how to purge your closet by Styles for Thought

Style Advice: How to Purge Your Closet?

Spring season is the perfect time to put away winter clothes and clean out your closet! The process of wardrobe cleaning can be time-consuming. But the end result of an edited closet is totally worth the time investment. Today, I wanted to share my method and tell you how to purge your closet!

Why should You Purge Your Closet?

Before diving in, let me tell you the benefits you get from wardrobe cleaning and why you should do it:

  • Spend less time finding clothes to wear.

Once you purge your closet, you will free up a lot of closet space. It will be easiser to view what you own and find what you need.

  • Spend less time figuring out what to wear.

After a closet purge, the remaining clothes are ones that you absolutely love and wear often. With less but better options, you will spend less time deciding what to wear.

  • Get a more coherent fashion style.

Your style and body evolves over time. Wardrobe cleaning is a great opportunity to purge out any clothes that don’t fit you anymore, making your fashion style more coherent and up-to-date.

  • Build a stronger friendship by giving away old clothes to friends.

I love giving away old clothes to friends. It’s a great way to reconnect with friends and build a stronger bond.

  • Earn extra money by selling old clothes.

Related: Style Advice: Why I Wanted to Build a Minimalist Wardrobe

how to purge your closet by Styles for Thought

How to Purge Your Closet?

If you have already decided to do it, let’s talk about how to purge your closet!

  1. Get your favorite music playlist ready. Before you start purging your closet, play your favorite music playlist and turn up the volume! What type of music do you like? I love tropical house! If you need music suggestions, follow me on SoundCloud!
  1. Get two heavy-duty bags or laundry baskets. Label one with “Sell” and the other one with “Donate”.
  1. Start with a clothing category, ex. Sweaters, tank tops, etc. Take a close look at the clothes, try them on and then place them into one of the buckets below:

a. The closet – Clothes that you love and wear. Return these clothes back to the closet.

b. The “Sell” bucket – Clothes that you will try to sell first, and then give away the to friends. Or vice versa.

c. The “Donate” bucket – Clothes that no one wants. In this case, it’s best to donate them.

  1. Go through this step-by-step process flow to decide which bucket to place the clothes.

Step 1 – Stained? Out of shape? Destroyed? Have a cut? If yes, put them to the “Donate” bucket!

Step 2 – Try it on! Does it fit you? If it doesn’t, can you tailor it? Is it worth the cost of tailoring? If no to all those questions, place them in the “Sell” & “Donate” buckets depending on the quality of the clothes.

Step 3 – Now you have examined and tried on the clothes. They are in good condition, and they fit you well. Then, ask these questions first before putting them back to the closet.

i. Different but similar? If you have 5 little black dresses, you should give away one of them to declutter your closet.

ii. Forgotten clothes? Clothes that you haven’t worn for a long time or you have never worn before. Then ask yourself if you will wear it today. Be honest with yourself. If you will wear it today, then keep it. Ex. I haven’t worn this peplum top (seen in pic) for almost a year, but I am so glad I keep it! If the answer is a no, then you are probably not going to wear it. Sell or donate it.

iii. Cough-Potato Clothes. All of us have T-shirts that we never wear out to the street. Those T-shirts are mostly likely comfy but embarrassing to wear out. Throw them away. I personally think everyone should try to look presentable everyday. It’s a good way to boost self-confidence and productivity.

iv. Fancy clothes that you don’t have occasions or opportunities to wear. These are the clothes you love and pay a lot for. But you don’t have the opportunity to wear them, and they are collecting dust in the closet. Chances are that by the time you have an event to wear fancy clothes, you would want to wear something different. So sell them. Sell them fast so that you can get as much money back before they go out of style.

  1. Repeat Step 4 until you finish every category of clothes. It will take a while, but be patient. Wardrobe cleaning is totally worth the time investment. Maybe you will discover better tips on how to purge your closet. If you have more to add to this list, please let me know!
  1. Now that you finish filling up the “Sell” and “Donate” buckets, go sell, recycle and donate them! Remember to do it quickly. It’s so easy to get lazy at this point.

Related: Style Advice: 19 Different Ways to Sell, Recycle, and Donate Old Clothes

how to purge your closet by Styles for Thought

What’s Next after Purging Your Closet?

Now that you finish cleaning out your closet, go enjoy the extra closet space. It can be tempting to fill it back up with new clothes, especially now when high quality clothes are so cheap to buy. To help you shop less but better, I have shared 10 ways to resist shopping temptations.

