Monday, 30 July 2012

Clothing Representing Countries at the Olympic Opening Ceremony, 2012

So what's in an athlete's closet, never to be worn again, after the Olympic opening and closing ceremonies? In some cases, I bet it will be the "outfits" worn at those ceremonies; although of course there will be exceptions.

Kristina on life.paperblog,com wrote, "the Olympic opening ceremony was a good look into the styles of all around the world". I so much want to disagree, but it is probably the case. For some countries it was an un-stylish representation. I am not referring to the sport kit - that which the athletes will wear while participating in their particular sport but rather the "outfit" chosen for the introductory and closing parades.

So excuse me while I rant! This is your cue to choose another post if you don't want to bother with my diatribe.

First of all, I am Canadian so in this case, like complaining about my mother - I can complain about her, but I love her dearly and will defend her no matter what I may say about her. My husband suggested that Canada's ensemble of red jacket emblazoned with CANADA and beige trousers looked like "discount tourist" wear. Like him I was disappointed in the look but what can one expect from a "department store" design? The Hudson Bay Company, originally Canadian but now American owned, was responsible for the choice. One might argue that it is a sporting event; however, surely if you are representing your country on the world stage you would choose a more styled effect. The artistic potential of the flag's maple leaf in perhaps an asymmetrical design offset in white and red for the jacket with white knee-length shorts or pants would have at least had some pizzazz. What the Canadian team was wearing just looked plain frumpy - old man jacket and old man pants. A Hudson Bay Company representative claimed the tie that the men were wearing was to show respect for the occasion. Hmmm? In my opinion, the jacket was not one that a tie complements. I'm speculating that most of the athletes would not have chosen this outfit for themselves.

Ireland in its green was not far behind Canada insofar as frumpy goes. At the very least they did not have Ireland in block letters on their chests and it appeared that they had the option of shorts or pants. Was Canada the only one wearing signage announcing where they were from?

The Czech Republic instilled some humour into their outfit with the rubber boots and umbrellas - apparently it's always raining in Prague. Good for them for bringing humour to a world-wide generalization.

The life.paperblog,com writer criticized the United States for their school uniform look. Perhaps France, Italy and the United States may be evaluated as looking too conservative in their blazers, ties and trousers or skirts; however, sport teams traditionally have dressed this way on game days or as visitors. Even in 2012, sport team members at high schools and universities "dress-up" on game days. So at least those countries opted to maintain tradition with the classics.

Flag colours are limited and repetitive. Germany obviously wanted to make a statement with athletic gear in baby blue and pink - boys in blue, girls in pink. I don't even choose baby clothing gifts in that way any more. I wonder if the athletes had a choice of which colour they would wear?

India chose "saffron" from their flag, as their focus colour. The saris looked fabulous but the turbans looked slightly "kitschy" in that colour. Since, they were looking for a match, the tone of the "yellow" perhaps should have been more "saffron".  As well, the flag bearer's headgear was situated slightly askance - like he wasn't used to wearing one.

The African countries always look exotic and stylish but not every country has representational dress that combines ethnic identity with style. The best others can do is choose a designer who will put a spin on the nation's flag. Some do it well, others "need to improve".

I lost interest in the parade soon after I saw Canada and France and so I went to bed. Sorry for the negativity. On a more positive note, what I did see were enthusiastic athletes proud to be in London representing their countries. And that is what was important for the world to see.

Which country do you believe was the most stylishly represented?
Regarding dress at the opening ceremonies, were you pleased with how your country was represented?

Friday, 27 July 2012

Questionable Attire: Short Shorts?

Closet Content Analysis: Appropriate-ness of Short Shorts 

NICE                   NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY            NEED          NEW

Know first who you are; and then adorn yourself accordingly.
- Euripides (BC 480-BC 406) Greek poet        

Photo source: My Fierce Fashion blog by Veronica
NICE: Veronika Yudina from Ukraine illustrates her perfect do-it-yourself shorts with a scalloped edge, on her blog.  Short, loose and airy - I can imagine a wide range of women wearing this look on a hot summer day.

