Ever feel like you have a closet full of clothes with nothing to wear? You’re not alone. A recent study found that nearly 61% of Americans admitted to regularly struggling to find something to wear, even though their closet is full of clothes. And the average person experiences “wardrobe panic” 36 times a year because they feel they have nothing to wear.
You might think the problem is that your clothes no longer fit, they’re outdated, or you need a bigger budget for a better wardrobe. I don’t want to invalidate those challenges, but I want to offer up the idea that those factors aren’t the ACTUAL problem.
In this episode, I’m going to reveal the truth about the REAL reason you have a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear. Plus, what you can do right away to start building a wardrobe you love.
THE REAL REASON
We’re going to unpack this a whole lot more. But first, I’m going to admit that no one is a bigger impulse shopper than me. So I say this from a place of love and service, NOT judgment. I once counted 30 cocktail dresses in my closet. And at the same time, I didn’t have a properly fitting bra.
I found myself in a similar conundrum again just a few short years ago after our son, Grey, was born.
My husband and I struggled with unexplained infertility for a number of years. And finally, in 2018, after a decade of marriage, we finally welcomed our sweet baby boy. This was a MAJOR transition time for us. We were both really career focused and used to enjoying our independence. So after Grey was born, everything changed in a way we couldn’t have prepared ourselves for.
I became pretty consumed with motherhood, rightfully so. I waited a LONG time for this! But we struggled a lot in the beginning with nursing, sleeping, and other first-time parent challenges. My body had changed a lot and my closet full of fancy work wear and date night outfits didn’t mesh with my new lifestyle.
In fact, I didn’t even know what my style was anymore. So I tried to copy what I saw other “fashionable” moms wearing on Instagram and Pinterest. (Essentially, I was NOT practicing what I preached to my clients over the previous decade.)
And for TWO years, I didn’t feel like myself At. All.
Can you relate?
Maybe you’re going through a similar transition in your life right now. A new baby. Career change. Relationship status. Decade of life. Wildly different day-to-day routine. If nothing else, I’m sure the recent pandemic rocked your world in some way.
Bottom line, friend: The struggle of having a closet full of clothes with nothing to wear is REAL. It’s also totally normal.
We all face periods of uncertainty, transition, feeling stuck, or unlike ourselves. Yesterday’s wardrobe might not be working today. I’ve found myself in that situation numerous times.. And remember, I’m a professionally TRAINED image consultant! For more than a decade!
I know firsthand how easy it is to fall into a rut. But it’s never too late to start being more intentional about building a wardrobe you love. I believe it’s possible for every single woman to show up ─and get dressed every day─ with confidence.
Like me, you just need to go back to the basics and redefine what works for you in this current season. And that really comes down to being more INTENTIONAL about what you wear and what you buy. This is essentially a two-step process.
Step One: The Foundations of Style
The first step is getting really clear on what looks and feels good on you at this stage of life. I call this the Foundations of Style and there are 3 pillars to this: style, color, and fit.
Let’s talk about dialing-in your signature style. One of the top complaints I hear from women is they don’t know what their style is, their old style isn’t working for them anymore, or they are drawn to so many different styles, they have a hard time pinning down just one key look. If you haven’t already, I invite you to take my Free 5-Minute Personal Style Quiz to get clarity about your personal style based on a number of different factors, not just your visual preferences alone.
➤ TAKE THE FREE PERSONAL STYLE QUIZ
Of course, when it comes to curating a closet you LOVE, two other important factors are discovering your best colors and learning how to flatter your figure. It’s time to start doing your homework and figuring out what pieces are most flattering on you, both in color and line.
If you feel like your colors have changed over the years, it’s time to revisit what’s in your wardrobe. Or if what you have doesn’t feel good on your body anymore, it’s time to get more intentional about what fits and flatters you today. Not at your goal weight or for future events you hope to have on your calendar, but what works TODAY.
STEP TWO: NEEDS BEFORE WANTS
Once you have the foundations of style, color, and fit figured out, the next step to ridding yourself of the dreaded “wardrobe panic” is being more intentional about what you bring into your closet.
Start planning ahead. Before your next shopping spree, prepare yourself with a list of what you actually need. Create a wardrobe shopping list and write down all the pieces you wish you had available to you. You can also look ahead on your calendar to see what activities and events are coming up. Think about how you spend your typical day. Is your wardrobe an accurate reflection of that? Evaluate where you are in this season and which wardrobe pieces are going to help get you through the typical day.
I also love curating Pinterest boards for my private clients before each planned shopping session so we know exactly what to look for to round out their wardrobes. Pinterest is my favorite FREE resource for fun, effective, and risk-free wardrobe planning. Plus, it’s a great way to go virtual window shopping. You can impulsively save items to a board, rather than adding them to your cart, while you think it over and determine whether it’ll bring more peace or clutter to your closet.
Whatever resources and strategies you put into practice, remember it’s important to stay focused and fill in the gaps of your wardrobe first.
My goal is to help you curate a closet you LOVE so you never feel like you have nothing to wear AGAIN. It’s definitely a process. But the effort is so worthwhile. And once you get these basic foundations down and learn my simple methods to shop with more confidence and intention, you can apply them over and over season after season and you’’ll find it so easy to feel effortlessly well-dressed, for life. I can’t wait to share even more tips and tricks with you here on the podcast and continue supporting you on your style journey!