The ‘buy nothing’ shopping diet

Buy Nothing Shopping Challenge

I’ve been thinking a lot about my consumption lately, and more so, just how many new things I seem to have bought in the last six months alone. While I’m no minimalist by any means (and I doubt I ever will be!), I’m firmly of the thought that we should only own what we love, and that this should fit within our means; both financially, and from the perspective that we can only consume so much. So when I read an article last weekend about the buy nothing diet, it really struck a chord.

One of the key things that I’ve been doing for years, to try and meter my spending and keep my shopping habits on track, is to keep a spending journal. Every time I make a new purchase for my wardrobe, I jot it down in a notebook, and tally up the total number of new additions each month, as well as just how much I spent. There’s no denying that I’m an emotional shopper – since I lost my mum in 2015, I’ve found that February has been a pretty spendy month for me – and it’s come through more this year than ever before. Considering that we’d like to jump on the property ladder at some point, all these new additions haven’t been quite so conducive to ramping up those savings….

So when I stumbled across an article chronicling Micha Goebig’s year of buying absolutely zero luxuries, I felt a little inspired. I started to think about how I could incorporate ‘buy nothing’ into my life, whether it be in smaller increments, or on a smaller scale. And I also started to think a bit more about how I could get back to that core manifesto on which I’ve been basing my entire wardrobe on; quality over quantity.

SO… JUST WHAT IS THE BUY NOTHING DIET?

It probably goes without saying, but the crux of it is that you refrain from buying any luxuries. The necessities such as food, basic household supplies, and toiletries are still on the table, but any item that fits more within the ‘want’ category – think clothing, shoes, beauty products, candles, flowers and the link – are completely off limits. It’s a movement that comes from the idea that shopping takes up too much cultural, mental and social space in our lives, and given the the ‘diet’ is supposed to span over the course of the year, works to break those shopping habits which so easily become ingrained in our everyday lives. Living in a world where consumerism is conspicuous, rather than conscious, it’s a way to regain that power, and reject the call to consume.

So, I figure now’s a good time as any to point out the white elephant in the room; as someone with a blog and a YouTube channel which occasionally relies on new wardrobe additions for the creation of content, where does someone like me, go from here?

WHAT OTHER OPTIONS ARE THERE?

If buying nothing is a shade too strong for you, but you’re all for conscious consumption, consider trying out a capsule wardrobe or getting on board with the five piece French wardrobe challenge, which force you to challenge the way that you look at your closet, and how you approach shopping for new wardrobe additions.

Another option is the #30wears campaign. This encourages people to extend the lifespan of their clothing by asking yourself, ‘will I wear this at least 30 times?’ before heading to the check out. As someone who used to manually track how often they wore each addition to their closet, I’m completely all for this – there’s nothing like a new wardrobe staple that you truly get your money’s worth from.

My final suggestion, would be to purchase only pre-loved. Personally, I’m a huge fan of consignment stores (The Real Real has to be my favourite, alternatively I occasionally browse Vestiaire Collective and eBay) as they allow me to get the look I’m after at a lower price point, make higher quality pieces more accessible, and reduce my own impact.

As of right now, I’m on a little bit of a self-imposed shopping ban – there’s not set time frame, but after investing a huge amount into my winter wardrobe, I’m at a point where I don’t really need anything, and taking a peek into my closet is evidence enough that I have plenty to wear. That’s not to say that there won’t be the odd new addition here and there (or that I won’t look to take up the 5PFW Challenge again soon), but I’m hoping to start a little bit of a softer take on the buy nothing diet, even if it lasts for just one month.

image via pinterest

Three reasons why the little – blank – dress is one of my style staples

Why a dress is one of my style staples
Why a dress is one of my style staples
Why a dress is one of my style staples
Celine trotteur bag in black
Why a dress is one of my style staples

Ever since paring back my closet, starting my very first capsule wardrobe, and being more mindful of what I add to my closet, I’ve focused on trying to build up a healthy stable of style staples: those easy go-to pieces I can reach for in a pinch. For years, this has mostly revolved around separates; the kind that you’d find on any top ten wardrobe essentials list, that give you a classic look, yet can be mixed and matched at the same time. If it wasn’t versatile by any traditional means, I didn’t need it.

