Neglected Wardrobe Areas – Part Two

Back in May, I wrote a post titled “Neglected Wardrobe Areas,” which addressed the issue of people not shopping for the wardrobe items they need most.  I wrote that even though I spend a lot of time in workout clothes and lounge wear, I generally spent less than 10% of my clothing dollars on such pieces.  Until recently, I didn’t believe these types of clothes were important enough to merit a larger portion of my wardrobe budget.   I now understand it’s important that we feel good about the way we look in all situations, even when we’re sitting at home in front of our computers.

Other Areas of Wardrobe Neglect

While I’ve successfully upgraded my at-home and workout wear in recent months, I’ve come to realize there are other areas of my wardrobe I’m neglecting for different reasons.   Although I still have a large wardrobe, my closet is sadly lacking in terms of bottom pieces, especially pants.  Most of my pants are at least two years old and many are from more than four years ago.  I’m doing a bit better with skirts, but half of my skirts date back to 2010 or earlier.

Neglected wardrobe areas - pants

Do you neglect certain areas of your wardrobe when shopping?

Even though I’m someone who shops a lot, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with holding on to older clothes, particularly if they are still in decent condition and are a good fit for your body and lifestyle.  However, I don’t love most of my pants.  Many are showing their age, and most could really stand to be replaced at this point.  So you may wonder why I haven’t replaced them during one of my many shopping trips this year or last.

Pants are My Nemesis!

I have certainly tried to find new pants many times in recent years.  I even purchased several pairs last year, but they were all either returned or purged from my closet after limited wears (and probably should have been returned from the get go!).

Pants are my nemesis for several reasons.  First of all, I’m 5’10” with very long legs and most pant styles are not offered in tall sizes or long lengths.  Secondly, my waist is much smaller than my hips and thighs and most pants in recent years are designed for those with more of a straight shape.  Third, I don’t like to accentuate my curvy hips and thighs in the skinny styles that have dominated the marketplace for at least the past few years.

Demoralizing Shopping and Opting Out

I know we should all embrace and love our bodies the way they are, but I have a very difficult time loving my larger posterior.  I usually opt to camouflage my curvy hips and thighs rather than accentuate them, and that’s difficult to do in tight-fitting pants and jeans.

I typically have to try on dozens of pants before I find a pair that meets my approval, and I generally feel demoralized after the first few try-ons.  I often order pants online rather than brave the harsh mirrors and lighting in store fitting rooms, but my success rate using that method is dismally low.

Since I have so much trouble buying pants, I’ve frequently opted out and focused my shopping instead on finding tops, jackets, and cardigans.  These types of garments are very easy for me to find and shopping for such pieces is much more fun.  I often shop to escape unpleasant feelings or to experience a “high,” and focusing on fitting my bottom half does not produce that desired result.

While I may set out looking for pants and skirts, more often than not I come home with several new tops and perhaps a jacket or two instead of a single bottom piece!  How else do you think I started this year with 129 tops and 75 toppers (coats, jackets, cardigans)?

Most People Struggle with At Least One Wardrobe Area

Some of you may identify with my pants difficulties, while others may struggle more with tops, jackets, or even shoes.  Although some people find it easy to find all types of wardrobe components, most of us experience difficulty in at least one area.  When I was working with wardrobe consulting clients, I usually saw one of two situations.  In some cases, closets were full of bottoms but included precious few tops.  Other times, my clients’ closets were similar to my own, awash with tops and toppers but with very few bottoms.

Most women buy what comes easiest for them when shopping.  For some women, it’s shoes.  I remember the Toni Colette character in “In Her Shoes” and her enviable shoe wardrobe. She focused on shoes when shopping, as she struggled with weight issues and her shoe size was one area that never changed.   Having fussy feet myself and a top half that remains slim even if I pack on the pounds, I focus my shopping efforts on tops, jackets, and coats.

