We’ve all done it. Impulse buying, without thinking about how practical a garment is. Buying for the future when we know full well we won’t get enough use out it to justify its cost. They are easy mistakes to make when you are in full-on shop mode. So here is a little pre-empter of tips before you engage the high street or get click happy online.
- Most major shopping mistakes come from buying outfits. That’s how clothes are displayed in the shop so that’s what we think we should buy, but that way we end up with loads of clothes and only ever have a few outfits. Buy individual items that are the perfect colour and style for you and they will all work together to build an amazing wardrobe that really works for you and your lifestyle’
- Before you go shopping be ruthless! Keep garments only if you feel good wearing them and remove those that you never wear, especially ones you haven’t worn for over a year, or that you have several similar and cheap versions of. Your clothes should accentuate you and your personality, not cover you up. By reviewing your wardrobe and removing rogue garments you can identify what is required pre-shopping.
- When shopping online always choose by colour, size, style and the detail. Read the reviews, be clear on the return policy, check the size chart and look at the detailed photos. Vitally always edit your basket and only buy what you need, and what will fit and suit you! Remember that the colours you see on screen, may not be accurate to what arrives in the post – if it’s wrong, send it back!
- Buy smart: a bargain is only a bargain if you actually wear it. Many people make the common mistake of buying an item just because it is on ‘sale’. Don’t buy on impulse. Never buy anything in the sale you wouldn’t pay full price for! Similarly buying the season’s latest fashion could be a waste of money if it doesn’t suit you! There is nothing wrong with being interested in the latest trends but only if they suit your shape, colour and clothing personality.
- Be colour confident by knowing what colours truly suit you. Learn which colours brighten your eyes, make your skin look radiant and create a glowing, healthy and confident you. These may not be the colours that you have been wearing for the last 10 years! You will be amazed at how many compliments you get when you wear the right colours!
- Always bear in mind if a new piece you are considering buying needs dry cleaning or hand washing. Does it fit with your lifestyle? Will you wear it enough times?
- A Capsule Wardrobe is a timeless clothing collection which you can use to make unlimited combinations to suit any occasion and stops those moments of panic about what to wear! Before you decide to keep or buy any garment, think does this make me look and feel fabulous? Does it flatter my shape and colouring? Does it work with my lifestyle – will I actually wear it? Is the price acceptable?
- Make your clothes work hard for you by investing in some timeless pieces that will last for years, such as coats, handbags and shoes.
- Choose some accessories that will transform an outfit. Be aware of what accessories really suit you. Is gold better for you than silver? Chunky bracelets or dainty bracelets? Big or small earrings?
- Many people buy the wrong size. Buy for the size that you are now and resist the urge to buy for the shape you think or hope you might be in the future! If you don’t like the number on the size label – cut it out!
Helen Venables is managing director of House of Colour.Last modified: January 8, 2021