Related: Shopping Tips: 10 Ways to Resist Shopping Temptations

how to purge your closet by Styles for Thought

My Experience on Wardrobe Cleaning

When I was cleaning out my closet, I almost threw away this beautiful halter top from Anthropologie. I bought it 5 years ago during college, and it still fits so well. Sometimes, wardrobe cleaning is a great way to reconnect with old pieces you love. It pushes you to wear your old clothes more often!

I also bought this 7 for All Mankind bootcut jeans from years ago, and you can see how I restyled it differently here.

Related: Floppy Hat || & Other Stories Wool Hat

how to purge your closet by Styles for Thought

Have you purged your closet before? What challenges do you have with wardrobe cleaning? Do you have more to add to this list?

I hope you find this post helpful. Good luck!

Smile and style on!

SK


Outfit Information

Trench Coat :: Burberry

Top :: Anthropologie (Old)

Jeans :: 7 for All Mankind

Purse :: YSL

Boots :: Todd’s (Sold out, Similar Here and here)

How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets by Styles For Thought

How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets

Leather jackets are unarguably fashion essentials that everyone should have. If you choose a high quality leather jacket, it can really last you for a life time. Well, at least longer than just a summer fling. In today’s post, I am going to talk about 6 things to consider when buying high quality sustainable leather jackets.

  1. Leather Quality
  2. Leather Jacket Fits
  3. Leather Types
  4. Leather Jacket Styles
  5. Leather Jacket Details
  6. Sustainable Fashion Brands and Ethical Clothing Companies for Leather Jackets

How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets by Styles For Thought


Download a FREE Copy of “How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets”


1. Leather Quality

Leather quality is the first thing to consider when buying high quality leather jackets. I prefer real leather over faux leather for many reasons. First, the process of making faux leather is chemical-intensive and very polluting. Second, unlike real leather, faux leather does not age well over time. High quality leather develops a patina on the surface and becomes more beautiful over time, making it a more sustainable option over short-lived faux leather.  Below, we are going to discuss different leather qualities and compare their durability.

  • Full-Grain Leather

Full-grain leather is the highest quality leather in the market.  Full-grain leather has never been sanded and buffed. So its natural marks and grains make the leather extra durable and strong.

  • Top-Grain Leather

Top-grain leather is the second highest quality leather.  Sanded on the surface, top-grain leather is smooth to the touch. Top-grain leather is commonly used in many high-end leather products because it’s thinner and more workable.

  • Genuine Leather

Contrary to common perception, genuine leather ranks low in the pyramid. Genuine leather is heavily sanded and processed. It is pressed with fake grain on the surface.  Don’t let the name fool you, genuine leather has much lower quality than full and top-grain leather.

  • Suede Leather

Suede leather has a unique textured feel and a muted appearance. And this type of leather is often a popular choice when people shopping for leather jackets.  However, suede leather jackets cannot get wet.

IMG_8375

2.  Leather Jacket Fitting

Fitting is crucial when buying leather jackets. Without a good fit, even high quality leather jackets are a waste because you will not wear them for very long.  I would say, the fitting of a leather jacket ranks #2 in this list of things to consider.

Before choosing a leather jacket size, you need to know these two things about leather:

  • Real leather stretches over time. So, when you find yourself in between sizes, always go down instead of going up a size.
  • While leather stretches, the lining of the jacket may not give as much. Make sure the shoulder area and the armhole area fit the way you want from the very beginning. For the shoulder area, you want to use the shoulder seams as the point of reference. You want to make sure they rest perfectly on the top of your shoulder.  Also move your arms around to make sure the armhole area is not too tight.

When you are trying on the leather jacket, ask yourself these questions:

  • Are you going to wear it over winter, or all year around?
  • Are you going to wear it zipped up or buttoned up?
  • Do you like a boxy cut, classic cut or extra slim?
  • Are you petite, regular, or tall?
  • Do you have a broad shoulder, or a narrow shoulder?

Then, you should always try on the leather jacket with clothes that you are planning on pairing it with. Finally, gauge whether you want to go up or down a size.

How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets by Styles For Thought

3. Leather Types

Two common leather types for leather jackets are lambskin and calfskin. Rarely, you run into other types. Below is a short list that highlights the characteristics of different leathers types.

