I hate running late in the mornings, but I always am. It’s pretty ridiculous, because I love waking up early and how it feels to dominate your day because you were totally prepared, well rested, and ready for action. So, I decided it was time to do something about it.
FIRST: I streamlined my options by pulling out everything that had smears or discoloration, that didn’t fit well, or that I didn’t love and sent that either to Goodwill or to the trash can. Having too many things isn’t just selfish and unnecessary, it’s also a HUGE hassle when you live in a tiny apartment. Giving my clothing a little extra space really helps reduces wrinkles and makes it easier to pick out outfits. There is really no reason to be stressed out in the mornings because you have too many things to wear, and no reason to repeatedly try on, take off, launder, and place back into your closet the clothing that just doesn’t do it for you anymore.
SECOND, I organized my closet to focus on clothing, not storage. My closet is currently looking BEAUTIFUL. The clothing is arranged from left to right: dresses, then sweaters, slacks, skirts, and blouses. I also removed all of the random storage I had kept inside the closet and simply placed a shoe rack along the bottom of the closet and an old welcome mat in the floor. The extra space makes it calmer and more comforting.
I also left an empty hook on the back of my closet door. During the day, I store my nightgown and robe of choice so that I can come home and have comfy PJs waiting for me. Once I change into my PJs, I can then pick out my outfit for the next day, iron and/or steam the pieces that need it, and hang them on the rack for the next day. It’s kind of amazing.
Full disclosure: I’m not picking out my clothes every day yet — it’s only been a week and I haven’t fully developed the habit — but having the extra space in the closet and in the floor is worth it even if the outfits aren’t always pressed before I go to sleep.
FINALLY, I bought some cute new things to make getting dressed in the morning more exciting, and more successful.
1) All new undergarments. Sorry if you are one if my three male readers (hi Dad!), but this seriously makes every outfit instantly cuter. The statistics are honestly probably made up, but “people say” that 80% of women are wearing improperly fitted undergarments. Do your back and your closet a favor and get fitted by a professional at Soma Intimates, it’s the best. And no, a high schooler at Victoria’s Secret does not count.
2) Add in color. Making outfits is way more fun when you have in-season colors, particularly for the bottom-half. For me, dressing well at work is easiest when I follow this simple math problem: well fitting skirt/slacks + fitted top + longer outer layer. Belt is optional. Here’s my favorites that I’ve added in this season:
- Old Navy Super Skinnies: Colored jeans are a definite winner right now, but since it’s hard to tell if colored pants will stay in fashion long enough to justify spending much on them, Old Navy’s versions (which were $19 on sale) were the perfect option. And honestly, as you guys know already, I’m not quite wild enough for the actual colors…but the dark taupe/khaki pair I bought? Such a valuable addition to my weekend wardrobe, and I’ve found a few ways to rock them at work, too.
- Colored pencil skirts: oh man, what a good idea! These are making my work outfits so much cuter. I’ve picked up a mustard yellow and a gray-navy plaid from JCrew, and a dark teal green corduroy from Old Navy. They are so cute with a tank and blazer! Click on the photos below for samples of what I purchased.
3) Stripes. Stripes are everywhere this fall, and I am loving mixing them into my wardrobe. What looks great with my bright-yellow pencil skirt? A navy-and-white striped sweater. What enhances a blazer’s waist-slimming effect? I striped shirt underneath. While stripes around the middle can be unhelpful, when combined with a blazer or a long sweater that comes in at the waist, it can be very slimming. Try it, you can thank me later!
Now, I’m still just plain-jane MB, but the extra effort is paying off. This Friday (while wearing a navy-and-cream striped polo, with a navy blazer, my khaki skinnies and loafers), H looks over and says “Hey, you look so fancy. You are looking so stylish lately. You’re getting too cool for me.”
Yes, seriously, that happened. Success.