Summer heat brings out scantily dressed women of all sizes and ages. And that begs the question of what is appropriate at what weight and what age? Put the body from "habitually random"'s site into shorts with a proper waistband and cut just above the knee and she would be comfortable and appropriate. This NO THANKS photo is a perfect example of "a picture is worth a thousand words". Over a particular weight, short shorts should not even be an option.

Photo Source:
--> NO THANKS: My first bit of advice, look in the mirror before you leave the house. This is beyond assessing what is appropriate!

Now what about age? Last week, my husband and I went to a nearby lake for an evening walk with our neighbours and there was a woman, very fit, perhaps in her late sixties as revealed by her facial features. (I hope to have as fit a body at her age.) She looked fabulous from behind in her short shorts and then she turned toward me. Her face revealed her age and my assessment changed. After determining that she had to be in her sixties, I now felt that she should be wearing something more age appropriate. How fickle am I? She had the body and walk of a woman 20 years her junior - we hope to all be so lucky - and here I was criticizing her choice of apparel. I felt that she should be in walking shorts, above the knee and no shorter than mid-quadricept. Yet I would not hesitate to advise women generally to flaunt it if they've got it. Why am I not so generous with this woman in her sixties? She was tanned, her legs were fabulous and she had a curvaceous yet slim body. She obviously exercises, has not been cursed with varicose veins, eats nutritiously I'm sure and by all estimations, could wear whatever she wanted, and wear it well. My neighbour's raised eyebrows told me that even she, French woman that she is, thought the short shorts inappropriate.

Many will say, "what does it matter what anybody thinks, but the wearer?" If you feel comfortable then it is your prerogative. However, my mother's advice works well here, "when in doubt, don't". And unfortunately, over a certain age and weight, there is doubt. 

NOTEWORTHY: As Euripides suggested, I guess I do know myself. The last time I had short shorts in my closet or on my body I was in my twenties.

Monday, 23 July 2012

Knee-Length Shorts at Work & Play

A Casual Summer Work Choice

Closet Content Analysis: Knee-length Shorts

NICE                   NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY            NEED          NEW

July and August temperatures, along with a more relaxed attitude in the summer, provides the perfect environment for wearing shorts to work. Depending on your work location, women will find it easier to look professional in shorts than men. Whatever blazer, blouse and shoes you wear with a skirt, you can wear with knee length shorts.

NO THANKS: Since shorts, essentially, take the place of a skirt, short shorts at work would be considered inappropriate in the same way as a very short skirt.

NICE: Several years ago I bought an Alain Manoukian linen suit including blazer, matching knee-length shorts and trousers in a charcoal-blue colour in Romans, France. That suit served me well at work in the summers when I was a Size 12. I took it to to a consignment store where I received pennies on the dollar but considering how much I wore it, the cost per wear was also probably pennies.

Photo source:
 A pair of "walking" length shorts that hit just above the knee in a slim fit with a blazer and a lightweight sleeveless cotton, silk or linen top provides the flexibility to look professional with a client or to remain cool when working at your desk. The key to wearing shorts to work is the length and the coordinating tops, structured blazer or unstructured jacket and flat traditional shoes, espadrilles, sandals, or even heels if you feel like it. Keep any shorts, shorter than just above the knee for casual summer outings. Heels with shorter shorts and really short shorts may be effective on the runway but not anywhere else in real life. 

NOTE-WORTHY 1: I bought an unstructured "offwhite" cotton jacket, no buttons, and a pair of matching shorts in Greece, which again I can no longer wear because I have down-sized in respect to my body size. The matched set is here with me in France and I can wear the jacket, which now provides an "oversized" look, but I never have worn as such. The shorts are still "work" shorts, but in a whole different way - gardening, painting, . . .

Photo source:
NOTE-WORTHY 2: Wear the same styled shorts with flip flops and a gauzy summer top and you will be dressed for the beach.

NEED: I have this length in white, beige and black therefore unless I get them on sale at a really good price, I don't need anymore knee-length shorts.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Keywords that Brought You Here in July, 2012

I began this in June (posted one month ago on June 18, 2012) and have decided to do another monthly review of the search statistics, and elaborate upon the questions and phrases, that have brought you here. During July, 2012 the most popular "closet fashion content analysis" search retrievals or the ones I can give you a specific answer to, include the following (search keywords are in italics and/or colour highlighted):

why are linen pants so great
The linen issue is alive and well relative to the number and variety of search keywords used that have brought you to my blog this month (over 50 different phrases). In fact my  Summer Pants = Linen Pants post was one of the top visited posts of my blog over the past four weeks. Linen is a staple fabric in one's wardrobe and does not need to be part of any trend hype in order to be a popular choice in fashionable clothing.

