This morning I was struck by the anti Black Friday campaign running on social media. It made me stop and think.

I run have been planning a Black Friday Promotion for a while.

My energy levels have meant it’s been a struggle to put together my campaign. I’ve been procrastinating and it’s not been fun. PS Please don’t tell my Coach, as he would have a field day with that one!

It was only reading the posts this morning that made me realise why I was not enjoying myself.  I dislike what Black Friday symbolises. It’s the wanton spending of money to fuel our desire to own more.   It’s not that I don’t advocate buying clothes.   I just have an issue with buying for the sake of getting a bargain.

Please do not simply dismiss Black Friday as another US custom that we’ve felt necessary to adopt. In the UK we did exactly the same with the January Sales. Under the guise of Black Friday it’s simply a different marketing tool with a slicker name.

As someone who runs an online boutique by now you’re probably thinking that I really should shut up as I could be heading for my Ratner moment!

If you’re still tempted to grab keys and credit cards then good luck with the bargain hunting! But for those of you like me find yourselves in a moral maze over this issue, the good news is that I’ve got some fabulous tips and ideas to share with you. Call it my maze map!

wardrobe de-tox

When did you last undertake a wardrobe de-tox?

If you have had a fabulous clear-out recently then well done, your job is much easier. Been a while? Or not sure where to start?  Take a look at my blog post I’ve got nothing to wear.  The advantages of doing a de-tox are priceless:

  1. You will quickly discover the items you don’t wear!
  2. You may find hidden gems that you’d forgotten about
  3. You will identify actual gaps in your wardrobe

Take the items that are not part of your current wearable wardrobe and consider why you’re not wearing them.

nothing to wear

You will find that the reasons can be classified under about 5 headings, which I’ve given below along with my ideas for each group:

 1. You don’t like them anymore but are not sure why

It’s amazing how some clothes morph from changing room to your wardrobe isn’t it!! Seriously mirrors and changing rooms can have an effect on how something looks. It may be the colour or the style that’s wrong. But chances are that you will never wear it, so while I don’t advocate waste this pile should be donated to help others.

Yesterday a friend was telling me about how she’d done a major wardrobe edit before returning to visit her parents.

She’d taken all of her unwanted clothes with her and had been able to donate them to refugees in Eastern Europe.     Her eyes lit up as she told me, because she was so happy that the clothes had gone to others who really needed help and not simply to an anonymous clothes bank.


2. They are too big

In theory this is the easiest pile to handle as most of us, whether we admit it or not, feel really chuffed when something is too big.

Another friend texted me last week excited that she’d offloaded three bags full of clothes to the charity shop!

This was following a conversation we’d had about whether she should keep them in case she put weight back on.   I’d been firmly supporting the ‘get rid of’ Campaign as I knew it would give her confidence a massive boost with how far she’d come!

I would also suggest for quality garments or much loved items to think about whether it’s worth altering. If you’re not a seamstress, then look for one locally.   Putting a post out on a town or local area site on social media is a great way of getting other people’s recommendations.


3. They are too small

This is the more uncomfortable pile to manage, particularly if you are suffering from a few body confidence issues because you have put on weight.

The most important thing is to be realistic and honest.

If you are unlikely to get back to the shape and size you were when you bought or last wore that item then why torture yourself?

If something’s just a bit tight and it’s perfectly feasible that you may fit into it again, it can be a great incentive. Keep your much-loved item in mind as you prepare to lose some weight.

Depending on the item and the scope for alterations it may also be worth considering this option. It may be a simple button move would make the item wearable again.


4. They are damaged

I’ve given up buying my husband a pair of luxury cashmere socks for Christmas! After the third year they ended up in the washing machine and I acquired another pair that nice as they were I didn’t really wear….

Seriously I wasn’t really thinking about shrinkage, more about spillage! It’s all too easy to get red wine over party clothes or food stains over a nice outfit.

Before you consign the item to the recycling pile or bin, think for a moment about whether there’s any chance of being able to save it.

An imaginative seamstress will often come up with some great ideas about how something can be rescued. While it may not be worth it for a cheap garment, I’d recommend it for anything you really value.


 5. They are Oddball!

You may well end up with garments in your wardrobe that don’t work with anything else. With these items you need to be ruthless.

I’m not advocating that you automatically throw these out but if you are going to keep them you need an action plan of how they are going to fit.

You need to decide what you’re going to buy to make them work and consider if this is practical with what’s available online and offline.

If you can’t find anything immediately then set yourself a deadline to review and decide if the real reason is that they shouldn’t really be part of your wardrobe.   If it’s an item that’s out of season give yourself at least six months to make that call. An item in season, allow 3 months.


Black Friday’s Nearly Over!

The point of this exercise has been to help you identify any gaps in your wardrobe and to look at your real needs.

From this you will be able to put together a shopping list and not be distracted by bargain hunting!

Worried that you may have missed the best of the deals? Don’t be!  It’s far better to get the item right for you and your wardrobe, it is better to spend your money wisely.

Alterations particularly of quality garments, is also very rewarding. Both in terms of the money you save and also rescuing a much loved item.

I won’t be running a Black Friday promotion, as I want you to have time to do that wardrobe edit. But the good news is that once you’ve put that shopping list together, I’m planning that there will be some great promotions waiting for you in December!

wardrobe edit