Does a “One In, One Out” Policy Work?

One way in which many women try to maintain a manageable wardrobe is to institute a “one in, one out” policy.  This means that each time they bring something new into their closets, they need to let go of an existing item.   In some cases, this item must come from the same category as the new piece (i.e. a dress for a dress or a long-sleeved top for a long-sleeved top), but it can also just be one for one from any wardrobe area.

one in, one out policy

When you buy something new, do you cull an existing item?

I have loosely tried to follow this policy since I started the blog, but I haven’t been very strict about it at all.  What usually ended up happening was that I noticed “closet creep” had occurred, so I spent some time going through everything and getting rid of enough items to level things out again.   But doing that doesn’t feel very deliberate, which is my theme for the year.

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Useful Links on Capsule Wardrobes

Capsule wardrobes have been a big topic of discussion on many blogs recently.  In addition, the fall season of minimalist fashion challenge Project 333 kicks off on October 1st.  So I thought this might be a good time to share some useful links on this timely and popular subject.

capsule wardrobe

Have you ever dressed with a capsule wardrobe? This was my first one. 

If you are contemplating taking on a capsule wardrobe challenge or if you already dress in capsules and want to improve your process, you might find the articles below interesting and useful.   Even if you aren’t ready to do Project 333 or a similar challenge – or have no desire to do so, you’ll likely still receive benefit from reading a few of these blog posts.  There are some great nuggets of wisdom therein on dressing with less and making the most of our wardrobes.

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Photography Interlude – Torrey Pines

I hope you enjoyed my first “photography interlude” last week.  As promised, I will be posting a few of these during my “modified break” and then periodically after that.  Today I would like to share one of my favorite beaches with you, Torrey Pines.   This beach area is about a half-hour drive north from where I live and is absolutely gorgeous!  In the six months or so that I’ve been taking photographs (read about how and why I started that hobby here), I have been there five times and intend to go back regularly as I improve my skills.

Debbie Roes, Torrey Pines Beach

Overlooking Torrey Pines Beach, May 2015

The photo of me above was taken by a cyclist who had stopped to take in the view around the same time I was snapping pictures on my phone back in May.   It was an overcast evening, but the view was still beautiful.   The photos below were taken from the same vantage point, in both directions. Trains travel right along the beach, as you can see in the second photo.  I have ridden trains on those tracks several times, including to visit Disneyland and to have dinner with my dad when he still lived in the North County of San Diego.   There are lots of picturesque views to take in on those train rides for sure!

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How Many New Items Should We Buy Each Year?

A few weeks ago, I launched my private Facebook group.   The discussions in this group are so interesting and thought-provoking that I will periodically share some of them here on the blog.   Today’s post includes the very first discussion topic that I posed for the group.

New Items Per Year

What’s a reasonable amount of clothes to buy per year?

The Question…

Here’s the question that I asked the group members to comment on:

I’ve been giving a lot of thought to how many new items it is reasonable to buy within a given year. I know there isn’t one number that will apply to everyone, but I’d love to get some thoughts on this subject. I know that the 50+ items I’ve been purchasing each year since I started “Recovering Shopaholic” is still too many, although it’s a lot fewer than the 150-200 annual purchases I made in 2012 and previous years. I’m thinking that I could probably reduce my purchases by half and it would still be more than enough, provided that I make wise choices. Thoughts?”

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Overcoming Debt and Improving Family Life in a Few Short Months

The following was posted in the comments section of my “August Grab Bag of Useful Links” post by a reader named Gabby, who shared her recent success with shopping less, overcoming debt, and reclaiming family life.   Although some of you may have read her comment, I thought it merited higher visibility as part of my “Stories of Recovery” series, especially since we haven’t had an installment in that series for a while.  I have done some light editing of Gabby’s words and moved things around a bit for impact, but the essence of her inspiring tale remains the same.

Summer family picnic

Gabby focused on summer fun with her family instead of shopping.

If you would like to be profiled in the “Stories of Recovery” series (you can be anonymous if desired), or if you have an idea for another type of guest post on “Recovering Shopaholic,” please connect with me to share your thoughts.  Since I’m taking a modified blogging break during September, I’m especially interested in any content you’d like to contribute here this month.

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Photography Interlude – Imperial Beach

Last week, I let you know that I would be taking a bit of a break from blogging during September to focus on other projects and priorities and to consider my plans for “Recovering Shopaholic” moving forward.   Although I won’t be doing the same types of posts I usually do here, I promised I wouldn’t be going away entirely this month.   I still plan to publish some content here, including useful links, “Throwback Thursday” compilations, and my photography.

Debbie Roes in Imperial Beach

My husband and I recently spent an afternoon in Imperial Beach. 

To kick things off, I’d like to share some photographs that I took recently in Imperial Beach.   This coastal community is about a thirty minute drive south of where I live, but I had never been there in my thirteen years of living in San Diego!   Not long after I arrived in Imperial Beach, however, I wondered what had taken me so long…  The beaches are beautiful and decidedly less crowded than the “tourist trap” communities closer to my home.  The tourists don’t seem to drive that far south, so the beach was mostly populated by locals out for the day with their families.

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On Self-Care, Clearing Backlogs, and Taking a Break

It’s a known fact that many women have a tendency to put themselves last. They expend the majority of their time and energy taking care of other people, such that they can become totally depleted and have nothing left to give to themselves. This phenomenon is common among mothers of young children and members of the “sandwich generation,” but it can happen to all of us.   And for those of us who struggle with compulsive shopping or other addictive behaviors, not taking care of our own needs can set us up for exacerbating those issues.

This has been the case for me in recent months.   No, I don’t have small children or elderly parents with failing health, but I also don’t really have a lot to give at this point.   I have been struggling more so than usual with my health over the past few months and have also been investing a great deal of energy in trying to help a sick friend who is really in a bad way.  I have also been spending many hours each week going to various medical and holistic practitioner appointments, which only seem to be eating up my time and money without doing much good.   And I often lose entire days or partial days as a result of feeling just plain awful.

lake tahoe clouds

Beautiful Lake Tahoe, where I will visit during September (my dad’s photo). 

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