Hopefully, those who searched, with phrases including linen, found some relatively useful information on either the Summer Pants = Linen Pants post or the general Linen post. There are some "linen" questions and phrases that I feel compelled to elaborate upon.

can you wear a black. blazer with beige linen pants
Of course, that is a very chic look.

wearing linen in nice, france
Mais oui, and anywhere else in the world you happen to be.

how to shrink linen rayon blend pants
*how to shrink eileen fisher linen shirt
Linen, 100% composition, may shrink ever so slightly but blend it with rayon and it is unlikely to shrink. I used the word, "unlikely" because I know I should never say never! You may have to have them tailored or just wear them "oversized" - call it the "boyfriend" look - a little big, a lot of comfort!
*When you buy a good quality shirt as you have from Eileen Fisher, the likelihood that it would shrink is probably remote. 

unlined linen pants etiquette
The word "etiquette" is perplexing for me, because I equate it with "protocol". Are you asking about caring for your linen? Or are you asking about what to wear under linen pants that are gauzy and see-through? The word etiquette as in the French, "l'étiquette du vetement" would be the "label of the clothing". So you see, I can imagine the preponderance of results "google" will return.

maternity summer shirts for sale ottawa
Interestingly, this is exactly the category of clothing that Christina said (in the July 2012 maternity post) she could not find in Ottawa and obviously someone else from Ottawa is looking.

anne fontaine where to buy las vegas
Premium Outlets Mall North has an Anne Fontaine store, number 2197; telephone: (702) 384-3056

cross jewelry is hot for summer 2012
It is and it will be hotter for the fall and winter!

i need to buy blouses
I have said this to myself many times; however, in order to do a better search online, identify the features that you like in a blouse, for example: "simple, classic three-quarter length sleeve blouse". More specific search words will lead you to more specific sites.

i have a gift and don't know whether it is a pashmina
Without writing an essay on the bastardization of the term "pashmina" and since there is no recognized industry definition for pashmina in North America, everything from viscose to lesser quality natural fibers can infiltrate the "pashmina" market definition. I'm not sure about the name of the goat but "pashmina" (maybe it is a pashmina goat??) is in fact a fiber, in the cashmere category, as goats go. The fibres are apparently finer than cashmere; so fine that it is often combined with silk to make it more resilient and hardy. The "70% cashmere/pashmina, 30% silk" blend is the norm for what we know as "pashmina". It is soft, lightweight, has a lustrous sheen and drapes beautifully. Unless your friend is accustomed to gifting you with items that cost anywhere from $150.00 (Cdn) minimum, it is unlikely a true pashmina fibre; unless of course, the gift-giver was in Nepal when he or she bought it.

are pashminas in fashion for 2012
Over the course of fashionable popularity, the word "pashmina" became synonymous with the word "shawl"; and that is an aberration. I'm assuming this search is referring to the "shawl" and not the fibre. When it comes to wearing a shawl, it is a functional piece and therefore is never really out of fashion but then again only in fashion when a celebrity makes it so. On a cool summer evening, it is perfect. During travel, it doubles as a blanket. If you like the look, wear it and don't mind what is "in style", only think of having "a style".

how many t shirts should i own
I said it on a previous post, and I will say it again:
How many t-shirts can one girl own? As many that look good and feel great.
How many t-shirts of the same style can one girl own? As many as there are colours in that style.
How many black t-shirts can one girl own? At the very least, one short sleeved, one three-quarter sleeved, and one long sleeved.
Insofar as regular shirts, I would think the same applies.

how many t shirts does one lady need 
Only you know!

brides something blue
The Victorian tradition of "something blue" lives on and every bride can adapt and modify and make her own tradition!

