Thursday, March 6, 2014

Wardrobe Essentials Series: Re-introduction

The reason our lives change so much is because we self edit, whether we realize it or not. We decide fast food is unhealthy, so we eat better. That's editing. Without it, life is stagnant. This is especially true in fashion. A good fashion stylist knows how to edit. If you remember the Wardrobe Essential Series from AHCs former home, I wrote it to help myself learn to build a wardrobe that was easy to style, but as life changes, those decisions need to be tweaked. Never does a woman need to hone her editing skills more then post baby. My body, my life, my taste, everything seems to be moving like a tornado.

I recently organized and cleaned our master closet. Initially there was one goal: get everything off the floor. The closet was clean-ish and organized-ish, but in a cluttered kind of way. Plus, I was still holding on to a few garments that I will never wear again, but enjoyed looking at. Does anyone else have outfits they can't/shouldn't wear, but want to keep displayed? (Oh, ok...guess I'm the only weirdo here.) Another issue was wasting valuable space on maternity wear. At 5 months postpartum, I still had my favorite maternity dresses hanging up. After realizing it was time to edit, a small project turned into a closet overhaul.

It took 2 weeks to complete the task during naptimes. I tried on every single item, checked it out from all angles and asked:
Does it fit?
How long until it fits?
Is it flattering?
Is it in good condition?
Can I wear this while taking care of the baby?

Don't be fooled by that last question. I do not mean frumpy. A pair of denim ankle pants and a tee with ballet flats is more presentable then the common softees with an over sized tee, but equally comfortable. They are also easy to clean.
It's important to also point out the 2nd question, "How long until it fits?" There's a fine line between keeping something in hopes of losing a few pounds and keeping around "skinny jeans" that are a long ways off from flattering and are only making you feel bad about yourself. I had a hard time remembering this and that's understandable. A lot of effort went into building my wardrobe. Each item was carefully selected and suddenly everything changed. I wasn't prepared for that. But, you know what? Once I boxed up everything that will fit after a few more months of working out and donated everything that either wont fit or is too short to wear when bending over to put a baby in a car seat, the closet felt fresh and calm.* After buying pants that fit and a few new tops, everything feels like it is falling back into place.

I will edit and repost the Wardrobe Essential Series. The original series felt a bit crowded. As I've learned to further edit my own life, I've learned what it really means to simplify life. Do I need 50 tops? Maybe if I only did laundry every 6 weeks. Fifteen is a good overall number, 7 is a good starter number. Otherwise I end up with too many things that remain unworn.

*If you are wondering how I determined what will fit in the future, I based it off of bone structure. After your first kid, your bones are spread out a little because of the hormone relaxin. Most of the time your hips remain the new size after the first baby (according to If a pair of pants could be squeezed on and barely buttoned, but still needed some room to be comfortable, they stayed. If they couldn't make it past my hip bones, they went. The key is to be honest with yourself about what fits your body and lifestyle.