One of my ongoing objectives is compiling meaningful data about what's in my wardrobe. This is the tip of the iceberg. I may post a detailed analysis complete with graphs and charts on my personal blog sometime.
Numbers: ±250 items, not including accessories, underwear, lounge wear or sports gear. Around two thirds has been acquired in the last six years and half since 2013.
Shopping: Around a third of my wardrobe was bought on the high street. Main suppliers are Uniqlo, M&S and H&M, the latter for designer collaborations and subsidiaries Cos, Weekday, &other stories. Around a quarter is evenly split between vintage and self-made, 5% online purchases and up to 40% sourced from independents.
Basics: Around a quarter my wardrobe could be described as menswear classic and normcore. This seems like a solid foundation of basics.
Wear and Usage: ±70 items are what I’d call kingpins, and ±90 are in regular rotation, but up to 40% is not getting enough wear. I could probably get rid of half my closet tomorrow and still get dressed successfully.
I’m already making moves to fix this. I want to bring back a few of the better pieces, some of whom are excellent and should not be neglected. I also need to set some clear objectives for culling.
Problem areas are:
T-shirts: I buy too many concert shirts. Enough said.
Shoes: Is it so wrong to have 30+ pairs? I don’t know if I could ever have too many shoes, but I’m only wearing around half of them at the moment. Some are benched because they need repairs, others because I ditched the heels in favour of platforms. There are quite a few awkward children among them, see below.
Skirts and dresses: According to the numbers, I am very good at wearing pants and I suck at dresses and skirts. I need to address this in my day to day style. If all goes to plan, many of these will be brought back into service by a pair of OTK boots I ordered at the weekend.
Trophy pieces: There are a few items on the bench which I don’t think I want to get rid of, such as international textiles, rarities and pieces with sentimental value. Suz, I’m liking your suggestion for a dedicated history closet.
Eclectic items are the most frequently benched. I fully expect some of these to make a comeback in future, because past experience suggests that if I like something enough, I’ll find a way to wear it one of these days.
Awkward children: There are a number of things that I like but just don’t seem to work for some reason. It could be the colour, the style or the fit, or it doesn’t suit my current style. I need to be brutally honest with myself about these.
Worn out favourites: I’ll be honest, if something I love dearly is worn out, I have a lot of trouble getting rid of it for some reason. Some of these are waiting for repairs, others I need to phase out or replace.
My immediate plan is to bring some of the benched items back into my day to day style, and ask myself how I feel about them. If something isn’t working, what do I need to do to make it work? And how do I feel about all this variety? Is it fun and enriching, or guilt-inducing and tiring?