Though as I’ve tried to strike that healthy balance of femininity in my wardrobe and inject that Parisian nonchalance I’ve been craving (even more so as of late), I’ve found myself being drawn to the effortless elegance of a simple dress – whether it’s a classic black or otherwise (like this cutie I recently snapped up…!). I’m currently on a bit of a self-imposed shopping ban (after this winter haul and some sneaky Nordstrom purchases, I think I’m set for the next few months at least!), but I’ve found myself so much more drawn to the ease of throwing on a dress and instantly feeling put together. This little flirty ruffle dress from Storets is case-in-point. It’s a deep navy hue – a subtle difference that sets it apart from my stable of little black dresses – the ruffle hem adds a playfulness to the silhouette, and it’s instantly dressed up with the striped shirt detail. It’s probably not hard to see why this has become a recent favourite of mine. So, let’s talk about why the little – blank – dress has become one of my style staples…

IT’S AN EASY THROW ON PIECE

Never underestimate the power of a dress; unlike separates, it’s an outfit in itself. Just add accessories. I’ve been taking full advantage of this on those mornings where getting out of bed feels like an effort – I can hit the snooze button one more time as I know I’ll be dressed and out of the door in less than five minutes. If that’s not reason enough to make a dress one of your style staples then…

YOU CAN LAYER IT UP

It’s winter here in Sydney, and while I can’t quite put my finger on why, it’s been feeling colder than ever. Rather than invest in a long sleeved dress, I’ve been throwing my favourites over the top of a skivvy (this one from Uniqlo is perfect for layering) or a silky blouse, with a thick pair of tights on for good measure – 60 denier or higher, of course! This has helped me to breathe new life into so many of my dresses that I’d typically save for the warmer months, and you look chic while you’re at it. Alternatively, I love the look of the flouncy skirt of a dress peeking out underneath an oversized sweater, or something I did a lot during spring last year was to tuck some my more lightweight dresses into skirts and wear them as a top!

IT’S A CULT CLASSIC

While I’m a firm believer that you shouldn’t buy something just because a list on the internet tells you too – no two people are the same – there’s usually a reason why the same items keep popping up on those lists. The little black dress will always have a place in my closet, and for good reason, it’s a cult classic and timeless too. I don’t think you need a better reason than that! x

wearing

Storets dress, Everlane heels (more affordable here), Celine trotteur bag (also here)

Style inspiration 03.06.17

current style inspiration

Today I thought I’d share a little bit of style inspiration in lieu of an outfit post; a simple look with a colour palette that has been right up my street lately, and some minimal details with classic sensibilities.

I’ve got some really great ideas for subjects that I want to tackle in the coming weeks, months, and year, though trying to upload fresh original blog content every two days, and filming two videos a week while working a full time job can be pretty exhausting (as you can imagine!). I mean, what is work-life balance, right? So if you notice me scaling things back a little bit – whether that’s one less post every second week, or dropping back to just one video per week on my YouTube channel, that’s why.

While I have you, I wanted to give a shout out to a pair of shoes which have really exceeded my expectations, since I purchased them a few months back. I’m talking about these low heeled pumps from Vaneli. They’re 100% inspired by Chanel (without the Chanel price tag), required zero breaking in, and I’m yet to find an outfit that I haven’t wanted to pair these with. It’s a little too cold to wear them now, though that hasn’t stopped me from trying to find any opportunity to throw them on – this past weekend included. Because when you’re on to a good thing… you wear it every chance you get! x

image source; pinterest

The gamine look

gamine parisian style outfit with stripes

See by Chloe stripe top, Uniqlo wool trousers, Celine trotteur bag (also here), Everlane chelsea heels (not pictured)

gamine. noun
a girl with a mischievous, boyish charm.

My sister-in-law kindly snapped this photo of me during our recent trip home to New Zealand, and it sums up what I’ve been wearing a lot lately very neatly. Lots of stripes; oversized sweaters; wool trousers; a chic black bag and a pair of heeled booties.

A huge part of my recent style overhaul has been this shift towards a more gamine look; an undone feminine look, with masculine undertones that is as effortless and easy as rolling out of bed and throwing on your favourite trousers and a crisp white shirt.

Currently on my wishlist: The Mansur Gavriel slide

mansur gavriel slides

As entirely impractical as it is – especially as Sydney’s current climate calls for much sturdier footwear – but lately I’ve found myself in the depths of an obsessive online stalk session of Mansur Gavriel slides a little too often.

After purchasing a more affordable pair from ASOS late last year, I’m practically on the edge of biting the bullet on what I’m hoping will become a well-loved style staple and wardrobe investment for the spring and summer seasons to come.

I’m not sure if I’m just getting a little bit of FOMO seeing all the Cali and London based girls in my Insta-feed rocking a pair of low heeled mules on their feet, or if it’s purely a case of me wanting to tick off all the boxes from my recent style overhaul and analysis (you can have a full read of my current wardrobe here), but a pair of these easy breezy sliders have been at the top of my wishlist, so to speak (Ive been particularly taken with the low heeled version in the punchy tangerine and muted peach hues, in case you’re wondering…).

Though as keen as I am to bite the bullet, one thing I think we can all agree on is that I’ve made enough new wardrobe additions of late to satisfy that sartorial ‘itch’ (not to mention we’re in the dead of winter right now), that I have a pretty strong feeling these are one of those purchases that can wait, but not until I sourced all my different options…. Which colour would you go for? x

image source; pinterest