Then there are those search phrases that leave one a tad perplexed: 

panty loafers shoes in winter
I think you mean "penny" loafers. I do not know this as a "loafer" term but I can't imagine what a "panty" loafer would look like.

classified shoes flats
Do you mean "classic"?

red coat thinking friday
What is this search for . . . are you thinking about wearing a red coat on Friday? If so, it's ok with me. Or is "friday" a brand name?

flip flop man
This falls under the category "phrases that sound risqué but aren't"! 

expensive gold bracelets for italian women 
Are expensive gold bracelets for Italian women different than expensive gold bracelets for any woman? I don't think so.

To make your clothing and fashion searches efficient, you might consider choosing key words, nouns, time frames - years (2012), seasons; without any articles (a, an, the), prepositions (in, over, between), or conjunctions (and, or, but). Study your favourite posts, blogs, websites and commercial sites to decide on the best inclusive categories and words that will be most effective in your searches.

As you know, web searches can be quite indiscriminate with hundreds of thousands of possible responses but if you choose your search words wisely, your results will be more accurate and productive.

If you inadvertently came upon this site, I hope you were satisfied with the results.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Wrap-style Dresses

A Provocative Choice

Closet Content Analysis: the Wrap Dress

NICE                   NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY            NEED          NEW

Often recommended for hour-glass figures, the wrap dress is a forgiving dress style. However, cinched at the waist with a strategically revealing slit when you sit and cross your legs and a v-neck that enhances the bosom, the wrap dress can be very provocative. Even the thought of it wrapped around your body rather than zipped or buttoned up, leads to a very glamorous look embellished with seductive thoughts. 

Diane von Furstenberg, 1970s; Photo Source:
NICE: Diane Von Furstenberg's the Gwyneth dress, a short sleeve wrap that has a separate camisole under the upper portion of the dress, appears to be designed to prevent wardrobe malfunctions.  

Diane von Furstenberg is recognized as “inventing” the contemporary wrap dress in 1972 by many fashion sources. Although, one source suggested that the concept may have originated with American designer Claire McCardell and her “pop-over dress”, which was a wrap around house dress designed in 1942.

The timeless quality of this photo of Diane von Furstenberg in the 1970s reveals the classic design of the wrap dress.

I am a fan of Diane Von Furstenberg and if you are, you will like the 2008 interview, "Diane von Furstenberg On Wrap Dresses And The Joys Of Aging Gracefully", conducted by Amanda Christine Miller for Huntington Post.

I design for the woman who loves being a woman. 
- Diane Von Furstenberg     

NO THANKS: Sarah, a commenter on another blog said, “I will not be seen in a wrap dress in public anytime soon!” She did not elaborate on what she found so reprehensible about the wrap dress but her sentiment was clearly articulated. 

I don't know if Sarah was referring to this but the wrap dress does have the potential for wardrobe malfunctions on the bodice and the skirt. If you like the style but are self-conscious about this potentiality, choose the faux wrap dress that pulls on over your head and has a decorative tie.

Faux wrap dress hanging in my French garden.
I have a faux wrap dress in my French closet that I left here in 2010 (it is a Frank Lyman dress, made in Canada). It is easy to wear since you just pull it over your head. I did tack up the neckline because I felt it was too revealing. I can't recall the exact year I bought it but the fabric pattern may suggest 2008 or 2009. My life is very casual in the French town of 10,000 and even though the pattern is passé, I did wear it once in May, 2012. My closets in Canada and France are presently devoid of a wrap-style dress.  

NOTE-WORTHY 1: The dress in the display window somewhere in Lyon, France haunts me to this day. This is definitely a "would have, could have and should have" dress from past shopping experiences. 

NOTE-WORTHY 2: With a number of women in my acquaintance having babies, I have been researching the clothing angle and it has been suggested on a couple of maternity posts on other blogs that the wrap-style dress is a perfect transition dress. It appears so but I would suggest, only with a broad overlap. Because the dress is made of three panels, the front two must be wide enough to allow pregnancy growth without fear of any unexpected fallout. Only the small sized, non-pregnant, women would not have to worry about this. 

NEED: I have always loved the look of the wrap-style dresses, but I must say I have never owned many. In fact, there is perhaps only one about which I have a vague memory. With the summer sales on, I will look for a linen one, just like the one in the Lyon store window.

Buying Tips for the Wrap-style Dress: 

Check for wardrobe malfunctions: sit, stand, and bend over to see if the top gapes open and the skirt splits at the crossover for a major reveal. 

