My 25 Cent Designer Jeans

Clients often ask me how much they should spend on a particular piece of clothing.  Everyone has a budget of what they like to spend on clothes, so it’s hard for me to give a specific amount.  What I do tell clients is to think about their cost per wear.   If you are planning to buy something that will be a staple in your wardrobe, then it is better to invest in something that is well made because it will last a long time, have a better fit, and hold up through many washings or dry cleanings.  A well balanced wardrobe has several well made classic foundational pieces, supplemented by less expensive, trendier items.  The key is to know what pieces to invest a little more in and what pieces you do not have to spend as much money on.  You will have a great wardrobe if you can master this skill.  And, of course, Twin City Style can certainly help give you direction.  This is one of my favorite ways to help clients!

Think about the $180 pair of jeans you have always wanted to buy but could not justify.   If you wear that pair of jeans 3 times a week just for the first two months, you are already at $7.50 per wear, and I am certain you will wear them more than that.  I know I have numerous pairs of jeans that are probably costing me 25 cents or less per wear.  The same can be said for the basic black pants that every woman should have in her wardrobe.  It’s worth it to spend the money on those pants because if you buy the right pair you can have them in your closet for years.  Even if you are someone who does not have to dress up each day, chances are you would have an occasion to wear the pants at least once a month.  Each person will have different pieces that they invest more in because this decision is very personal and is largely based on lifestyle.

I know it can be hard to work up the courage to try something on that has a little higher price tag, but clothing that is more expensive is so for a reason.  It is all about the quality of fabric, the construction of the seams, and the overall fit.  There has been more time put into each garment to make sure the fit is consistent.   Have you ever tried on two pairs of pants in the exact same style and size and there was a noticeable difference in fit?  That’s an example of why something may have a lower price tag or may be on sale.  Don’t misunderstand me, just because something is on sale or well priced does not mean there is something wrong with it.  Sometimes you can get a great deal, and there’s certainly nothing wrong with that!

I think every woman should have at least 10 staples in her wardrobe that will last for years.   You do not need to buy these things all at one time.  In fact, it is better to buy these pieces over time.  Even just adding 1-2 nice pieces per year to your wardrobe is fine.  Also, many times you find these types of clothing when you are not even looking.  If you see something you like and it fits well, is good quality, and will be worn a lot, you should buy it, even if you don’t need it right at the moment.  If you don’t, when you really need that particular piece, you will not be able to find it. 

So, next time you are shopping and spot something you like, before telling yourself not to try it on, think about your cost per wear. You’ll be surprised how much this will help you focus on what you feel are the most important pieces in your closet.   You will also be a lot more honest with yourself on how much you plan to wear something.