Most Women Don’t Want Workable Wardrobes

When I sat down to write this post today, I was reminded of an excellent article by Bridgette Raes titled “Most Women Don’t Want Workable Wardrobes.”  Bridgette points out that having a workable wardrobe means being realistic, restrictive, and responsible – and these things aren’t any fun.  Women may say they want solutions to their fashion problems, but when we approach shopping as an escapist pastime, we end up with overly stuffed closets filled with surprisingly similar pieces and lots of “wardrobe benchwarmers.”

To cultivate a workable wardrobe, we have to engage our brains fully in the process of shopping. We have to shop with a plan and exercise discipline and restraint along the way.   But that’s not how most shopaholics shop.  Most of us with compulsive shopping problems don’t use lists or budgets (or if we have them, we don’t take them very seriously).  We grab anything that looks shiny and pretty and try on whatever is the newest, hottest style or trend.   We also focus our shopping efforts on what’s fun and easy.  Why spoil the experience by shopping for our problem areas?

The Consequences of Shopping for Escape & Exhilaration

I have come to understand the consequences of shopping for escape and exhilaration.  I bought a lot of very similar pieces, packed my closet full of tops, and neglected buying pieces for my bottom half.  Then when I became frustrated by the lack of versatility in my wardrobe, I went out and bought still more tops and toppers in similar styles.

I aimed for short-term highs over long-term closet satisfaction. I spent thousands of dollars and still didn’t love what’s in my closet.  I wasted lots of money on short-lived escapes and easy shopping, all the while neglecting to build a workable wardrobe for myself!

It’s Time to Face the Music!

No more!  It’s time to face the music and take the time – and exercise the necessary discipline – to build a wardrobe that will work for me.  That means I have to “bite the bullet” and try on as many pants as necessary to find a few pairs that I love and can’t wait to wear.  I’ll have to do the same with skirts, although that will likely be far less painful.

I’ll have to endure harsh lighting and mirrors and the accompanying body image discomfort, and I may have to leave many stores empty-handed.  I’ll have to put aside my preconceived notions of what will and won’t fit my body and what will look good on me, and try on pretty much anything and everything.  Most pants won’t be long enough for my “giraffe legs,” but some will and tall sizes may be available online in some cases.

No Escape or High, But Perhaps Something Much Better

This shopping likely won’t be fun and won’t provide escape from the things I don’t want to think about.  It likely won’t provide a “high” or lead me to feel more confident and happy about my life.  I likely won’t feel a lot of connection to the sales associates, who might find my laser focus on pants – come what may – annoying.

But maybe, just maybe, if I focus on buying what I truly need, instead of what is easiest to find, I’ll end up with a wardrobe that works better for me.  Perhaps I’ll have more outfits that I love from top to bottom instead of just top to waist.  Maybe I’ll feel more confident and attractive for the events of my life and more ready to meet my personal challenges head on.  And maybe I’ll start to feel love instead of lack when I look inside my closet.  And one last maybe, a big one… Maybe I won’t want to shop so much.  Then, instead of “white-knuckling” it in order to stay out of the shops, I’ll actually want to shift my focus more toward new activities and experiences.

If all of the above assumptions are true,

Isn’t it worth it to address those neglected wardrobe areas, even if doing so might be uncomfortable and not particularly enjoyable?

I think so and I’m going to put my money where my mouth is (or at where least my fingertips are).  For the remainder of the year, I’m going to focus my shopping efforts on finding bottom pieces I love, both pants and skirts.  I may even go crazy and buy bottoms in colors other than black, grey, and navy.  Wonders may never cease!  I’ll keep you posted.

What Are Your Neglected Wardrobe Areas?

Now it’s your turn.

  • What are your neglected wardrobe areas?  
  • Are you ready to bite the bullet with me and address those areas in the coming months?  
  • Or perhaps you’ve already met this type of challenge head on.  If so, what advice and words of wisdom can you offer to those of us who are venturing into these rocky waters? 

I invite you to share your insights and challenges with me and my readers.