Before even trying one on, check the front panel so that it provides a substantial enough overlap to allow for some slide and to prevent the skirt from dividing at the split completely.

And if you don't care to spend so much time worrying about possible wardrobe malfunctions, the faux wrap dress has all the flattering qualities without the concerns.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Comments . . . spam or not?

Although I'm supposed to be writing about closets, more specifically the clothing within them, there are times when, as a blogger, one has to post about blogging . . .

A spam comment may be defined as a comment coming from someone whose sole intent is to have readers click on the signature he or she has left and take them to a commercial site. In essence, every blogger who leaves comments on anyone's blog is essentially producing more "spam" since there is a hope that someone will read, click and be taken to your blog. But somehow the blogger link is more respectable - if you are a blogger, that is more likely considered reciprocity, not spam.

In respect to this blog, I am thrilled when someone comments. But sometimes the thrill is tempered. Here's a recent comment, "Great post! Personally, I'm really impressed! I love the way you write your blog!" Now that's a NICE comment. Yet another, "This is a helpful read for those who love to put on fashionable jewellery with their outfits. Looking forward to more posts." So, of course the thrill came back, but only for a fleeting moment. With a click on the first signature to find out where in fact it takes the reader, I arrived at a commercial site for boudoir-ish more-than-just-sexy lingerie, not the kind I have in my closet at the moment. I'm sure there are readers who would be intrigued, but it is unlikely they would be visiting my blog in anticipation to find this particular link. The second one takes you to engagement rings and other diamond jewellery. Yet the comment suggests ". . . looking forward to more posts" and that suggests the writer is genuinely interested.

I could blame the whole infrastructure of blogspot, since it facilitates this action and I do not have the option to publish comments without signatures. The commenter may respond anonymously but I may not eliminate the linking feature to the signature.

But suppose the person writing really means what they write - call me naive - but just suppose. Even though their signature takes me to a commercial site, maybe the commenter really means what he or she is writing. Are there demographic statistics on commercial sources leaving comments on blogs?

Comments are important because they indicate readership and in order to continue writing on a regular basis, it is good to know your readership. However, I hope to receive more than a "great or awful" comment. I would like to read and interact. I want to know where you, the blog readers, are coming from, both in location and philosophy. My blog's objective is to stimulate responses about what is in your closet and to explore what others around the world are wearing. So it is as much a cultural reflection of regional diversity through clothing as it is a fashion blog. My own assessment is that I have not achieved this goal; however, I have been blogging a relatively short time and perhaps it will eventually happen. I will only be aware of the fulfillment of my goals through your responses.

I have received emails and talked to others who have said, "but I don't pay attention to fashion" or "I don't wear heels because I can't.". From my perspective, these are as important to share as others who describe their clothing, trends they follow, and closet perspectives.

David McCullough Jr. could have been talking to bloggers when he said, 
“You are not special. You are not exceptional,” (he) told graduating seniors . . . The teacher's controversial advice caught the nation's eye, in an age where many believe today's youth suffer from a sense of self-importance." (Quoted from Meaghan Neal, Friday, June 8, 2012 in and retrieved on June 30, 2012.)
Does a blogger "suffer from a sense of self-importance"? It appears so, particularly since bloggers anticipate that readers will take the time to respond through comments. And so, in a humble state of self-importance (forgive the oxymoron), whether you consider yourself fashionable or not; if a thought passes through your mind as you are reading; or if you just want to say "great or awful", but especially if you want to share what is a NICE, NO THANKS, NOTE-WORTHY, NEW or NEED in your closet, this blogger welcomes all that you want to say, spam excluded or perhaps included, if the comment is relevant . . .

In appreciation for all those who have commented and in anticipation for all those who will,

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Maternity Clothing

Limited Choices

Closet Content Analysis: Pregnancy & the Clothes in your Closet

NICE                   NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY            NEED          NEW

This is a category of clothing I have never had in my closet so all that you will read comes as my interpretation from a few different sources. From what I have gathered, many pregnant women make do with what they have, are given, borrow or find on sale. With such short term "wear-ability" it seems that the "ladies in waiting" want affordable comfortable casual items and their choices are limited.

