The Good Ick #9: Shop Sale Smart
The Good Ick #9: Shop Sale Smart

Sale time is when I’ve scored some of my best wins in the closet. It’s also when I’ve made my biggest mistakes. So, with the risk of stating the obvious, my aim here is to help you minimize your misses and give you a chance to add, smartly, to your closet. Sale can be tempting, but keep your head on and remember, you are building personal style here. Additional ways to tell the story of who you are. Don’t view sale time as an opportunity to become someone else, try on new personalities. That’s how you get a closet filled with purple platform peep toed heels that you will never, ever, wear. Rather, use sale to be extra smart about leaning in to your style and telling your story. Better. And more consistently. I will show you what I mean.

First things first, a quick recap of what should be in your closet: Your WOFs - the WithOut Fails, items that ground everything you wear. They function as a basic, but are never banal in shape or point of view. And the best ones can go from season to season or from day to night. You will wear them a lot. Keep a running list of what WOFs are missing in your closet. When you find them, you will want to score them quickly. The In & Outs. These are the items you covet from a runway show or campaign. You know adding them to your wardrobe will make other items in your closet feel instantly lifted. They pique your curiosity and reaffirm that you love beauty and fashion. They also play in to specifics about your character (e.g. risk taker, humorist, minimalist, etc.). They will be with you for a good while, but it doesn’t have to be a super long term commitment. Don’t overthink these - go with your gut. But make sure you get those WOFs in place because they pair best with the In & Outs. And then there’s the HtH, the had to have. These are the items in your closet that may have no explanation for the why behind the purchase other than you loved it. Really loved it. And you may never have ever worn the item. But you loved it. Keep these to a minimum as they’ve sunk the closets of even the best dressers out there!

the missing WOF, the in and out, the had to have

The make up of what you NEED will vary greatly depending on where you are in the process of building your closet. Many of you DM me that you’ve finally figured out your personal style, you’ve bagged up 90% of what you had to just get it out of your sight, and you’re starting fresh (A). Others (B) have been in a solid place longer, and maybe you are just needing pick me ups, extra emotional pieces, and the WOF you hadn’t really given a shot yet.

two pie charts

Ok, so far so good, right? Now I will give you examples of items from our sale that I consider to be in these various groups. I’ll explain the why, and give visuals. You will find this helpful, I’m sure.

WOF Bottoms. I’ll start with skirts. These are perfect examples of WOFs Fundamentals for me. The shapes are simple but have a point of view, they have details that are neither fussy nor divisive, and the material is luxurious without being precious.

three skirts, one blue, one grey, one black

I’ll start with the denim skirt. What makes this a WOF? First, the fabrication. It’s denim, it’s classic. No one has ever looked back in time and said “damn, remember the time we all looked like asses wearing classic wash denim?” No. Doesn’t happen. What’s key with this particular one is the weight. Heavy enough that it works with boots and sweaters, but it’s not stiff or thick - so it also works with a tube top and sandals in July. And because it’s clean and refined, it dresses up head to toe. See?

illustration of denim skirt worn different ways

Next, the trouser skirt. Menswear classic styling in a skirt. And if you think you would tire of the length, you could always chop it off to a mini or above the knee. So, here’s the best thing about WOFs: THEY ALLOW US TO EXPERIMENT but always feel like ourselves. See the good strange elements below with the grey skirt? When worn with a WOF, they don’t feel strange at all. They just read chic. If you were trying out a white pump and sock for the first time, and you paired it with an over the top amazing dress straight from a fabulous runway show, you may not feel like yourself. WOFs are the clearest way to communicate that you are still in there. You don’t lose yourself in a trend or moment. The WOF fit and style should be so simple that any experimental item, like the big circle backed sweater here, immediately has your name written all over it. Ironic that something so clean and simple is what frees us up to experiment so much more with other creative pieces.

illustration of the good strange way to wear a skirt

And then the trouser wrap skirt. This is the WOF that always surprises people - but….should it? A piece CAN have tremendous design attitude and still be so damn functional that you wear it as a basic. And, in fact, if a basic is meant to be worn a lot, then the last thing you want to feel “a lot” is basic. Trust me on this one. Ok?