36 thoughts on “Neglected Wardrobe Areas – Part Two

    • Thanks, Bridgette! Yes, that article was one of my favorites as well and I plan to read it regularly to make sure your excellent advice sinks into my thick shopaholic skull 🙂

  1. Wow, this is a bit spooky. In the midst of returning latest crop of pants failures that I bought online. Two pairs from Boden (usually reliable for me for dresses and tops) and two pairs from Old Navy. All shockers. I’m 5 ft 11 inches (what Imogen describes as figure 8 shape) and the experience you’ve described with finding bottoms could have been written by me, too. Struggling with current trends for cropped pant lengths and also skinny shapes. I have recently had lucky with skinny jeans from Mavi (inseam of 34 inches. The Alexa mid-cut style in dark wash is very stretchy and almost as comfortable as my Lululemon track pants – you should try them!). However skinny and cropped style I tried from Old Navy looked disastrous… Anyway, was almost getting there with building my trouser wardrobe, then I lost some weight (a good thing) and now back to square one. Please share your tips for trousers when you find them!

    • Hello fellow Amazon, Gervy! I can tell you feel my pain regarding pants… I am an X figure shape according to Imogen (for those who want to find out their shape, here’s the link:, so we are similarly built. I haven’t heard of Mavi jeans but will check them out (I have a pair of Lululemon track pants and would love jeans as comfortable as those!). I’m not fond of the skinny and cropped pants styles on me (well, I don’t like the cropped style on many others, either). If I find some good tips on trousers, I will definitely share, but I see many others already have!

  2. If I were in your position (in which you say you allocate $500 a month to clothing purchases), I would have a few classic pairs of pants custom made by a top-quality tailor, and then I would limit my other pant purchases to a few pair of jeans or casual pants that can be hemmed or taken in at the waist or whatever. At this point, I would consider my wardrobe complete and stop purchasing, but then I rarely purchase any clothing except to replace worn-out items. My wardrobe is workable and well-thought-out, and I do make my planned purchases from an annual list. I know what style and cut of clothing works for me, and I ignore anything else that doesn’t meet my stringent criteria of cut, color, fabrication, workmanship, clothing care, etc. I actually think about my clothing and my clothing needs a lot, but I ONLY buy what works. Anything that doesn’t work for me immediately (size or fit or quality) goes back to the store. Nothing that I do not love and love to wear stays in my wardrobe of 100+ items of clothing. I work very hard for my money and therefore I make very sure that what I spend on clothing is the best quality I can afford. By “quality” I don’t mean designer or brand; I mean cut, fabric, workmanship, etc.

    • I have thought of having my pants custom-made, Dottie, and may opt to do just that. My monthly budget is actually $250 instead of $500, but I’m sure I would still have plenty of money to get custom pants made. If I don’t have luck with my shopping soon, I will investigate that option (and will share what I learn for others who might be interested). I’m definitely going to slow down how many new items come into my wardrobe. My August shopping binge kind of scared me straight, as it were. I will add slowly and focus on my actual needs and quality pieces, which is sound advice for all!

  3. Do you have Long Tall Sally in the US? They are a specialist tall retailer and I get most of my clothes from them. I do need to get pants tailored for my shape and also hemmed as their standard length is 36 inseam. They don’t do much in a 34 but you can usually get jeans and basic black. They do have a variety of leg shapes unlike some retailers. I decided that even if I only have jeans and black pants this is workable as long as they are actually right for me. You can always buy skirts to extend your colours as they should be easier to find. Having a plan is a good starting point though and I wish you luck in your quest.

    • I have heard of Long Tall Sally, Marion, but the only US stores are far away. I get nervous ordering online because of the costs involved with shipping and returns (I do order things online but focus on retailers who offer free shipping and returns). I may get desperate and need to try this option, though, so thanks for the reminder and information! I may end up just having very basic pants and using skirts more for color variety, as you suggested. We’ll see how it goes…

  4. I have the same problem with pants — at this point, I have ZERO pairs of professional pants in my closet. I need the 34-35 inseam, but my bigger problem (no pun intended) is my apple shape — I have no hips, butt, or thighs. Trying to alter pants for this shape is next to impossible, thus I wear Eileen Fisher stretch crepe pants (that used to come in Tall) for weekends and dresses all week long for the office. I also wear VS yoga pants that come in 34 and 36 inseams (online) — but have been sternly told by my daughter that “yoga pants are not real pants.” LOL!