Carly from Kelowna with about 4 weeks to go.
NICE: Carly who is now at about the three week mark before birth has been wearing maternity jeans, but was able to wear the tops she had, albeit the profile progressively changed. 

It seems also that in the summer, the consensus is that maternity dresses are cooler and easier to wear than jeans. 

Tunic tops and dresses suffice in the first five to six months - of course, dependent on how big your progression goes.

Christina from Ottaw at 31 weeks.
NEED: To quote Christina, with just about three weeks to go as well, "being pregnant is the best reason out there to go out and buy a new wardrobe. It’s not just a “want”, it’s a real need for new clothes. It sounds fun and exciting, but unless you have a bottomless bank account, the excitement stops when you see the first price tag." Nonetheless, the need is still there. 

NOTE-WORTHY: Christina found that, "It’s impossible to find regular, around the house lounge clothes for pregnancy. I’ve been on a mission for the last 5 months to find just a simple pair of athletic shorts and a regular t-shirt that I can wear around the house or outside when I’m working around the yard. IMPOSSIBLE task!" Christina had visited the specialty maternity shops in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada as well as the maternity section in Wal-Mart, yet she says, "No matter where I have shopped, I have not once come across a real t-shirt or pair of shorts. That has been annoying. The only maternity shorts I have are cotton/khaki type material and I paid too much money for them to wear them in the yard! What’s a girl to do? If I was a maternity clothes designer, I’d go after casual/athletic styles. It’s just not out there."

"Getting bigger everyday!"

August, 2012 Update:  Welcome to the world Michael Joseph James (Carly) and Maximus Joseph (Christina) - everyone is healthy and Carly and Christina can pack away their maternity clothes!

Thursday, 5 July 2012

Clothing & Accessories to Buy on Sale

My top ten classic summer sale buys that you can wear forever!

3 Euro swimsuit purchased at a hypermarché in France
1 Bathing Suits. Unless you are a swim instructor or training for the Olympic swim team, the likelihood of needing to buy many bathing suits at top retail prices is low. But if you spend your summers at the beach, summer sale time is the time to stock up on good quality one and two piece swimsuits. I know a woman who has a summer home with a pool and she buys high quality swimsuits on sale for herself but she also buys "grocery store" swimsuits on sale in different sizes for the happenstance that someone visits and doesn't have one. Just recently, she picked up several including the one in the photograph for 3 Euros each at the E. Leclerc hypermarché in Pineuilh, in the Gironde, France. In France you will often find one piece swimsuits on sale because the bikini or two-piece are more popular.

Photo Source:
2 Designer Totes or Unstructured Handbags. Handbags usually have a shelf life but totes or unstructured bags, which usually have minimal detailing, are basically the same design and structure all the time. Designer bags go on sale too and they can be priced to a point where one can tolerate the excess. If you have a desire to own Louis Vuitton or another designer bag, consider a tote. The hardware changes slightly but a tote is a tote in 1992 or in 2012. Tod's Medium Tote with logo is another good example of the "forever" bag. 

Photo Source:
3 The tunic dress. The tunic dress offers a simple silhouette in sleeveless, short, 3/4 length sleeve and long sleeve options. On hot summer days it is cool to wear and can double up as a bathing suit cover. The photograph illustrates a tunic dress that would be perfect in the fall with a black pair of tights accessorized with a statement necklace. If you find one like this, you will be able to wear it for a very long time with the simple addition of a scarf or a necklace. And not to forget those women who are in the period of their lives where having babies is happening, the tunic dress can take you through the first bump reveal.


Photo Source:

4 Traditional Flats. These don't change much year to year and so a good pair of brogues, driving shoes or loafers can come at good prices during sale time.

Photo Source:


5 Flip Flops. Another shoe category that doesn't change much but wears out more quickly than other shoes is flip flops. You might not find these on sale until the very end of the summer. The same woman who buys "grocery store" swimsuits, buys "grocery store" synthetic flip flops in a range of sizes for her forgetful guests. She says that she has found decent quality synthetic flip flops for men and women for anywhere from two to five Euros a pair. She keeps them in a large wicker basket, near the pool and simply dunks them in a chlorine bleach solution between wearers.

