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How To Curate A Fabulous Wardrobe That You Will Actually Wear Using The One In, One Out System

I adhere to a strict One In / One Out Rule when it comes to bringing non-consumables into my house as a way of maintaining a grip on the amount of stuff I own. When it comes to my wardrobe, I take this rule one step further and use it to curate a wardrobe that I want to wear and makes getting dressed everyday fun.

It also allows me to declutter fashion that either doesn’t fit, is of low quality, no longer in line with my style, or for some other reason, I don’t reach for anymore and it’s just time to go. I consign or donate everything I declutter unless it’s stained or damaged.

So far this year, I’ve added 20 things to my wardrobe. Below is a real-time account of my process and thinking. I don’t abide by the “if you haven’t worn it in a year, get rid of it” rule because I’ve never cared how old something is. I have a lot of things I don’t wear any given year mostly due to the fact that I’m into exploring different styles or looks that I become obsessed with but that doesn’t mean I’ll never reach for some old thing in the back of the closet again. In fact, I love it when I rediscover an item of clothing that I had forgotten about. It’s like shopping in my own closet.

However, my tastes and attitude toward clothing do change. This is what dictates my process and keeps me excited about the concept of curation vs accumulation. In this round, I acquired 11 new wardrobe pieces that inspire and excite me to wear and decluttered at least 17 items that no longer pay service to my style or body.

New In: I caught “Desperately Seeking Susan” vibes when I spotted these boots earlier this year on the sale rack. They are a half size too big but I had to have them. So good.

Madonna in Desperately Seeking Susan. In the film, she trades her jacket for these awesome boots.
Out: I had to say good-bye to these BELOVED boots of mine. I’ve had these since the 90s. They’ve been resoled and restitched numerous times but they were beyond repair. I loved the shape, pointy toe, etc. When it comes to cost per wear, I definitely got my money’s worth.

New In: Michael Kors loafers. I’m a sucker for antique gold hardware and these go with a lot of things in my mostly black wardrobe.

Out: This was easy because the sequins were coming off these Topshop sandals. Sadly, they had to go in the trash.

New In: This is 1 of 2 pussy bow blouses that I have bought off Etsy this year. I’m into them at the moment and I definitly wanted vintage. This one is from the 80s.

Out: I feel great about the fact that I decluttered three tops for the one blouse. What these three tops have in common is that they are all too low cut. I try hard to avoid sun damage on my décolletage so I have to slather myself with sunscreen when I wear this type of thing. I’m over it.
Out: Love this color but I reach for other tops more often.
Out: I have better basics and never reach for this.

New In: I bought this vintage skirt on Etsy earlier this year. There are tiny rhinestones on it as well as stars. It’s a little witchy and I love it. I wear it over black skinny jeans.

Out: This wide leg pant represents a change in style for me. I bought it to wear to a wedding years ago. I have a couple of palazzo pants that I prefer over these so I donated them hoping someone else would like them.

New In: My sister, niece and I went to the Frida Kahlo exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum in March. Afterward, we went thrift shopping. I must have been channeling Frida because I found this incredible vintage skirt for $8. The PVC boots are from Nasty Gal a few years ago.

Out: I’ve had these white linen pants since the 90s. I didn’t wear white pants then and I certainly don’t now. I am a fool for embroidery though which is why I’ve held onto them for so long. Time to give them a new home.

New In: If I have one clothing obsession this year it’s vintage prairie skirts or skirts in that vein and once I go down a rabbit hole, I find some interesting things. I bought this at a vintage clothing fair earlier this year from one of my favorite collectors, IG:busyladybaca. I buy something from her every time I see her at a show. I fell for this vintage velvet and lace skirt. I didn’t have anything close to this color in my wardrobe. It came with a jacket as a set that was more than I could pull off and Liz was nice enough to break it up and sell me the skirt.

Out: I consigned two pairs of Guess jeans. I prefer the wash on other jeans I own and wear more often. These had a good run but it was time to pass them on.
Out: These jeans have a lot of spandex (stretch). I prefer thicker, structured denim these days.

New In: I began giving my jewelry a serious look and edit last year. The first thing I got rid of were heavy earrings that pulled on my earlobes. I hate that sensation and don’t like the look. I bought these two gold hoops around my birthday. They are lightweight and go with everything. I wear them daily.

Out: These weren’t heavy but I no longer reached for them so I passed them on.
Out: I have another pair of earrings similar to these so I passed these on as well.

New In: I bought this Victorian lace collar from eBay earlier this year to have as a most beautiful and unusual accessory.

Out: I consigned two hats. I think this one shrunk because it was a little too snug.
Out: It was time to say goodbye to this vintage felt hat as well. I have others that I reach for regularly during the fall and winter months.
Not new but I decluttered my bangles. Kept these gold metal ones that I’ve had for years and years.
Said goodbye to ones I no longer like.

New In: A stunning black and silver antique bracelet I bought at a NYC antique mall in January.

Out: Broken bracelet. Easy decision.

New In: I bought this vintage beaded bag from a shop in Hartford with an event in mind. It’s the perfect size for my phone, ID, keys and lip balm.

Out: Had this bag for years and I got a lot of good use out of it. But for daily use, I’m more inclined these days to carry a cross-body or tote. I don’t like the way this sits under my arms. It was time to say good-bye.
Out: This is another bag that I’ve had for years that I decided to part with. It’s vintage and quite heavy on its own. Once it’s filled with all my stuff, it becomes too uncomfortable to lug around.

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