    I do recommend you try Talbots for pants. When I get desperate enough, I’ll order an assortment of sizes and fabrics, with free shipping (and right now, 25% off w/ card), and return all those that don’t fit (maybe every pair) to my local store. It’s easy enough, just need to force myself to do this. Like you, I find it demoralizing and upsetting.

    • It seems we are in a similar boat in terms of pants, Elizabeth. Even though we’re shaped differently, we both have shapes that are harder to fit. I’ve shopped with apple-shaped clients and I know how difficult it is to find pants. The tall factor just makes it that much harder. I will give Talbots a try, as I know they offer talls online. I like to try things on in the store if possible (to avoid major returns) and I just saw there is a store about 20 minutes from where I live. I am gearing myself to shop for pants soon and will do my best to remain upbeat rather than getting demoralized. Thanks for your suggestions!

  5. Re jeans – have you tried J Brand? I’m very leggy and need at least 34″ inseam but J Brands are extremely long – I always need to hem them. Might be about long enough for you… For dressy pants, I would really suggest made-to-measure, you will only need two pairs for all year, fine wool and cotton poplin. Start with the lightweight wool pair, they are surprisingly versatile.

    • Thanks for the tip re: J Brand, FrugalFashionista. I’ve tried lots of designer brands that sales clerks said were long, but so far only Citizens of Humanity were long enough for me (and only in skinnies, which I didn’t want). I will give J Brand a try. I may opt to do made-to-measure for dress pants. I’m not sure where to get that done, but I’m sure I can find out with a bit of internet sleuthing…

  6. This is a great post – and reflects me almost exactly (LOL). I “never” shop for bottoms. I am tall (5’10”), with an 8 shape similar to Gervy. While I have found a few brands that have pants long enough in the leg, it is almost impossible for me to find pants with a long enough rise. Pants in the recent years have a shorter rise so I cannot get most past my hipbones so the waist doesn’t fit. As a result, I have one pair jeans (yes, they get lots of wear) and 3 pairs of work pants (all made by my mother). Skirts fit better but unfortunately, I’m very much a pants person.

    • I’m glad to know I’m not the only one with such pants woes, but I’m sorry you have to go through this, too, RM. I don’t have the rise issues (I’m really all arms and legs!), but I do have my major fit issues. Luckily, I do like skirts and dresses, but there are some times when pants really fit the bill best, especially during the cooler months. If I learn any useful tips, I will share, but please check out the tips others gave me, as they may work for you, too.

  7. Excellent article Debbie and you discussed some really critical points- not spending enough on the less showy pieces thinking they don’t count( that was my problem for so long until I clicked in that it was the plain navy blue sleeveless tank or the simple black v-neck pullover rather than the embellished tank or bright trend of the moment color v-neck, which helped pull the wardrobe together and made it all work).

    As to pants- you will find them – there is a newer version out this past year( I just picked up some in gray which are identified as a “slim straight leg”- they are basically straight (aka a straight leg) through the hips and thighs but have smaller opening at the leg making them great for all types of footwear such as heels, flats and boots) but they are not those damn skinnies!!!! which I don’t care who you are and how slim you are, look stupid on everyone( just look at the rocker guys who wear them to see what I mean. In fact the skinnies are nothing more than leggings done in heavier material than what they are supposed to be-hmmm pretend leggings???( my views on leggings – they do not belong on the street as everyday wear but on those for whom they were designed- figure skaters( yes I was one), dancers(ballet,etc) and so on)
    And remember your altering mantra when buying something new- so in this case only worry about them fitting you across your widest part which would be your hips and the waist can be altered smaller to fit

    And for some colored jeans -go for it( I also just introduced some burgundy which fall into my brown capsule -fortunately no one has to leave there as I never owned brown bottoms in that capsule)

    • I’m glad to learn there is a new slim straight shape out there, Abgurl. That sounds like it would fit the bill nicely for me. Like you, I am not a fan of skinnies, although I do think they work well on some people (but not me!). I hope to find some colored jeans and burgundy is one of my favorite colors. Fingers crossed!

