Jennifer Nataf
Personal Stylist and Wardrobe Therapist

Sometimes you win…

I have more than one besequined item in my closet that I’ve never worn. Picture courtesy of cottonbro/Pexels.

… and sometimes you learn.

Having just parroted one of the more cliched phrases of the moment (but one I still love!), let me try to put a positive spin on a very aggravating, very costly phenomenon: buying clothes or accessories that you end up NEVER wearing.

If you have heeded the wise advice of every efficiency expert out there, you will have taken advantage of the extra time at home we’ve all had recently to clean out cupboards, organize papers, and go through your closet. Or at least, some part of that. And since I’m a personal stylist, I’m hoping that by this point, given the changing seasons, you will have gone through your closet.

If you’re like most people, you will have rediscovered an item or two that you’ve never worn. Perhaps you’ve uncovered never-worn pieces folded up at the back of your top shelf, hanging in your closet, or bunched up under a pile of clothes you actually do wear. You might have taken them out periodically, tried them on, said to yourself, “Someday, I’ll figure out how to wear this…” and then put them back. They might even fit you perfectly, and your friends may have told you how fantastic you look in them.

And yet… something about those articles of clothing just doesn’t sit right with you.

So why did you buy them? Here are some of the reasons we might buy clothes we don’t really love:

– It fits and we don’t hate it!
– We love the colour but not the fit, or vice versa, and we’re scared we won’t find something better.
– It’s similar to something we already own which has served us well enough.
– We’re tired of looking around for something better.
– We were talked into it by the salesclerk or our less-discerning shopping companion.
– We don’t really know our own style. (More on this one in future posts!)

When you go through your closet – if you didn’t do it during the quarantine, you will be driven to it in the near future – pull out those items you’ve never worn. Now go through these next steps:

First, don’t beat yourself up for having bought them.

Then, see what you can learn from it.

Ask yourself: why did you buy those items?

Was there a feeling you were trying to capture? (I’ve been guilty of this.) Did you see it on someone else and think it looked amazing on them? (I’ve been guilty of this one, too!)

Next, try to analyze what it is that you don’t like.

Is it the colour, the fit, the general vibe? There usually isn’t much you can do about colour, but perhaps you can combine it with other pieces, creating an overall look that you DO like. Get creative and see whether there actually might be a way to wear the garment!

If the problem is the fit, a tailor might be able to help.

If it just doesn’t work, toss it; you don’t need to keep “paying” for the item by letting it take up precious real estate in your wardrobe, reminding you that you wasted money on it. Donate, give to a friend, or resell.

Lastly, the next time you go shopping, be mindful of what your shopping pitfalls are, based on the work you’ve just done. Don’t buy something unless you love it AND it fits AND it matches the image you want to project AND you know you can wear it with other pieces already in your wardrobe.

And as always, if you would like my help clearing out your closet, finding your style, and/or shopping for clothes that will make you look and feel beautiful, feel free to contact me!

About the Author
I'm a Jerusalem-based personal stylist, and I help women find their own unique style and elevate it, so that they look, and feel, beautiful. I've always loved playing with clothes and I recently fulfilled my lifelong dream of working in fashion, obtaining my styling certification from the International Image Institute and opening a styling business. You're more than welcome to explore my philosophy of clothes, fashion and body image in my blog. And if you're considering hiring a personal stylist, feel free to reach out!
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