Right, so with this round of my Ultimate Closet Consciousness posts, I'm referring back to an article I published called, '70 Things I Learned After Quitting My Job At Neiman Marcus And Moving From Dallas To San Francisco.' I know, seriously long title...
When you hear a former luxury retailer say the words, "less is more," the tendency would be to think today is Opposites Day. Trust me, it's not. Wait, maybe that means it is?
Ok moving along...Less is more, it's a biggie. When working with clients on their Closet Overhauls (or when readers go through Week 1 in the book) it is sometimes difficult for them to understand and visualize how more looks can come from a dwindling closet inventory (the donation and sell bags can grow to Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade float proportions and start to get a little daunting, understandably so). It's my job to translate this concept and show clients/readers, not just tell them, how it's not only possible, but pretty easy to do more with less, when the 'less' consists of favorite pieces that work for their life/body type already.
The same applies to life. We love more. That's cool, I get it, I did live in Dallas, Texas for ten years and worked at Neiman Marcus (selling floor to buying offices to e-commerce) so I understand excess and enjoying it to a certain extent.
But having more, especially in one's closet, is sometimes like ice cream overload in my opinion. What? Allow me to elaborate:
You know when you get a fresh cone/cup of ice cream (or pint, whatever) and start to dig in? Right, it's kind of the best (unless you're lactose intolerant). You start with the first spoonful, yessssss. So good. You go to the next, and then the next. And by the end of the whole she-bang you're chowing down on ice cream mainly for texture sake because let's face it, unless you have super-hero tastebuds, after the first several spoonfuls, the sweet ice cream loses it's flavor. You end up eating just to eat and appease those neurotransmitters that are firing like it's the Fourth of July up in your brain.
The same goes for your closet. No, you're not licking your clothing, that would be weird.
Before I dig into the next paragraph, this is the point in the post when I should probably advise all those in favor of the Imelda Marcos method of consumption to just click away, look away, and go to the shopping list.
Ok, ice cream, closet, what's the correlation? Right. After a certain point, having another pair of black pumps becomes, well, tasteless. Not in that way. But when you start to accumulate beyond what you're actually using, things start to lose their flavor. They're just not as special when you have twenty of them, whether it's a black pump, ankle strap sandal, white tee, etc. The only multiples you need in a closet (ladies and men) are the workhorse pieces, your core/essential items that fit you like a glove and work perfectly for your lifestyle. Once you find a core piece that works, you invest, and sometimes that means multiples. I'm not talking about buying stock in the silhouette, I am however showing a baby loophole in the less-is-more line of thought. Love the crew neck tee? Wear it all the time? Buy two instead of just one. Keep it simple.
More is sometimes just more. And more can start to get flavorless, fast. Here are a few favorites I go back to in the book and with my clients, just to drive the point home:
1. On average, women spend anywhere between $150-$400 on clothing every month (more).
2. Out of that, they tend to wear, on average, only about 20% of what's in their closets (less).
3. And finally, on average (we love our averages), they have about $550 of clothing collecting dust in there (less).
So, you're buying more (maybe not you but Mary Sue Average is), wearing less, and creating more clutter. Why not try this: buy smart (shop for the best-for-you styles, this doesn't mean more clothing but more targeted picks that you can invest a tad more in and will take you through the season), wear more of what you already have in your closet (let's shoot for 100% shall we?), and de-clutter your closet (and life)? How about them apples? (I always see Matt Damon holding up 'her number' against the glass in his Good Will Hunting scene. and yes, I am saying/writing it in a Boston accent).
Sound good? Are you in? See below for links to preview the book so you can take that puppy for a test drive. But first, yep, a little closet love...
You know the drill my people! Welcome to the two-part challenge, soon to be your daily routine? Less is more on this challenge as well! I'm so staying within the theme of this post and loving it...
1. Compliment yourself. Go try something on, get ready for your day, and get in front of that mirror as you normally do. Except this time, find one (or more, overacheiver that you are) thing you love about what you see in your reflection. Got it? Cool. Now, pretend like you're talking to your best friend and tell her/you how much you are loving that one thing. Check, part one, complete.
2. Now that you're confidence levels are a bit higher than they were two minutes ago, head out into the world and find some other things you love, preferably on a stranger's or friend's outfit. Give them a compliment, big or small, just do it. Be the reason someone smiles or walks a little taller today. Words are crazy powerful like that, even just a few. Whoa, less is more with your words too! See that? Full circle. I'll pretend like I planned for it to go that way...