  8. Bottoms used to be one of my problems too. I am not tall, just the opposite in fact. Short, but not quite short enough for petites and the straight up and down styles never fit me either. I now know that Lucky Brand Jeans and Loft pants Julie fit are what work for me. The good news is once you do the work rebuying is much easier. I haven’t seen many stores that carry tall inseams, but I have seen many online. JJill, Talbots, Loft, Banana Republic…One of my friends that isn’t tall, but has a much smaller waist than hips has had luck with Talbots. If it’s something that you don’t enjoy I would recommend that you set a time limit while shopping in person or only place one or two orders at a time to keep it from getting overwhelming. The fact that the stores are offering many different fits (ex Loft: Marisa, Julie, Zoe) does make it easier and if you’re not sure what one works for you I would try on the too short ones in the store or call the company to get some direction. Most companies offer free shipping if you spend X amount and you can return to the store so you won’t waste money on shipping. Good luck!

    • I’m glad you found some types of pants that work well for you, Tonya. I’m sure I will, too, but it’s been so long since I really diligently shopped for pants, that the ones that worked for me in the past are no longer available! It’s good to know there are more styles out there and I’m okay with ordering talls online if I can try the regular size on in a store. Otherwise, it becomes a major buy and return fest and I’d rather not go there. I pretty much only order online if I can get free shipping and fortunately that’s becoming a more common option. I haven’t tried Loft in a while, but I will add that to the list along with the others. I’m planning on shopping on Sunday, so we’ll see how it goes…

  9. Neglected. Hmmm… I guess undies. And sleepwear. I mean, nobody sees me wearing them anyway, so what’s the big deal, eh? Except that I’ve got holes in my PJ’s, my knickers are falling apart and my bras are at least ten years old…
    It’s just, I hate – absolutely, positively HATE – spending money on that kind of stuff. I’d rather buy me a nice bar of chocolate. Oopsie!

    • I feel much the same, Leah. Undergarments are really important, though, so I’m biting the bullet and upgrading those, too. For larger busted women, a good bra is integral, but those of us with smaller chests can get away with skimping in that area. I do feel that all women should have good foundation garments, but like you, I’d often rather buy something more fun (like the chocolate you mentioned!).

  10. I disagree, re skinnies. Skinny jeans look good on all shapes. Wear longer tops if you want to cover your hips, thighs. Have you tried english store Dorothy Perkins on line? They do tall lengths in pants and jeans. My favourites at the moment are the Eden Jeggings, pull on jeans with back pockets and flat fronts. Sorry, Abgurl, they look great and are so comfy.

    • Discussing skinnies can be a polarizing topic, Pauline. My views run in between yours and Abgurl’s. I think they look good on some people but not all. I don’t think they look good on me, but that’s because I don’t like to accentuate my curvy hips and thighs. Some people with my shape like to show it off and skinnies will do just that. Thanks for the tip re: Dorothy Perkins. I just looked them up and saw that they offer free shipping to the US over $50. I will explore that option further if I don’t find anything locally.

  11. Heehee, Debbie it’s so funny to hear you call pants your nemesis – that’s exactly what I say about belts! My nemesis, the belt. I try to experiment with them every few years, but my wardrobe and I just seem happiest belt-free. 🙂

    Anyway, I feel your pain with pants. They are my favorite thing to wear, and soooo hard to find off the rack. I would say I easily try on 50+ pairs for 1 viable candidate. But I’m very forgiving and accepting of my body, so I think that makes it easier to just keep trying. Sometime I use the tactic where I look for pants first thing when I go into the store and have the most energy, but stop and switch to something easier (or leave) before I get overly fatigued so I don’t feel so burnt out. Also, in a way I kind of relish leaving a store empty-handed because I know I definitely didn’t make a purchasing mistake, which appeals to my miserly side. Yay! And if I leave a store with something that I really need, that ends up working out at home, it feels deeply satisfying and that feeling tends to stick with me.

