The Boutique’s Bakers Dozen (Week 51)

October 26, 2014

The Boutique's baker's dozen

The Boutique’s baker’s dozen

The 1 year mark for The DH Closet Challenge is quickly approaching, which means it is time once again to take a look at the “boutique” (a last look at the boutique was here).  Although I’ve made great strides during the past year in reducing the size of my total wardrobe, I still have a number of unworn items in my wardrobe, which are sitting in the “boutique.”  Since one of my personal goals is to wear the bulk of my wardrobe, most of the time, I really need to put the boutique out of business at some point.  So I rolled up my sleeves and got down to business and I have once again purged items from the boutique.  I find myself left with a final total of 13 items.  Here are the items STILL in the boutique and why I am holding on to them.

Top Row:

  • Red Thermal Top: An impulse purchase for my favorite team, the NJ Devils.  The logos make it too casual for work leaving me only weekends to sport the top.  And I already have weekend specific tops in my working closet, which have not worn out yet.  Until they do this continues to sit unworn.
  • Denim Shirt: Purchased during my favorite sale, it was purchased to replace a denim shirt already in my working wardrobe once it wears out.  Except that top hasn’t worn out yet!
  • Brown Fleece: Purchased as a souvenir, it’s too casual for work making it another weekend only topper.
  • Red Fleece: Purchased for gear use, except my other gear toppers are still in good shape.

Bottom Row:

  • Devils Hoodie: Another impulse purchase for my favorite team, again too casual for work.
  • Tan Sweater/Jumper: Purchased during my favorite sale, LAST year.  It is still in the boutique because it never made it into my working closet last year.  It’s currently too heavy in weight to add to my fall/winter wardrobe.
  • Pink Zip Up Sweater/Jumper: Purchased during Black Friday shopping two years ago.  I get lots of compliments on this color for me, but as with the tan sweater/jumper, it never made it into my working closet last year.
  • Black Turtleneck: Yet another item I purchased duplicates of to replace when a layering knit wore out, except my tops don’t wear out as fast as I think they will.
  • Blue Poncho: Another souvenir purchase, it is very heavy in weight and as with other items never made it into my working closet last fall/winter.
  • Four T-Shirts: Two of these are solids that may work as layering pieces for now under a sweater/jumper.  The other two are once again souvenirs from concerts.

Now for a little number crunching…

With a current working wardrobe total of 111 items (58 for fall/winter and 53 for spring/summer) and 13 items sitting in the boutique unworn, I have 11.7% of my wardrobe sitting ‘on hold.’  In the next 6 months I would like to close the boutique and either purge or have added into my working wardrobe, these final 13 items.

More than half of the items left in the boutique can be summed up into 3 observations of what NOT to do in the future:

  1. Stop purchasing souvenirs.  6 of my 13 items, were impulse purchases as a souvenir (concerts, holidays/vacations, events, etc) and they are the slowest to be added to my working wardrobe.  Often it’s because these items are too casual for my job, which means I only have two days a week to sport them.  And if I can only use the item on the weekend I don’t need many items for this purpose nor do these items wear out very fast.
  2. Stop stocking up. 3 of my 13 items were duplicates that were purchased to ‘save for later.’  At the time of purchase I already owned something similar that was a workhorse and I did not want to run the risk of being without my workhorse item.  So I picked up one to ‘save for later.’  But later often takes a LOT longer than I think it will.
  3. Stop over-purchasing for weekends.  5 of my 13 items are only suitable for weekends.  And I spend most of my time at work.  So why am I purchasing so many weekend only items?  Good question.  For future purchases I need to pay closer attention to when I can sport the item.  The bulk of my purchases should be focused on sporting the item for work, not weekends.

And below is the latest look at the boutique.  Only one bag left.  And how far did I come, well here is the first time the boutique was shown on Shopping Brake (second photo in this post).

One bag left in the boutique.

One bag left in the boutique.

Do you know how much of your wardrobe you do not use?



    1. DH is thrilled that I’m starting to wear out my clothes instead of always donating clothing that is still in great condition. And I have to admit, it is a great feeling when I have to toss something out because the item is genuinely worn out. I’m looking forward to getting rid of the boutique over the next year and shrinking the size of my wardrobe a bit further. Sometimes I still feel I have too many choices, I never would have guessed that when I started this process.

  1. Wow! What a big change. Very insightful figuring out the reasons behind the bulk of your mistakes as well.
    What is the total decrease in numbers from when you started? I dream of 100ish items but I’m just not there yet. Too many variables to contend with in my life still. Moves, climate, budget, possible career change. Maybe next year. Ha.

    1. First, congrats on starting your blog Mo! Now onto your question. I started with over 300 items in my wardrobe and now I’m down to 111 in my working wardrobe plus an additional 13 in the boutique. Using 300 as a benchmark that means I’ve purged 176 items in the past year, or 58.6%. And with only 13 items in the boutique, only 11.7% of my wardrobe is ‘on hold.’ That is a big change, in the beginning I was only using about 20% of my wardrobe and now less than that sits unworn. It’s been a slow process. And with a four season climate I realize that I need more clothes that can layer and work across seasons/temperatures as opposed to one temperature only clothing.

      1. Wow. That is fantastic. I bet your DH thinks so too! 🙂 And thank you. I’m so new to the blog thing – I may just be asking you for some tips!

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