscose mix tuxedo jacket (a bargain at 80% off from Zara summer sale last year) and the silk blouse.

Sorry about the detailed/self-absorbed post - just cannot quite believe how great the payoff from swapping, rooting around the wardrobe for forgotten items and some extra effort can be! <astounded> I have three quite glamorous outfits, perfect for spring grin Thank you CeeCee!

Oh and I cleaned some of my shoes and boots with baby wipes and then treated them with beeswax-based nourishing cream. Instant sheen, I think the shoes actually said "Thank you" grin

CeeceeBloomingdale Thu 21-Mar-13 09:23:21

Yay and swit swoo at you in the skirt. I'm loving all the swapping, great new staples and cash to buy new things from passing on bits that don't work for me. What's not to love?

I'm off clothes shopping with the hubby for the second day in a row (for him but I can't resist a look too). Yesterday I bought a pair of black skinnies for £5 in the M&S clearance and that was all (I have the khaki ones already so know it was £5 well spent). Today I am going to a huge shopping centre. I may make one or two small, considered purchases but I have something in my mind I would like online so will see what's in the shops first before deciding - I won't do both and I have a small budget to play with anyway. Must be diciplined!

CeeceeBloomingdale Thu 21-Mar-13 09:53:23

Oh and I've pulled out some old flared jeans from the back of my wardrobe wearing with a batwing bretton top that normally goes with skinnies and a leopard print scarf. Today the scarf is pea green so I don't look too sailor and as I'm wearing flares I can hide comfy boots under too - result!

Corygal Thu 21-Mar-13 12:22:33

I've got some straight leg James Jeans in a very dark blue in a 32.

I've never worn them. Anyone want? Will post pix later.

I've also got a thyroid problem & thus am nobly going to get rid of a lot of 7FAMs if anyone wants. 31 or 32.

dixiejo Thu 21-Mar-13 13:00:57 <