    I’m glad you brought up loungewear in the first “neglected areas” post. It finally made me pay some attention there, which is so crazy b/c I spend tons of time in loungewear! It has been a super-slow process and I’m just barely starting to form a real capsule, but again, it’s really satisfying. One thing I noticed is that it actually takes quite some time to start feeling the cumulative effects of careful purchases. I read somewhere (here?) that foundational wardrobe building can take 3-5 years, and the meaning of that notion is starting to click into place for me.

    • I find belts to be a nemesis, too, Claire. I usually avoid them, but just got one I liked not long ago, so I’m dipping my toe in those tricky waters. I have the body shape for belts, but find them fussy to wear. I guess I just need to get used to them.

      Re: pants, I need to adopt more of your healthy attitude toward the process. I can identify with needing to try on 50 pairs of pants to find a good pair, but I definitely need to be more forgiving and accepting toward my body!

      I wasn’t the one who said foundational wardrobe building can take 3-5 years, but I definitely believe it! It’s not an easy process, especially when one is starting with a large wardrobe and isn’t sure what should stay and what should go. I’m glad you’ve started to address your lounge wear needs. It’s made a huge difference for me and I’m glad that area of your wardrobe is shaping up, too.

  12. No apology necessary Pauline. I didn’t say one can’t wear them ( around your house because they are comfortable) but I did state they don’t belong on the street as part of an outfit,particularly on females over the age of 12 . As you mentioned they are often worn with a tunic( hence a long top that covers the butt area) and when I see a woman in this outfit I have to wonder what she is trying to cover up-if slim a potbelly or unattractive butt(even if it is only in her mind) or if heavy herself in general? They are a cop-out to finding well fitting bottoms and to dressing well. They work best as home lounge wear.

    • I think there is a difference between skinny jeans and leggings. The former can be done well by some people, but I don’t like the blousy top with leggings look, either. I think that anyone can definitely benefit from taking the time to find well fitting bottoms. I need to take my own advice now and I’m happy for the great tips that you and others have offered here, Abgurl!

  13. Here is something that has really helped me in buying difficult to fit items. It came from Sally McGraw at Already Pretty. She tells her readers and clients, “It isn’t you that doesn’t fit the clothes. It is the clothes that don’t fit you.” In short, the problem isn’t you. It’s the clothes!

    This has helped me innumerable times when shopping for jeans or bras. The last time i shopped for bras, I probably tried on over 50! With every one that didn’t fit, I kept telling myself, it isn’t you. It’s the bras. I spread my shopping out over several trips. I only looked at bras. When I got tired/overwhelmed, I left the store with nothing. After several trips, I finally found the perfect bras.

    So maybe this mantra will help you and your readers like it helped me. Best wishes for finding the perfect pants and skirts.

    • Thanks for mentioning this, Anne. I follow Already Pretty and have seen Sally mention “It’s not you, it’s the clothes.” Stacy and Clinton on “What Not to Wear” also say that. I think it’s a good thing to keep in mind while shopping for tricky pieces. Just in the comments section here today, several other tall women have chimed in with different fit issues from what I have. We may all be tall and may even wear the same sizes, but our bodies are shaped differently. It’s hard for designers to create clothes (or bras!) that work for all women, so the best thing is to find those brands that work for us. I need to do that with pants and I’m starting from scratch because I’ve opted out for so long. I will keep your mantra in mind when I shop this coming weekend. I will take a deep breath and try to remember that my body is not wrong!

  14. Women around the world seem to hate skinny and cropped styles yet the fashion industry keeps on churning them out! And they really do look rubbish on nearly everybody! Personally I share your feelings on the matter, I’m also 5ft 11 with a lot of hip and anything cropped is an absolute no go. I own about two or three pairs of pants at this stage (other than bootleg jeans) and they’re all four or more years old. I’d love a good quality pair that fits really well but I’ve given up looking with the trends being what they are right now…. I’m sure wider legs will come back eventually!