Photo Source:

6 Pencil Skirts. Trends in pencil skirts include back pleats, slits and length; therefore, for the most part if you find a classic pencil skirt that fits you well in the basic neutrals, just skimming above the knee, buy one in white, camel, grey, navy, black or brown. However, remember denim and khaki for summer vacations and travel over the next several years.

7 Sunglasses. When you try on a pair that are perfect, buy them. Whether you pay $10.00 or $200.00 or more for a pair, this is your opportunity to reveal your personal style with a pair that is price tolerable.

Photo Source:
8 The Shirt. If you don't have a classic white shirt in your closet, keep your eye out for the button-down shirt in cotton, silk, or linen. Keep it simple, no embellishments, just a plain shirt. If you don't need a white one, look for it in your favourite colours as you peruse the sales. 

Elana's jacket from the west coast of Canada.

9 The Jacket. If you need formal wear but are not a formal wear kind of person, a tuxedo jacket or a uniquely tailored one, such as Elana's jacket pictured here, is all you need to pair with trousers or a skirt for a formal night out. Or if you are in a workplace that requires professional dress, having a variety of jackets will serve you well and purchasing blazers and jackets on sale allows you to expand that variety.

10 The t-shirt.  T-shirts get worn and washed a lot: black gets dull, white gets dingy. Summer sales are the perfect time to replenish the worn out and expand the colour horizon.

What are your favourite sale purchases?

Monday, 2 July 2012

Sale Shopping for Clothing

Reduced Price Choices
A bargain ain't a bargain unless it's something you need.
- Sidney Carroll

Closet Content Analysis: Sale Items

NICE                   NO THANKS         NOTE-WORTHY            NEED          NEW

Buying something on sale is a very special feeling. In fact, the less I pay for something, the more it is worth to me. I have a dress that I paid so little for that I am afraid to wear it. I could spill something on it, and then how would I replace it for that amount of money?
- Rita Rudner

Now that you have analyzed your closet (Pre-Sale Closet Analysis)  to determine what you should buy on sale, it's time to go shopping. In France, the sale that begins the first week in July is a traditional time to stock up. However, in North America the spring and much of the summer wear is also on sale beginning the first week in July. By the end of July, the fall clothing will be displayed and you will say to yourself, "I might as well wait and buy something more fashionable for the fall."

This post offers 9 guidelines when sale shopping for clothing.

1 End of season shopping. As you approach the end of a season, begin "stalking" the pieces that price has forbidden you to buy previously. Stalking is also good for items that you want but don't necessarily need. Mark-downs are often progressive so that something that begins at 30% off when the end of season sales begin, could go down 50% or more over a three week period.

2 Re-place the classics. Buying the "classics" in colours such as black, grey, camel, and navy; pants and skirts; blazers and jackets; white button down man-style shirts; and simple tops in complementary colours can cut down replacement costs significantly.

3 Buy at your high end at a more comfortable price point, whether you are a discount or designer kind of shopper.
A bargain is something you can't use at a price you can't resist.
- Franklin P. Jones

4 Buy only colours that you feel comfortable in. Buying a lime green cardigan, no matter what the price - if you're not fond of green, is not a bargain.

5 Be careful if choosing colour trends or trendy accessories from the preceding season. The shelf life is short and you probably will not want to wear it next year. (Excluding sample sales at the beginning of a season). An example presently is feather earrings. The only reasons anyone is wearing them right now are number one, they have them and two, they don't care because they still like them.

6 If it doesn't fit, it doesn't fit! Do not buy unless you are already on a weight loss program and are in the process of losing weight. However, do buy on sale as you are losing weight because you want to look good, no matter what weight you are, as you move down the scale.

7 Don't get talked into something by someone else. We don't see the items someone else likes, we see the items we like, so remember that when someone says, "I love this, try it on." Your response should be, especially if you don't love it is, "If you love it, you try it on." Perhaps that's a little abrupt, but I think you know my intent.

8 Don't shop for something specific such as "an outfit for my sister's wedding". You might settle for something you would never choose ordinarily just because of the price.

9 Be careful what you buy since most cannot be returned. Large department stores might allow returns, even on sale items, but small shops and specialized boutiques will have an "all sales final" displayed or stamped on their receipts.

Good luck in your sale shopping!

I've been shopping all my life and still have nothing to wear. 
- Author Unknown