Closet Dilemmas: How to Fit All That Stuff?

January 23, 2009

When we moved to NYC, we literally sold an entire house worth of stuff — tools, kitchen utensils, Christmas decorations, etc. Obvs, the most difficult was consolidating my bedroom’s (yes, I had a bedroom for a closet) worth of clothes into a single duffel bag. What I ultimately came away with was a mish-mash of favorites — from a DVF wrap dress to several old concert tees — and what resulted was a motley combination of nostalgic pieces and those too expensive to toss. Needless to say, my early NYC wardrobe was an absolute mess.

Gradually, I realized which items were more suited to city life, and also began to reassess my personal style in light of the amazing outfits I saw on the street everyday. I started editing based on what I was actually wearing, instead of what I aspired to wear. After all, there was no room in my mini apartment-sized closet for ill-advised purchases still bearing tags.

After we moved apartments last Fall, we were downsized again to a 3′ x 5′ box of a closet (for two people — including shoes!!!). At this point, I began to group the items I commonly wore together on hangers, so as to save as much horizontal space as possible. The thought suddenly dawned on me: I’ve always wanted to wear a uniform, so why not put together several complete outfits together for easy reference?

The benefits? Now, I have fifteen complete looks at my disposal at all times — no more wondering what skirt to pair with what top in a frantic morning rush. Instead, I set aside seven looks every Sunday night, and cease to think about dressing for the duration of the week. My shoes, jewelery, and even hoisery are paired for optimal wearability (no item gets more play than the others), so I know every item in my closet is always used. I’ve even found that I’ve become more creative with my makeup, since I can pair whatever look suits my outfit for the day best.

I understand that not everyone has it in them to be so completely OCD about their everyday lives. Very simply, I don’t have the time every morning to worry about what I’ll be wearing — the planning is a great measure to guarantee efficiency. In terms of creativity, I’m still able to fulfill my desire to assemble outfits while shopping (this is another rule — I never buy individual items; only complete, hanger-ready looks).

My friends think this approach is absolutely nuts, not to mention unattainable. What about you? Could you pull it off? How is your closet organized?

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This, I Need: Proenza Schouler Pre-Fall 2009 Collection

January 22, 2009

Have you ever seen anything more perfect? Proenza Schouler has hit my sartorial mood right on the head; lots of bruised tones (with a hint of metallics), varied textures, and a round-but-fitted shape. It reminds me a ton of the Parisian silhouette happening right now, but with a nice NYC slouch. I am sooooo going to be this girl next Fall.

Image via WWD; Inspiration via Some Notes on Napkins

Runway Haiku: Givenchy SS2009

January 22, 2009

Runway Haiku: Diane Von Furstenberg SS2009

January 22, 2009

Pretty Things, Practically Applied: Valentine’s Dinner

January 22, 2009

Items:

1. Catherine Malandrino Embroidered Knee Length Dress ($520.00)

2. Topshop Feather Capelet ($120.00)

3. Urban Outfitters Double Layered Tap Short ($18.00)

4. Forever 21 Black Pump ($19.80)

5. Lulu Guinness Snakeskin Lips Clutch ($328.50)

6. MAC Viva Glam I Lipstick ($14.00)

Where’s My Money? Marc Jacobs Spring 2009

January 22, 2009

* This is a look for the extremely bold; however, mixing and matching prints & textures isn’t as difficult as it sounds. Just be sure to stay within a cohesive color palette, and you’ll look perfectly eccentric.

Items:

1. Amish Straw Hat ($17.97)

2. Forever 21 Cory Plaid Shirt ($15.80)

3, 4. Forever 21 Vintage Floral Bangle & Swirled Acrylic Bangle ($4.80 and $5.80)

5. ASOS Satin Obi Belt ($12.00)

6. Fly Jane Birdcage Gladiator Booties ($64.90)

7. Topshop Floral Skirt ($65.00)

Say What? Couture

January 21, 2009

This, I Need: Ports 1961 Cap Dress

January 21, 2009

I am in a seriously Spring state of mind. Witness, this dress:

Have you ever seen a garment that more perfectly screams “I’m ready for an afternoon of croquet and Mint Juleps while surrounded by perfectly manicured lawns and just-bloomed tulips?” Seriously.

Ports 1961 Cap Sleeve Dress

Fashion Essential: The Cardigan

January 21, 2009

Your Inspiration: Burberry Prorsum (especially SS08); Mister Rogers


Background: A cardigan is a variation on the pullover sweater, with a seamed front portion (via button or zipper) that can be opened in the front (how do you like that technical description?). The garment was supposedly named for James Brudenell, 7th Earl of Cardigan because he wore the item on campaign. The Earl’s notorious win at at the Battle of Balaclava in the Crimean War made him into a national hero, and his signature outfit became an (enduring) trend.

Why It’s Essential: The cardigan is one of the most versatile pieces of Winter-wear available; it’s a fashionable spin on the sweater particularly notable for its ability to pair with a dress, as well as its formal versatility.
How to Wear: Throw a fitted cardi over your favorite dress & belt or pair an oversized version with your favorite skinnies.

Items:

1. Forever21 Celia Sweater Cardigan ($19.80)

2. Rebecca Norman Gold Hammered Hoops ($143.00)

3. Christian Louboutin Decollete Patent Pump ($680.00)

4. Alice + Olivia Crinkle Silk Floral Dress ($375.00)

5. Forever21 Kristen Sleeveless Cardigan ($22.80)

6. JCrew Solid Washed Favorite Tank ($16.50)

7. Tejani Deep Onyx Bangles ($50.00)

8. Dolce Vita Chastity Heel ($162.00)

9. Pac Sun Solana Extreme Skinny Black ($27.50)

Golden Globes 2009

January 16, 2009

It looks like this year’s awards season will rely heavily upon SS2009’s beige trend for its red carpet choices; whether in sand, clay, or blush tones, muted palettes were a huge hit. Shimmer (in the case of Angelina Jolie and Vanessa Hudgens) and ruffles (see Sandra Bullock and Salma Hayek) add much-needed dimension, while wavy hair adds a beachy, loose vibe. My favorite touch of the evening was Sandra Bullock’s bright turquoise clutch — it added just the right amout of quirkiness.