    • I see you share my pain, K… I haven’t given up yet, but then again I haven’t actually LOOKED for pants in quite a while. I may end up coming to the same conclusion as you did. I do know that when the styles I prefer come back, I will stock up on at least a few pairs. I don’t usually advocate buying “multiples,” but given that the fashion industry seems to be eschewing variety, there are some cases when it’s called for. I’ve even tried the stores for more “mature” women (e.g. J. Jill) and it’s pretty much all skinnies and ankle pants there, too! Sigh… Fingers crossed we’ll see some variety or at least a shift in styles soon!

  15. This was a great article! I too could have written it! My closet consists of hundreds of tops, jackets and shrug sweaters and a handful of pants. I am 5’3 and hourglass shaped. I guess my least favorite – is my bottom half………hence the ‘hundreds of tops’. I have lost 45 lbs and have gone down 3 sizes in everything. One day I was going to go out skinny pants shopping and happened to glance down at my ‘to go’ pile of clothes. This was a mixture of ‘mistakes’ and ‘too bigs’. It is a big pile consisting of tops and bottoms. Well I thought that I would take a pair of huge pants and just sew up the side seams to make them smaller and straight legged just for fun. I had nothing to lose if I destroyed them as these were on their way out anyway. I had a pair of skinny pants waiting to return so I turned my ‘big’ pants inside out – laid the skinny ones on top and then traced them with chalk. Long story short I loved them and they fit perfectly!! So I quickly did this to 6 other pairs of pants, jeans, etc. They all fit , I love them and saved some $$ in the process!!! It was soo easy and each one only took 1/2 hour to do. It also took up the time that I would have spent shopping – and gave me a fun creative outlet.

    • Welcome, Ruth, and thanks for your comment. We seem to have quite a bit in common in terms of our shopping patterns. Yes, lots of tops and very few bottoms has been my M.O. for many years. Congrats on your impressive weight loss, and good for you for altering all of your pants yourself! How great that it worked out so well for you. I don’t do any sewing myself, but I swear by the power of alterations. That’s the only reason I have ANY pants that fit me at all. Manufacturers just don’t cut pants for my body type, but my tailor is able to make my small number of pants (wish I could find more…) work for me.

  16. What a great post! Like you I have an abundance of tops and very few bottoms I feel truly work for me. I wear drapey, looser fitting tops and slimmer fitting bottoms, which means I find well-fitting bottoms a lot harder to find. Is it just me or are they more expensive too?
    All this adds up to a wardrobe imbalance, and it’s one I’m hoping to correct soon. Thanks for sharing your experiences with this!

    • Thanks for your comment, Emma. I DO think that well-fitting bottoms are often more expensive as well as harder to find. I know I can find tops that fit and are a good price with little problem, but bottoms (especially pants!) are my nemesis. Of course, some people have the opposite problem as well. I know women with TONS of pants and not very many tops. I think most of us tend to buy what’s easiest and that often doesn’t serve us in the long run. Glad you liked this post!

  17. Hey Debbie ! I’m young woman (22 years old), and I’m embarking on the rolercoaster of minimalism, cleaning my wardrobe etc. I wanted to share a website for you : These are young entrepreneur from Switzerland who make tailored pants/jeans with a 3D-system. You have to mesure yourself, give the data in the website, pay and they ship the pants your way 🙂 :). The big problem is that the website is in German, and I don’t know if they ship to America. I know that the owner are really really kind, you can get in touch with them with email. And the pants are a bit pricey, but… they fit perfectly ! (and only a few style). But maybe there is something similar in America ?

    Kinds regards,


    • Welcome, Nato, and thanks for your comment! I think it’s great that you are discovering minimalism at such a young age and I wish you the best of luck with your journey. I appreciate your sharing the custom-tailored pants resource. You’re right that there is something similar in the U.S. I haven’t tried it yet, but am strongly considering it. I was lucky to find a few good pairs of pants/jeans since I wrote this post, but it still isn’t easy for me!

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