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Departure From My Standard Style

Isn’t it funny how our style tastes change over time (and sometimes over not so much time)?

For those of you who’ve been reading these posts for a while, you know my space started out as a workwear fashion blog. I’m far from a fashion guru so I focused on everyday wearable and achievable style ideas that worked at the office. All those photos are buried in the archives, but the first two or three years of writing here led me to explore my own style quite a bit. I learned a ton, to say the least.

Just a couple years ago, most of my outfits consisted of lots of color and varied styles and silhouettes. I tried many different things, partially for myself but also to keep blog posts somewhat unique and offer new ideas to others. Lots of those outfits failed (so maybe don’t check out the archives), and having photo evidence of my daily outfits gave me a pretty clear idea of what worked best for my body and my lifestyle.

In March 2015, after dabbling in thrift stores and diping my toe into more conscious shopping channels, I started a year-long 90/10 socially conscious style challenge. I committed to myself to buy at least 90% of my clothes through socially-conscious channels and brands (secondhand, one-for-one, made in the USA, eco-conscious, and the like).

I’m not entirely sure what inspired those initial thrift store trips or encouraged me to watch True Cost for the first time which were the catalyst for my 90/10 challenge. In hindsight, my experience with this challenge can probably be considered a turning point in my perspective on so many things in life. It definitely contributed to shifting the focus of the blog from just fashion to more varied lifestyle posts but all with a simpler living and more conscious consumption undertone.

With fewer than half the clothes I had two years ago and a much more thoughtful purchasing process anytime I buy something, I have a much smaller wardrobe and am naturally drawn primarily to neutral colors and simple silhouettes. I have a handful of colorful pieces left in my closet, like today’s bright purple boots and orange and gray dress, but I rarely purchase something new like this anymore. Not only do I like blacks and all sorts of grays so much more than color now, it’s also a whole lot more functional. Everything in my closet, for the most part, matches.

Having a more thoughtout wardrobe has also saved me so much time (and definitely money). Shopping as a hobby or pastime neither crosses my mind nor interests me. I can’t recall the last time I shopped in a traditional mall for myself.

Only after I notice a gap in my wardrobe do I start to think about shopping. Then I live with it for a little while to be sure it’s really a gap and not something I can fill with a piece I already own (or just feels like a gap because I haven’t don’t laundry in a while). When I do shop, I have a specific item in mind (and often a specific brand or retailer), and I’m online, cart filled and purchase made in just a dozen or so minutes.

For now, less shopping is working out for me. Like most moms, I never feel like I have enough time to do everything on my to-do list or wish list. But clothes shopping isn’t one of the things that often makes it on that list.

A couple years ago, I remember buying something new every week or two. Maybe it was just one shirt or a pair of tights, but the flow of incoming pieces was pretty frequent. Now.. not so much. Funny how times change…

About all those neutral outfits lately? Here are the last handful of outfits I’ve shared on the blog. Not a lot of bright colors…

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  1. I love the bold orange stripes and how paired this with your purple Hunter’s. Super cute, Jen! I also enjoyed reading more about your shopping and wardrobe choices and how they have changed over the past year.

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