365 Days: No New Clothes

Beginning September 6th, 2013, I have started the challenge of not buying new clothes for a year. Many may think this a stupid challenge (or an impossible one if you know me), but I feel a very strong inclination towards testing my willpower and changing my habits of buying “new” things to wear all too often.

It all started when I was reading some fashion blogs around the web. I stumbled across one where a young woman was starting a challenge because she was in debt. The shame she felt for spending thousands of dollars on clothes somewhat rang true for me, but I thought she was going a little overboard. Intrigued, I looked up some similar blogs and I decided to see how my spending compared. Thanks to mint.com, I was able to see just how much I spent on the category of “clothing:”

$2,600 in 2013 (8 months)

$4,100 in 2012 (12 months)

That’s $335/month. My heart fell into my stomach. I felt (feel) disgusted with myself. I decided to pursue the subject and see what others had achieved and if I could actually do it. I knew something had to change.

I felt empowered after so much reading. I made a plan: November 1st (post-Halloween/costume buying plus prep time) I would begin the challenge, but only for 6 months. My reasoning was that I wasn’t sure if I could do a whole year. Then, I caught myself binge buying clothes to “prep” for this challenge, which was completely counter-intuitive to my objectives. ‘There needs to be more immediate action,’ I realized.

The last time I “bought” new clothes was on August 29. I felt horrible after hitting the “place order” button on Forever 21. As horrible as I felt, that last package arrived on Friday, September 6th, which is how the start date came about. I needed a change before I could prep for it. Can you ever really prepare for going “cold turkey” for something that was once…an addiction?

2 thoughts on “365 Days: No New Clothes

  1. Ah, this was so me the year before last. That sick feeling when you realize how much you spend and how much you already have…I tried this challenge last year and while I wasn’t 100% successful, it definitely forced me to face my addiction and get creative with what I had.

    • The creativity is definitely what keeps me going (well, that and it’s much cheaper…). I never thought of myself as the creative type before, but when you get compliments on stuff you’ve had for years, it definitely makes you realize that you don’t need new all the time!

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