Today’s Friend Friday topics is about how you choose and plan your outfits. I see my answers are quite repetitive and rambling and not very conclusive today. I was writing them while half watching Silent Witness, so that’s what you get I guess.
1. and 2. How do you determine what you will wear that day? Do you plan outfits out in advance for a whole week, month, weekend?
For the weekdays, I choose the outfit I am going to wear the night before about 70% of the time, and otherwise I just pick something out in the morning. It doesn’t take me long and there are a few tried and tested combinations. I also don’t have that many officey type clothes, so I tend to rewear quite a lot. Sometimes I know I haven’t worn an item for a while, so I make sure I include it in an outfit.
On the weekends, it’s a different story. Sometimes I plan outfits ages in advance, like if I have a new dress to wear. For example at the moment, I have a new thrifted dress that I have yet to wear. I know exactly what I will pair it with, I just need to find the right day. For a special occasion I will preplan longer too. Tonight is Dave and I’s 11 year anniversary, and I also have a big meeting with lots of senior people, so I did a bit of planning. I decided on an outfit on Monday night. Other weekend days I will just flounce around for a bit in front of my wardrobe and pick things out that I fancy wearing that day.
3. Do you have any specific way of tracking outfits and items already worn so you don’t repeat?
Nope, it’s all in my head! I have a pretty good memory for useless details like that – unfortunately for some other things my brain is like a sieve. It helps that I have a lot of clothes and accessories, I don’t think I will ever run out of possible combinations even if I never buy another thing ever again. I actually repeat outfits all the time as well, just not the ones I photograph. Sometimes I will also take an outfit that I’ve worn before as a starting block, and change a couple of details like the belt, and sometimes bigger things too, until eventually it becomes a new outfit.
4. How do you discover new combinations of items in your closet? (Trial try-ons? Hanging items together?)
Again, it’s mainly in my head. I know my wardrobe very well because I’ve been photographing outfits for so long (since 2007), and I can visualise how something will look easily. I’ll sometimes add a necklace or a belt or something, but I only really deviate from my original plan substantially if it looks really awful. I take inspiration from everywhere, other bloggers, people in the street, in films etc, but the foundation of this is that I know what I’ve got at home really well, so if there’s something I like, or something that has weaseled its way into my subconscious (inspiration isn’t always so explicit and literal), I can think of ways of adapting it to what I already have.
5. To streamline the process for 2011 what is one new thing you can do to cut down your dressing time?
I don’t think I need much streamlining really. I don’t spend much time in the mornings, and the time I spend at night is enjoyable, so I don’t feel I need to cut it down.
But I did used to do this thing while I was doing my Masters where on a Sunday night I used to pick outfits for the week ahead, and put each outfit on a hanger (minus shoes, of course) so that in the morning everything was in one place. That worked well, I can’t remember why I stopped. You need some fairly sturdy hangers though, and you can’t repeat during that week.
So it seems I do a little bit of everything, some planning, some last minute decisions, some tried and tested combinations, and some explicitly new juxtapositions. What about you, kittens?
Here’s the roundup of this week’s posts.