This week, I received an interesting question, “Why don’t you shop at Chico’s anymore?”
The truth is I am not buying much at all these days. If I need one thing to fill a hole in my wardrobe, I will buy the best quality I can afford, and it will not be memorable. That means no prints, no beading, no standout details.
I have spent the last five years rebuilding my wardrobe after losing about forty-five pounds. Not even my shoes fit afterward! I made a tremendous number of mistakes while buying what I thought a lady my age should be wearing. For a while, companies and boutiques were sending me boxes of clothes to show on the blog. My closet was no longer my happy place as I stood before a vast collection of things that did not reflect me. I had a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear.
Over the past year, I have been letting go of the items that do not serve me well. I also stopped accepting items to review on the blog. It all became overwhelming, and I was no longer authentic or believable. Most women do not get something new every single day, nor do we want to. Being surrounded by clutter and things I rarely use does not give me a sense of peace. I prefer to have a few items that I can wear many times in several combinations and always feel true to my style when I wear them.
Several features must be checked off before I make a purchase now. The first must be that it is an item that I have been looking for, not an impulse buy. The item must be in the color and tone that looks good with my complexion. The item must be a solid color neutral that goes with everything else in my wardrobe. I look for things that have no details, zippers, ruffles, or gathers, which would make my upper body appear more substantial. If I can check off all these points and the item is on sale, it might be coming home with me. It must also fit and flatter my shape with few if any alterations required.
I enjoy wearing accessories to complete and complement my neutral combinations. At one time in my life, I believed I needed a standout tunic or jacket, but it was wearing me in reality. People saw the standout piece, not me.
So there you have it, a very long answer to a concise question. I don’t shop much anymore because I already have plenty of items I enjoy wearing. A lot of them came from Chico’s, but the things I have kept do not scream from across the lobby of a theater, “I bought this at Chico’s!”
I hope that what I share helps you create a wardrobe that serves you well and allows you to get out there and enjoy your second fifty years as much as I am.
In these photos, I am wearing an old white tank from Chico’s, Jag pull-on jeans from last year, an old scarf from the Banana Republic, and a long cardigan, which is also old from Saks Off 5th. The bag is by Zac Posen via Saks Off 5th last year. The shoes are old by Kenneth Cole Reaction.
I meant no disrespect to Chico’s with this post. That was simply the question that started the conversation. Chico’s is an excellent company, as are its sister stores White House|Black Market and Soma Intimates. I have been a loyal customer for years and will continue to shop in all three stores when I need something new.