illustration of how to wear a wrap skirt

The WOF pants. I’ve selected these guys below to give an example of the varied types that reside in the CP closet.

five pairs of pants

First, the eased out trouser (a.). Many people make the mistake of buying repetitive styles in their closet - just with different embellishments or colors. But you’ll add much more versatility if you focus on buying in to different “vibes.” Here’s what I mean. This is a super polished suiting type pant. But it has tremendous ease built in to it - yet it’s still lean. This is what I pull out everytime when I want something a little slimmer, but not overly so. A little relaxed, but not overly so. And put together, but not overly so. That may seem like it has no point of view. But quite the contrary. There are just those many days when just perfectly chill, but not overly so, is how I want to feel. The good vibe.

woman in a pair of pants that are the good kind of loose

Next is the higher waisted trouser (b.) and this one is in a year round fabric, so bonus. The fabric has a hint of shine from the viscose - that means it can look really dressed up - if that’s what you’re going for. But the cut is so relaxed and easy that it becomes that ultimate valve item - meaning it can really turn up a sweatshirt and make it feel like so much more, but if you wear for evening, it can really take it all down a notch. And then full on head to toe for work, no brainer. Functional. Highly so.

model on tarp with pants on her left and illustration of woman on her right

This sculpted pull on pant (c.) is so self explanatory I won’t belabor the point. It’s just the body we love (it’s like the Calder sweat body in a rich polished knit). And we wear it, a lot. So relaxed and put together at the same time. For the plane, for office, for home, for dinner. Seriously.

photo of woman wearing long sleeve top and long balloon pants

Sometimes a WOF is chosen primarily because of what a color can do for your closet. The cream of the denim twill here (d.) gives that light focal point. Personally, I have a closet filled with a lot of black, charcoal grey and dark browns - sometimes my outfits need breathing room. Think of your clothing as tools. This is the tool you reach for when you need to lighten things up a bit. Choose your tools wisely and make sure you don’t end up with a box of only hammers. This is the piece that is often missing in someone’s closet.

model wearing all white look, illustration of two women wearing white pants and dark tops

And this short definitely makes it on to my WOF list (e.). What I look for here is versatility through the seasons (this one is viscose twill - that’s 12moer material). You can see it feels as natural with a boot and tee as it does the way Sarah is wearing it here in Dubai with a strappy sandal and 90 degree heat. It’s also one of those items that has all the clean masculine effect of a cargo short but because of the drape of the fabric it manages to feel quite feminine at the same time. Or rather, balanced. The way we love it.

model wearing beige outfit, woman wearinf striped t shirt, woman wearing beige outfit with man in the background

Next are the In & Outs. These are the pieces that lift your closet. They give it extra personality. They can take your favorite WOF and make it feel….different, alive - in a new way. Everyone’s going to have different favorite In & Outs, so I’ll just show you a couple of mine and explain why. For sure the cut out bodysuit is top of my list. First, you don’t have to wear it all “cut out.” A highwaisted pant hides that detail - when you want. But, I love the idea of wearing it with low slung stellas, or especially the way my friend Hedvig (@hedvigso) is wearing it here with a big pair of pleated khakis. Pair this with any of your slouch cargo pants and the feeling is good. Different. Lifted. See?

three women wearing the same bodysuit

And of course, the box sleeve top in cotton poplin. What you’ll see here is that most In & Outs tend to be “outfit makers.” They become the focal point of the outfit. You put it on and you’re done. And certainly without trying too hard. That’s what the bodysuit above does - Hedvig just needed the suit. Enough. Statement made. Same goes with the box top. Paired with something so simple and clean like the Slouchy Carpenter Jeans, or the athletic knit pull on pant, and you're done. Without thought, but hardly thoughtless.

two women wearing the same shirt in different colours

So happy sale shopping. Be smart and thoughtful. It’s a marathon not a sprint. Ok?

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