  • Calfskin

Calfskin is smooth and durable. Chanel purse lovers prefers calfskin over lambskin bags because calfskin is tougher, and it can handle more scratches and last longer.

  • Lambskin

Lambskin is luxurious to the touch and light-weight. Lambskin leather jackets are more commonly found in women’s fashion.

  • Goatskin

Goatskin stands in between calfskin and lambskin in terms of durability and softness.

  • Buffalo skin

Buffalo skin is the heaviest and most durable. People buy buffalo skin leather jackets for protection and functionality rather than style and look.

4. Leather Jacket Styles

Choosing a leather jacket style is a matter of personal taste and preference. Before deciding on a style, I recommend you to ditch online shopping and really try on the leather jacket first.  Click here to download a free copy of shopping questions to help you shop better. Below for a breakdown of various common leather jacket styles:

  • Biker

Biker leather jackets are originally designed for motorcycle riders. Biker leather jackets are functional and resistant to harsh weather conditions. Typical biker leather jackets have a cropped cut that allows bikers to bend over easily. Biker leather jackets feature an asymmetrical front zipper, large lapels, a D-shape pocket and a half-fastened belt.

  • Bomber

Bomber styled leather jackets are originally designed for pilots who had to sit in a tiny space for a long period of time.  With comfort as the number one priority in mind, a bomber jacket usually has a roomy cut, elastic wrist and waist bands to help retain warmth. A bomber leather jacket is perfect for casual settings.

  • Blazer

Get a leather blazer if you are planning on wearing leather jackets to your 9-5 job. A leather blazer jacket comes with a double-breasted silhouette and a sharp shoulder cut.

  • Shearling

Get a shearling leather jacket for cold climate. Lined with warm fluffy fur, a shearling leather jacket is usually bulky, and it is perfect at blocking wind and retaining warmth.

5. Leather Jacket Details

Details are what makes leather jackets high quality.  When you are spending so much money and time shopping for the highest quality leather jacket within your budget, do not settle for anything less.  Pay attention to these details:

  • Tailoring
  • Seams
  • Stitching
  • Zippers
  • Buttons
  • Metal Color
  • Linings

Buying a high quality leather jacket is not easy.  It is similar to finding a husband. Have a mindset that this leather jacket is for life. Do not settle for anything less. Do not support fast fashion brands. Support sustainable fashion brands and ethical clothing companies.

How to Buy High Quality Sustainable Leather Jackets by Styles For Thought

6. Sustainable Fashion Brands and Ethical Clothing Companies for Leather Jackets

Finally! Where can you shop for high quality sustainable leather jackets? Here are my favorite sustainable fashion brands and ethical clothing companies for leather jackets!

  • All Saints. According to Refinery29, AllSaints partnered with Not For Sale in 2011 to create a line of t-shirts to prevent human trafficking. According to ProjectJust.com, All Saints cannot be classified as an ethical clothing company because they don’t trace their entire supply chain, and they don’t provide transparency.  However, I love the side initiatives they participated in such as
    • Partnership with Not For Sale to help prevent human trafficking
    • Use of 'real people' in their campaign instead of supermodels
    • Discontinuation of angora usage in its collections.
  • Falcon. Handmade leather jackets made in NYC.
  • Pelechecoco. Very reasonable prices leather jackets made with recycled leather.
  • Better World Fashion. Made with recycled leather.

Thank you for reading this super long post! I hope you will find a high quality, sustainable leather jacket that’s within your budget.

Smile and style on!

SK


Outfit Information

Jacket :: AllSaints

Top :: American Apparel

Bottom :: Lululemons

Shopping Tips: 10 Ways to Resist Shopping Temptations

10 Ways to Resist Shopping Temptations by Styles For Thought“Shop less and better” is one way to support sustainable fashion. But, keeping yourself in check is not easy.  Especially when you follow so many fashion bloggers, when you receive daily email advertisements from your favorite online shopping sites, and when your girlfriends always wear the latest trendy clothes, it’s hard not to feel the need to fit in and purchase clothes that may not be sustainable.  If you are experiencing the same struggle, don’t worry – here are 10 ways to resist shopping temptations:

  1. Unsubscribe from shopping mailing lists.  Out of sight, out of mind. If you see less ads, you will feel less tempted to shop.  Try apps like Unlistr or Unroll.Me to unsubscribe from retailer emails.
  2. Block out clothing advertisements. Install apps such as Adblock Plus to your browser to resist shopping temptations.
  3. Use productivity apps. Adblock apps do not work on social media sites such as Facebook and Instagram.  Instead, try productivity apps such as StayFocused to limit the time you spend on these sites.
  4. Use a buddy system.  Find a friend who shares the same fashion taste as you.  When you need help resist shopping temptations, she/he can back you up during those moments of weakness.
  5. Develop a strong sense of fashion style.  Developing a fashion style takes more than a few days to accomplish.  But you can discover your fashion style by asking these simple questions before making a clothing purchase – Does it fit your style? Does it fit your body type? Can you see yourself in it next year? Answering these questions before buying can help you strategize your clothing purchases.  This will in turn eliminate the need to buy clothes that do not fit you and help you stay sustainable. I created a simple cheat sheet with questions that you can ask yourself before making a purchase! If you are interested, please go to the bottom of this post for free download! 🙂
  6. Consider the end results of your clothing purchases.  First of all, buying excess clothes is a waste of money. Second, having too many clothes can jam up your closet, making it harder to decide what to wear. Lastly, having too many clothes is totally not sustainable and bad for the environment. Every year, over 11 tons of clothing waste get sent to landfills and release toxic gas to the environment.
  7. Look for role models that reflect your belief and sense of style. I follow many minimalist and sustainable fashion bloggers,. My current favorites are The Minimalists and Into Mind. When I read their blogs on sustainable fashion, I immediately drop any desire to shop.  I was even inspired by them and decided to declutter my closet. If you are inspired to clean your closet too, read Style Advice: 19 Different Ways to Sell, Recycle, and Donate Old Clothes
  8. Borrow clothes from your girlfriends.  For special occasions such as Christmas parties or Halloween parties, it’s natural to feel the need to shop for new clothes and look different in pictures.  In this case, instead of buying, you can borrow clothes from your girlfriends! Not only is borrowing clothes sustainable, but it also has zero impact on your bank account. Lastly, keep in mind that everything is “give and take”. If you want to borrow clothes, offer to lend your clothes first!
  9. Find ways to restyle your clothes! You will be surprised by how many different outfits you can come up with using the clothes that you already own.  Instead of buying more, look for creative ways to restyle and repair.  Do a capsule wardrobe challenge or a 10×10 challenge. After all, there are many ways to support sustainable fashion. If you need inspirations, you can also read my ‘Restyling Ideas’ posts for ideas, such as Restyling Ideas: White Halter Tank Top with Floral Shorts
  10. Switch up your look with a new hairstyle or a new makeup look. Sometimes, it’s impossible not to feel left out when all your girlfriends own the same trendy tops while you are trying to stick with the basics and the classics. If you feel this way, instead of giving in to shop more, try a new hair style or makeup look to switch things up!

10 Ways to Resist Shopping Temptations by Styles For Thought

DSC07234

After cleaning out my closet last year, I was determined to build a more minimalist and sustainable wardrobe. I don’t think we need to buy from sustainable fashion brands all the time to be sustainable, as long as we are more intentional with our clothing purchases.  But from time to time, I still feel the urge to buy trendy clothes that won’t last more than two seasons. One of the fashion trends I am trying very hard not to fall for right now is off-shoulder tops.

DSC07152

Currently, I am sticking to classic styles – a chambray shirt, a beige trench coat, a pair of brown booties and blue jeans. If you are looking for ethically-made/sustainably-made jeans, there are actually plenty of options available.  One denim brand I love is DL 1961, and it is available on Amazon Prime. Here are some of my favorite styles:

DL1961 Women’s Margaux Instascuplt Ankle Skinny Jeans

DL1961 Women’s Florence Instasculpt Skinny Jeans

DL1961 Women’s Emma Power Legging Jeans

DL1961 Women’s Margaux Instascuplt Ankle Skinny Jeans

So tell me, what challenges do you face when trying to resist shopping temptations and support sustainable fashion? Got more tips to add to this list? What fashion trends are you trying to resist from buying? I hope to hear from you.

Hope you find this post helpful!

Smile and style on!

SK


Outfit Information

Trench Coat :: Burberry

Chambray Shirt :: Madewell

Jeans :: 7 For All Mankind (Sustainable Option: DL1961)

Boots :: TODS (Sold out) Similar: See By Chloe!


Still thinking about that dress you saw last week? Ask yourself these questions first before making a purchase!

Enter your email address below for a FREE COPY of a shopping cheat sheet!