Here we are in year two of the pandemic and if you’re like me, your weight has reflected that. Weight fluctuations can not only hit your self-esteem, but they can also take a hit on your closet. It’s easy to get discouraged and upset once you begin to realize that your clothes no longer fit the way they used to or at all. But I’m here to remind you that not all is lost. Give yourself some grace and remember, we have been surviving a pandemic for two whole years.
Since I’ve been struggling with closet issues and finding things to wear myself, I thought I would share some ways you can start rebuilding your closet after weight gain.
Purge Your Closet
I know you have the hopes of losing the extra inches or pounds so that you can fit back into those jeans. But maybe you would do yourself better justice by just letting them go. Why hold onto things that no longer serve you? I mean, aren’t these clothes a constant reminder that you’ve gained weight? I would recommend purging your closet and getting rid of any clothing items that no longer fit or don’t look flattering when you wear them.
One way to purge your closet that’s budget-friendly is by starting small. Only purge the items that are definite “no’s.” When you’re on a budget, you probably don’t have the extra funds to replace every single item in your closet. That’s why it’s important to start with the things that you can’t wear anymore. Examples would be if you can’t pull the bottoms up at all or can’t get the shirt over your chest/shoulders. Those items are definite nos. But if you have items that fit but may not be as flattering, you can keep those (for now).
Shop Your Closet
What’s shop your closet mean? It literally means going through your closet, taking inventory of what you already have, and finding new ways to wear those items. So now that you’ve purged your closet, look at what pieces you have left and think about ways you can wear them. This is also helpful for when you go shopping. You can shop for pieces that will complement the items you already have and maximize your outfit options.
When shopping your closet, pay attention to the colors, textures, patterns, and styles of the items you have. You will probably want to replace some of the purged items and/or find additions that will supplement what you have kept.
Shop For What’s Needed
Now that you’ve purged and shopped your closet, it’s time to replenish. But it’s important that you shop only for what’s needed. You don’t want to spend time and money purchasing items that are not fluid and can only be worn one or two ways or can’t be paired with items you already have in your closet.
Try to avoid impulse buying and picking up the more exotic pieces because they’re cute and get some pieces that you can create plenty of outfits with. When I impulse buy, I end up purchasing colorful, printed items that aren’t transitional or fluid, thus making it hard for me to wear them often. So I end up at the same point, where I don’t feel like I have anything to wear.
Lastly, pay attention to the season in which you are beginning this rebuild. If the seasons will be changing soon, then you probably want to get items that will be transitional in nature. Refrain from buying a lot of clothing that is season-specific, i.e. a bunch of sweaters near the end of February. When you do this, you’re only making your problem bigger. Instead, purchase items that can be useful in both seasons.
So, make intentional purchases. It will take a lot more thought, planning, and energy, but it will be much more rewarding.
Here’s an example:
I needed more shirts and jeans. So I made sure that I searched for shirts that were transitional and fluid, and jeans that not only looked cute but fit me well. I am able to create several different outfits with the shirts and jeans I purchased paired with items I already had in my closet, like shackets, jackets, and cardigans.
Don’t Be Afraid To Go Up A Size
Here’s the thing. If we are getting rid of clothes because they are too tight, we shouldn’t go to the store and purchase the same size. Purchase a size larger, you’ll thank me later.
Half of the problem we were experiencing was improper sizing of our clothes. We were uncomfortable. We didn’t have any clothes left that fit. So we need to go up a size. I know you’re telling yourself you’re going to lose weight. But why keep the carrot dangling in front of your face? Still have the goal to lose weight but also do your self-esteem and your body a favor and give them the size they need.
It will make you feel better and you’ll look better in your clothing. Larger clothing will not only be more flattering but it will also help camouflage any areas you may not want to draw attention to. Plus, you can always get clothing that’s too big altered when you lose weight!
Purchase Quality Over Quantity
This is something I struggle with but the quality of an item definitely matters more than how many items you purchase. I say this because quality items will last much longer and keep you from having to return to the stores to replace them. They are less likely to lose their shape after washes and just overall look better when worn.
To ensure you’re purchasing quality items, make sure you are checking the fabric. You can tell if you’re getting something that has sturdy-feeling fabric versus something that feels thin and cheap. You want to make sure you’re getting something that will withstand the times and possible future weight fluctuation.
Purchase Items That Are Staple Pieces
I think it’s agreed that your closet needs some staple pieces. Staple pieces are considered those basic everyday closet essentials that you need to build an outfit. Hopefully, when you “shopped” your closet you saw that you had a few of those items left. Some examples would be a jean jacket, a variety of white blouses and t-shirts, a blazer, a transitional sweater, a black dress, jeans and other basic pieces like these. I’ve linked other articles that give even more examples of staple pieces you should include when re-building your closet. Just check this link.
When shopping, try to build up your neutral colors first before adding too many other colors. The goal is to be able to create as many options as possible. Avoid purchasing items that can only be worn one way or are limited in their styling options. Adding blazers and jackets, as well as shirts, gives you more options during transitional seasons and more opportunities for layering.
I just went shopping a few weeks ago and here are some items that I purchased:
Shopping is meant to be fun but sometimes it also needs to be intentional. Weight fluctuation is inevitable, but it doesn’t mean you have to feel down about it. Using these tips to work with the clothes you have and adding other pieces on a budget will help you to always feel like you have something to wear. Take your time pre-shopping and while shopping so you can make sure you’re only purchasing items that will make your heart smile.
How are you making an effort to rebuild your closet this season?