I lit a bit of a wildfire yesterday when I ‘fessed up to my pledge to go one year without buying any clothes.Â
Quite a few people are chewing on it and might take the pledge with me. (Whee!) The goals areÂ to spend less, be more creative, and become truer to ourselves. (Take that, Â evil hamster wheel of fashion marketing!)
The nice thing about A Year Without Clothes is that it’s a play-a-long, which means you get to make the rules.Â Â To help you decide your house rules, here are *8Things to think about before going a year without clothes:
1. Write Yourself a Pass: Maybe you’re getting married this year, or having a baby, or working on losing weight. Why not take the pledge, but write your self a pass? “Good for one wedding dress and accessories.” “Good for the minimum number of work pants/jeans needed in size 6, when I get there.”Â The goal is to limit yourself enough that you think creatively about your wardrobe and the effect of consumerism on your self image. But doset you own rules and limits now, or the pledge will dissolve at the first clearance sale!
2. Create anÂ Plan for Warm Weather.Sure, it’s easy figure out if you have the basics forÂ Winter wear, but Summer is a looooong way away. Write down what you bare minimum is for summer (4 tanks, 2 shorts, a sleeveless dress…) Then if you don’t have the minimum when the time comes give yourself permission to try number three…
3. Consider the Hierarchy: Hit the summer and have nothing short sleeved? Follow the hierarchy. Re-purpose. Trade. Buy Used.First option: Re-purpose. Turn a shirt into a tank top with your sewing machine. Second option: Trade. See if a girlfriend will swap a couple of her extra tanks for that sundress you never wore last season. Third Option: Buy Used. It’s cheaper and friendlier to the environment.
4. Stock up on Socks and Undies.These are the things that will wear out during the year. Sure, you could write yourself a pass to buy them as needed…but once you are in Target buying your Hanes, it will be MUCH harder to resist the sales racks.
5. Get Curious. How will this help me be more aware of who I am internally and how I express that in my outward appearance? Am I a slave to fashion marketing or am I being my truest self? How deep is my resourcefulness and problem solving skills? How willing am I to learn a new skill? If I set limit, will my creativity expand?
6. Get Excited!This could lead to some really fun stuff! A mail-based accessories exchange? A Tweet up with virtual friends for an In Real Life clothing swap? A Flickr photo pool of images of the real you? Who knows? You could start ANYTHING. Adventure is out there!
7. Learn from Experience.Â The first year I livedÂ in Copenhagen the prices were so insane that all I bought wasÂ a winter coat and boots,Â two sweaters, and a blouse. My expat girlfriend told me last week that she and her husband went two years here before the closet full of clothes they already had wore out.Â Â We wereÂ suprised by how littleÂ we reallyÂ needed.You will be too.
8. Remember Others. This pledge will save you money,Â and Â it will free up some funds to help others who are less fortunate than we, the middle-class blogging ladies. You don’t need to give all the money you’ll saved to charity. But please do make a symbolic donation to indicate that your pledge is for a purpose.Â I’m suggesting the Apparent Project, my friend’s organization in Haiti that helps feed and clothe orphans, and supports poor parents through cottage industries and microfinancing so they don’t have to giveÂ up their children.Â If you want to join me, the Chip In is below. Or pick a charity of your choice and send some abundance thier way.
What are *8Things you could do to make A Year Without Clothes work for you? Or alternatively, what are *8Things you could do to make the clothes you have go farther for you? Or *8Things that will help me spend less on clothing? Or *8Things To Do To Dress Like Your True Self. Grab a button and play along, add your post-specific URL to the list, or tell us inÂ the comments below. Thanks for being here!