Sunday, November 3, 2013

"Fall"ing for an Old Sweater

Sweater (Susan Bristol; Parisian); Denim Shirt (Kohl's); Plaid Wool Wrap Skirt (LL Bean); Boots (Aigner); Belt (Nordstrom); Bag (Rosetti; purchased from a street fair in Florence, Italy); Necklace (Aronstam Fine Jewelers)
While overhauling my closet last summer, I decided to challenge myself to make no new purchases as long as there were items hanging in my closet that had never been worn (with the caveat that I could purchase items specifically to coordinate with something I already owned if the only thing keeping me from wearing a piece was lack of anything to go with it).   I haven't been perfect about the "no new purchases" aspect of the challenge, but I continue to make progress in maximizing my wardrobe while minimizing my shopping budget, and getting rid of items that are merely taking up precious closet real estate. 

This chunky knit cardigan sweater by Susan Bristol was by far the oldest item in my closet that had never been worn.  I bought it at Parisian while moonlighting as a sales clerk during law school.  I worked there from 1996-1998, so it's pretty old.  The tag (with the receipt stapled to it) was still hanging from the sleeve.  The original price was $125, but I got it for about $26 on sale and using my employee discount (the best reason to work retail).  Still,  a bargain is not really a bargain if it hangs in your closet unworn.  I can't really explain why I never wore it - the color palette exists in abundance in my wardrobe, so it's not as though I didn't have anything to wear with it.  Maybe it was actually the presence of too many autumnal options that made me pass it over for other choices season after season?!  I also think the tree design is a bit "themey" - not ugly Christmas sweater "themey," but enough that it gave me pause.  

In any event, sticking to my "wear it or share it" mentality, I experimented with other items I already owned (including a $6 thrifted wool skirt from LL Bean), and came up with the outfit in the top photo.  The olive suede and cognac leather riding boots are my all-time favorite riding boots (come on, you're not surprised that I have multiple pair of riding boots), so any outfit that lets me sport them is an outfit I like!  In fact, this outfit was so comfy and perfect for a crisp Fall day, I'm actually disappointed I never put it together before.

I also managed to make the sweater more than a "one outfit wonder" by layering it on over the Vince Camuto distressed (faux) leather fit and flare dress in the picture below - a newer acquisition.

What's the oldest item in your closet that's never been worn?  How do you feel about "theme" sweaters?
Dress (Vince Camuto); Denim shirt (Kohl's); Fair Trade Hand Painted Leather Ring from Guatemala (a steal for only $4.00 from Global Gifts); Booties (Frye; Zappos); Bag (Fossil); Statement Necklace (The Limited); Belt (Tommy Hilfiger Outlet).
Fashion is what you buy; Style is what you do with it!

Linked up with:  Friday's Fab Favorites by Style Elixir

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