2016 By the Numbers: Budget, Purchases, and Purges

I hope you all liked Esther’s “story of recovery” that I published last week. I felt it was well worth interrupting my 2016 recap posts (see the first two HERE and HERE) to share such an inspiring story with you.  If you enjoyed reading about Esther’s journey and want to learn how others have been able to overcome their shopping and wardrobe management challenges, click here. What I love most about the recovery stories is how varied they are, as it illustrates that there’s no one right way to reach peace and freedom around shopping and our closets.

2016 clothing purchase and purge update

It’s time for my final “by the numbers” accountability update for 2016.   I already covered my wardrobe “all-stars” and “benchwarmers” earlier this month.  In today’s post, I’m going to look at the remaining numbers surrounding my wardrobe and shopping for last year:

  • My budget
  • My purchases
  • What I purged from my closet

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A Year Later: August – October 2015 Purchase Review

Earlier this year, I started a new feature in which I review my purchases a year later to see how well (or not) they have worked out for me.  Most of the time, these purchase updates will encompass two or three months, and today I’m going to look back at the items I bought from August through October of last year. I definitely bought far too many items last August through October, so there will be a lot to cover in this update!

Good or bad purchase

How do you feel about the purchases you made a year ago?

I will share some basic numbers, let you know what I still own, and reflect on which purchases were good and bad and why. I’ll close this update by encapsulating the lessons I learned from reviewing the items I purchased a year ago.  I hope that reading this post will inspire you to take a look at your past purchases to see how well they’re serving you – or not.   Taking the time to do such a review can be quite eye-opening and is well worth doing.

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Shopping Priorities & Purchase Update – October 2016

A little over a month ago, I posted a long overdue update on my wardrobe and shopping goals for 2016.  That update covered my budget, item limit, frequency of wear, a basic overview of what I bought, and my goals for the remainder of the year.  I had also planned to review my progress with the shopping list I created back in February, but the post just got too long. As I feel that it will be helpful to look at my shopping priorities and how I have or haven’t addressed them, that will be the focus of today’s post.

shopping priorities update

How have you done with your shopping priorities for 2016?

A Cautionary Tale – Don’t Do What I Did

Before I delve into a discussion of my shopping list and what I’ve bought, I want to say a few things. First of all, I think that if we go through the trouble of creating a shopping priorities list, we really need to be reviewing it on at least a monthly basis.  That way, we’ll be much less likely to get off-track with our purchases.  Of course, it’s perfectly understandable that we may need to make some revisions to our list, as many things are subject to change in our lives, including our bodies, our lifestyles, and what we are and aren’t wearing.  I would never be one to advocate rigid adherence to what one planned many months ago.

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A Year Later: May through July 2015 Purchase Review

Earlier this year, I started a new feature in which I review my purchases a year later to see how well (or not) they have worked out for me.  Although I periodically reviewed past purchases previously, I got the idea to review things from a year ago from Mette of “The Yogastic Shopping Planner(see her most recent edition HERE).   Sometimes my purchase updates will cover just one month (as my last one did – I bought a lot in April 2015), but most of the time they will encompass two or three months – or even longer, as was the case with the 2014 review I published last week.

2015 Year in Review

Today I’m going to look back at the items I bought from May through July of last year. Those were fairly moderate shopping months for me, so it made sense to cover them all together.  I will share some basic numbers, let you know what I still own, and reflect on which purchases were good and bad and why. I’ll close this update by encapsulating the lessons I learned from reviewing the items I purchased a year ago.  I hope that reading this update will inspire you to take a look at your purchases from a year ago to see how well they’re serving you.   Taking the time to do such a review can be quite eye-opening and is well worth doing.

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Two Years Later: 2014 Purchase Update

I have done quite a few purchase updates on this blog over the years. I feel it’s helpful to look back at what we bought to see which items were successes and which were failures.  When I first started doing such reviews, I did them a few months down the line.  However, I’ve come to understand that such a time interval is not long enough for a true analysis in most cases. Thus, I started to review my purchases a year later beginning this year (see HERE and HERE).  A full year gives us enough time to see what we are and aren’t wearing and how it’s working out for us.

Since I didn’t do too many purchase updates in the early days of the blog, I thought it would be fun and interesting to look back at some of my earlier purchases. I probably should have started with 2013 (the year I started “Recovering Shopaholic”), but I opted to look back at what I bought in 2014 for this post. I will share my shopping wins, failures, and a few pieces for which it’s not an easy call.  I’ll also point out some patterns and lessons among the hits and misses that will help to guide my future purchases.

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What Are Your Favorite 100 Wardrobe Items?

A couple of weeks ago, I read about an exercise that could help us to pare down our wardrobes.  The instructions are simple:  select the top 100 items in your closet.  The idea is that once you separate out your favorite pieces, it will be easier to let go of at least some of the things that didn’t make the cut.  Since I love to do wardrobe exercises and am always up for a challenge, I decided to take this exercise on. In today’s post, I will share how it went for me, what I selected, and what I learned from the process.

top 100 items

The Number 100 Isn’t Written in Stone…

Now, 100 items may seem like too many for some of you or far too few for others.  As with Project 333 and other capsule wardrobe concepts (like this one for example), the number is not nearly as significant as the challenge itself.  If you have a small wardrobe but are intrigued by this exercise, perhaps you might want to select your top 50 or 75 items (or whatever number feels right to you).  On the flip side, if you have a very large wardrobe and find the idea of paring it down to 100 (even just “on paper”) extremely anxiety-producing, you can of course select a larger number.   The point is to stretch yourself and get to thinking about what you really need – and truly love – in your closet.

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A Year Later: April 2015 Purchase Update

Anyone who has been reading this blog for a while knows that I publish monthly accountability updates. These posts (see the most recent one here) include what came into and left my closet in a given month -and why, as well as how I’m doing with my clothing budget and item limit for the year.  It’s been very helpful for me to do these updates, as they help me to stay honest and on track with my wardrobe and shopping goals.

Last month, I started a new feature in which I review my purchases a year later to see how well (or not) they have worked out for me.  Although I periodically reviewed past purchases previously, I got the idea to review things from a year ago from Mette of “The Yogastic Shopping Planner(see her most recent edition HERE).   Since I started this new series a few months into the year, I began with an update on my first quarter 2015 purchases.  Most of my purchase reviews will look back on just one month’s purchases to see whether these items have become wardrobe workhorses or closet benchwarmers.  Occasionally, if I bought very few items in a given month, I will combine two months into one update.

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