I have expensive taste. Yesterday I was shopping for bed covers at Macy’s and my eyes were immediately drawn to the most expensive bedding in the store. So it really doesn’t matter what department I’m shopping in, my eyes are just drawn to pricey items. That’s a curse. It really is. But I didn’t buy the expensive bedding, and I don’t usually buy the priciest things my eyes are drawn to in women’s clothing stores either. I’m determined to shop within my budget. But every so often I find something that I decide is worth the investment and I doggedly save for it, shop wisely for it and wait for it. That’s why today I’m sharing a winter classic outfit built with investment pieces.
When I looked over these photos, I almost decided not to show this outfit. What was I thinking taking photos of an outfit curated with such expensive pieces? Alas, I decided to go ahead and share them because I really don’t like wasting photos that James and I endured the freezing cold to take.
But as I began typing up this post I had another decision. Would I try to pass this outfit off as just another winter classic that you could easily construct from items in your closet or would I address the elephant on the page? I value my readers’ trust, so I decided we’d talk about the elephant.
This leather Veronica Beard dickey blazer is quite pricey. But, like when I purchased mine, it’s available for 25% off right now at Nordstrom (but not at Veronica Beard, where there are more sizes available – maybe they’ll price match???). I tried faux leather blazers, and I still have this one from Chico’s. But the faux leather Chico’s blazer will stay in my closet for a season, while the Veronica Beard dickey blazer is an investment that will be in my possession as long as the kitchen table my daddy built for my wedding gift. Some things are worth holding on to.
My AG Mari straight leg jeans were also an investment…of a different sort. While I probably won’t keep these premium denim jeans forever, I chose to pay a higher price for them because they fit and wear beautifully. And I wear them at least a couple of times a week. As a woman who pretty much lives in jeans, I like having denim that feels good and wears well. Cost per wear, I believe these jeans are a good investment.
You know, we all have our “things.” We all have certain things we’re willing to pay a little more for. I don’t use expensive skincare, drive a new car, dine at expensive restaurants (without a gift card!) or take pricey vacations. But I’m all for people who do!
But I love pretty clothes. And I especially appreciate well constructed clothing made with good fabrics and quality hardware. Plus fit is important to me. Not only do I want clothing that fits me well so that it looks good. I only want items in my closet that feel good on my body, too. Most of the time I’m able to achieve those goals without spending an exorbitant amount of money. But every so often I’m willing to save, watch for a good deal and invest a little more than usual in something of higher value.
My black Michael Kors handbag was not an exorbitant price, but it was a little pricier than something I would buy at, say, Target. Again, it’s a classic bag that I’ll carry for years and that I already carry very often. I purchased it on sale and got free shipping by being part of the KorsVIP program (which is totally free and open to anyone). You’ll find similar bags here and here. They’re having their semi-annual sale right now with up to 70% off.
Finally, my sunglasses are also a little on the pricey side. I don’t think I’ve ever paid this much for another pair of sunnies. But you know what? I’ve also had these sunglasses longer and they’ve remained scratch free for longer than any other pair of sunglasses I’ve had before, too. If I invest in something, I take good care of it.
My shoes, necklace, earrings and cashmere sweater were all very reasonable purchases. And every single item I’m wearing was purchased on sale and/or with bonus points of some sort. And, looking over the list, I can assure you I got free shipping for every piece, too.
I’m spilling the beans about these investment pieces because I value your trust. I’m not advocating that you make the same choices I’ve made and I’m not really showing you this outfit to compel you to purchase the items. But I do have four tips in case you do want to make similar investments now or in the future.
- Instead of making impulsive investments, plan for investment purchases. Create a wardrobe wishlist (I share how in this post) and chart your course. I had been planning to purchase a leather blazer for several years before I finally bought this one.
- Determine the characteristics you’re looking for (fit, color, quality, accents, etc.) and don’t budge on those. Resist the urge to purchase something that “will do” only to determine later on that it really doesn’t meet your expectations. (I returned a pricey faux leather jacket I’d bought in the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, and it was hard to let it go. But now I’m glad I did. It didn’t fit nearly as well as this one.)
- Be patient. Watch for sales, accumulate loyalty points at your favorite stores, shop secondhand, create wish lists at the stores such as Nordstrom that have that feature and….wait.
- Take care of those investments and hold onto them. If you invest in classic, well-constructed pieces, I definitely advocate taking good care of them and keeping them in your closet. They’ll endure the ebb and flow of fashion fads and trends, and you can enjoy using them for years.
I do believe that a curated wardrobe built with a few investment pieces that you love and that fit beautifully can be a source of great joy. I also believe it can help you have a wardrobe that works for you with minimal changeover. And it helps you to be able to create classic outfits with ease and style.
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Coming next week…
Right now I’m working on a post that many of my readers have been asking for. I’ll be sharing how to wear socks during the winter to keep those ankle warm while also looking stylish and modern. Stay tuned!
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Blessed for My Day
Loss is a part of life. It’s huge and impactful, but it is also something we all must endure. When we lose someone or something dear, it is normal and even healthy to grieve what we have lost, that which we held dear and loved. But when have an important choice to make: will we grieve alone or will we allow the Lord to walk us through our grief.
When we allow our grief to turn to bitterness, it eventually becomes toxic and poisons every area of our lives. But when we take Jesus’ hand and walk with Him through our season of grief, we come out on the other side with compassion and insight and grace to extend to others. The story of Jacob losing his son Joseph is a story of contrast. The father grieves poorly and never really recovers from his loss. But Joseph grieves well and becomes a man marked by lovingkindness. You can read the story in Genesis 37-50.
Then Jacob tore his garments and put sackcloth on his loins and mourned for his son many days. All his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted and said, “No, I shall go down to Sheol to my son, mourning.” Thus his father wept for him. ~ Genesis 37:34-35